51BCGSMKFNL__SS500_Our lovely Vintage Librarian Claire Pursglove is always on the hunt for a good reference guide that not only gives a good overview on past decades but also shows off the glamour of vintage fashion. Could she have found the right book this week?

Vintage Style, 1920-1960 – Desire Smith
Available from: www.bushwoodbooks.co.uk
UK postage is £2.50, overseas postage is £7.50

For those of you who read my column regularly, you will know that I’m a bit of a stickler for good photography. I’m no David Bailey, but I don’t understand why anyone would produce a book for style lovers that just doesn’t do the subject justice.

I love vintage clothes for many reasons, not least because they’re often more intricate and well-made than their modern day counterparts. It saddens me then, when books like this pass under my nose. It does what it says on the tin and catalogues garments from across four decades; each chapter (starting with decades and narrowing down to specific garments such as shoes and bags) begins with a brief overview and is followed by numerous pages of dated examples of key styles.

It’s pretty image-heavy, and unfortunately most of these photos are awful! Out of focus, badly lit, and often just bland, I can honestly say I’ve seen better efforts on eBay listings than there are in here. If you’re looking for a reference guide then this is a passable effort, otherwise avoid.

2 Responses

  1. Morgana

    That is too bad Lena. I agree with you regarding good photography is needed for such.

    You do a great job and I love this website! Have a happy holiday!


  2. Karen

    Wow, have to disagree – you must be looking at a different edition – this is 1 of my faves! On the contrary nice clear pics taken indoors & out and clothing shown on real live models (just like ebay these days)! And stuff that’s not just designer and high end untouchable. Price guide too (though dated a decade of course). If you are a vintage lover, buyer or seller I would recommend .