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22 Must-read Fashion Books to Satisfy Your Stylish Fancy Rage

22 Must-read Fashion Books to Satisfy Your Stylish Fancy Rage - Featured Image Updated

September 2022 Sales (LATEST)

Fashion shares one of the most colorful and rich stories ever told. Its history, development, its individual, collective, regional, or universal aspect and significance, and how it has transcended from one generation to the next. All these and more make fashion an interesting, yet massive subject to study. But the best thing about it is that fashion relatable and that is what make a difference.

Whether you are studying fashion on an academic level or was just enraptured and intrigued by it as a fashion enthusiast, reading is such an important to factor to further one’s knowledge and reaffirm or expand your learning. Fashion books come in different types. As to what book is appropriate will depend on the purpose of your reading. And while there is a great number of blogs or websites that contain massive information about fashion, books still play a special role in learning. Either way, we decided to include 22 must-read fashion books to satisfy your stylish fancy rage.

  1. The End of Fashion: How Marketing Changed the Clothing Business Forever

The End of Fashion Book Cover 2 Updated

In Teri Agins’ book, The End of Fashion: How Marketing Changed the Clothing Business Forever, the author how fashion transformed from what was once exclusive to the elite has become a subject of mass market. It was a fashion book written on the perspective of a business and social journalist. Agins discussed the crucial role of marketing in reshaping the world of fashion and how fashion has changed from the 15th to the 21st century. In this book, Teri Agins has also substantially talked about other brands and significant designers of her time.

  1. A Dash of Daring: Carmel Snow and Her Life in Fashion, Art, and Letters

Dash of Daring Book Cover

The fashion we know of today would not have been what it is without the significant people who have, in any way, contributed to its development. And in this book by journalist Penelope Rowlands, it was about the iconic Carmel Snow. Snow was among the most iconic women in the 20th century. Being editor-in-chief of Harper’s Bazaar between 1934 and 1958, Snow has successfully advanced the careers of some of the most prominent names in the fashion industry. Her editorial job in the said magazine has featured exceptional art, photography and more to people.

  1. D.V.

Diana Vreeland Book Cover

An autobiography of herself, Diana Vreeland, takes her readers in a fun-kind of ride as she narrates her life as a young woman whose style has been greatly influenced by haute couture. The way it was written by Diana Vreeland will make you realize why this book is considered as among the must-read for women who share the same passion for fashion. Diana Vreeland, in this book, revealed a lot about her younger self until becoming editor-in-chief for Harper’s Bazaar and Vogue. You also get to figure it out why she has become one of the most influential fashion icons in the 20th century.

  1. The Glass of Fashion: A Personal History of Fifty Years of Changing Tastes and the People Who Have Inspired Them

The Glass of Fashion Book Cover

If you have a huge interest in the history of fashion, this book from Sir Cecil Beaton is a great addition to your must-read. The book allows you to go back in time and behind the lenses of the famed photographer. A photographer in the 1920s for Vogue and Vanity Fair, Sir Cecil Beaton, in his book, talked about iconic personalities in the golden era of fashion. He discussed about some of the biggest designer we know today like Dior and Balenciaga, as well as, his relatively personal and unknown fashion muses.

  1. Vogue: The Editor’s Eye

Vogue - the Editor's Eye Book Cover

For true-blooded fashionistas or fashion photographers, a Vogue magazine has a special place in their collection. This book, Vogue: The Editor’s Eye, focuses on the accomplished works of eight of the editors of the Vogue who worked closely with photographers and designers to create some of the most influential photographs Vogue has ever produced involving its most remarkable muses or models.

  1. Deluxe: How Luxury Lost Its Luster

Deluxe - How Luxury Lost its Luster

Fashion has its dark sides too. The award-winning journalist, Dana Thomas, unravels the same in her book, Deluxe: How Luxury Lost Its Luster. In this history of luxury fashion, Dana Thomas has wittingly talked about the evolution of luxurious goods, the business itself, marketing, and design. The book revealed some facts about fashion brands, as well as the shift from luxury to mass market.

  1. How to Dress For Success

How to Dress for Success Book Cover

We often hear that how we dress is an expression of ourselves. Well, apart from that, we can also say how we dress speaks of our aspirations and goals. This is why if you want to be successful, dress like one. And in this book from the award-winning renowned costume designer, Edith Head, shares some ideas and pieces of advice to looking your best. Bearing some of her original black and white illustrations, Edith Head has some words to say for women who aspire to be successful in their chosen field.

  1. The Little Dictionary to Fashion: A Guide to Dress Sense for Every Woman

The Little Dictionary of Fashion by Christian Dior - Book Cover

If we talk about fashion handbooks, then this could be probably one of them. Every fashion enthusiast would want to read about these timeless tips from the expert himself, Christian Dior. In this book, Dior explains the three fundamentals in fashion: grooming, simplicity, and good taste. The book has all the essentials of fashion that you need to know.

  1. The Woman I Wanted to Be

The Woman I wanted to Be - Book Cover

If you want to really understand the world of fashion and all its intricacies, there are no other people to turn to but the experts themselves. Diane von Furstenberg, in her book entitled The Woman I Wanted to Be, she narrated how she started as a young girl with a vision of creating a dress that would symbolize power and independence and how far she has come since. She becomes personal in her book as she wrote about her motherhood, her life away from the limelight as a mother and a philanthropist, her career, and her survival from cancer. The book makes an inspiring story for other women just like her.

