Posts Tagged ‘Coco Chanel’

I Am Coco by Isabel Pin

Award winning illustrator Isabel Pin has just published her latest children’s book, I Am Coco: The Life of Coco Chanel (Prestel Publishing).

Much has been written about the designer/fashion icon Coco Chanel (even for children), however, there’s something quite unique and compelling about Ms. Pin’s addition to the stack. As the author and illustrator, she gives readers an overview of Chanel’s life from young orphan at the turn of the last century to innovative designer to icon, highlighting the big events in her life – short-lived singing career, first shop, love affairs, world wars, daring designs, and her comeback in the late 1950s.

Illustrations From the book I am Coco: The Life of Coco Chanel.

Each chapter of the story is concisely written and embellished with colorful illustrations. Although Pin’s depictions bear little resemblance to Chanel, her simple drawings with a swipe of added color grew on me. (Her style actually reminds me of mid-century fashion illustrations, in particular Andy Warhol, who was a fashion illustrator in his early career.) Pin’s images of Chanel, her life, and designs are as delightful to look at as a plate of pink and green French Macarons.

Chanel’s story takes place in the world of fashion, but the message within her story is perseverance. In addition to learning about Chanel’s life and achievements, young readers will find in I Am Coco fashion history, inspiration, and encouragement to follow their ambitions.

I Am Coco: The Life of Coco Chanel by Isabel Pin is targeted for readers aged six to nine, but this its a fun read at any age.

(Thank you Prestel Publishing and Media Masters Publicity for providing a review copy to ODFL.)

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untitledCertain dressmakers desire to pass for an artist. I have one ambition: that is to have good taste.

Jean Patou (1880-1936) – French fashion designer.

Jean Patou was as successful as Coco Chanel in 1920s and 30s Paris. Like Chanel, Patou ushered in a sportswear look for daytime ensembles. In particular he was known for the long knit cardigan.

This quote makes me think of Elsa Schiaparelli, who was inspired by and worked closely with Surrealism artists in the late 1930s and 40s. Patou was an early supporter of Schiaparelli having encouraged her to open her own fashion house in the 1920s.

Here’s to good taste (and good fashion) for the New Year.

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