Since the creation of his eponymous fashion house in 2004, modern design has certainly felt the influence of Giambattista Valli. Whether it’s atMoncler Gamme Rouge where he combines sportswear with a haute couture aesthetic, or in his own ateliers on Paris‘ rue Boissy d’Anglas, having learned the ropes at Fendi and Emmanuel Ungaro the designer’s creations are sumptuous in their minimalism, oozing his unique brand of elegance and timeless vision of femininity. In 2011, the designer’s work received the ultimate accolade from the Commission de Classement Couture Création in the form of a haute couture designation. With the designer’s Spring/Summer 2014 collection fresh off the runway, Rizzolipublications is celebrating his work with a book that gets right to the heart of the creative process of this master of cutting. Through a series of sketches and photos documenting the designer’s inspirations, complete with fabric swatches of signature prints, the book explores the couturier’s subtle style, with comment from prestigious contributors. Lee Radziwill,Hamish Bowles and Diane Kruger all pay homage to Giambattista Valliin a luxe tome available in October.
Giambattista Valli by Giambattista Valli, published by Rizzoli, €75.
In 2008, Lee McQueen invited photographer Nick Waplington backstage at his Fall/Winter 2008-2009 show. The 15th anniversary Horn of Plentycollection revisited in turn each of the designer’s major inspirations from a decade and a half in fashion and sadly, it would be his last. Nearly three years since his tragic death, Waplington has published the project withDamiani, as Alexander McQueen Working Process, a visual retrospective that takes us step-by-step through the designer’s creative process from sketches of rough ideas to the runway-ready final garments. Alongside the photos and storyboards, the book features texts from journalist Susannah Frankel and other big-name fashion contributors.
Alexander McQueen, Working Process – Photographs by Nick Waplington, text by Susanna Frankel, published by Damiani,€ 65.
Inventor of the Aiguille heel in 1954, the Etrave in 1958, the Choc in 1989 and the Virgule in 1963, Roger Vivier‘s iconic creations are on show at the Palais de Tokyo until November 18 in a retrospective entitledVirgule, etc… dans les pas de Roger Vivier, accompanied by a book,Roger Vivier, whose glossy pages tell the story of the French fashion house. Over 200 shoes have been photographed for the book, ranging fromRoger Vivier‘s first designs to the most recent creations of Bruno Frisoni, who has been creative director of the brand since 2002.
Roger Vivier by Virginie Mouzat and Colombe Pringle, published by Rizzoli, €65.
As Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pierpaolo Piccioli were showing theValentino Spring/Summer 2014 collection, on October 1 Rizzoli Editions released a beautiful book in homage to the label’s accessories. From slippers and studded leather, to camouflage bags and embellished clutches, discover the the ultra-covetable items that have set the fashion world alight season after season. Edited by art critic Francesco Bonami, the name behind the excellent exhibitions at London‘s Whitechapel Gallery and the 50th Venice Biennal, Valentino: Objects of coutureincludes images of over 300 accessories immortalized by David Bailey,Nobuyoshi Araki and Douglas Gordon. Immerse yourself in the world of the Roman fashion house, whether or not you’re a lady in red.
Valentino : Objects of Couture by Pierpaolo Piccioli and Maria Grazia Curi, published by Rizzoli editions, €60.
What better location to host new exhibition Impressions: Dior thanGranville, the childhood home of Christian Dior himself? The retrospective aims to show the connections between the various designers of the couture house – from its founder in 1946, to current creative directorRaf Simons – and French Impressionist artists including Edgar Degas,Paul Cézanne and Claude Monet. Rizzoli NY publications produced a literary companion to the exhibit, written by curators Florence Müller andBarbara Jeauffroy-Mairet, fashion historian Farid Chenoune, Brigitte Richard from the Musée de Granville, Phillipe Thiébaut from the Musée d’Orsay, and Dior perfumer François Demachy. Packed with illustrations, the book compares 70 dresses from the couture house with canvases by the Impressionist movement’s most renowned artist, from the Musée Marmottant and Musée d’Orsay’s private collections.
Founded in 1952 by Gaby Aghion who wanted to create a carefree and modern new kind of fashion, French label Chloé celebrated its 60th anniversary last year and to mark the milestone, celebrated curator Judith Clark organized a first-of-its-kind exhibition entirely dedicated to the label at the Palais de Tokyo. Chloé Attitudes retraced the story of Chloéthematically rather than chronologically – or nostalgically – to create a picture of the Chloé universe as imagined by Gaby Aghion. Now the exhibition itself has been immortalized in a beautiful commemorativeChloé Attitudes book. Overseen by Marc Ascoli with commentary from journalist Sarah Mower, the glossy edition showcases some of the most emblematic pieces from Chloé‘s different creative directors over the years.
Chloe : Attitudes by Sarah Mower, Rizzoli edtions, €65.