  1. Gods and Kings: The Rise and Fall of Alexander McQueen and John Galliano

Gods and Kings - The Rise and Fall of Alexander McQueen and John Galliano - Book Cover

Dana Thomas has once again allowed fashion enthusiasts to dig deeper in the world of fashion in this book. She talked about the lives of iconic fashion designers, Alexander McQueen and John Galliano, who have greatly contributed to the multibillion dollar success of the luxury fashion industry. The book traced the roots and the starting grounds of the two designers, talked about their similarities and differences, the evolution in high fashion, and how all of these have affected the lives of the two designers.

  1. How to Be Parisian Wherever You Are: Love, Style, and Bad Habits

How to be Parisian Wherever You Are - Book Cover

Paris is one of the world’s fashion capitals. They have huge influence in the fashion industry. They are looked upon for their distinct elegance and style. If you are interested on what it is like to Parisian, this book, authored by Anne Berest, Audrey Diwan, Caroline de Maigret, and Sophie Mas, will tell you how it is as a French woman. The authors give you a look on every aspect, including style.

  1. The World According to Karl

The World According to Karl - Book Cover

Modern couturier, Karl Lagerfeld, who runs Chanel, Fendi, and his own fashion house, has so many things to say about fashion. This extraordinary designer whose catwalk and street fashion has inspired a lot of individuals- both designers and enthusiasts- throws out his opinion about women, style, books, and more. This book reveals that and more.

  1. The Little Black Book of Style

The Little Black Book of Style - Book cover

Speaking of fashion handbook, Nina Garcia’s The Little Black Book of Style is indispensable. In this book, Nina was so generous with all her fashion tips and advice on dressing to your best. She dwells on the fundamentals in fashion that include mix and match of print and colors, as well as, experimentation to really discover your fashion identity. It is both an informative and inspiring book as it will lead you truly understanding the relation between internal style and fashion.

  1. Fashion (Oxford History of Art)

Fashion - Oxford History of Art - Book Cover

The respected professor and fashion scholar, Christopher Breward takes us to a ride onto the history of fashion by exploring trends, phenomenon, and people. He studied the relationship between fashion and other forms of art like film. He also delved into the business of fashion including the aspect of marketing, as well as the influence of hygiene and comfort in the direction of fashion. Moreover, he included in the book a timeline of historical events in fashion and list of museums and galleries.

  1. The Fashion Designer Survival Guide, Revised and Expanded Edition: Start and Run Your Own Fashion Business

The Fashion Designer Survival Guide - Book Cover

Starting your own fashion business can be pretty overwhelming and daunting at the same time. Mary Gehlhar, consultant to hundreds of designers, breaks down in her book all the essentials in launching and sustaining a business in fashion. The updated version includes insights from other business icons in fashion as they talk about latest and emerging developments. The book includes all the tools you need from creating a business plan, conducting press briefings, and actually producing runway shows.

  1. Overdressed: The Shockingly High Cost of Cheap Fashion

Overdressed - The Shocking High Cost of Cheap Fashion - Book Cover

Since the time that fashion has become a thing for all or after it shifted from the exclusive use of the elite to the mass market, author Elizabeth Cline realized for sure that it had changed the way the people dress. Hence, in her book, she discussed how cheap fashion adversely affected the way Americans dressed and how this phenomenon poses a threat to the society as a whole. Guess it’s true, cheap fashion is not really cheap at all.

  1. Dressed: A Century of Hollywood Costume Design

Dressed - A Century of Hollywood Costume Designer - Book Cover

If you are studying film, fashion, or design, this book by Deborah Nadoolman Landis, is must-read. No movie is ever realistic or believable without costume design and the same has been instrumental to the success of many Hollywood films. In this book, the author explained how costume design is a language in itself. The book shows how it was utilized by filmmakers through the years in creating remarkable characters.

  1. Dior by Dior: The Autobiography of Christian Dior

Dior by Dior - The Autobiography of Christian Dior - Book Cover

Who does not know of Christian Dior? The prominent designer whose career as a designer skyrocketed when he opened his fashion house in 1947. He revolutionized fashion with his fascinating couture creations. He was and is still adored and celebrated by many. This autobiography will uncover why.

  1. Hijacking the Runway: How Celebrities Are Stealing the Spotlight From Fashion Designers

Hijacking the Runway - How Celebrities Are Stealing the Spotlight from Fashion Designers - Book Cover

Back then, fashion was all about the fashion designers. But through the years, as social media got in the way as fan base followings, celebrities have become more than just advertisers. Teri Agins, in her book, talks about the power of celebrities and their role in this multibillion dollar fashion industry.

  1. The Beautiful Fall: Fashion, Genius, and Glorious Excess in 1970s Paris

The Beautiful Fall - Fashion Genius and Glorious Excess in 1970s Paris - Book Cover

The 1970s was about Parisian fashion. All eyes were definitely in the blossoming Parisian brands. That same year also witnessed the division in Paris. Alicia Drake, in her book, delved into the intriguing rivalry between two designers- Yves Saint Laurent and Karl Lagerfeld.

  1. The Battle of Versailles: The Night American Fashion Stumbled into the Spotlight and Made History

The Battle of Versailles - Book Cover

Pulitzer Price-winning fashion journalist, Robin Givhan, takes us back to one fateful night in 1973 in Versailles. It was a battle fashion face-off between five American designers and five world-class French designers in an extravagant fashion show. It was the night that changed the history of fashion as one of the two excellent teams of designer dominated the runway and emerged as the new face of fashion.

  1. The Fashion System

The Fashion System - Book Cover

Famous French literary theorist, linguist, philosopher and semiotician, Roland Barthes, has delved into the colorful world of fashion as he performed a structural analysis on the descriptions of fashion writers on women’s clothing, as well as, the relationship of economics in prose used by fashion magazine.

Other Fashion Resources You Might Be Interested:

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