Books

R.I.P. Ron Galella and the true celebrity age



Jackie Onassis and Ron Galella

A sad farewell to celebrity photographer Ron Galella who died last Saturday at the age of 91.

I’m not a celebrity follower. In the famous-for-15-minutes age of the last 20-odd years I’ve actively avoided celeb content as the barriers to entry lowered and any old nobody could achieve notoriety thanks to reality TV and social media (more…)



In the mood for Lemaire AW22



Suzi De Givenchy in Lemaire AW22

I’m beginning to hate my puffer jacket. I just want to wear something insulating and protective but unrestricting, something like the many wonderful examples of outerwear shown at Lemaire AW22 last month.

Described as “an urban horde of modern-day hunter-gatherers,” the collection nailed Lemaire’s versatile trademarks – trench coats, soft overcoats, deconstructed blazers – for the 24-hour city girl (or boy). Accompanying the utility-luxe silhouettes and layered styling were equally desirable accessories. Cross-body bags to create graphic demarcation, knitted balaclavas (still around for 2022) and bougie leather water bottle holders. (more…)



In praise of the cultural oral history



oral history

Never met an oral history I didn’t love.

Oral histories are the perfect format book for the time poor. You can open at any page and learn something or entertain yourself in five minutes flat. I first got hooked in the early 90s, starting with Days in the Life* (Jonathon Green’s seminal deep dive into London’s 60s counterculture), swiftly followed by his equally brilliant It: Sex Since the Sixties* (more 60s rompage) and later, Them: Voices from the Immigrant Community in Contemporary Britain*, a fascinating investigation into British immigrant life (Green mentioned recently that he’s planning an update, which is amazing news). (more…)



Don’t call it French girl style



Vanessa Seward The Gentlewoman's Guide

Thanks Keep it Chic for the heads-up on Vanessa Seward’s book.

The Gentlewoman’s Guide is Seward’s take on fashion and style from a shy girl’s perspective, which I totally relate to. Born in Argentina, educated In London and living in Paris, the designer and artist tells WWD, “I’m fascinated by all this kind of English, Anglo-Saxon culture, which actually French people sometimes don’t understand at all. It’s just like all the understatement thing or the self-deprecation. I do it all the time, because it’s a kind of twist. It’s also a good shy person’s armor.” (more…)