36 of 41 people found the following review helpful
on November 23, 2009
A harsh review perhaps. Individual short essays on the usual suspects Babe Paley, CZ Guest, Jackie O, the swans... aren't we tired of reading the same thing over and over again? And yes, the black and white ball is in it. If this book is supposed to cover the last 4 decades, couldn't Kotur find more weddings other than the Plum Sykes, Lauren Davis, Dita/Manson and Eliza Reed weddings? Either that or do these represent the most Vogue of the weddings? Putting Gisele and Tom Brady at the latest MET Gala for the cover; is this the best of the Vogue world for the cover? The editor (or perhaps editors - I suspect one totally old-world retro unable to let go of that world of endless fittings and the other totally celebrity-driven with no cultural references before 1999) has nothing to say about the specialness of Vogue or why these choices represent the Vogue world and has no originality. I'm rarely driven to write a review but the entire book is just a unstylish grouping of lazy and predictable choices when one expects so much more from Vogue.
15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
Vogue's big photo books --- and The World in Vogue: People, Parties, Place serves up 300 gorgeous pictures --- are ruthlessly edited experiences. They buy the glamor myth, and they chart it over time. Their aim is manicured, buffed, air-brushed beauty, life the way it oughta be.
Old people? Never happened. Which makes it disconcerting to see photos of people you know --- or knew, because many have gone on to that place where Vogue can't be delivered --- in the full blush of youth.
Truman Capote's "swans", beautiful people in the Hamptons, Mick Jagger and Jerry Hall in Mustique, Valentino's country house, palaces, gardens --- almost every photograph and most excerpts from the profiles that accompanied them have the same effect. That is, they make you want to be rich. And thin. And young.
And that's the way it goes for 400 oversized pages. Vogue is the InStyle of the upper order; it's one big wet kiss to the people it photographs. Which isn't to say it's unappealing --- it's nice to get all your jealousy from one thick source.
I do note one factual error. The editors claim that, in 1990, "Georgina Howell found Carolyne Roehm exemplifying the spirit of the Working Rich." Yes, she did. But she wasn't the first. I recall a New York Magazine cover story about Roehm called "The Working Rich: The Real Slaves of New York," published in January 1986. The author, I believe, was Jesse Kornbluth.
13 of 16 people found the following review helpful
on November 19, 2009
Each of the last two years as the holiday season approaches, Vogue has published a compilation of the very best of its past editorial pages. Last year's book, "Vogue Living: Houses, Gardens, People", was very reminiscent of the book by a very similar name done forty years ago which has become a classic; the earlier volume goes for $200 or more. The current book is produced in the same very high quality, 400-page large-scale format, but this time with more emphasis on the people part of the equation -- personal profiles, the best parties, most interesting weddings and finest editorial features -- going back as much as fifty years.
The most interesting portion of Vogue each month has often been a few editorial sections toward the end of each magazine, perhaps focusing on the lifestyle of a particularly tasteful individual, an attractive new political figure or someone in the entertainment world who might actually be interesting. Many of the best of these editorial features -- often featuring great fashion -- are now gathered in one large volume and are illustrated the most talented photographers of our time: Horst, Avedon, Penn, etc.
We start by visiting Babe Paley, then attend Truman Capote's famous black-and-white ball as written up by Gloria Steinem. We see the '60s Newport wedding of Peter Beard and Minnie Cushing, two of the most beautiful people of our era; visit gardens from Normandy to the Hamptons and drop in on Mick Jagger in Mustique and Valentino's country house. We particularly welcome a chance to view the art collection of Carlo Ponti and Sophia Loren, starting with six, count 'em, six, full size Francis Bacons, and to see the homes of Paloma Picasso over the years. We also visit some absolutely beautiful Venetian palaces, to see the informal shots at the Met's fashion parties and to attend the Santo Domingo-Davis wedding. We come right up to the present in features on Michelle Obama and Penelope Cruz.
