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LEIDA EXITS T&C: Edward Leida, the design director of Town & Country and one of editor in chief Jay Fielden’s first high-profile hires, is leaving the magazine. His last day, after nearly two years at the magazine where he oversaw a top-to-bottom redesign, is Friday. Leida, a veteran designer, spent 25 years at Fairchild, leaving in 2011 when he was one of the last veterans to be ousted at W after Stefano Tonchi became its new editor in chief, succeeding editorial director Patrick McCarthy. Leida had been preceded out the door by then-creative director Dennis Freedman, another 20-year veteran of Fairchild.
Working with then-chairman John B. Fairchild, Leida and Freedman helped redesign W in 1991 from a broadsheet into its current oversize glossy format and, with McCarthy, forged the edgy, often provocative identity it would have for the next two decades. Leida also played a significant role at other then-Fairchild-owned magazines, like Jane and Details, as well as WWD.
Leida came to Town & Country at an auspicious time, with Fielden newly minted as editor in chief and Alexandra Kotur as creative director, and gave the century-old magazine a visual overhaul, including a new logo that referenced the title’s long history. It’s not clear what prompted his sudden departure. “Eddie played a valuable and important role in the recent transformation of Town & Country. We thank him for the mark he’s helped the magazine make over the last two years and wish him the very best,” a spokeswoman said. Leida’s position will be filled soon. Leida, who declined to comment on the particulars of his exit, said his next venture is not yet lined up. “I don’t have any definitive plans. I’m just kind of a free spirit,” he said.