Nicholas Coleridge says Princess Diana would try on clothes at Vogue

Princess Diana tried on clothes at Vogue to stop flustering shop staff and Victoria Beckham insisted on having her family at every event says Nicholas Coleridge, as the Condé Nast s

  • Nicholas Coleridge revealed several celebrity stories on the Sheerluxe podcast
  • The magazine supremo shared the Princess of Wales’ clothes shopping habits 
  • Revealed Victoria Beckham’s desire to always have family near during events 

As the long-standing managing director of British media company Condé Nast – among many other titles – Nicholas Coleridge has a wealth of celebrity stories up his sleeves.

The former President of Conde Nast International spent 30 years at the top of the business, assembling more than 100 titles, as well as countless A-lister encounters which he shared with Sheerluxe podcast yesterday.

Nicholas revealed the Princess of Wales’ clothes shopping habits, Victoria Beckham’s desire to always have her family near her during events, and how Anna Wintour seemed prior to constantly wearing sunglasses.

The director of the Victoria & Albert Museum, who spoke about his 2019 memoir The Glossy Years, claimed Princess Diana would often try clothes on at Vogue House to avoid any embarrassment at a store if she didn’t like any of the designer products.

Elsewhere, he claimed Anna, editor-in-chief of American Vogue, was ‘much easier to communicate with’ before her days of constantly wearing dark glasses.

Nicholas Coleridge walking behind the Princess of Wales in 1991, outside Vogue House in Mayfair, London

Speaking on the podcast, Nicholas recalled how Princess Diana used to often visit Vogue’s headquarters in London. 

He explained: ‘[During] the period when I was first working at Conde Nast, [the Princess of Wales] used to come in there a lot to Vogue House and she had a very particular reason for coming in. 

‘And that was that she found it very embarrassing to go to shops in Sloane Street or in Bond Street and try on clothes by a designer and then buy nothing and not get something.

‘Because when she came in there was such excitement and everyone working there was so thrilled so then if she didn’t buy something she felt that she caused great disappointment to everyone who worked there.

‘So she had an arrangement with Vogue that if she wanted to try a new designer, the magazine would call in quite a lot of clothes from that designer for her to try them on and then the fashion editors there would look at them with her and they would say “you know we think you look great in this one, this one I don’t think works quite so well, this one is marvellous.”

Nicholas revealed the Princess of Wales’ clothes shopping habits, Victoria Beckham’s desire to always have her family near her during events, and how Anna Wintour (pictured with Nicholas in 2007) seemed prior to constantly wearing sunglasses

‘Her people would then ring the designer and say the Princess saw some clothes you lent to Vogue and wants to buy two of them and she found that much easier,’ he said.

Why Anna Wintour never removes her trademark sunglasses 

American Vogue editor and fashion legend Anna Wintour is known for never taking off her trademark sunglasses. 

As well as wearing them in the Vogue offices, she is regularly seen sporting them on the catwalk, and even watched the entire Oscars in 2015 without taking them off.

One of the only times the British-American fashion legend, who has worked for Vogue for 30 years, has been seen taking them off is when she was made a Dame at Buckingham Palace in 2017.

She wore her trademark sunglasses on arrival at the Palace, but removed them before entering the ballroom, where she received the award from the Queen. 

During her ’60 minutes with Anna Wintour’ interview, the American editor admitted she used her sunglasses as ‘armour’, and they were a useful tool to ‘hide boredom’.

‘I can sit in a show and if I am bored out of my mind, nobody will notice… At this point, they have become, really, armour’, she said in 2012.

The society magazine supremo said that there was a time that whenever a person entered the lift at Vogue House, you could be confronted with the Princess of Wales. 

‘And then later, she came to lunch and used to come to our parties and I have to say that I found her so utterly beautiful in the flesh,’ said Nicholas.

‘She had something about her, this incredible glow, incredible star quality. She was very flirtatious, to everybody, to all men, and I think that was one of the extraordinary things about her. Men of all ages frankly fell for her. 

‘She was quite tactile which is an unusual thing. She was a big one for putting her hand on your shoulder, or her hand on your hand, or her hand on your wrist and of course, nothing is more sort of generally sexy than that.’

Nicholas also shared his experience of working with Spice Girl-turned-fashion designer Victoria Beckham, admitting that the mother-of-four would often ask for an invite to events for her whole family. 

He said: ‘There was a time when I was running the British Fashion Council and Victoria Beckham was absolutely the zenith of her moment, I think actually her moment continues to this very day.

‘…And we always longed to have Victoria Beckham to all these Fashion Council awards and everything that we did, and when she came she always insisted on bringing her entire family and this is the weirdest thing. 

‘So we would invite her and then you’d get a message saying that Victoria would want to come but she’d want to bring her sister Louise, her sister Louise’s partner, and her mum and her dad, and her dad’s brother, and they all wanted to be on the top table. 

‘So the whole of the top table sort of became the Beckham family table so there was a period of my life when I was always sitting next to distant members of the Beckham family, who were all there, there was no one who wasn’t there.’

Nicholas also shared his experience of working with Spice Girl-turned-fashion designer Victoria Beckham (pictured), admitting that the mother-of-four would often ask for an invite to events for her whole family

However, while the family loved ‘all the attention’, Nicholas suggested they ‘didn’t know how to get any privacy at all and weren’t sure if they wanted privacy’.

The director of the Victoria & Albert Museum spoke about his 2019 memoir The Glossy Years (above)

‘I could sense they were in a terrible muddle and probably still are,’ he added.

The magazine guru’s final reveal was about his working relationship with Anna Wintour and her signature black sunglasses. 

‘Well, Anna Wintour, what a phenomenon she is,’ he said. ‘I knew her first before she started wearing dark glasses, which was a big moment in her life, but for the first six or seven years when she was editing and a was a figure, she only wore dark glasses about half the time and she used to take them off for lunch.’

‘When I was editing Harpers she was the editor of British Vogue at that time and we would have lunch together not more often than once a year, but about once a year, and she didn’t wear her glasses.

‘It was much easier I found communicating with her in those days. You could see the whites of her eyes, you could see her burning ambition.’

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