The winners of the European Publishing Awards 2022 have been announced, with an impressive five accolades for BurdaVerlag. Three of its brands were chosen out of around 300 submissions from 16 media markets.
José Redondo-Vega has been an established name in the men’s lifestyle world for many years and last year was appointed managing editor of Focus Style. A “style guide for the modern man”, the free supplement is published twice a year with Focus, the news magazine. Redondo-Vega received the White Star Award 2020 for the “Best Editor Fashion & Lifestyle” in recognition of his long-standing journalistic achievements and his contribution to the success of Focus Style. In this interview, he reveals how fashion works in times of crisis and dares to predict what will happen post-coronavirus.
What does luxury mean for you in times of crisis?
It means concentrating on the essentials while also remaining curious about new things and allowing yourself to have special moments – despite the prevailing alarmism. It means consciously choosing the people around you.
Have you stayed true to your clothing style during lockdown?
Of course. We should retain control over at least one aspect of our lives, especially in times of crisis.
What have you learned from the pandemic? How would you sum up this period?
It’s been the same for everyone: The coronavirus has acted as an accelerant in every area of life, professional and personal, without exception. This extreme time also has extreme side effects, both negative and positive. It will take a long time to analyse it all. Hopefully, this will prompt us to take a more conscious approach to things we have taken for granted: health, friends and family, prosperity and personal freedom.
Has coronavirus changed fashion forever?
Definitely the fashion industry, but not the designs, apart from the huge variety of face masks on offer. It’s totally acceptable – and nothing new – to dress a little more casually when working from home. Naturally, some brands think they’ve discovered a new trend and have responded with quick, short-lived fixes. Somehow I doubt these concepts have been successful. Unsurprisingly, most people have not neglected their style.
In an interview with Focus Style, Tommy Hilfiger says that the fashion industry needs more equality and less exclusion. Do you agree?
Absolutely. First and foremost, the fashion industry needs to truly reinvent itself and get rid of outdated rituals. There are definitely some positive signs, but it really needs to catch up when it comes to communicating content and dealing with customers. It’s not enough to jump on the digital bandwagon and hope that vegan influencers and charity campaigns will help to distract from years of neglect. But the coronavirus will have a long-lasting effect here as well.
In the latest issue you travel around Berlin with celebrity chef Tim Raue. Is he one of your style icons?
Certainly, in the sense that “style is the person themselves”. Tim has an impressive biography; he has worked hard for his career. People like that know what they want better than others. Above all, however, they know what they don’t want. Tim Raue’s fashion style reflects his attitude as a chef and as a person: free and radical. He’s just as happy in a camouflage outfit as he is in a business suit.
Why did you choose Matthew McConaughey as your latest cover star?
Like – hopefully – all the personalities we put on the cover, he is one of those celebrities with whom modern men can identify, and see themselves in. He has a confident style, natural self-assurance, a sense of humour and is down to earth. And he has experienced personal crises that have helped him to mature over the years. Perfect for a “back to business” issue. He’s a good guy.
In the latest issue of Focus Style, Hollywood star Matthew McConaughey gives ten tips for overcoming any crisis, Tommy Hilfiger calls for the fashion industry to adopt new values and Tim Raue, Germany’s most stylish Michelin-starred chef, provides an insight into his wardrobe.