Stylish coffee-table tomes to suit every taste

From French fashion manifestos, to Champagne Supernovas, to feasts fit for a design emperor

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Cathy, by John Carder Bush, Sphere, £40

Kate Bush’s style influence found its apotheosis when “This Woman’s Work” was chosen to underscore the Céline SS15 show. This rare portrait of a style icon in the making, captured as a young girl by her older brother (above left), finds her in outsize cavalry boots, cable knits and folksie boho frocks.

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Original Man, edited by Patrick Grant, Gestalten, £25

Menswear designer Patrick Grant, of E Tautz and Savile Row tailoring house Norton & Sons, profiles 80 men with unique style, from Rabelaisian rebel Oliver Reed to louche libertine Jimi Hendrix, and from dandies to Dapper Dans. Each gets a small biography highlighting their lives less ordinary and singular style.

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How to be Parisian Wherever you are, by Anne Berest, Audrey Diwan, Sophie Mas, Caroline de Maigret, Ebury, £16.99

Despite its didactic tone – “keep him waiting, never blow-dry your hair, banish brand logos” – this saucy guide to French chic has a charming autorité. It’s also curiously persuasive. How typically French!


Valentino: At the Emperor’s table, by Andre Leon Talley, photographs by Oberto Gili, Assouline, $150

Feast on the world of fashion designer Valentino Garavani, via his many residences and the dinner parties offered therein.

Talley offers a rare glimpse into a life of unashamed opulence, while Gili’s images of risotto milanese amid Meissen tableware, or flan au chèvre served on fine porcelain are pictures to gorge on.


Vogue: The Gown, by Jo Ellison, Octopus, £75

The only thing that might upstage the Cinderella-fantasy dresses here are the girls within them: Kate Moss suspended in a tulle cloud of Dior; Gisele deliciously déshabillée in Cavalli, and Guinevere Van Seenus wilting in McQueen for Tim Walker (above).

A supersized visual overview of a century of evening dresses (written by the FT fashion editor).

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Champagne Supernovas, by Maureen Callahan, Simon & Schuster, £14.99

Forget YSL and 1968. Maureen Callahan posits the theory that 1992 was fashion’s most seismic year: Kate Moss signed with Calvin Klein; Alexander McQueen debuted his infamous thesis collection at Central Saint Martins, and Marc Jacobs introduced us to “grunge”.

A cautionary celebration of the waif era that will appeal to millennial kids everywhere.

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I Just Arrived in Paris, by Juergen Teller and Nicolas Ghesquière, Steidl, $95

Arriving in March 2014 to capture Nicolas Ghesquière’s first collection for the French luxury-house Louis Vuitton, Teller captures the house in the midst of radical change and under new direction.

A collaborative project between the creatives, this box of ephemera contains campaign images, interviews, backstage posters and look-books, as seen by the master of fashion vérité.

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Seven Sisters Style, by Rebecca C Tuite, Rizzoli, $35

The unofficial companion to the male-centric Ivy League, Tuite’s anthology examines sorority-gal style, as seen from the school campus to the big screen.

Argyle sweaters, button-downs, plaid (right) and clam-diggers abound.


Snowdon: A Life in View, by Antony Armstrong Jones, Rizzoli, $85

This beautifully presented overview of Lord Snowdon’s fashion images, portraiture (including Diana Vreeland, left) and reportage work, collated alongside his daughter Frances von Hofmannsthal, repositions his reputation as a “royal photographer”.

Also covering his career diversions into furniture design and architecture, it features commentary from collaborators and colleagues such as Tom Ford, Vogue editor Alexandra Shulman and Vanity Fair’s Graydon Carter.

Photographs: Oberto Gili; Tim Walker; Juergen Teller; Camera Press

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