Happy-Go-Lucky Book Review. “Grace. A memoir.” by Grace Coddington.

by Cashmere Wrap & Macadamia Nuts

9780701187989

Reading the memoir of Grace Coddington was a real treat. Her story is told in a fascinating and very personal way, with openness and honesty that refers equally to happy but also challenging life experiences. Grace takes her readers on a journey through more than fifty years of fashion. Reader will follow the “heroine” through her beginnings of a fashion model career in London up to being a Creative Director of American “Vogue”. Book is filled with anecdotes and stories as well as personal reflections, but more importantly it allows readers to follow and understand the evolution of fashion industry as seen by one of its most important observers.

It may be hard to imagine that in the old days models would rely on nothing more than their own capabilities in make up and hair styling, sometimes even accessorizing the look with own jewelry or shoes. In those days photo shoots were more intimate, limited in resources and manpower. In the pre Photo-Shop era, all that was captured by camera happened in the reality before its lenses. The certain magic reflected on pictures had to be created by lightning, scenery and clothing, not to mention model’s ability of create remarkable images.

Little by little more media hype was created around the world of fashion. All became global, imitable and overexposed. This in turn exposed and highlighted the commercial side of the whole fashion business. It is not only focused on creations and their beauty, it is more and more about seeing and being seen, about self promotion and immediate digital access. Suddenly the celebrities and “it – girls” became the center of modern fashion. The era of elegant models with their aura of aristocracy, poise and real sophistication is long gone and belongs to the romantic past.

To some it may seem a little pessimistic, but as the author wrote, “I’ve grown to realise that life doesn’t stand still and it’s no good being sad about it. For me, one of the most important aspects of my work is to give people something to dream about, just as I used to dream all those years ago as a child looking at beautiful photographs. I still weave dreams, finding inspiration wherever I can and looking for romance in the real, not digital, world.”

(Photo source: www.tanum.no)

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