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Worn Stories Hardcover – August 26, 2014


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 200 pages
  • Publisher: Princeton Architectural Press (August 26, 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1616892765
  • ISBN-13: 978-1616892760
  • Product Dimensions: 7.2 x 0.8 x 9.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #161,750 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

An Amazon Best Book of the Month, August 2014: If a picture is worth a thousand words, what's the worth of photos of old clothing? In the gorgeously packaged Worn Stories, Emily Spivack has paired short essays with beautifully sparse photos of their subject: old sweaters, shoes, jackets, and other sentimental apparel. But even more fun than the eccentric clothing is the diverse cast of creatives she's assembled, from musicians (Roseanne Cash) to critics (Sasha Frere-Jones) to actors (Greta Gerwig) to comedians (John Hodgman) to artists who do a multitude of things (Maira Kalman). The tales are often steeped in nostalgia--a funny anecdote with a tinge of longing--but the sum of these anecdotes is something bigger, more universal. Old clothes have a particular smell, often not the same, but familiar to someone. --Kevin Nguyen

Review

"Worn Stories is absolutely remarkable in its entirety - a true labor of love that weaves this common thread of intensely personal, courageously vulnerable sartorial memories into a colorful tapestry of the human experience." - Brain Pickings

"A fascinating, poignant book." - Minneapolis Star Tribune

"A plain buttondown shirt, a green sweater, a pair of legwarmers, all are suddenly seen in a new, more poignant light." - Globe and Mail

"Full of emotion and honesty, and a handy antidote to 'fast fashion.'.. Dip in and out whenever the cynicism of today's consumer culture seems overwhelming." -NYTimes.com

"Intimate and sweet.... A fashion book for everyone who feels that so far they have been left out of the fun." - Publishers Weekly

"The one-page mini-memoirs, accompanied by a photograph of the piece of clothing, are intensely personal and yet universal. Initially I skipped around in Worn Stories until I realized I didn't want to miss a single story and read it straight through." - Boston Globe

Customer Reviews

Heart warming stories.
Rita Moulen
This was so much fun to read, then it made me want to look at my clothing and think about the memories made with each one.
Mrs. Kimberly S. Napier
Fantastic stories and clothing photos.
Julia B. Santen

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

13 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Amelia Gremelspacher TOP 500 REVIEWER on August 26, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
In this intriguing collection of short memoirs, Spivack interviews a number of people both famous and not. She has asked for a piece of clothing that evokes a piece of time for the owner. The resulting entries ensnare the mind with the everyday magic of an item. I do,however, suspect it is also her interpretation of the story in precise and elegant prose that further enhances these little worlds.

I am captured by the uncanny spread of clothing and stories. Some are totemic such as first Converse sneakers, but others are prosaic such as a pencil skirt that stood for adulthood for its owner. Perhaps even more telling than the clothing we buy are those clothes we save through the years. I especially love the fact that some of these items are not lovely and will never be candidates for clothing lust or envy. This book is a lovely little peek into the role of our much maligned "stuff" that follows our travels by design or habit.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Rigden on August 28, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Really Really Enjoyed this book. It's a fairly simple concept - one piece of clothing, one story about the clothes per person, but executed with a great array of really meaningful voices, and the stories are so well arranged and curated by the author. It reminded me of all the hidden narratives embedded in my favorite clothes. I am looking at my closet differently this morning.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Cissa on September 4, 2014
Format: Hardcover
I loved this book! So many different voices, each telling us about an article of clothing that's extra-meaningful to them, and why.

The essays range from funny to nostalgic to sad, with a lot of nuances. All of the writing is excellent, and each tale is accompanied by an elegant photograph of the clothing piece discussed. This gives the book a very clean, yet immediate, tone.

The production values of the book itself live up to the elegant prose and photos. It's really a joy to read!

I am proud that my daughter is one of the authors therein, especially since I doubt I would have heard of this book without that connection, and it's really good.

Highly recommended if you like thoughtful, personal essays.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Dorothy Coakley on October 2, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Clever, clever! Everybody has a favorite piece of clothing with a story behind it. This little anthology contains a multitude of suc stories from ordinary folk as well as the famous. My personal favorite was about a Girl Scout badge sash!
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Format: Hardcover
What a great gift this book is! Short stories-some printed as written by the person owning the item of clothing, some written by Ms. Spivack from information she received from the owner. Each piece of clothing tells a story even though it may have had some humble beginnings. It is a great coffee table book because you can open it to any page and feel touched by the story you read....in turn, it is easy to chat about ideas/experiences the stories describe. I think we all have a few articles of clothing or accessories we hold onto because of the memories connected to them. I plan to wrap this book in a soft shirt and scarf to pass on to a good friend. She will "get" it.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Everything about this book is lovely, but not in the sense of a brand new dress or a flawlessly tailored suit. Here is a moving story from a Holocaust survivor. There is a deep reflection from a very funny man about the dress he sometimes wears on stage. I'm not much for coffee table books, but this is one I'll savor--picking it up and putting it down, staring at one image and reading one story at a time--for this collection deserves to be cherished as much as the footy pajamas I wore as a teen-ager on freezing-cold nights and still can't bring myself to throw out.
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By Kiki on September 30, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
As an image consultant, I'm always helping people make their wardrobe smaller and more functional, but my favorite part is getting to know and be amazed by the stories each piece of clothe can hold. I even study psychology to understand how much further a simple piece can go besides just making someone more beautiful.
Emily just reassured why i got into this business in the first place: to getting to know (and help) people and to learn the amazing particularities each one of us have.
I'm in love with this book.
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Format: Hardcover
Opening up the book Worn Stories is like opening a clothing diary. Each piece of clothing that is found in a person's wardrobe has a story, each one special its own way. Some stories are funny, some are full of memories. Each essay has its own photograph.
This was so much fun to read, then it made me want to look at my clothing and think about the memories made with each one. I would give this book the highest rating and would recommend it to everyone I know.
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