With parallel fashion careers and matching fortunes, country houses, famous friends and royal connections, you could imagine that Victoria Beckham and Stella McCartney have much in common.
They each have four children, handsome men and are even regular customers with the same London facial practitioner.
Stella and Posh were indeed under chummy conditions ten years ago when Stella’s husband Alasdhair Willis was hired as a style consultant to help David re-brand David after his transfer to the American football team LA Galaxy. But recently there has been a clear chill in their friendship, with conversations about arguments about staff and publicity.
There is also a feeling that Posh, 45, has tried a bit too hard to effortlessly emulate cool Stella, 48. Battle lines have now been signed – and Posh is no longer followed by her one-time friend on social media.
Here Alison Boshoff tells the story of the “best of frenemies” and exactly what has driven them apart.
Stella McCartney (left), 48. Stella has not followed Posh on social media. Victoria Beckham (right), 45. Victoria offered work to Stella’s babysitter, after she had heard on the mummy network that she was excellent
Their fashion empires compete against each other
Stella has earned around £ 50 million in fashion, while Posh has lost £ 42 million.
Stella started as a trainee with Christian Lacroix at the age of 16 and then worked for Edward Sexton, a tailor in Savile Row who made clothes for her father Sir Paul McCartney. She graduated from Central Saint Martins in 1995 with Kate Moss and Naomi Campbell who walked in her graduation show.
Her fashion house was launched in 2001 in collaboration with the Kering group.
It has been a huge success, with sales estimated to be £ 250 million a year.
Victoria (left) and Stella (center) with Natalia Vodianova (right) in 2009
She bought back the 50% stake in Kering in 2018 and concluded a deal with luxury giants LVMH last year – part of their new commitment to ethical fashion and sustainability. She uses no leather or fur in her designs.
Meanwhile, Victoria started in fashion with jeans and sunglasses in 2006, before launching her own line in 2008. Figures submitted last year indicate that Victoria Beckham Ltd has not made a profit for the seventh consecutive year. It has lost £ 11 million in 11 years, the equivalent of almost £ 10,500 a day.
Losses are 18 percent worse than last year and amount to £ 11.7 million. Meanwhile, sales have also fallen by 16 percent to £ 35.1 million for the year ending December 2018. Earlier this was £ 41.7 million.
CEO Ralph Toledano said it was going through a “growth crisis” because demand had reached a “plateau.”
Fashion designer Jeff Banks told me: “It’s not that she’s lost her eye, but she’s struggling with a huge overhead that doesn’t support sales of £ 35 million a year.
“The question is how much they can afford to keep pursuing her dreams?”
The two women have little in common in social terms – Stella’s dearest and oldest friends are super models Kate Moss and Naomi Campbell, both of whom have a well-reported antipathy against Posh and her fashion ambitions.
But the beef between the ladies actually started thanks to a friendship popped up between their daughters, Harper and Reiley, both nine, who attend the same private preparation school in London.
In 2017, Stella’s daughter Reiley was invited to Harper’s sixth birthday tea party at Buckingham Palace. Proud father David placed a photo in which Reiley was clearly depicted in a group photo with Princess Eugenie during the trip, which was organized by Prince Andrew and his ex-wife Sarah Ferguson.
Stella was “extremely angry” about this violation of her daughter’s privacy, which she has always done to protect.
Later, more recently, Victoria offered a job to Stella’s babysitter, after she had heard on the mummy network that she was excellent.
Rumor has it that the babysitter was not paid at the high rates that this type of work usually assigns. In any case, sources confirm that the nanny left Stella to work for Posh. (Representatives for both women refused to comment yesterday.)
After this, Stella heard that Victoria had approached a senior member of her fashion team. Although the employee, a head of the studio, did not leave, it was the “last nail in the coffin” of their friendship.
Stella has not followed Posh on social media anymore. It is said that Victoria sent an email requesting forgiveness, but no one has arrived yet. A source said: “Stella has many friends in high places and Victoria clearly does not want to become a pariah in the world of celebrities.
“She sent an e-mail with apologies and asked that their personal queue should not affect their family’s friendship.
“Her daughter Harper is good friends with Stella’s daughter Reiley, and she would find it terrible that this would become a problem.
Very good qualities
Victoria and family own a spectacular renovation just a stone’s throw from Soho Farmhouse – the Cotswolds outpost of the luxury private member club – of which Stella is also a member.
It has three ‘wings’, an outdoor swimming pool and a tennis court on the landscaped grounds, plus a huge tree house.
Stella’s country house, a beautiful Georgian farmhouse with nine bedrooms on 277 hectares in Worcestershire, beats Beckhams’ more modest home in a tense hat.
