Wednesday, April 17, 2013

SPRING /SUMMER reading....


With the advent of Spring comes a new crop of very fashionable reading material from all over the world.  The thread of commonality is of course fashion and all of its contiguous aspects.  Be it fashion in the purest sense … clothes, or the adjuncts of the subject, such as photography, scent, history of fabulous jewelry; the literary world has it covered!  So, here are my 10 recommendations for your enlightenment and for additions to your fashion library … learn something today, buy a book and read it!

Power and Style is not the usual photo heavy fashion volume but a serious study of what one can call an encyclopedia of “silent signals” that pertain to how a person presents themselves in matters of style.

Jewels from Imperial St. Petersburg reminded me that there is no greater pleasure than to hold and savor a volume of such high caliber… it is more than just a sumptuously and exquisitely illustrated book about “Russian jewelry.”


Cult Perfumes is an extraordinarily engaging treat about an aspect of fashion sensed but not seen “The creation of fragrance is one of the highest art forms . . . the equivalent of painting for sight and music for hearing . . . The art of perfume does indeed involve a love and appreciation of something higher than mere scent in a bottle.”.

The writers of Valentino Master of Couture: A Private View have bestowed upon us what can only be described as “a catwalk of history, stretching through the golden age of couture and continuing into the present.” These few words sum up the content and context of this mini treasure of a book.

Little Black Dress is described as an evolution of the little black dress, and yet the arrangement of the garments is nowhere near chronological, which makes it merely an inventory catalog.

Looking for a reason why books should still exist as printed matter? Here is an outstanding one: World Without Men is a prime example of a book that shines. Of course, this is all predicated on your being a Helmut Newton fan or having a great love of photography and fashion during a golden era.

Roger Vivier is a treasure trove of shoe design reminding us that in a time of Bally, Delman, Beth Levine, David Evins, and the Julianellis, the master of them all was Roger Vivier.

New Icons of Fashion Illustration exposes the reader to a new generation of those artists who might have at one time been considered the only true “artists” representing fashion. Boomers might recall that fashion illustration was once the primary method of advertising in magazines and newspapers.

C. Z. Guest: American Style Icon lives up to its name on every imaginable level and then goes on to deliver a genuinely endearing and personal portrait depicting a woman who is legendary and remains unforgettable. As one is reminded over and over in the book, “We’ll never see the likes of her again.” In the contemporary vernacular: True Dat!

Audrey in Rome is undoubtedly a love letter from an adoring son to his mother. This is a celebration of a woman who must have been a wonderful and loving mother as the book remembers her in the most endearing, iconic, and somewhat melancholy way, though the book never descends to the maudlin or schmaltzy.

There will be lots of rainy days and there might even be some space on your coffee table but most of all make some time to get lost in fashion and “take a trip” into some worlds that you never really knew much about… full reviews are available at http://www.nyjournalofbooks.com/reviewer/jeffrey-felner...