Top 10 Stylish Reads for Summer

Pick up a fashion-fueled read for your vacation with our guide to the most stylish books for summer.

You live and breathe fashion and now you’ve finally got some time to settle down with a good book. Why not indulge your passion with a read on your favorite subject this summer season? From behind-the-scenes tales to designer biographies and style guides, here is essential fashion reading for any fashion follower.

Parisian Chic: A Style Guide by Ines de la Fressange


French women may not get fat, but they’ve definitely got personal style down to an art form. Former Chanel muse Inès de la Fressange shows us how to dress like chic Parisian women. This lighthearted step-by-step guide that features adorable illustrations and photography, is a must-have for those looking to enjoy a lighthearted read poolside this season.

Sleeping with the Enemy: Coco Chanel’s Secret War, by Hal Vaughan

(Paperback) / (Kindle)

A fascinating look at the life of one of fashion’s most legendary stars. Revealing her secret history as a Nazi agent, the book‘s discoveries of what it took for Coco to become Chanel caused a media sensation when it was released last year.

Vivienne Westwood, by Claire Wilcox


“You have a much better life if you wear impressive clothes,” Westwood famously said. Based on a retrospective of Westwood’s work shown at London’s Victoria & Albert and San Francisco’s De Young, this book catalogs the work and impressive achievements of one woman’s creative journey through fashion.

Deluxe: How Luxury Lost Its Luster, by Dana Thomas

(Paperback) / (Kindle)

Ever wondered why certain fashion items have become enduring icons? A revealing exposé that documents the rise and the recent decline of the luxury fashion industry – and why most so-called luxury goods are now mass-market manufactured in China along with most of our other clothes.

Blow By Blow, by Detmar Blow


For anyone intrigued by one of fashions most eccentric and beloved characters. Insightfully written by her husband, this book recounts Isabella Blow’s tragic background and inspiring career. Blow bought Alexander McQueen’s entire degree show, becoming both his muse and cementing her position as a true visionary and talent.

Fashion and Sustainability: Design For Change, by Kate Fletcher and Lynda Grose


A fascinating look at the potential for change in the fashion industry. Ideal for those wanting to become part of the solution, this book outlines the ideas, industry practices and innovations that will help transform the existing fashion system.


A.L.T.: A Memoir, by André Leon Talley


Vogue editor-at-large, André Leon Talley apprenticed under legendary editor, Diana Vreeland. A profound influence in his life, he remembers her and other celebrities warmly in this spellbinding book detailing a 50 year long career in fashion. You won’t be able to put it down!

D.V., by Diana Vreeland


Everybody loves legendary editor, Diana Vreeland. Brilliantly ahead of her time, her memoir of her early life and time spent at Vogue and at the MET is engaging and uplifting. A great book to tuck into chapter by chapter, whenever you need some inspiration – her witty observations will have you chuckling away under your breath.

Shocking! The Art & Fashion of Elsa Schiaparelli, by Dilys E. Blum

(Paperback – for those with deep pockets!)

If you caught the Met’s Spring 2012 Costume Institute exhibition, Schiaparelli and Prada: Impossible Conversations, you’ll want to get the backstory on this celebrated designer. An insight into the fashion of the 1930s and 40s with hundreds of photos, this book showcases the vivid designs of a talent who continues to influence today’s designers.

Overdressed: The Shockingly High Cost of Cheap Fashion, by Elizabeth Cline

(Hardcover) / (Kindle)

Looking to change up the way you consume fashion? Let Elizabeth Cline’s fast fashion journey guide you to a new approach. Every woman can relate to Cline’s frustration at her over stuffed closet and the desire to get to the bottom of a seemingly endless desire for ever more clothing.

Rowena Ritchie

Rowena is EcoSalon’s West Coast Fashion Editor and currently resides in San Francisco, CA.