Inspiration, glamour and an energy that was electric is the only way to describe the latest event by the BSME – British Society of Magazine Editors. Taking place inside the iconic Mirror Room at the Rosewood London, guests from the publishing industry and beyond gathered together for the lunch with Edward Enniful OBE. Our Editor in chief and Vice Chair of the BSME, Laura Bartlett was in attendance, here’s a little bit of her insight in to the day…

If I’m totally honest, listening to Edward speaking on stage was like listening to myself. Whilst his career has been the definition of trailblazing, specifically whilst he was at the helm of British Vogue for the last six years, his sentiments and message align with everything that we stand for here at House of Coco magazine. That everybody deserves a seat at the table, regardless of their race, gender or socioeconomic background. 

Edward has now stepped in to his new role as global creative and cultural advisor for Vogue and editorial advisor for British Vogue which means his impact will continue to reverberate throughout the publishing industry. Joined on stage by Gideon Spanier, Edward divulged several golden nuggets and insights in to what he believes the future of publishing looks like. 

Magazine publishing is no longer about focusing primarily on print publications, it’s about creating a global brand. The industry has changed so much since I launched House of Coco ten years ago and I understand the importance of being more than just pages in a magazine, it’s about how we can meet our audience where they are. Whether that’s on social media, via our digital magazine, through our newsletter or in person, real life events. Edward talked about the necessity for Editors to be more than just that, they need to think about how they can grow a brand on a global scale, pivot when needed and continue to stay relevant. 

When asked about how he manages to incorporate diversity in to his work, Edward said it’s not even a thought, it’s just something that comes naturally and that’s why it’s so important for diversity to be present in leadership positions because to people like Edward and myself, it’s just who we are. Which has been something that, looking back over the last decade, has been the catalyst to what are now some of my proudest moments at our magazine. From our stunning, diverse models on the covers which we shot all over the world from day one, to our first ever trans cover model around 7 years ago and finally our latest cover shot on location in Grenada with black models, black designers and pure black excellence. It’s not about following trends, it’s about creating them. 

It was such an empowering afternoon where guests included Naomi Campbell, Journdann Dunn and I was also joined by my wonderful guest, Pelumi, the first woman to drive solo from London to Lagos. Pelumi stands for everything that we epitomise here at House of Coco, that women are strong, capable of anything and that the world is our oyster. So it was great to spend some time with Pelumi amongst our industry peers for an afternoon that won’t be forgotten any time soon. 

Finally, the time with Edward acted as a reminder that having a platform means that you have a voice and with that comes responsibility. I believe it’s our role to make sure that we use those voices for impacting the world in a positive, all inclusive, everyone deserves a seat at this table kind of way. 

Because as Edward said, in order to be it, you have to see it. 

Photography by David Cotter.

Head to the BSME website to hear all about the next event coming up soon. 

Author

Northern girl Laura is the epitome of a true entrepreneur. Laura’s spirit for adventure and passion for people blaze through House of Coco. She founded House of Coco in 2014 and has grown it in to an internationally recognised brand whilst having a lot of fun along the way. Travel is in her DNA and she is a true visionary and a global citizen.

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