Rather loving these moody, vintage pics from The Gifts of Life tumblr. I love that indian sheer top – can that really be vintage? If so please can it make it’s way to Syd’s Vintage in Kirkdale so I can purchase it?
There is a reason why I have a crush on Harper’s Bazaar España, apart from Sandra Suy’s beautiful illustrations. The attention to the layout of text, in relationship to images, is really quite something.
I confess I am a terrible magazine junkie, and it may simply be the case that I am so used to reading the same magazines, I’ve become desensitised to their layout. But the creative, contoured use of text in this publication has really hit me between the eyes and feels distinctly familiar.
The reason it might strike you as familiar is because of Alexey Brodovitch, the art director of Harper’s Bazaar (US) who revolutionized magazine publishing with his use of double spreads and clever typography in the late 1930’s through to the late 50’s.
“Brodovitch sometimes manipulated text to comply with the constraints imposed by the photograph. He explored various typographic possibilities to see how they could work with the content of an image; he seems, for example, to have designed the contour of a block of text to harmonise with the outline of a dress photographed by George Hoyningen-Huene (15March 1938). At this time he was also performing similar experiments with the photographs of Man Ray. One or more dropped initials, in black or in colour, would harmonise the composition of the text and create a counterpoint to the image”. (Alexey Brodovitch, Gabriel Bauret)
“A Hurrell portrait is to the ordinary publicity stills what a Rolls-Royce is to a roller-skate”. This is how George Hurrell, MGM’s main man, was described in Esquire magazine in 1936.
George swept into town with the intention of becoming a painter, only once he started photographing heiresses, with his signature dramatic spotlight, creating sculptured cheekbones and glowing skin, he never looked back.
By 1929 he had a contract with MGM and became renowned as an image maker, helping to create the flowing locks of Veronica Lake and the impressive cleavage of Jane Russell.
I’ve even spotted some gorgeous images of Brooke Shields, Sherilyn Fenn and Jessica Lange. Oh, how comfortable would you feel to know that you were going to sculptured and veneered – no wonder they all look so serene!
I watched the documentary Diana Vreeland – The Eye Has To Travel over the weekend and it is an absolute must-see. I was totally transfixed from beginning to end.
“I was the most hideous thing in the world”, Diana Vreeland told an interviewer in 1977 and perhaps because of this, she became the champion of the eclectic woman and the unconventional beauties of the world.
I won’t spoil her story here, you must definitely watch the film, but she was well known for her “Why Don’t You…” column in Harper’s Bazaar in the late 30’s which involved bizarre suggestions like “Why don’t you twist (your child’s) pigtails round her ears like macaroons!”
As you can imagine as fashion editor for Harper’s Bizarre and then Vogue, she delighted in the extraordinary and her fashion shots are still some of the most talked about. She launched many a face and made a huge impact in developing a more cosmopolitan consciousness in the world of fashion.
So I thought I would just highlight a few of her favourite people so you can get a taste for the film. Do, do watch it – it’s total escapism and a history of fashion all in one …..
The lady who discovered Lauren Bacall
Mick Jagger photographed by David Bailey 1964
Diaghilev’s Ballet Russes 1939
I shall now leave you for a week, as it’s half term here and it will no doubt be chaos….Cx
I now know the best way to get the presents you desire and that’s to write a post about them. Oh yes, some of those lovely 10 Best Books found their way into my stocking this year and I am one happy gal!
Now I’m not favouring one present over another, but I have to say Decades by Cameron Silver, which my cousin’s in law gave me, had me, (rather unfortunately for my family), totally mesmerised on Boxing Day.
The pictures are gorgeous. But the story of how this young cabaret singer who randomly started to collect vintage fashion, established a prestigious vintage store and essentially waited for the vintage trend to unfold, is totally fascinating. Needless to say Cameron Silver now dresses Oscar tipped celebrities.
So I guess you would like a sneak peek?
Camille Clifford 1905, Gibson Girl
Gustav Klimt 1918, Portrait of Johanna Staude
1924 Dress by Chanel
Frida Kahlo by Nickolas Muray 1938
Red Scarf by Clare McCardell 1946
Grace Kelly, To Catch a Thief, 1955
Monica Vitti 1965
Bianca Jagger in Zandra Rhodes
1980’s gets edgy! Loving those canary yellow knickers!
Now you know why I was rather uncommunicative!
“There are different layers of rich, and you have to choose which rich she is. She’s the heroine of the film, so you can’t choose to make her a dumpy rich person. She’s also Faye Dunaway. You can choose to make her rather chic. I’ve never seen Babe Paley wear anything but brown, gray, off-white, and black. I assume Faye does the same thing as Mrs Mulwray”.
My friend, Emma, picked up this 2006 W magazine for me, on one of her home shoots, and I discovered this wonderful 30’s style photoshoot which is just so reminiscent of the uber- chic, slightly masculine style of Mrs Mulwray in Chinatown, I just had to put the two together:
Photos: Michael Thompson for W Magazine
I’m rather susceptible to white lace dresses, particularly the edwardian types with the bobble edging and crochet details.
In fact you can usually spot me at a vintage fair by the trail I lead from one white outfit to the next. Generally, followed closely by my mum, saying “yes it’s lovely but when would you wear it?”
Well the weather, for the last few days anyway, has been perfect for a white dress – this is when I would wear it ………if I had one.
So, with a little investigation, here are some rather lovely white lace dresses to drool over, introduced by a little inspiration:
Vintage Textiles $800
Personally, I think the vintage ones have the edge over the more modern versions, but I suppose at least they’re not as fragile or petite.
I absolutely love the second one at Etsy, and pretty reasonable considering the excellent condition and exquisite detail.
Hmmm …..watch this space, I might have to make it mine …..unless you get there first!