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Just How Creative Is Elle Creative Director Joe Zee?
We get letters, we get letters, we get lots and lots of letters

Stylista judge and Elle creative director Joe Zee may or may not be ruining the magazine, may or may not be polluting the magazinewith shirtless model boys, but most certainly is leveraging the magazine to cement his own brand.

Enter "From A to Zee," the most clever take on "From A to Z" since Centrum's "From A to Zinc." Zee's new web feature is a 26-page listing of his favorite things for fall; if popular, we see the feature returning in the winter, spring, and that season when everybody leaves New York.

But as with any "A to Z" list, where objects of desire must begin with the letter of the alphabet on whose page they appear, we're never impressed with what they can come up with for letters like B, G, or M. Give a second-grader some blocks with letters on 'em, and he'll be able to find a word that begins with C ("car") or H ("harlequin").

It's those tricky letters, like Q, X, Y, and Z, that must impress us.

Inevitably, X always turns into something that is "Xtreme" (as it does with Zee's list) or "X Marks the Spot," as it does in Departure magazine's "Dress Code: The A-to-Z Style Guide" this month. But how does Zee manage with for the rest of the challenging alphabet?

Zee: "Quick Print." A Polaroid device that lets you print pictures from your BlackBerry
Departures: "Q&A" with an "exotic (animal) skins" store owner.
Winner: Zee. At least he, or his assistant, found something we haven't even spotted on our casual gadget blog perusing. Departures' question-and-answer approach is expected, and tired.

Zee: "Yarn knit." Giant stringy sweaters are in this fall.
Departures: "YSL." As in the designer. Really?
Winner: Zee. Departures went with another obvious choice. We don't agree with Zee's look selection, but at least it wasn't "yummy shoes."

Zee: "Zippers." Kind of an obvious choice. He's just lucky designers like Marc Jacobs and BeBe have worked them into their fashions this season.
Departures: "Zegna Now." Ahem. Looks like the second-grader could do the hard letters, too.
Winner: Draw. Both lack creativity.

Sep 3, 2008 · posted by david · Link · 2 Responses
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Comments (2)
No. 1 dizzyspins says:

I used to work with Zee at another lifestyle magazine, and I found him to be completely uninspired, self-involved and lazy. In other words, your typical glossy editor-in-chief. Except he lacked the talent to justify his position. He covers for his lack of talent by blabbing incessantly in the gayest way possible and acting very excited about the most random things.

Posted: Sep 3, 2008 at 1:25 pm
No. 2 mslewis says:

I can't wait to see Zee on that new shows "Stylista." I've seen him a time or two on shows where they do 30 seconds with him but I can't wait to see him for a full hour. He seems so over the top gay, not fun gay like Michael Kors.

Posted: Sep 3, 2008 at 5:48 pm
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