5 life lessons we can learn from Vogue legend Lucinda Chambers

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The fashion maven has spoken out about her time at the famous publication.

Lucinda Chambers – one of fashion’s more enduring figures – recently stepped down from her role as fashion director at British Vogue. 

Over the course of her 36-year tenure at the title (25 of those as fashion director), Chambers stood at Vogue’s helm shaping fashion editorials that will always be remembered as truly iconic.

In the wake of her departure, Chamber’s has now revealed details of her time at magazine in a telling and frank interview with fashion journal Vestoj.

These are things we gleaned from her remarkable, and brilliant, career:

1. Always allow yourself to be proud of your achievements.

Although Chambers told Vestoj she was fired from the magazine in May, she said she was “proud to have worked at Vogue” and was thankful her workmates had been “such brilliant colleagues.”

2.  Failure is part of the process.

It takes time to develop in a career, which means you’re not always going to get it right, despite your best intentions. Taking a radical approach, the fashion director advocated for “celebrating failure”, noting “it helps us to grow and develop.”

3. Confidence is everything.

In the fashion industry, Chambers explained how appearance is huge factor in terms of how you’re perceived. “You can walk into a room feeling pumped up and confident, and if you radiate that the industry will believe in what you project. If on the other hand, you appear vulnerable you won’t be seen as a winner.”

Vogue's fashion features director Sarah Harris, former editor-in-chief Alexandra Shulman and Lucinda Williams. Photo: Getty Images

Vogue’s fashion features director Sarah Harris, former editor-in-chief Alexandra Shulman and Lucinda Williams. Photo: Getty Images

 4. People are at the heart of every business success story.

While Chambers was specifically referring to her time at Vogue, she did note the alchemy of having “the right person at the right company at the right time.” The longstanding former editor also spoke of managing the demands of a working in a creative industry, such as fashion, which is endlessly subject to change. “Fashion moves like a shoal of fish; it’s cyclical and revolutionary. Nobody can stay relevant for a lifetime – you always have peaks and troughs.”

5. Always allow room for the new and unexpected to alter your the world.

Chambers has styled editorials for the world’s top designers and has probably sat front row at more fashion shows than most. Right now she loves French fashion label Vetements, because “what they were doing felt very new.” Speaking about a recent Balenciaga show, the fashion maven raved about how thrilled she was by designer Demna Gvasalia’s unconventional approach. “Everything was thought through: the casting, the music, the space. Everything. And I loved how we were all seated: so far from each other, it all felt anonymous. Normally at a fashion show, everyone looks at each other – who wears what, who sits where. ‘Oh, she’s got the new Céline shoes.’ But here you felt as if you were on your own. It was a new feeling.”

Photos: Getty Images