By Audrey Tan

Like every other profession, being a fashionista involves learning. Sure, you may be born with an awesome sense of style or inherit a killer fashion gene. But if you really want to get into the fashion business, create your own brand, and go beyond dressing well and knowing which pieces go together, it’s time to read up on fashion books.

There are plenty of books out there on the topic of fashion that can help you to learn everything from the history of fabric to the evolution of styles to the creation of legendary fashion trends. Some books share the awe-inspiring story of iconic designers and brands who’ve made monumental waves in the fashion world, such as Christian Dior, Guccio Gucci, and Alexander McQueen, also telling of their experiences in the field. 

So if you’re into fashion and want to broaden your knowledge or gain some insights and secrets, here are five fashion books that you must have in your collection now:

The Chiffon Trenches: A Memoir By André Leon Talley

It’s easy to be fooled by the glitz and glamour of fashion without knowing what goes on behind the scenes of such a cutthroat industry. The late André Leon Talley was and still is, an esteemed figure in the fashion world. Nevertheless, his road to success wasn’t all red carpets and glitter. 

Despite his incredible style IQ, charming wit and influential connections, the Vogue creative director faced challenges in the form of racism and illicit rumours. Get to know the ups and downs and the ins and outs of the fashion industry through the lens of the iconic designer as he shares his experiences in a raw and candid tell-all.

Gucci: The Making Of By Various Contributors

Dive into the makings of the world-renowned fashion house and get an insider look into Gucci’s inception, identity, influence, and innovation through this thought-provoking publication. The book is made up of a collection of heartfelt essays from style icons such as Peter Arnell, Stefano Micelli, and Katie Grand in tribute to what the coveted brand has done for the industry. 

It explores the inspiring process of how new concepts materialise and the interplay between moods, shapes, symbols, and images. Thanks to the gorgeous and chic cover, in all its Gucci gloriousness, this read will also make for a stylish coffee table book.

Dior: Couture By Patrick Demarchelier

This book is a must-have if dramatic gowns and dresses are your thing. One for those who prefer something more visual, Dior: Couture is a colourful collection of breathtaking portraits of models in magnificent gowns from the entire era of Christian Dior’s haute couture, including ones that the designer designed himself. 

In true Dior fashion, everything about the book makes a statement, such as the extra large size, high-quality paper, and first-class photography, which will surely add an extra layer of chicness to your space. Moreover, it’s a timeless piece that will be a source of inspiration for many years to come.

The Golden Thread: How Fabric Changed History By Kassia St. Clair

The history of fabric goes all the way back, around 30,000 years. So much time has passed since then, and the fabric industry has come a long way, shaped by different cultural customs and technological advancements. 

Design journalist Kassia St. Clair is the author behind The Golden Thread. She takes readers on a deep journey of exploring the contemporary textile history and their production’s environmental and human impacts. This book will make you think and possibly change how you see clothing by the time you reach the end.

Gods And Kings: The Rise And Fall Of Alexander McQueen And John Galliano By Dana Thomas

Alexander McQueen and John Galliano are two fashion trailblazers who changed the runway game. They brought a new visual aspect, and their work evokes emotional experiences alongside high fashion. Both were pivotal in elevating the art of high fashion. Yet, they were also tragic casualties of the war between art and corporate greed. 

Journalist Dana Thomas guides readers through a tale of social history through the compelling biographies of the two icons and sheds some light on the relentless world of couture.

Fashion books are an excellent way to delve deeper into the field and learn about the issues that surround it. The fashion world is painted with a rich history, drama, and stories that can offer a wealth of knowledge and guide you through the merciless and often lonely industry, especially for those just starting out. And, bonus, some books add a sense of vibrancy and style to your reading pile! 

Check out our five suggestions above if you need help figuring out where to start. Hopefully, you will find your ideal fashion read and have a collection of stylish books you can proudly display in your home.