It would be nice if Hamish Bowles had been allowed to do a few more houses, gardens and interiors and I, for one, could do without another look at Madonna, Cher or Angelina Jolie. We would certainly welcome seeing more of Europe and particularly the U.K. There are also perhaps too many pages on models at the end on the book, but it is still successful. This makes an ideal gift book for anyone on your list who enjoys Vogue and similar Conde Nast publications.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on January 14, 2010
I live vicariously however unrealistically through Vogue and appreciate the good taste and lovely photos so this book is perfect for me. The world of beauty will never become stale in my mind. I would have to disagree that putting Tom Brady and Gisele Bunchen on the cover is a mistake - what better way to epitomizse the combination of the athletic world with the world of fashion? They have indeed become intertwined as has the world of fashion and the world of entertainment. A lovely book to keep ~
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on September 20, 2010
I own a few hard copy Vogue books, I was expecting this books images to be based around events and opening parties.
It is a beautiful, if it is a first time Vogue coffee table book its a wonderful page turner.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on May 23, 2012
"The World in Vogue: People, Parties, Places" by Hamish Bowles takes an "insider" approach with discussing the worlds of fashion, entertainment, and those born into high society. A diverse range of celebrities are featured in this book. The following are some of the well-known names that feature in this tome:
Nicole Kidman pages 28-29 and pages 216-221
Michelle Obama (with one picture of President Obama) on pages 90-95
Scarlett Johanson pages 180-181
Jennifer Lopez pages 186-187
Gwyneth Paltrow pages 196-199
Charlize Theron pages 200-203
Angelina Jolie pages 224-227
Iman (world famous supermodel, businesswoman, and wife of David Bowie) pages 316-321
Cher pages 328-331
Beyonce pages 336-337
Naomi Campbell pages 340-347 and page 7
Cindy Crawford pages 368-371
There are many more celebrities and high society women featured in this book. The details on the origins of the wedding cake (page 130) and pictures from Truman Capote's Ball (pages 136-145) interested me. "The World In Vogue: People, Parties, Places" by Hamish Bowles is great for anyone who enjoys feature books on celebrities and/or heiresses that live a life of fame and opulence.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on May 20, 2010
Does this book qualify as a fetish book? Or a guilty pleasure? Or, in fact, is this book more along the lines of I-gotta-read-it-cause-I-HATE-half-these-people? Like Vanity Fair when it gets all drooly over European royalty. Or quasi royalty. Or anyone with a robber-baron last name. Mellon. Vanderbilt. Astor. Janklow (heh). They're all in here, believe me. Principessas, Crown Princes, the whole lot, with their blonde American wives, too. And it's as infuriating as ever when the editors refer to such beings by their title, even when, as in the case of Pavlos of Greece, such titles have been rendered meaningless by history and by acts of government.
On the other hand, the overentitled are so pretty. They have cool antiques and rooms with 30-foot ceilings. Collections of Meissen. Gardens measured in acres. Wedding dresses measured in seamstress-hours. They marry people like Peter Beard, one of the best-looking people ever born. And they get photographed by Avedon, Annie Leibowitz, Herb Ritts, Mario Testino, Helmut Newton.
Also, there are models and actresses, and at least two instances of Clooney. So that helps.
on September 23, 2014
INTERESTING BOOK or MAGAZINE if you care to explore another angle of this crazy 20, 21 CENTURY ... How the very wealthy passed the time, from party to party, in the company of "ninfettes" some with money,some without... The penniless "gigolos" -- always -- arm in arm with rich "doyennes" wrinkled to death, enjoying the last murmurs of their empty hearts. These people never knew another life. They were and are involved in their circles for ever. Revolving around them, we find the parasites: modistes, (HAUTE COUTURE), hairdressers (COIFFEURS), JEWELERS and their last creations, DERNIER CRI, AHHH! LA NOUVELLE VAGUE !!!! Always girating -- LIKE FLIES -- around the man and women of Society. I have to admit that they amuse me, that's the reason why I recommend this book. Important dresses, marvelous creations from the hands of poor modistes, perhaps working for pennies ... jewels, fancy cars, furs, parties, (how many parties?) NOUVELLE CUISINE...DIETICIANS, MASSEURS ... PETS WITH STRANGE NAMES ...
DO I ENVY, THEM? YES, OF COURSE I DO, A LITTLE BIT (BUT NOT FOR LONG), then reality sinks in, and one more time, I return to my books and my writings. Margarita Sep 23, 2014.
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on January 9, 2010
I was hoping to find more on parties and it was really more on people.
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on May 11, 2011
This is a wonderful book, exactly as described. I bought it to scrutinize the photographs, which are excellent, but have also been greatly appreciating its chronicling of history through fashion and high-society. There's just enough text to give context to the photos but the emphasis, for sure, is on the great photographs.