Amazing Grace

Until a year ago, I haven’t had a clue about who Grace Coddington was. I didn’t even know that much about the whole machinery and army behind a fashion magazine of VOGUE’s magnitude and size. Then I saw the September Issue. I wanted to see it because of the importance of this magazine but mostly, I wanted to see Anna Wintour up close. I was curious about her attitude and whether she is as bitchy as they say. Along the way, I got to know about Grace and her work. I realised that Anna is the boss who decides who, what, how and why will be published in VOGUE. There was nothing beautiful in her work. I see her as a sort of a manager – a manager with strong sense of what’s in and what the market wants. She might be considered a visionary but definitely not a creative mind or an artist. She has a hard job figuring out how to keep the magazine’s sales on a desirable level. Still, Grace has more fun, as all stylists do. During the film she put together three shoots and I loved her ideas. After the movie I started checking out her work regularly and I can say that she really is a master.

My second step in getting to know Grace and her work (and everything a good stylist should know) was to get her monograph. To my devastating disappointment, it now costs over 1000 $!!! Probably because it is already sold out and since many people still want to own it, the price rocketed. I can only hope for another edition in a year or two because I would really love to add this beautiful book to my collection of fashion books. I believe it is a classic alongside with D. Vreeland’s books. Here is the official description from Amazon:

Grace Coddington’s celebration of fashion has danced along its cutting edge for over 30 years. Abandoning a highly lucrative career as a leading model on the 60s London scene, alongside such swinging contemporaries as Jean Shrimpton and Twiggy, Coddington signed on in 1968 as a junior fashion editor at British Vogue. She quickly established herself on the other side of the camera, coordinating photo shoots with David Bailey, Cecil Beaton, Helmut Newton, Sarah Moon, and the eccentric Guy Bourdin. A close working relationship with royal photographer Norman Parkinson produced a series of startlingly vibrant location shoots that have come to be considered classics. At British Vogue, Coddington also introduced the sweeping narrative epic, a familiar feature of her work nowadays at American Vogue, where she has been creative director for the past 14 years. GRACE: Thirty Years of Fashion at Vogue is not only a collection of Coddington’s greatest work, it is a visual reminiscence of her life in fashion. “.

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