Bloom: A Story of Fashion Designer Elsa Schiaparelli by Kyo Maclear


Bloom: A Story of Fashion Designer Elsa Schiaparelli by Kyo Maclear; illustrated by Julie Morstad. 2018. Liquid watercolor, gouache, and pencil crayons. Published by HarperCollins.

Brief summary: Growing up in Italy, Elsa notices the brilliant colors of the flowers. She enjoys designing dresses and is influenced by the countries she visits. Back in Paris, she befriends other artists of the surrealistic art movement and begins to bloom at age 37 when she opens her first shop. She and a chemist, Jean Clement, create a bright pink in which she uses in her dress fabrics.

Comments: End pages are brilliant pink. Told in the first person narrative through Elsa’s voice. She was known as mixing fabrics not commonly done and often had clothing as art. Brief bio sketch in the back detailing some of the new clothing creations that are common today like see-through raincoats and colored tights. Book for the young artistic fashionista.

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Fancy Party Gowns: The Story of Fashion Designer Ann Cole Lowe by Deborah Blumenthal

Fancy Party Gowns

Fancy Party Gowns: The Story of Fashion Designer Ann Cole Lowe by Deborah Blumenthal; illustrated by Laura Freeman. 2017. Published by littlebeebooks.

Brief summary: Ann Cole Lowe was taught how to sew by her mother and grandmother. Her mother died when she was only sixteen, so Ann took over her mother’s business. In 1916, she was employed by a  kind woman who sent Ann to design school in New York. Ms. Lowe opened a salon in Manhattan where she received a big order for Jacqueline Bouvier’s wedding which was almost destroyed by a broken water pipe disaster. She, with the help of some sewers, were able to get the wedding dresses and bridesmaid’s dresses finished on time. Her one-of-a-kind designs for prominent women made her sought after for couture clothing. In 1961, she received the title “Official Couturier”.

Comments: Girls are always asking me for fashion-related books. This would be a great addition for the fashion  or biography sections. I would like to have seen photographs of Ann Cole Lowe and some of her beautiful gowns.

Buy here.

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