The blogosphere will be popping with plenty of tributes to the Divine Miss H. She worked on almost 500 films and dressed the biggest stars in Hollywood. For me it would be impossible to pick a favorite dress or movie. Here is my small tribute with a few favorite sketches, quotes and a bibliography where you can slowly drink up all the talent, controversy and inspiration that is Edith Head.
Books by Edith Head
“You can do anything you want in life if you dress for it,” says Edith Head in How to Dress for Success. Would you like to look younger, prettier, slimmer? Would you like to attract a new man and hold on to the current one? Would you like to get a better job and earn more money? Then this is your book. Edith Head (1897-1981) dressed stars from Grace Kelly and Elizabeth Taylor to Sophia Loren and Audrey Hepburn. This reprint of Head’s 1967 tome serves as a timeless reference to looking your best. Head offers no-nonsense, and often hilarious, fashion advice. Illustrated with Head’s original black-and-white line drawings and packaged with a chic cloth cover, this pocket-size guide is packed with smart tips on how to accessorize, dress for all occasions, and develop your own personal style.
Long before celebrity stylists became as renowned as the Oscar-winning film stars they advise, the legendary costume designer Edith Head was dressing Hollywood’s most fashionable women and men on screen and off—and lending her sartorial wisdom to women across the country on radio and television. In 1959, she published a best-selling memoir and style guide, The Dress Doctor, in which she shared tips on style and dozens of entertaining anecdotes on Hollywood’s A-list with her fans. Now, The Dress Doctor has returned in this special edition of the original volume, an alphabetical romp through the art of getting dressed and dressing Hollywood, with specially commissioned illustrations and the best advice and stories culled word for word from the original book.
From Audrey Hepburn to Zooture, The Dress Doctor is filled with Head’s timeless tips: her expertise on developing a personal style, dressing to flatter one’s figure, building a wardrobe, and judging quality. Her prescriptions for dressing properly for various activities from archery to house cleaning to roller skating are a charming mix of perennially chic and, now, with the passing of time, tongue in chic. Fashion illustrator Bil Donovan’s stunning re-creations of Head’s most famous gowns, along with illustrations of myriad other stylish ensembles, bring the designer’s work vividly to life again, along with Hollywood icons Grace Kelly, Katharine Hepburn, Mae West, Cary Grant, and many others.
Great look into bygone Hollywood and Edith herself. Written by her and Paddy Calistro with a great forward by Bette Davis
All About Eve. Funny Face. Sunset Blvd. Rear Window. Sabrina. A Place in the Sun. The Ten Commandments. Scores of iconic films of the last century had one thing in common: costume designer Edith Head (1897–1981). She racked up an unprecedented 35 Oscar nods and 400 film credits over the course of a fifty-year career.
Never before has the account of Hollywood’s most influential designer been so thoroughly revealed—because never before have the Edith Head Archives of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences been tapped. This unprecedented access allows this book to be a one-of-a-kind survey, bringing together a spectacular collection of rare and never-before-seen sketches, costume test shots, behind-the- scenes photos, and ephemera.
Edith Head is widely considered the most important figure in the history of Hollywood costume design. The glamour and style of her creations continue to inspire generations of designers. Her career spanned nearly half a century and included such classic films as Rear Window and Sunset Boulevard. Her private life and professional achievements, however, have been the subject of speculation since she rose to the top of her field in the late 1940s. Ruthlessly competitive and intensely secretive, Head had few close friends and many detractors. In his unprecedented biography, David Chierichetti offers a privileged glimpse into the personality and emotions behind the famously impenetrable “schoolmarm” façade, as well as a comprehensive account of her creative process.
From Publishers Weekly
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.