New York Fashion Week is nearly upon us, but if you can't make it to the shows — not to mention those in Paris, London, or Milan — there's plenty of spectacle to be enjoyed from the comforts of your coffee table. Preview ten of the best fashion books out this fall, here.
Also in attendance at McQueen's legendary "Highland Rape" show was Alix Browne, a writer, editor, and now W's features director who's attended hundreds of runway presentations over the last 20 years. Runway: The Spectacle of Fashion, her new book (Rizzoli), chronicles the stand-outs, from models floating down a Milanese canal at Carol Christian's Poell's 2004 show to the moving escalators at spring 2013 Louis Vuitton.
Since 2013, Hood By Air's casting director Kevin Amato has been shaking up the runways with untraditional faces he finds both on Instagram and the streets, making for a rare and welcome show of diversity that's helped propel the likes of Luka Sabbat to stardom. Amato's also a photographer, and he has a penchant for capturing kids he scouts around his neighborhood in the Bronx — a group he calls The Importants, which is also the name of his brand-new book of portraits (Phaidon), with an afterword by none other than Rick Owens.
Rather than playing up the glamour of the famous subjects he's captured over the last three decades, the German photographer Peter Lindbergh's genius lies in letting them speak for themselves. From a fresh-faced Kate Moss in overalls to the more traditional supers of the '90s in simple white shirts, Lindbergh's knack for understatement is now at the center of Peter Lindbergh: A Different Vision on Fashion Photography (Taschen). (There is also a major retrospective of his work going up at the Kunsthal in Rotterdam.) Entirely in black and white, the book's 400-plus images stretch from Azzedine Alaïa and Tina Turner in the '80s to Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt captured just last year.
Coach turns 75 this year, and while the New York brand's seen plenty of change in that tenure, the most marked might have come in the last few years: Since British designer Stuart Vevers took over as creative director, the brand's been putting on runway shows and rolling out risk-taking designs favored by everyone from Debbie Harry to Tavi Gevinson. In fact, it's Harry who has the foreword to Coach: A History of New York Cool (Rizzoli), which traces the house's origins from a leather goods house to a commercial powerhouse.
Few can say they have a personal brand as strong as Donatella Versace, who appears completely stripped down, save her trademark bleached hair and a cigarette, on the very first page of her book chronicling her family's namesake label. Dedicated to Prince, and compiled with Maria Luisa Frisa and W's Stefano Tonchi, Versace, out later this fall (Rizzoli), also features contributions from Tim Blanks and Ingrid Sischy; photos from names like Irving Penn and Richard Avedon; and eye-catching, fleshy campaigns from the '80s to the present.
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