Released today: Fashion Sourcebook 1920s

Charlotte Fiell’s latest compilation has just been released today: Fashion Sourcebook of the 1920s! I’m guessing this will be a gorgeous sourcebook for original images of twenties fashions. I want this now! But I can’t buy it until February when I move to London (and therefore have a bookshelf to put it in!). Oh well, you kids can buy it now at Here’s the blurb:

Saucy flappers and manic Charlestons, dramatic silent movies and the bigband euphoria of early jazz: the 1920s must surely rank amoung the most dashing eras in American styles history, and this volume documents in ravishing detail the clothing that helped make the decade so stylish and glamorous. Sumptuously illustrated with more than 600 original photographs, drawings and prints, Fashion Sourcebook 1920s focuses largely on the Art Deco period, with its beautiful beaded dresses, cloche hats and t-bar shoes as worn by the fahsionable flappers and the “bright young things” of the time. Hemlines and haircuts both became drastically shorter, mirroring the changing social roles: at the decade’s outset, women gained the right to vote and Prohibition led many otherwise law abiding Americans to break the law of the land rather than abandon their gin fizzes. This title will prove an indispensable reference work not only for students of fashion but for all fashionistas seeking ideas for the major themes within fashion during this period, surveying its most famous designers and assessing their creative contributions. A cornucopia of beautiful clothes with exquisite detailing, this book is a rich source of inspiration as well as an important survey of Art Deco fashion.

Hairstyles: Ancient to Present

Just released today, a new book claiming to be the most comprehensive survey of hairstyles ever published. I trust this will be an amazing sourcebook, with tonnes of inspirational images, since it’s coming from Charlotte Fiell, the editor behind those fantastic Taschen design icon books – you know the ones?  She also has two fashion sourcebooks being released soon: one on the 1920s being released in a few days, and one on the 1930s due out in March 2012. I’ll post about those shortly.

Here’s the blurb for Hairstyles Ancient to Present:

No part of the human body is as culturally determined, and as diverse in its possible expressions, as hair. The afro, beehive, bob, bouffant, bowl cut, dreadlocks, mullet, mohawk, perm, pompadour – from year to year, and from era to era, old and new hairstyles come and go, telling a new tale about their wearers each time around. Hairstyles: Ancient to Present is not only the most comprehensive survery of hairstyles ever published, it is also a visual celebration of this endlessly inventive cultural phenomenon that looks at the entire cultural sprectrum of hairstyle, from ancient Greek tresses and eighteenth century powdered wigs to Art Deco bobs and Punk spikes, to the latest directions in the world of hairdressing today. Throughly researched, with 800 illustrations, this book showcases an amazing array of wonderfully imaginative styles, while also demonstrating the remarkable skill of their creators. It includes over 1,000 hairstyles, from resplendent Victorian chignons to 1950’s ponytails to the creations of today’s top stylists. With page after page of visual inspiration, Hairstyles contextualises through its accompanying texts the historical and and cultural relevance of hairdressing in society, as well as analyzing its role as a signifier of social status.

Everyday fashions of the 20s, 30s & 40s by Sears

For me, as a vintage clothing collector and wearer, old clothing catalogues are must have as they are gold-mines of imagery and info. Part of recreating a vintage look is understanding how an outfit was put together back in the day, and old catalogues are the best way to find this out.

The clothes people bought to wear to work, around the house, for vacations or for more formal or glamourous occasions are all to be found in Sears catalogues. Dresses, hats, shoes, purses and scarves, jewellery and stockings. These books are a wonderful record of exactly what people wore in the 20s, 30s and 40s and HOW they wore it. It can be hard to source original catalogues these days and most go for a fortune on ebay, so these three “Everyday Fashions” books from Dover Publications are great resource and not too expensive. I use them all the time as a reference. They are available from


Everyday fashions of the 1920s

Everyday Fashions of the 1930s

Everyday fashions of the 1940s

Book: “Cary Grant: A Celebration of Style”

Cary Grant

A divine book about a divine style icon, not just for the photos of Cary Grant in all his splendor, but a wonderful read as well. What a way to express fashion and style:

I’m talking about style, not only in the sense of how he wore his Savile Row suits, but style as a revelation of character, as a way of facing the world, a means by which all of life’s riches are embraced and celebrated.

– Prologue pXII