The flurry of speculation attendant upon Cara Delevingne and St. Vincent wearing silver rings at Chanel’s fashion show in Paris on Wednesday was predictable.
Were they engaged? Were they just wearing some silver rings?
The two are in a relationship. They have been fashion’s ‘It’ couple of the season: the 33-year-old Texan singer, and the 23-year-old very posh English model and actress—and high-profile lesbian couples in the world of fashion are too few.
Delevingne confirmed the depth of the relationship in July’s Vogue: “I think that being in love with my girlfriend is a big part of why I’m feeling so happy with who I am these days,” she said. “And for those words to come out of my mouth is actually a miracle.”
Her attraction to women had been an issue for Delevingne, she said.
“It took me a long time to accept the idea, until I first fell in love with a girl at 20 and recognized that I had to accept it. But I have erotic dreams only about men. I had one two nights ago where I went up to a guy in the back of a VW minivan, with a bunch of his friends around him, and pretty much jumped him.”
But it has been her relationship with Annie Clark, better known as St. Vincent, that has been played out in front of the cameras over the last few weeks, as New York, London, and Paris Fashion Weeks have rolled by.
Besides Rick Owens’s models-wearing-models catwalk japes, sightings of Delevingne and St. Vincent together have been snapped hungrily by photographers.
They are the only high-profile lesbian relationship on the front row—despite the trend of “lesbian chic,” stretching all the way back to the 1990s, visible lesbianism is relatively scarce on Planet Fashion.
Lesbianism may be used as a visual theme in fashion spreads, and this year—with Kendall Jenner, Delevingne, and their famous buddies—young women in entertainment and fashion are celebrating their close friendships, with BFF shots aplenty, on Twitter and Instagram. But lesbianism itself is absent from fashion’s public realm.
Despite their singularity, Delevingne and Clark are not being portrayed negatively by the tabloids. Not only are they together—their sense of style is stupendous. Gone is St. Vincent’s (beautiful) tangled gray mane of last year; she now sports an ethereally bouncy-looking mop of brunette curls, and favors innovatively tailored dresses and jackets. Delevingne too has a great, individual sense of style, rocking the Chanel show in a short, electric blue jacket.
In London, they were photographed emerging from a party, although in stories like this where they are photographed together, there were also dark whispers of a “distance” growing between them as a couple.
They were also photographed together at fashion shows, like Burberry’s in London.
Three days ago, Delevingne posted on Instagram a picture of an older couple rollerblading, with the caption: “Love is spending the rest of your life with someone who makes you nuts and you just want to kill them but you don’t…because you can’t imagine life without them.”
Eight weeks ago, when Cara turned 23, Clark posted a birthday greetings and a love heart for Delevingne on her Instagram, illustrated by a great vintage Brooke Shields photo and the hashtag #thisisanoldpervypictureofbrookeshields.
Then there was another Instagram, with “Marry Me, Annie Clark” written out, 17 weeks ago:
St. Vincent has not spoken publicly about her relationship with Delevingne, although when I interviewed her last year, she said she was single. “I live an absolutely unconventional life where I travel 10 months a year, so it’s not always the easiest to hold a relationship together. I didn’t ever imagine my wedding day. Someday I’d like to have kids, but I don’t have that burning desire to.”
Clark—who named herself St. Vincent after a line in a Nick Cave song that referred to the famous Manhattan hospital, St. Vincent’s, where Dylan Thomas died in 1953—also added that she was a feminist, believing that “being a feminist by action speaks louder than arguing about semantics. Being a strong woman in the world is a feminist act. It’s impossible to be a woman and not see misogyny, but I don’t walk through life feeling like a victim. I’ve been very lucky. The strongest thing a woman can do is be successful, powerful, and excel at whatever they choose to excel at.” Of her music, Clark told me, “I try to live at the intersection of accessible and lunatic.”
One Instagram post Clark shared with her followers from nearly four months ago showed her peering over Delevingne’s shoulder, with the model’s back to the camera, and the caption, “Pyrrhic victory.”
She and Delevingne make for a cute couple on the front row, although just a few weeks ago Page Six reported they had broken up.
As the sighting at the Chanel show proves, that appears far from true, but are they married, engaged, or could they be wearing just two pieces of silver jewelry? The couple is, now, keeping shtum.
It doesn’t matter: Fashion loves Delevingne and Clark, as does the wider media. And both women love keeping the photographers guessing. If they do get married, the media shouldn’t expect an invite.