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Chanel and Her World Hardcover


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Vendome Press; First Edition edition (March 9, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0865651590
  • ISBN-13: 978-0865651593
  • Product Dimensions: 10.5 x 8.2 x 1.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (29 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #31,273 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

If style never goes out of fashion, then a biography of Coco Chanel shouldn't either. First published 25 years ago and out of print for the last decade, Charles-Roux's book was originally all black and white, but large color photos and illustrations have been added for this reissue, and the layout has been redesigned as well. (The text remains the same.) As a former editor-in-chief of French Vogue for 12 years and a longtime friend of Chanel, Charles-Roux collected a lot of photos of the fashion icon and of those allowed into her inner circle. She shares many of them in this massive biography, which follows Chanel's journey from her birth on August 20, 1883, to her days as a shop girl in Moulins to her triumph in, and transformation of, the fashion world. The book also provides insight into how Chanel's style developed and how its evolution was related to her defiance of the social conventions of her time; Coco was a great friend of the Cubists and she shared many of their avante-garde tastes. Charles-Roux's analysis may occasionally have more style than substance, but this balance would hardly have bothered Chanel, for whom style was always everything. And with a Chanel exhibition coming up at the Metropolitan Museum in May, 2005, it seems unlikely that this book will every be out of print for so long again.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Language Notes

Text: English, French (translation) --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
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See all 29 customer reviews
I found this coffee table book just lovely.
Angie2
The author captured the life of the great Coco Chanel in a very interesting detail.
Krisy
The old photographs are interesting, as well.
Anamaria Padua

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

54 of 56 people found the following review helpful By Mary Jo Magar on May 25, 2006
Format: Hardcover
This is a substantial book in both size and pictorial content.

As an ideal complement to the Metropolitan Museum's Chanel exhibit last spring (2005), this book actually exceeds - and outlasts - the exhibit itself.

More than just an intelligent, fascinating woman, Chanel was a fascinating opportunist in the way that she manipulated and transformed the trends of her times (and many men of her times), turning them to her advantage. She was as much a businesswoman and social and cultural politician as a fashion designer, and to see her in this book's big, beautiful photographs, modeling her own creations, is an inspiration to any woman who disbelieves that humble beginnings and a less than conventionally perfect countenance can lead to high achievement.

The best photograph of all - the photograph that tells all - graces the book's cover: one look at that face of intelligence, intensity, self-composure, and elegance, and one knows what the book is all about (philosophically as well as biographically) even before opening it.

The classic Chanel endures as a legend and lesson in the achievement of authentic beauty, i.e., defined by compelling creation rather than passive, taken-for-granted standards of acceptance.
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33 of 36 people found the following review helpful By Linda Painchaud-Steinman VINE VOICE on April 18, 2005
Format: Hardcover
Visually pleasing and well-written, here is a book that would surely please Mademoiselle Chanel if she were still with us.

Fans of Chanel and "Fashionistas" alike will undoubtedly be delighted with this big, beautiful book and its vast number of Chanel photos, which document Coco's personal world of fashion.

Linda Painchaud-Steinman, Park Edge Books
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17 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Gromer on April 7, 2007
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I was looking for a book showing photos of Chanel's clothing designs and styles. This book focuses more on her life and the celebrities and cultural/social trends of her era (spanning 1910's - 1950's), so if you are looking to see her clothing styles and designs, you will be disappointed as there isn't that much coverage of the actual clothing. However, it is a very absorbing, encyclopedic, pictorial collection of the people of Chanel's time and you can spend many a lazy Sunday afternoon thoroughly exploring les temps perdus. There are many many pictures of Coco Chanel - like Madonna, she looks different every few years, a real chameleon. It retails at $65, so the $37 Amazon price is a good deal. It is a heavy thick book with glossy pages.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Shannon Deason on April 15, 2006
Format: Hardcover
Mademoiselle Chanel was quite a woman. She totally invented herself, she was her best creation. This book does a fine job of showing off the clothes that made her famous and also offers many pictures of the singular Coco. The layout of the book is unique and took some getting use to, but it is informative and quite interesting. It is amazing all the men she was reportedly engaged with, she was not what one would call beautiful, but the woman had style and she knew knew how to work powerful men, a priceless talent in her day and unfortunitely to this day. Really a very good book on an amazing woman.
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20 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Lindsey Wenrich on April 6, 2007
Format: Hardcover
I was disappointed in the text. I guess from the title I should have expected some world history. The story line is somewhat incoherent and doesn't seem to present her life very well. I had to use the index to find a couple lines of reference to her "Boy", a romance started in the story and then dropped, only to be finished much later and with no real detail. Either Chanel was very closed mouth about a lot of her life or the author didn't know her that well. Also, there are a lot of pictures of rather irrelevant items. I wouldn't purchase it again.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By L. A. Margadant on October 6, 2008
Format: Hardcover
Not only beautifully written, it gives you a perfect picture of a fascinating era and a fascinating woman. In a way Chanel lived ahead of her time, on the other hand she had a perfect sense how to translate that into the time she was living. I thoroughly enjoyed the book.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Angie2 on May 27, 2007
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I paid almost full price for this book and I don't regret it. I found this coffee table book just lovely.

I am not a fashion expert. I'm just a reader interested in interesting people, so I was looking for a book on CHANEL that gave a brief background on her life and photos of Coco and some of her fashions. Well, this book seemed to fit the bill---for me. I was not disappointed.

I have enjoyed this book very much and it sits on my living room table , ----for the book to be browsed by others.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By K. Lynn on November 8, 2011
Format: Hardcover
The photographs in this book are amazing, and if you're interested in a pictorial history of Chanel, this book is lovely. However, the text leaves much to be desired. My biggest qualm with this book is that it is a severely truncated form of the original 1975 English translation of Charles-Roux's biography (entitled Chanel: Her Life, Her World--and the Woman Behind the Legend She Herself Created). The Publisher's Weekly Editorial Review that Amazon uses on this page claims that "The text remains the same," but they obviously did not read the 1975 edition. Several previous reviews have claimed that this edition (2005) does not give enough of a history, which is completely true, however it is not true of the 1975 translation, which is a 373 page book with few pictures. I would have given the 2005 edition a higher rating if it acknowledged that it is a loose interpretation and abridgment of the original Charles-Roux biography. The publishers definitely sacrificed bibliographic content for photographs, which is fine considering it is a pictorial history, but they should have acknowledged the abridgment. Anyone looking for a more comprehensive history of Chanel's life should try to get their hands on the 1975 edition (out of print but still available online)--it can be dry at times, but it gives you a much better understanding of Chanel's life.
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