Book Review|Icons of Women’s Style

by Charlotte Smith
Book Review|Icons of Women’s Style

The most influential and legendary items in your wardrobe, and the celebrities who made them famous. Ever since I decided to go back to school in Paris to study fashion, it has always intrigued me that so money people want to work in fashion. Yet these wannabe fashionistas have no clue about fashion and many of the Icons of Women’s Style. If you are one of those people, or are headed to fashion school next semester then the book written by Josh Sims entitled Icons of Women’s Style, should be on your list of course reading for the summer.   There is nothing worse then being in a class with someone who has to give a presentation on designer houses like Emilio Pucci, and they have no clue that he was an athlete before he was a designer. My advice for those who want to work in fashion, learn your history before you profess you passion.

Book Review|Icons of Women’s StyleThe book Icons of Women’s Style is your compact guide to the history of fashion and how “It Girl” style evolved.   It takes two to create style and a new trend, the designer and their muse. The book details how a designers dream, invention or ideas turns into a trend worn by the era’s most influential women, from Audrey Hepburn to J-Lo. Behind every garment in the feminine wardrobe there is a first of its kind that has spawned countless others. While the absolute example – often created by a single designer often for a movie or to revolutionize a women’s wardrobe in the very often changing of political times. Then in turn achieves iconic status, sometimes many years later through its various reinterpretations, season after season, and eventually becomes fashion staples like the trench coat.

Icons of Women’s Style

It was a pity to go against nature Madeleine Vionnet

One of the most interesting parts of the books is some of the fashion quotes. Like the one from the French designer Madeleine Vionnet in the chapter describing the history of the Halter Neck Dress, which she is credited for making fashionable along with the bias-cut, handkerchief dress and draped, Grecian-style dress. She made this comment when critics disliked the style and form of the halter dress. Critics as well as Marilyn Monroe’s husband at the time Joe DiMaggio, who was said to have hated the dress. My question is where would Marilyn be now if she had not worn the Iconic cocktail dress in Billy Wilder’s 1955 movie The Seven Year Itch, in the infamous scene where she stands on a subway grate and her dress billows up?

Icons of Women’s Style also gives you a refresher course in the names of clothes and their history.   To the love affair with the Oriental style of dressing from Kaftans to ‘MC Hammer’ pants other wise know as Harem pants and ‘Turkish trousers’. The book ends with the history of accessories with the history behind sexy Stilletto heels, to the story behind the Lolita shoe the kitten heel.

Book Review|Icons of Women’s Style

Read about the unmistakable outerwear like the Burberry trench coat to the waist-cinching, bosom-enhancing corset (and every layer in-between)  and garments that have always provoked a reaction. In a quick course in the body and dress politics of fashion for women. Icon’s of Women’s Style details each area of apparel; Outerwear, Skirts, Dresses, Trousers, Tops, Underwear, Leisure and Swimwear, Shoes and Accessories and cherry-picks the key sartorial stars who put each garment on the global stage, for all to replicate. The book is also a great reference guide for fashion journalist who also needs inspiration from time to time.


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