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Ralph Lauren Hardcover – October 16, 2007

ISBN-13: 978-0847829903 ISBN-10: 0847829901 Edition: Slp

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 482 pages
  • Publisher: Rizzoli; Slp edition (October 16, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0847829901
  • ISBN-13: 978-0847829903
  • Product Dimensions: 16.1 x 11.8 x 2.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.4 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (58 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #507,681 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Ralph Lauren isn’t easy to define. Unlike many designers, he is not known for a single signature look, but rather for his sweeping dreams of American living. Over the course of his career, the images of luxury, adventure, and beauty that he created have come to define American style. In this visually stunning book, Lauren speaks candidly for the first time ever about himself and his art. In part one, we get to know the designer through never-before-seen pictures of him in private life and with his family, living the lives he designs for. In his own words, we hear about his life, work, and inspiration. In the second part, Lauren displays and writes about his most important, most iconic, and most beloved work, hand-picked from hundreds of runway shows, collections, and his signature cinematic advertising campaigns. Lauren’s aesthetic influence and unique design sensibility are captured here by fashion’s finest photographers, including Bruce Weber, Deborah Turbeville, and Patrick Demarchelier. Featuring an introduction by Audrey Hepburn (from her 1992 presentation speech at the CFDA awards), this is truly a unique fashion monograph, a personal expression of the artist, and a rare peek into the mind of one of America’s most accomplished fashion designers of all times.

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From Publishers Weekly

Larger than life, luxuriantly priced, and filled with simple, elegant work, this volume mirrors the universal style and global reputation of its subject, American fashion icon Ralph Lauren. At first heft, this 14-and-a-half pound retrospective might seem excessive and ostentatious; once one starts turning the pages, however, it's hard to imagine the work any smaller. Following a warm introduction by Audrey Hepburn (presenting Lauren with a Lifetime Achievement Award in 1992), Lauren takes readers on a pictorial history of his life, family and work. Every photograph is rich with texture and depth, rendered in a style immediately familiar to anyone who's flipped through a fashion mag over the past several decades, but far more striking and sumptuous in this large format (each easily worth two or three times the standard thousand words). The variety of gifted photographers included (Bruce Weber, Claus Wickrath and Sheila Metzner among them) capture well Lauren's talent for anyman elegance, even on the imposing frames of such models as Linda Evangelista, Naomi Campbell and Tyson Beckford. Those with a fever for fashion (and a strong back) will find this largely text-free tome a real page-turner.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

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Customer Reviews

Great coffee table book.
Reddirtgirl
It is a wonderful story of an amazing success story for Ralph Lauren and his family.
passionatereader
That is generally laid on much, much too thickly.
Ralph Lara

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

69 of 72 people found the following review helpful By Mark Twain on October 16, 2007
Format: Hardcover
I had the opportunity to view this book in the store and it is gorgeous. Gigantic glossy photographs, many of Ralph Lauren and his family. I was waiting for this book to come out because I am a huge Ralph Lauren fan. That said, in my mind, I sort of thought this book would dissect his fashions over the past four decades. While his styles have the reputation of being timeless, the designer certainly has evolved and a book that started with his ties to his initial designs, perhaps examples of the tweed jacket he bought for his wife, etc. then moving to the polos, Blue and Black Label, Home and lifestyle, that would have made a fantastic book. This is not quite a book on the evolution of Ralph Lauren designs over the past four decades. This is more a collection of very beautiful photographs and some editorial. It is beautiful, no question. But had I purchased it sight unseen, I would have been expecting a different book, a forty year retrospective, with initial designs, runway, retail versions, fabrics, British lifestyle influences, etc.
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60 of 64 people found the following review helpful By Kirk L. Wood on October 21, 2007
Format: Hardcover
First....This is an AWESOME book. No doubt about it. It is HUGE. It weights 14 1/2 pounds!!! It is really beautiful. The photos are just what you'd expect from Mr. Ralph. Sweeping, grand and elegant. There are over 700 photos..Large and small. Not a lot of text but enough to keep you well wrapped up.

