Tatler: “Where are all the lesbians? On page 94″ – we take a closer look at The Lesbian Issue and That Lesbian Party
by Potato Cake, MYSTERY PARTY-GOER and Petit Fours
Well. Guess what’s on trend: you.
You, me, that girl you pulled last month and everyone on Gaydar Girls. Lesbians are totes a thing, a thing in Tatler magazine, on page 94, in a feature titled ‘Where are all the lesbians? They’re in Tatler’s definitive portfolio on page 94′. Tatler is the so-called society bible, society in the sense of West London. (Not including Ealing Broadway.) It’s significant that they have a feature on lesbians, cause They Don’t Usually Do That.
Tatler also did a whole glam dinner bash Lesbian Ball last week to launch the issue.
Mystery Party-Goer gives us a few choice observations from the Lesbian Ball and Potato Cake (it’s a Jewish delicacy) talks us through The Issue. The issue of the magazine.
On page 94, by Potato Cake
Tatler is the kind of magazine that I devour when it’s given to me at the hairdressers, but it’s not the kind of mag that I would ever think to buy…. until I heard that the latest issue would be full of lesbians.
A friend told me lesbians would be getting a feature in this month’s issue, and after confirming the rumor I duly sped to the newsagents. ‘Where are all the lesbians?’ the front cover asked. Apparently they were on page 94.
There’s a fine line to tread here: on the one hand it would be refreshing to see the frumpy lesbian stereotype dispelled, on the other it’s not exactly progress to be treated like a 21st Century fashion accessory. I pawed my way to the first page of the feature: it read ‘there’s no need to be nervous or titillated’. This did irritate me, but hey I thought this is Tatler. The following pages profile seven Sapphic socialites including comediennes Sue Perkins (course) and Emma Kennedy as well as actress Sophie Ward and eco activist Tamsin Omond.
Each has been given the Tatler treatment: eye wateringly expensive outfits and a short light paragraph about their loves, hates and a few bits in between. Nothing to get offended at here but not much to excite either. A particular low being the comment that Eden Clark adores yellow because it makes her happy. Therein lies the problem for me, there really was nothing to feel strongly about either way. The promising question of ‘where are all the lesbians’ remains unanswered. Unless of course you find ‘page 94’ satisfying.
I’m a great admirer of all of the interviewees and in fact any lesbian in public life that has made the conscious and often brave decision to be open about their sexuality, but the feature itself fell a little flat and just didn’t feel very lesbian. Emma Kennedy rescues it by talking about her crushes on other women, a refreshing interlude in an otherwise flimsy feature.
Ok so it wasn’t my dream article but then this is Tatler and these are empowered lesbian women being portrayed in a positive light. It’s progress, I guess. In the meantime I continue my ten year quest for the answer to the question ‘where are all the lesbians?’
On the Tatler lesbian ball, by MYSTERY PARTY-GOER
1) Did katie reardon say why she was doing this dinner thing? was there a speech? some sort of rousing statement about what the dins was aiming to achieve?
No, she didn’t say anything but she seemed to be having a GREAT time. Nobody said anything in fact, about the event or the point of it etc. There was no welcome or anthing.
We spoke to some Tatler people and asked them what it was all about, they told us v enthusiastically that they believed it was high time that lesbians got some good press.
2) Okay who did you spot? Did anyone do anything particularly exciting/ outrageous?
Mary and Mel, who were being DEAD sweet and nice. Alison Goldfrapp who was a fav of mine. Lot’s of newsreaders/ that kind of thing. Some girls I know from the past who didn’t seem to be under the queer umbrella (then or now). Pretty much all of the people who were on the lesbian panel at WOW, at Southbank Centre. Sue perkins was drunk, in fact, a lot of people were really drunk. People were milling around and drinking but really seemed to be having a great time. Christine Hamilton, who was on amazing form and who did lots of follow up tweeting. Anneka Rice was there, that was weird. So was Gillian Anderson. There was this British film actress there who is in her 50s and she was wearing sunglasses but I don’t remember her name. She was being a right japer.
3) Was it very dressed up?
The official dress code was black tie but people had interpreted it differently. I didn’t see a lot of what I would class as black tie. Lots of girls in blazers and some doing that weird tux style with a bow tie open at the neck. A couple of ball gowns, which were quite out of place. The invitation had said ‘dinner and dancing’ but there wasn’t much of a dinner, just lots of canapes. They wheeled out a sushi bar at one point, which was delicious but it meant the venue stank of fish for the rest of the night, which was fairly inappropriate.
4) Did it at any stage feel a bit awkward at being lumped in a sexuality group? or was it just a good night out?
It felt like a general celebration, which one couldn’t really complain about. It was very much ‘lesbians and their friends and supporters’ rather than just 200 lesbians. Obviously there are so many reasons why this kind of lez fest is problematic, i.e. what’s the real agenda etc and the invitation stated ‘no men allowed’ which obv causes all sorts of problems if we’re to think about gender identity etc but all in all it felt like a really positive event and I think it has done what it set out to – get us some good press and sell lots of magazines?
5) Was it good fun?
Yes, although I wish it hadn’t clashed with the light show at the Shard because we would have had a really good view from our balcony
[ed: well as it turns out the Shard light display was really shit so you missed nothing]
More Tatler lesbian ball photos here
Anyone – thoughts? Does yellow make YOU happy?