Elsa Schiaparelli

Author(s): Meryle Secrest


During the glittering decades of the 1920s and 1930s, Elsa Schiaparelli was the undisputed queen of fashion. Everyone who was anyone, from Vivien Leigh to the Duchess of Windsor, entered her doors on the Place Vendôme and obediently wore whatever she instructed.
Her clothes were beautifully made, but they were also designed in a manner no one had seen before: buttons that looked like butterflies, mermaids or carrots, trompe l'oeil pockets that looked like lips, gloves with red nails appliqued on them. She was unique, and in her day more famous than Chanel.
Born into a prominent Italian family, she moved to London and married a so-called Polish count who turned out to be a lowborn French con artist. His deportation during World War I saw them move to New York, where he abandoned Schiaparelli and their infant daughter. Undaunted, she picked herself up, moved to Paris and launched her meteoric career, surviving World War II despite being under suspicion of spying from both sides.
In the year when Schiaparelli's fashion house has been relaunched, here is a fascinating and highly readable portrait of an artist whose brilliance and inventiveness made wearing clothes a pleasure - and so much fun.


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Product Information

General Fields

  • : 9780241146347
  • : Penguin Books, Limited
  • : Penguin Books Limited (UK)
  • : December 2014
  • : 23.40 cmmm X 15.30 cmmm
  • : January 2015
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : Meryle Secrest
  • : Hardback
  • : 115
  • : en
  • : 288