BUT....Well...Really 2 buts....I am a HUGE fan of Lauren's western vintage inspired line of clothing called "RRL" or "Double RL". Have been since 1993. Was a little let down that there are only about 8 pics related to this line which Ralph admits many many times is his true passion and love in his vast empire of styles and brands.
On the upside...There are LOTS of photos from the first western collection in 1979 that was really the groundbreaking for all his RRL and Western/Roughwear/Santa Fe collections since. Many not seen in some 25 years. AA++ on that.

SECOND BUT....There are little to NO STORE photos. Inside or out of the shops. In my humble opinion...This is about 75% of Lauren's pure gift. HIS STORES!! There are unlike any other stores in the world!! Th sheer scope that each store has..It's own style depending on it's location, the accents, the style direction, etc. You can spend hours just wondering through his stores in awe. MAJOR minus in this book. DDD---

Upside again....There are many many photos NEVER published before. Most from early ad spreads. Lauren's early ads were often 15 to 20 magazine pages long...Like mini movies. Remember them all quite well from my early adulthood. Very nice to see new/old images. AAA+++

OVERALL...Excellent book. We all know Lauren could have (without any effort due to the wealth of material to draw from) split this book up into 3 or 4 or even 5 volumes.
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13 of 17 people found the following review helpful By kooky Kid on October 16, 2007
Format: Hardcover
An abundant feast- a gluttonous selection of images beautifully bound- This will not dissapoint hard core fans and will thrill those poor readers who haven't joined the cult -yet. Printed in Italy by Rizzoli you'd better have your chauffeur pick you up when you tote this baby - it is a whopping 14.6 lbs of paper and ink.

The accompanying text is simple, elegant and sincere, page 29 "Personal style is about having a sense of yourself and of what you believe in , which is basically self-confidence.When you have that confidence you can wear whatever you want and project something personal about who you are and what you feel.Dressing,then,can be an adventure.You can dress for the role you are playing on a particular day."

The premier American designer and virtual pioneer of the global classic american lifestyle brand(ing) exemplifies American ideals of freedom / paradox by explaining that it is after all about belonging AND being an individual...I surrender!

There are tons of pictures black and white and color, chronicling the product and RL lifestyle, in honor of the 40th anniversary of the label.It's a great book to have.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Laura Henderson on October 26, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
If you're expecting to settle in with a nice long read about the nitty-gritty details of Ralph Lauren's life, this isn't for you (although he does share a good number of family pictures). For one thing, your arms would give out just from holding this puppy upright. This is really a giant (literally) picture-book, a peek inside the life of Ralph Lauren, followed by a photo essay of some of his more compelling and fantastic (fantastic as in "fantasy") ad campaigns. The quality of the book is as you would expect of a product associated with the brand. Fun for true RL fans.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Ardent Reader on November 21, 2007
Format: Hardcover
A stunning pictorial of the work from a man who has brought his imagery and quiet, good taste to a public that has been, at times, jaded by the neon excesses of our modern age. His vision and influence have not wavered and we, as the public, are all the better for it.
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12 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Front Row on November 7, 2007
Format: Hardcover
Mostly pictures of Ralph himself. Would have liked to see more inspiration and background to his amazing collections in rtw, home and men's.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By BOYWAY on September 11, 2008
Format: Hardcover
No other designer has been more inspired by Hollywood in theatrically portraying his clothing designs in a fantasy world of outrageous priviledge, impossible beauty, understated elegance and grace. Mr. Lauren's wisest choice was contracting photographer Bruce Weber to bring his obsessive vision combining English-Aristocratic-Refinement with Rugged-All-American-Athletic-Sexiness to a public hungry for classic,lockjawed Wasp (tennis, anyone?) style. This outrageously proportioned 21century monster of a book shouts not only of the power of marketing and sustained image building, but of the consuming public's fierce desire to escape through the old-fashioned values and traditions in a crazy-chaotic-angry increasingly unpredictable, violent world. Mr. Lauren's unshakable and highly detailed vision includes re-imagining The American West,The Tropical getaway, African Safaries, Horse-Country Houses, College Life and Romance as well as the Modern, Urban loft living at it's chicest. Is it any wonder that he dressed the cast of Robert Redford's The Greaty Gatsby? The dream team behind the dream book.A uniquely American retail success story.
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