Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Not your average coffee table books.

As a perpetual student and lover of books, I make it a point to go to a bookstore every couple of weeks.  It's kind of like a form of yoga for me, in that it is relaxing, I love the smell, and I'm giving myself the chance to learn something, either from a book or about myself.  I've always said that I hope bookstores stay in business for as long as I'm alive and don't die with the advancement of digitil books and technology.  My favorite book store in Chicago was The Book Table in Oak Park.  I always found something right up my alley or discovered something I hadn't heard about yet when I went in there.  In Memphis, I always go to the Booksellers at Laurelwood, formally Davis-Kidd.  All the staff there is so nice and hospitable (as they should be, being Southern men and women..) ANYways, I bring up bookstores because there are a few books dedicated to fashion that I hope to see on the shelves of my favorite bookstore soon.

Hollywood's hold on the pulse of fashion is influential even today.  This book highlights 35 films that have influenced not only fashion but also style in their own time and continue to inspire today.  Not only is the character from one of my favorite movies, "Bonnie and Clyde" with the gorgeous Faye Dunaway, on the cover of this book, but I am also so excited that a book has been written about the actual costume designers of some of the most iconic movies of our time.  So many know of the little black dress from "Breakfast at Tiffany's" or the little white dress from "Seven Year Itch", but how often does anyone hear the accounts of the designers who sketched them or the costume production team that so fatefully choose those garments.  Expect to see this book in bookstores on October 16th.

The memoir of the beautiful Grace Coddington, creative director of Vogue, is bound to be filled with a story worth taking note of for any aspiring fashion die-hard. Out on November 20th, Grace is the memoir of a woman who rose through the world of fashion as a young model in London and would eventually become the right hand woman of Anna Wintour. Her creative vision has shaped the pages of Vogue for many years and a peak inside the world of Grace Coddington is certain not to disappoint.

My first encounter with the work of Antonio Lopez was the drawings included in the Charles James exhibit at the Chicago History Museum last fall. This book cronicles the life and influence of Antonio Lopez.  He created a vast collection of illustrations, photos, and paintings working with some of the most revered and respected designers, including Yves Saint Laurent and Versace among many more.  This book by Roger and Mauricio Padhilha, with an introduction by Andre Leon Talley, an epilogue by Anna Sui and contributions from Bill Cunningham, is the first of its kind featuring Antonio Lopez and will certainly be a must have for the collections of historical institutions as well as fashion moguls worldwide.  Look for it on September 4th!

This book is definitely the most coffee table-esque out of the others just because it mainly features photos.  However, as a forever follower of anything Lagerfeld touches, I will definitely be checking this book out.  This book does reflect on the timelessness of Coco Chanel's oringinal design of the "little black jacket" and its versatillity, so there is definitely some historical referene and provenance to this book.  It also features some of my fashion icons, such as Yoko Ono and SJP, wearing the jacket in their own way. This book is due out on August 25.