New year fashion reads

Diana Vreeland is back! Hot on the heels of her biographical DVD, The Eye has to Travel, comes a hot new volume of Vreeland’s correspondence relating to America’s most prestigious and in-demand fashion mag – Vogue. I can’t wait for my reserve to come through on this one – place yours now!! January’s new books also bring a sneak peek into fashion designers’ sketchbooks, as well as their own homes. If the new year has you itching for a new wardrobe, check out our new book Recycled Chic for some tips on reinvigorating your existing wardrobe. Have fun!

Syndetics book coverMemos : the Vogue years, 1962-1971 / Diana Vreeland ; edited by Alexander Vreeland.
“A look behind the scenes at Diana Vreeland’s Vogue, showing the legendary editor in chief in her own inimitable words. When Diana Vreeland became editor in chief of Vogue in 1963, she initiated a transformation, shaping the magazine into the dominant U.S. fashion publication. Vreeland rarely held meetings and communicated with her staff and photographers through memos dictated from her office or Park Avenue apartment. This extraordinary compilation of more than 250 pieces of Vreeland’s personal correspondence and memos that show the direction of some of Vogue’s most legendary stories. These display Vreeland’s irreverence and her characteristically over-the-top pronouncements and reveal her sharpness about the Vogue woman and what the magazine should be.” (adapted from

Syndetics book coverJean Patou : a fashionable life / Emmanuelle Polle ; photographs by Francis Hammond ; translated from the French by Alexandra Keens.
“This illustrated monograph spans the life and career of haute couture designer Jean Patou during the apex of twentieth-century glamour. Drawing from previously unpublished family archives including vintage photos, diaries, hand-colored fashion sketches, fabric swatches, and contemporary photographs of his masterpieces, the volume offers unprecedented access into the rarefied world of Jean Patou and celebrates his significant contributions to the history of fashion.” (Book jacket)

Syndetics book coverDior impressions : the inspiration and influence of impressionism at the House of Dior / edited by Florence Müller.
“Christian Dior grew up in Granville, in Normandy, in a natural environment similar to the setting favored by the Impressionist artists. Throughout his career, he designed dresses that show links with this art movement, such as the elegance seen in the Impressionist paintings, with subtle connections through common themes such as nature, light, color, and the notion of movement. Published to accompany the Impressions Dior exhibition presented at the Musée Christian Dior in Granville, France, this lavish volume features over 150 pieces of gorgeous art – including noted artworks by Monet, Renoir, Degas, and Manet – alongside a magnificent visual tour of Dior garments, from Christian Dior’s first designs to Raf Simons’s latest collection.” (Library catalogue)

Syndetics book coverVintage fashion & couture : from Poiret to McQueen / Kerry Taylor ; foreword by Hubert de Givenchy ; afterword by Christopher Kane.
“Profiled by Vogue and The New York Times and courted by style icons with wardrobes to sell and top designers in search of insipiration, Kerry Taylor is one of the world’s leading experts on vintage fashion and couture. In this lavishly illustrated book, Kerry tells the story of a century of fashion through the work of its key design talents and the memorable women who have worn their creations. All the fashion stars are here from Poiret to McQueen via Lanvin, Chanel, Schiparelli, Madame Grès, Dior, Balenciaga, Mary Quant, Ossie Clark, Vivienne Westwood, Alaïa, and Margiela.” (Book cover)

Syndetics book coverFashion designers’ sketchbooks. Two / Hywel Davies.
“Following the success of Fashion Designers’ Sketchbooks, this second volume shines a light on the work of a new line-up of major names in the fashion industry. Photographs, sketches, moodboards, line-ups, toiles, swatches and more all feed the creative processes that forge fashion designs, and here they are brought together to reveal how the final collections are conceived and developed. Juxtaposing the original research material and drawings with the garments shown on the catwalk and in lookbooks provides fresh insight into the working methods of leading international designers and the role of different media in creating their collections. Rick Owens, Clements Ribeiro and Marios Schwab are just some of the prominent designers featured.” (Llibrary catalogue)

Syndetics book coverThe great fashion designers at home / Ivan Terestchenko.
“Some of the most important people in fashion, Chanel, Alaïa, Yves Saint Laurent, Pucci, Kenso, and Missoni are know for their public image and their iconic designs. But what kind of world have they cultivated behind closed doors? From France to Italy, from England to Morocco, come along on a private visit to the remarkable homes of couturiers, stylists, muses, and fashion personalities. Photographer Ivan Terestchenko shows the decor, works of art, and the personal collections of these legendary designers.” (Inside front cover)

Syndetics book coverRecycled chic / Amanda McKittrick.
“Take a creative plunge and explore the possibilities to refashion your wardrobe with these unique, yet simple, projects.” (Library catalogue)

Syndetics book coverLouis Vuitton city bags : a natural history / Jean-Claude Kaufmann, Ian Luna, Florence Müller, Mariko Nishitani, Colombe Pringle and Deyan Sudjic ; contributions by Rei Kawakubo, Yayoi Kusama and Takashi Murakami.
“This volume is an unprecedented history of Louis Vuitton’s women’s bags, the most coveted line of accessories in women’s fashion. At the heart of Louis Vuitton are its City Bags, a range of women’s bags that dates back to the turn of the twentieth century. These bags have in a hundred years formally diversified into a dizzying array of handbags for every conceivable function demanded by the modern woman. Lavishly illustrated with new and archival photography, historical graphics, landmark editorials, and ad campaigns, the volume traces the history of these specific bag families, and examines the earliest specimens and today’s most sought-after collectibles.” (Adapted from

Syndetics book coverBlitz : as seen in Blitz : fashioning ’80s style / Iain R. Webb.
“1980s fashion and culture, as seen on the deeply influential pages of ‘BLITZ’, the pioneering ’80s style magazine.” (Library catalogue)