She saw it on the Country Life pages and bought it for £ 1.3 million in 2001 as the perfect place to ride her horse. She and husband Alasdhair Willis have carried out major renovations.
Party at Buckingham Palace: Harper, right, and Stella’s daughter Reiley, left, with Princess Eugenie
Stella said: “We have removed the roof and removed the walls, and there is still much to do. Every morning I go, “Oh, my God, is it going to take another ten years?” “They have also made a fortune in the garden.
“We are now trying to have it as a red box in a garden in a garden in a garden, and we are gradually trying to make our way through the country. Fortunately, we have many hectares to take you on a journey.
“We have planted a million trees here. We have made another Eden. “
The ladies are almost neighbors in London – that’s why they have daughters at the same school.
Victoria and family have a £ 32 million home in Holland Park, while Stella and her family live in a similar home in Belgravia. Stella also has a beautiful building in The Hamptons, outside of New York.
Two stories about rural people
Although both women are members of Soho Farmhouse, they have a very different view of rural life. The version of Stella is traditional, with a drafty house, fleets of gardeners and days spent riding on her farmland.
The Beckham version includes cocktails with metropolitan friends at Soho House.
The Beckhams are known to get ‘room service’ food at home from Soho Farmhouse and ask the staff there to walk their dogs.
Handsome man lovers
There is a hint of the personal style from Stella’s husband Alasdhair to Beckham’s image – the crest, beard, well-cut suits.
This is no surprise, since Alasdhair (top right) was hired to help David sell off his striped hair and baggy jeans style in 2010.
Alasdhair Willis and Stella McCartney. He now works for Hunter, the wellies people
He now works for Hunter, the wellies people, while David has a deal with Kent & Curwen, the men’s outfit.
There are four children in each family. Stella has Miller, 14, Bailey, 13, Beckett, 11 and Reiley, nine. Posh has Brooklyn, 20, Romeo, 17, Cruz, 14 and Harper, nine.
David and Victoria Beckham. David has a deal with Kent & Curwen, the men’s outfitters
They are also often in the bar until late – it was reported that David and son Brooklyn were away until the early hours of the evening before the wedding of Meghan and Prince Harry. There are also different views about photography.
David Beckham regularly takes photographs with his film director friend Guy Ritchie. But lifelong vegetarian Stella is fervent against all blood sports.
Stella’s property falls on the territory of the hunting of Croome and West Warwickshire, which was allowed to cross the farm’s land, but now runs along bridle paths at the bottom of the farm.
Most of her estate cultivates organic farmland, while the Beckhams essentially have a large garden with a few staff areas and many recently planted trees.
Move in very star circles
Stella is friends with countless Hollywood A thrushes, including actress Gwyneth Paltrow, who she has known for decades, and George and Amal Clooney. She is also friends with designers Valentino and Tom Ford, who came to her wedding. Other friends are actress Kate Hudson.
Although Posh was a celebrity before trying her hand at fashion, she has surprisingly few friends in super-star circles.
A famous friend is actress Liv Tyler, who is married to David Beckham’s best friend Dave Gardner. The family is also close to TV chef Gordon Ramsay.
In the fashion world she was supported early on by Marc Jacobs.
She said at a conference last year that the late Karl Lagerfeld had been supportive, just like Valentino. But, she confessed, her eyes rolled when her name was mentioned. “I was very aware of the prejudices, being married to David Beckham, being a Spice Girl, here is suddenly a collection.
“If I knew what I know then, I don’t know if I would have the courage to do it,” she said.
Battle of the beauty regimes
Both women went to the London studio of facial practitioner Linda Meredith. Victoria also goes to the famous Dr. Harold Lancer in Los Angeles, the dermatologist of Kardashians.
Victoria lets her hair be done by Ken Paves, who is her personal stylist, while Stella favors Jamie Stevens, the coolest hairdresser in London.
Pick up royal connections and gongs
Again, Stella comes to the front. She received an OBE in 2013, the year after designing the Team GB Olympic kit. She also designed Meghan Markle’s evening dress for her wedding in 2018.
And while Posh, who received her OBE for services to the fashion industry in 2017, was once on good terms with Meghan, there were reportedly concerns from the Duchess that Posh was leaking stories about their connections, leading to a difficult conversation between David Beckham and Prince Harry, and cooled relationships for a period of time.
Stella McCartney holds her OBE in 2013 (left). Victoria Beckham earned her OBE in 2017 for services to the fashion industry (right)
Meghan wore Victoria Beckham clothing twice – once to church during Christmas 2018 and once on one of her engagement photos in 2017.
The Beckhams are now said to focus on maintaining their friendly relationship with Prince William, who got to know David through charity work and sports ambassadors.