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SELF ON THE SHELF: HOLIDAY BOOKS WE RECOMMEND

By Lance Avery Morgan     Photography courtesy of Thames & Hudson USA and Rizzoli USA

We love to read a stylish book, don’t you?  We’ve found some dazzling ones that we’d love to recommend…

screen-shot-2016-12-08-at-10-55-42-amFirst, we can’t get enough of 20TH CENTURY JEWELRY & THE ICONS OF STYLE (Thames & Hudson) where international jewelry experts Stefano Papi and Alexandra Rhodes explore the profiles of thirteen style icons who built up astonishing jewelry collections in the mid-twentieth century. From The Duchess of Windsor to Barbara Hutton, and Daisy Fellowes to Maria Callas, among them. In fact, each chapter explores one collection, treating the jewelry as an insight into the personality of these powerful women who became the style icons of their time. This revised and updated edition, in a new trim size, includes two new chapters that explore the lives and jewels of singer and garden designer Ganna Walska and perfumer Hélène Rochas. At http://www.thamesandhudsonusa.com

41mxdgxlhl-_sx304_bo1204203200_We can’t put down FROCKING LIFE: SEARCHING FOR ELSA SCHIAPARELLI by BillyBoy* (Rizzoli Ex Libris). The tome is terrific blend of memoir, fashion history, and insight into the life and work of the legendary fashion designer Elsa Schiaparelli. Inspired by Shocking Life, Schiaparelli’s own memoir, Frocking Life will resonate with anyone who loves fashion and flamboyant storytelling. Which we love. A great deal. Peopled by dazzling characters from Schiaparelli s own inner circle and the worlds of art and fashion – with Saint Laurent, Vreeland, Warhol to name a few, this book is a scintillating yet profound homage to a woman who saw life as art, and inspired a young boy, Billy Boy, to do the same with his. At http://www.rizzoliusa.com

9780500292648_28959Take a trip back in time as the fashions of the 19th century continue to capture our imagination, but surviving examples are often too fragile to be on display, let alone frequently handled and studied. 19TH–CENTURY FASHION IN DETAIL (Thames & Hudson, December 6, 2016) offers an invaluable opportunity to explore such garments in detail, from their elaborate trimmings, refined embroidery and lavish drapery to their restrictive corseting and impeccable tailoring. Their range is broad, from early designer dresses to Indian-inspired printed cottons, and from petticoats and brightly colored corsets to feathered capes and dramatic sleeves. Part of the “Fashion in Detail” series, this fully revised and updated volume explores the opulence and diversity of the 19th-century costume. Each garment is clearly illustrated with close-up photography and specially commissioned line drawings, and is accompanied by a commentary by leading experts in historical dress. At http://www.thamesandhudsonusa.com

9780500239483_28918Now here’s something in good form. In ART DECO SCULPTURE (Thames & Hudson) decorative arts expert Alastair Duncan showcases and places into historical context a profusion of sculpted works created in the 1920s and 1930s. From the chevrons, sunbursts, maidens, fountains, floral abstractions, and ubiquitous biche (doe) of the Parisian geometric style to the crisp, angular patterns of the zigzag, Jazz Age, streamlined aesthetic of the 1930s, the works shown demonstrate an enormous range of styles and stylistic influences. Duncan organizes his subject into three main categories: the first features work by avant-garde sculptors (Csáky, Janniot, Pompon and more); the second shows commercial sculpture, comprising mainly large-edition statuary, commissioned as decorative works for the burgeoning 1920s interior design market; while a final, third category covers architectural and monumental sculpture from Western and Eastern Europe, Scandinavia, North and South America and beyond. At http://www.thamesandhudsonusa.com

 

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