Kim Kardashian Chooses Herself: Vogue’s March 2022 Cover
Saint, Chicago and Psalm surround their mother and play arm wrestling with her jeans, while North quietly asks for her hand. Instantly, one of the most famous women in the world transforms into any other mom resorting to bribery to regain her composure. “Psalm-y,” Kim asks her youngest, “do you want candy or do you want me to carry you?” Offers of ice cream, LOL dolls, makeup, and Roblox are quickly presented in an unwavering tone of voice.
Saint, whom Kim calls the negotiator, may see how obedient her mother is — and distracted, with cameras rolling — and whispers a higher price in her ear.
“Five million Roblox? faux-gasps the CEO of two billionaire companies, Skims and a relaunching beauty line (formerly KKW Beauty). She strikes deals in a short time, managing to give each child her undivided attention without ever losing her temper – her superpower, she tells me, is staying calm in all situations. Filming is over in no time, before the last band of golden light of the day disappears behind the hills.
Later that evening, freshly showered, makeup-free and wrapped in a fluffy white dress, Kim slips into her breakfast booth for a plant-based stir-fry prepared by one of her two full-time chefs. The dinner is momentarily interrupted by Chicago, or “Chi”, and her five-year-old cousin Dream, the daughter of Kim’s brother Rob Kardashian, twins in pajamas and braided pigtails, as they run back and forth in front of shouting at us, “I never had a boyfriend! I never had a boyfriend!”
“You better not!” Kim yells at them, encouraging the two to venture upstairs to share this news with North and Saint, who are playing in Saint’s room together.
The kitchen is a serene oasis of neutral tones, like the rest of this minimalist retreat designed by Belgian Axel Vervoordt, who has created interiors for Sting, Robert De Niro and Calvin Klein. The house was bought by Kim and Kanye (Ye, as he is now legally known) in 2014 and it took nearly seven years to renovate, coincidentally the length of their marriage. Although the house started out as the couple’s shared vision, it now feels very Kim, virtually every piece is rendered in the monochromatic palette that has become her signature, from the Skims she designs to the Balenciaga she constantly wears, up to to the cars she owns – a Maybach, Rolls-Royce and Lamborghini SUV, all in the exact same shade of gray. The design process she and Ye collaborated on with Vervoordt led Kim to a love affair with architecture, particularly Japanese. Currently, Pritzker Prize-winning architect Tadao Ando is building Kim’s Palm Springs home, which she describes as “concrete, gray and truly zen,” while Kengo Kuma, who designed the national stadium for the Tokyo Olympics in 2020 as well as LVMH’s head office in Japan creates for her a house of glass and wood on the edge of a lake in an undisclosed location, where Kim goes every July 4th.
Since filing for divorce early last year, Kim has said little publicly about the demise of her union with the man she credits with inspiring her current aesthetic interests. Perhaps she’s letting the last few years speak for themselves: Ye’s move to Wyoming; the July 2020 political rally during his half-baked presidential run, when Ye alleged the couple considered terminating their first pregnancy; the ensuing Twitter screed where he accused Kim of trying to “lock me up,” prompting Kim to ask for compassion for Ye and his experience with bipolar disorder. Although Ye made no secret of wanting her back, even making a show of dating someone new. Kim has refrained from making public statements about the split itself, and today she is philosophical about the dissolution of the marriage.