I KNOW, I KNOW. It’s far too early to be thinking about Christmas lists.
Actually no, it’s not really. August is early. November is OK (but maybe a little bit questionable). Now is the time where the start of gift lists and wish lists are starting to form in your mind, where an idea or a spark hopes to develop itself into THE BEST GIFT EVER GIVEN.
If you can’t think of the best gift that has yet to be given, let me suggest a book. Books are great. Unlike electronics, they don’t crash or freeze, they are incredibly tactile and the feeling of looking at a picture on a page is far superior to looking at one on a screen (it’s the glossiness, I think).
I’ve got some fashion book choices for the various people in your life. Well, the people in your life who like fashion. For everyone else, I’d suggest a book token.
1. For the fashion connoisseur, the friend who knows everything there is to know, who can out-Lagerfeld Lagerfeld and scare Colin McDowell with their knowledge of industry trivia, it’s perfectly acceptable to pull out the big guns. The out of print, highly covetable (and quite expensive) Antonio’s Girls by Antonio Lopez will mean you get free styling advice for years to come. A compendium of sketches and photographs of muses including Jerry Hall and Tina Chow, this beautiful book by the late Lopez is something of a collectors item.
Honourable mention - Karl Lagerfeld’s Illustrated Fashion Journal of Anna Piaggi
2. For the down-in-the-dumps friends, there’s nothing better than a flick through The Cheap Date Guide to Style for to restore you to your normal fashion equilibrium. 2012 has not been a great year for a lot of people (myself included) – the economy, the weather and the ever-looming tiny chance of apocalypse have a tendency to make a person feel less sure of themselves. Cheap Date is a great book to make a person feel good and refine their style in a totally non-judgemental, self-celebratory way. It’s amazing what a tiny change can make in a person’s outlook and this book reflects that.
Honourable mention – Style Statement: Live by Your Own Design by Carrie McCarthy and Danielle LaPorte
3. For the non-fiction friend who just can’t stop reading biographies, the life of September Issue breakout star and creative director of American Vogue Grace Coddington is a prudent gift choice. I haven’t read Grace: A Memoir yet (it’s not out until November 22nd) but Vogue have already published an excerpt with suitably scandalous tidbits online – if a woman can mistake a condom for a chocolate mint then you know her outlook on life is going to be interesting. The book will be accompanied with sketches from Coddington’s own hand. They are all incredibly cute.
Honourable mention - D.V by Diana Vreeland
4. For the modeliser friend – the friend who has a slightly unhealthy obsession with models, I present to you Kate: The Kate Moss Book. Published by powerhouse Rizzoli Books, it has eight, count ‘em, eight different covers. It is the definitive collection of images of the ever-chameleonic Moss. I don’t get the model-worship thing – even after just researching an article on Moss and her career I still don’t gt it – but I do get that model-worshippers will love this ridiculously heavy slab of a book.
Honourable Mention – Vogue Model: The Faces of Fashion (which, surprise surprise, also has Kate Moss on the over)
6. For the friend who wants to break into fashion media, this is the book to buy. Granted, it might be a little bit dry to give a friend an academic textbook for Christmas, but they’ll thank you later. This book goes through all aspects of fashion writing, from journalism to PR and everything in between. No stone unturned – no angle unexamined, Writing For The Fashion Business will teach the reader exactly what it promises on the cover. It’s pricey, but well worth it.
Honourable mention - Mastering Fashion Styling