With signature pieces including the Breton shirt, the tweed suit, the little black dress and the quilted leather bag, Coco Chanel’s brainchild has revolutionized fashion since its inception 100 years ago, evoking French elegance through cult creations that blend masculine and feminine design elements. In 1921, the brand innovated even further, becoming the first couture house to launch its own fragrance in the inimitable Chanel n°5and a few years on in 1924, Chanel began to produce jewelry, including – along others – the Camelia pearl necklace. This rich heritage is sustained today by Karl Lagerfeld, who became creative director in 1983.Assouline Publishing paid homage to the label this Summer, with a set of three volumes dedicated to the fashion, perfumery and jewelry of Chanel. The books retrace the label’s history through photographs as well as articles, with British journalist and author Natasha Fraser-Cavassoni recounting Chanel’s haute couture history, French writer Vincent Meylantelling the story behind the label’s jewelry line and French journalist Martine Marcowith writing on perfumery. Charting the house’s development from its humble beginnings to its mega-production catwalk shows and endorsements from the likes of Carole Bouquet, Vanessa Paradis and Keira Knightley, Chanel offers a look inside the brand’s unique world.
Kate Moss, Gisele Bündchen, Christy Turlington, Alexander McQueen, Sofia Coppola and Lady Gaga are just a few of the fashion, cinema and music icons who have appeared before the lens of this prolific pair. Partners both in business and life, Inez Van Lamsweerde and Vinoodh Matadin are members of a photographic elite. Their distinctively strange and sumptuous style falls somewhere between fashion photography and multimedia art and over the last 20 years, they have created over 26 Vogue Paris covers and hundreds of campaigns for the likes of Louis Vuitton, Balmain and Christian Dior. The paperback version of the book, edited by the publishing house Taschen under the artistic guidance of Paris agency M/M, looks back over the Dutch duo’s life’s work. Bringing together over 600 images, the book comes complete with a sticker page so readers can personalize the cover to their heart’s content. The new edition is on sale now at colette.
Pretty Much Everything, Inez Van Lamsweerde and Vinoodh Matadin, published by Taschen, €750.
Creative director at Fendi womenswear since 1977, Chanel since 1983 and his own eponymous label since 1998, Karl Lagerfeld’s creativity shines collection after collection, season after season and it has made him a fashion establishment figure. A not insignificant factor in the creation of the Lagerfeld myth, however, are the biting witticisms – known as Karlisms to industry insiders – that have been around the world and back again. Such memorable quotes as “luxury is having a free spirit, being independent – in short, being politically incorrect” and “I think tattoos are horrible, it’s like wearing a Pucci dress for life”, have now been compiled and edited by the author and translator Jean-Christophe Napias under the direction of journalist and editor Patrick Mauriès, and published in book form by Flammarion on September 25 in a volume illustrated by artist Charles Ameline.
The World According to Karl by Jean-Christophe Napias and Sandrine Gulbenkian, Flammarion, €25.
The latest bookshelf must-have is a high-profile release that looks at a recent fashion phenomenon: the auction. From an early twentieth-century Worth dress sold for €21,270 in 2012, to a 1998 Alexander McQueen jacket that went for €15,600, via heavyweights including Dior, Chanel, Yves Saint Laurent and Versace, this vintage bible sets the trend tempo for seasons to come. Prices might be sky-high for the crocodile Birkin bags by Hermès that regularly surpass the €40,000 mark, but while you can still find a Comme des Garçon dress for €400 and vintage Alaïa for a similar figure, a 1960s Balenciaga suit recently went for €12,000. There’s something for every budget, alongside the best expert advice from specialists including Cameron Silver from Decades in LA, Fiona Stuart of London’s Rellik and Parisians Dominique Chombert and Françoise Sternbach, in a 500-page volume that will leave you with the knowledge and passion to start out in – or get deeper into – the auction rooms.
Icons of Vintage Fashion: Definitive Designer Classics at Auction 1900-2000 by Penelope Blanckaert & Agele Rincheval Hernu, La Martinière, €40.
Founded in 1914 in the heart of Paris, fashion house Jean Patouoverturned the elegant style of the times and left a distinctive mark on the Parisian couture scene. Renowned for his glamorous oriental-style sleeveless dresses, the founder was also a master of sportswear, creating the first tennis skirt for Suzanna Lenglen and bringing the monogrammed sweater to fame, embroidered with his initials. The designer launched a perfume range in 1923, which rose to success just as quickly as the couture line, with famous fragrances such as Joy, named the most expensive perfume in the world, and l’Huile de Chaldée, the first ever sun tanning lotion. After Jean Patou‘s death in 1936, Marc Bohan, Karl Lagerfeld, Jean Paul Gaultier and Christian Lacroix all tried their hand at the helm until 1987, when the couture line closed. Having just announced its return to the Parisian fashion scene, the house is now the subject of a new book by Emmanuelle Polle, published by Flammarion.
Jean Patou, A fashionable life by Emmanuelle Polle, published by Flammarion, €75.
Known for his bold animal prints, light summery dresses, plunging necklines, crystal-encrusted jeans, and ultra-tight laced leather looks,Roberto Cavalli was one of the first to pioneer an unmistakably Italian kind of sexy. Embodied by Kate Moss, Gisele Bündchen and Laetitia Casta, the Cavalli woman is voluptuous, tanned and well-aware of her seductive power. Just a day before Milan Fashion Week began, the designer released his autobiography Just Me. Bringing together over 40 years worth of notes and late nights, the book carefully collects Cavalli‘s memories of times gone by. As well as detailing his decades as a designer,Cavalli discusses his childhood in Tuscany, the part women have played in his personal life and his place in the heart of Italian society. Just Me is published by Mondadori and available exclusively in Italy.
Just Me by Roberto Cavalli, Mondadori, €25.