Chanelle Reviews…

Clothes . . .

and other things

that matter… by Alexandra Shulman

I raced through this book, although upon reflection I wish I had savoured it more. Since the age of eleven, I have been collecting and reading Vogue, so “Clothes and Other Things That Matter” was a book I was desperate to get my hands on. My love of Vogue is so all encompassing, that my late Grandma would decorate my birthday cakes as a Vogue cover, with topical headlines; bless her soul.

So, to the book…. Shulman’s manner is accessible, chatty and friend-like. There is no pontificating – she is surprisingly unaffected for someone who was at the helm of British Vogue for twenty-five years. At the driving seat of every fashionista’s Bible.

To introduce the book, Shulman tallies up all the clothes in her wardrobe. I was astounded to know that I actually own way more than her, handbags aside. Although my collection is rather less costly and definitely more Chanel-light. In the absence of being allowed to do many other things right now, tallying up your clothes is one to try at home on a free weekend. You might surprise yourself, and rediscover forgotten treasures.

The content of this book is multi-faceted; part autobiography, part fashion critique and part social commentary. These multiple layers stand together to make it a very beguiling read. Format wise, each chapter is dedicated to an item of clothing and/ or colour that has significance during different epochs in Shulman’s life.

The jacket of the book has a navy background, bubble-gum pink writing and a photo of Shulman herself in a L.B.D.  The semiotics of this become more meaningful as you read on.

Anyone who loves fashion and Shulman should read “Clothes and Other Things That Matter”. A little knowledge helps. However, of course, you’re reading Zips It Up so you’re probably already ” in the know”. 

Alexandra writes with élan and, of course, style. This book is a delight.

Chanelle Clark Bruccoleri