Stylist Leith Clark is one of the busiest women in the business—and with the launch of her new fashion magazine, Violet, she just got a whole lot busier. Clark’s credentials are impressive. She’s the founder of Lula Magazine; the style director at large for Harper’s Bazaar U.K.; Keira Knightley’s red-carpet stylist; and a brand consultant for the likes of Honor, Orla Kiely, and Michael van der Ham. Tomorrow, with the launch of the new biannual publication, she’ll add EIC to her résumé. Violet is a labor of love she started alongside her friend Luella Bartley, the new design director for Marc by Marc Jacobs.
“I started talking and brainstorming with Luella,” says Clark, “and slowly, it felt like time for me to do this.” Despite the digital-crazed, online world that fashion is moving toward, Clark argues print still has its place. “Print is not dead for me, no way. Magazines just need to be special and booklike—and Violet is booklike. I would never read a book on a screen.”
With her heavy involvement in the business, Clark is constantly surrounded by talent, and it seems she’s managed to lasso some of the best for the new venture. Bartlett has been deputized, while other masthead notables include Amanda de Cadenet, Stephanie LaCava, Clémence Poésy, Zoe Kazan, and Valentine Fillol-Cordier. Brit Marling covers the first issue, shot and interviewed by de Cadenet, but Clark is leaving a bit of mystery as to the feel of the whole thing. “It’s difficult for me to explain Violet in a few short sentences,” she says. “Especially when I want everyone who reads it to decide what it is to them. That’s better than me telling them how to feel.”
So where does the name Violet come from? “I called it Violet for a lot of reasons,” Clark says. “Namely because it’s a strong word, my favorite scent, my favorite Hole song, my goddaughter’s name, and also the name of my mysterious great-aunt who I only met once—she wore a kimono and pink lipstick and had naturally shiny silver hair. I was very little and she made quite an impression on me.” Let’s see what kind of impression Violet can make on the rest of us. — Afsun Qureshi