August 24, 2011, 3:19 PM

An online fashion magazine turns to e-commerce to round out its offerings

Style.com will enable readers to buy clothes from high-end designers.

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An online magazine catering to followers of the fashion elite wants to raise its profile and profits by offering e-commerce, a twist on the recent trend of high-end apparel sites trying to craft their own editorial voices.

The latest version of Style.com will debut on Oct. 31, according to publisher Fairchild Fashion Media, a unit of Condé Nast Publications. Under the same name 10 years ago, Style.com served as the online home of Vogue and W magazines, and included an online store developed and co-branded with The Neiman Marcus Group Inc., which is now No. 39 in the Internet Retailer Top 500 Guide. The initial issue of the new Style.com will focus on fashions for spring 2012, and the worldwide runway shows previewing that apparel. Style.com, in another twist, also plans to publish a print magazine.

Fairchild has given few details about the brands and items that will be sold through Style.com. Fairchild says that that Style.com is working with six New York City designers on the e-commerce effort, called “Instant Gratification,” which will enable consumers to buy items from designers’ collections.

Among online retailers of fashion and luxury items, Gilt Groupe Inc., No. 49 in the Top 500 Guide, has been the most prominent recently in hiring editorial employees to spice up its e-commerce offerings.  The retailer, which focuses on flash sales but recently launched a full-priced site for men’s apparel, recently hired Melissa Liebling-Goldberg, a former People.com style editor, as editorial director of the women’s arm of Gilt, for instance.

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