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Dogs have always been in Vogue

1930voguecover“The next best thing to having the world at your feet is to have a dog at your heels,” Vogue — the magazine — observed in 1930.

Since 1909, dogs have played a role in the magazine’s portrayal of all things glamorous — as companions to style icons and royalty, as inspiration for fiction, as art (both paintings and photographs), and even appearing on the cover from time to time.

Now their contribution to the magazine has been captured in a book, “Dogs in Vogue: A Century of Canine Chic.”

Author Judith Watt came up with the idea as she was sifting through 100-year’s worth of Vogue (the British edition) while doing research for a  special millennial issue in 1999.

“I came across something quite unexpected among the fashion photographs in the magazine’s archive: thousands of canines,” Watt writes in an article in the UK Independent.

In the past century, dogs have served Vogue as “companions, accessories, barely-legible scribbles, caricatures, stars of the grandest photographic portraits and of whimsical fashion illustrations. They are the subject of essays and sometimes treated as celebrities. Taken together, the best of the photographs and features provide a fascinating record of society’s changing preferences for breeds and the evolving role of dogs in women’s lives.”

“Anyone labouring under the delusion that dogs are just man’s best friend and women prefer cats will think again.”

Comments

Comment from Sarahkate
Time October 9, 2009 at 2:19 pm

If you look at many of the magazines esp. the “coffee table” type periodicals from the twenties, thirties and forties with the abundant Erte illustrations, that graphic artist loved portraying dogs usually the Borzoi types along with supremely elegant fashion depictions. I am going to buy that book – love to see how various artists, commercial and otherwise, have drawn dogs over the decades as fashions and preferences change. Thank you for featuring this!

Comment from Anne’n'Spencer
Time October 9, 2009 at 2:37 pm

From a purely decorative standpoint, I love the Twenties and Thirties illustrations of sighthounds–Borzoi, Saluki, Greyhound, and Whippet. They’re sort of iconic for that era. Of course, all dogs are beautiful. And they’ve been gracing our art since ancient Egypt. But those Thirties sight-hound illustrations somehow captured the essence and spirit of those particular dogs.

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