Former Vogue editor and famed fashionista André Leon Talley might be a fan of many labels, but “gay” is not one of them.
The 63-year-old, who is profiled in Vanity Fair’s September 2013 issue, was asked by Vanity Fair contributing editor Vanessa Grigoriadis if he thought he was gay, even as a teenager in high school. Talley responded in the negative.
“No, no, no. I was just into my magazines and the drawings,” he said. “I had a very strict upbringing, almost puritanical. I lived there all the way through college. I was in my grandmother’s house, and I respected that!”
Talley told Grigoriadis he rejects the gay “label,” but admitted to having had some “very gay experiences.” Designers not included. “[Y]es, I swear on my grandmother’s grave that I never slept with a single designer in my life. Never, ever desired, never was asked, never was approached, never, ever bought, in my entire career. Never. Not one. Skinny or fat. Never.”
He also said he has never been in love with a man, but has been in love with two women, including an unnamed socialite whom he fell in love with after an evening of dancing in Manhattan.
Talley — named No. 45 on Out magazine’s “Power 50″ list of gay cultural icons in 2007 — is not the only one in the fashion world to rebuff being pigeonholed. Designer Tom Ford also rejects the notion.
“I hate to use the words ‘gay’ and ‘straight,’ and I think we’re all on some sort of sliding scale,” the fashion mogul said during an interview with British Vogue last year. “Of course, I’m at the Richard Buckley end of the scale, but I hate that gay/straight thing.”
Out and Proud Celebrities
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1. EJ Johnson
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2. Robin Roberts announced her sexual orientation on Facebook in 2013. (Photo: AP)
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3. CNN Anchor Don Lemon
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4. Previously married to a man for seven years, Wanda Sykes officially came out in 2008.
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5. NBA player Jason Collins
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6. Fitness trainer Shaun T came out in 2013 and married his longtime boyfriend.
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7. Michael Sam announced he was gay in an ESPN interview.
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8. Singer Meshell Ndegeocello is an open lesbian and huge advocate for gay rights.(PR)
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9. Orlando Cruz is the first active, openly gay boxer.
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10. Elton John announced he was gay in 1976, and has been openly out since. (PR)
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11. Director and Producer Paris Barclay has been with his partner for 14 years. (PR)
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12. R&B singer Frank Ocean recently divulged to the world that his first love was a man. (AP)
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13. André Leon Talley, fashion icon and editor at Vogue Magazine. (PR)
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14. TV personality and hair stylist Miss Lawrence.
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15. Singer Melissa Etheridge announced she was a lesbian in 1993 and has been a huge gay rights activist since. (PR)
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16. "Precious" and "The Butler" director Lee Daniels
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17. Andre Charles or famously known as drag queen RuPaul has been openly gay for many years. (PR)
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18. Ellen Degeneres and Portia De Rossi have been married for four years. (PR)
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19. Famous Latino singer Ricky Martin finally came out as gay in 2010. (PR)
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20. Famous Choreographer Bill T. Jones is openly gay. (PR)
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21. Former N'Sync band member Lance Bass announced he was gay in 2006. (PR)
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22. "Fast Car" singer Tracy Chapman. (PR)
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23. Anderson Cooper came out in an open email to fans. (AP)
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24. Celebrity hair Stylist and TV personality Derek J.
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25. Catwalk coach Miss J. Alexander.
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