A week at The Guardian with Jess Cartner-Morley, Associate Fashion Editor


In the hot seat:

  • Jess Cartner-Morley
    Associate Editor (Fashion) at The Guardian

Jess' Week:

  • Heads up the fashion team at the Guardian, responsible for the fashion pages in main paper, G2, Guardian Weekend and online.
  • Spends 10 weeks per year out of the office at fashion shows.
  • Will meet PRs for coffee but only if relevant: put your pitch in an email first
  • No dinners outside of fashion weeks. Younger members of the team will go.
  • Best time to pitch long lead ideas is the afternoon. For news it needs to be 8-10am for the following day’s paper.

The week:

  • The Guardian and The Observer are two separate teams, both are digital first.
  • The fashion teams for each title work across online and print
  • Daily conference for the Guardian is at 10.30am
  • Readership = ABC1
    • Younger demographic compared to other papers
    • London/city focused readership
    • Average of 11m unique users per day on Guardian website; two million of which read fashion section
  • Fashion runs on Saturday in the Guardian, in the magazine.
  • Print deadline: Guardian Weekend goes to press the Monday 12 days before the Saturday it runs. For the paper, the copy must be in by lunchtime for the following day. Goes to press at 7pm.
  • The Guardian runs two fashion specials a year, to coincide with London Fashion Week (LFW). Print deadline is two weeks before LFW. Needs info well in advance of that.
  • Attitude to price has changed: used to chase cheap, now it’s about investment pieces. Looking for a global range of brands, and sustainability is key.
  • Rarely use freelancers as have a solid team of writers

Top Tips:

  • Pitching: header, bullet points and one low-res image. No small talk. First 15 words are key.
  • Readers are always interested in British brands
  • Press trips: no time for them, though some staff will take them as holiday.
  • To secure coverage, read the paper and see what is being written about, ask what will be interesting to the reader.
  • Editorial coverage is not linked to advertising spend: she is only answerable to the reader.
  • For celebrity stories, they have to be very influential, eg the likes of Meghan Markle and Victoria Beckham

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