This week’s “On Her Shelf” comes to you from Maria MacNamara, the editor of The Style Letters. Maria’s sense of style is impeccable as well as attainable. When she told me that she wanted to do Maureen Callahan’s Champagne Supernovas, I couldn’t have a better book that epitomizes Maria’s love for fashion and its history!
What is the last great book your read and why?
I’ll never forget the “Grunge and Glory” photo shoot in the December 1992 issue of Vogue magazine. (In fact, I’m pretty sure it’s saved in a stack of magazines in my childhood bedroom back home.) Seeing Naomi Campbell and Kristin McMenamy dressed head-to-toe in Marc Jacobs was a transformative moment for an already fashion-obsessed eleven year old. And while I might have been too young to recognize the power of marketing or the influence of stylists, all I knew was that I would die if I didn’t get a baby backpack, plaid babydoll dress, and Doc Martens right now.
So when I came across Maureen Callahan’s Champagne Supernovas: Kate Moss, Marc Jacobs, Alexander McQueen, and the ’90s Renegades Who Remade Fashion, I cleared my schedule and promptly devoured it. Callahan explores the major shift between the 80’s and 90’s style, music, and politics. This was a time where supermodels like Cindy Crawford and Christy Turlington were swiftly replaced with the heroin chic of Kate Moss. The fashion world – once obsessed with logos, labels, and a “bigger is better” philosophy – now turned towards style stripped of embellishment or flash, slightly messy and off-kilter. It was the antithesis of glamour and greed, and the Gen X movies and music of the day reflected this attitude of rebellion and defiance. This was the decade where the alternative became the mainstream, and Champagne Supernovas chronicles the icons, looks, and tragedies that defined the era.
Would you recommend this book? If so, to whom?
Absolutely! I’d recommend it to anyone who grew up in the 90’s, loves fashion, and/or enjoys insanely juicy details of debauchery and rock-and-roll lifestyles. I couldn’t put it down and definitely ignored laundry and my husband for a good day and a half.
If you liked this book so much, that you wanted your everyday attire to reflect it, what would you wear and why?
So here we are, 22 years later, and the influence of the 90’s is everywhere this season. Floral dresses paired with distressed combat boots, plaid mania, small leather backpacks – updated versions, to be sure, but the inspiration behind them can’t be denied. In addition to all of the above (will I finally get that backpack?!), I can’t get enough of slouchy, oversized sweaters and ripped jeans with booties. It’s the best kind of throwback style with just the right amount of attitude.
SHOP THIS LOOK: Old Navy Dress // Old Navy Jacket // Target Mossimo Coat // Forever 21 Blouse // Maybelline Color Sensational Lipstick in Deepest Cherry // Essie Nail Polish in Wicked // Sam and Libby For Target Boots // Mulberry Backpack