Fifty Years of Fashion: New Look to Now Hardcover – 1 Oct 1997
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This book covers Post War 1940s through 1990s. In each era the author focused on a few key designers. The author chose Balenciaga, Balmain, and Dior to represent the 1940s and 1950s. The author primarily showcased Correges, Yves Saint Laurent, and Quant to represent the 1960s. Halston and Yves Saint Laurent were the focus of the 1970s era. More designers are represented in the 1980s. The book has one or two photos from Chanel, Lacroix, Blass, Herrera, Azzedine Alaia, Armani, Gaultier, Comme des Garcon, and Issey Miyake, among a few others. The 1990s are represented by a photo or two of designs from Versace, Anna Sui, Chanel, Tom Ford for Gucci, Galliano, Donna Karen, Westwood, Calvin Klein, and Prada.
Just as it is the maxim for fashion in general, so is it for this book in particular...less is more. The photos in this book capture the essence of each era and the text details the stylistic atmosphere to which each designer contributed. I highly reccommend this book. Despite having access to it at the library, I plan on buying it.
This book is a very light introduction to the type of questions you see in more advanced texts, but will not alienate the dilettante fashionista or costumer. The pictures provide exemplary examples of the styles discussed, and the chapters summarize everything quickly enough to have a solid overview of our recent fashion history. Again, I am sure this book will gain lots of interest, whether for browsing or seriously perusing an interest in a compelling aspect of human history and society. Check Steele's other books as well--she writes with insight, but doesn't overdo it with the dry academic stuff; she also has excellent taste with her picture selection.
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