Thursday, 2 January 2014

Fab (non) Fiction Thursday #9: The Teen Vogue Handbook


Before the wonderful thing that is the internet entered our lives; Books were quite simply the Google of the 1900s. Forget 'Googling' a designer, a new make up brand or googling some quick homework help; it was off to the library or a good old book shop for you. As valuable a source as the internet is, sometimes having a physical source of information is oodles more beneficial. 

Nevertheless, the internet is wonderful place. At the click of a button, millions upon millions of articles, images and invaluable information is at your fingertips, all just waiting to be absorbed. That's not forgetting the thousands of gorgeous items you will only ever drool over due to skyscraper prices. We know the feeling; the fear of walking into Prada or Gucci because you know you will be instantly judged by the gorgeous supermodel employees. So instead, we turn to the ever so reliable best friend we all have, in the name of Miss/Mr Internet who allows us to ogle over clothes that could only ever inhabit our wardrobes at the powers of a magical genie. 

We all partake in fashion. Whether you're dressed to the nines in Channel (you lucky soul) or strutting around in a bin liner and the hideously blue shoe protectors you're forced to wear around a poolside; its still fashion. You're still making a statement, whether that be pro-plastic or pro-designer, its still there.

Fashion sources are constantly at our fingertips. From countless fashion blogs to drool over, fashion magazines to re read 100 times and the ever so popular 'street style' spotting; we don't have to go far in order to find something inspiring.

The purpose of clothing has changed dramatically in the last decade. Prior to the so called 'swinging sixties' clothing was a necessity; unless you were rolling in money; hand me downs, 'potato sacks' and sewn-together tea-towels were the norm. Indeed, there was a time when clothing was simply to cover your dignity, and served no other purpose. However, with the arrival of the swinging sixties, the purpose of clothing underwent a large make over. Fashion became a tool to express oneself and claim an identity, a tool to which the new found generations of 'teenagers' (a word that only developed in the late 50s) embraced to the nines. The rapidity with which looks changed was in itself a challenge to traditional values. There was no longer any point in making, or buying clothes designed to last. Traditional roles were abandoned, and fashion was literally 'up to the minute' - to be worn and then disposed of when a new trend emerged.

And this has barely altered. However, contrary to the rebellious connotations of fashion in prior years; fashion is now an immensely respected concept throughout the world.

Vogue is considered the queen, the goddess and the Miranda Priestly (If you don't get this then I advise you read The Devil Wears Prada immediately) of the fashion world. And oh are we blessed, because Vogue had a precious offsrping a while back. That offspring comes in the form of Teen Vogue. And when Teen Vogue grew up a little; it had it's own precious little offspring, which finally brings us onto the point of this post: The Teen Vogue Handbook. 

For all of you fashion conscious beings out there, or the little fashionista inside of everybody, this is the book for you. The book is labelled, "An insiders guide to Careers in fashion". But do not fear; the book is not a guide full to the brim of how to get the stick insect look of a model these days (God forbid), but rather its personal accounts and advice for anybody who even has a vague interest in fashion, or who wants to work in the magazine industry. Whether you aspire to work as an editor, designer, stylist, photographer, make up artist or a model, the book is your holy grail of resources. 

Despite common stereotypes of the fashion industry, this book provides you with a thorough, accurate portrayal of the fashion world; an intense, highly influential, creative and and hard working industry. This book illustrates that there is so much more to fashion than it appears. It opens your eyes to how much creativity and hard work goes into making the fashion industry the iconic industry it is today; all whilst putting those trolls who slate it for being vain, to shame.

The book is split into 6 main chapters, or 6 categories that make up the industry as a whole; 'Designers'; 'Editors'; 'Stylists'; 'Models'; 'Beauty' and 'Photo'. Each category is full to the brim of in-depth interviews and glossy spreads of photographs; all whilst describing exactly how you can pursue your fashion dreams; providing advice, resources, and inspiration.


The book is written in the stereotypical albeit addictive magazine style; its chatty; young yet nonetheless interesting and informative. The book is narrated by all different people which adds to the important contextual advice; it gives a lot of perspectives in order to help you come up with your own. 

Although the majority of the content focuses on a career path and how to 'break into the fashion industry', if you are able to read between the lines then the book is of use to everybody. It provides some invaluable fashion influences and general fashion knowledge to help guide and influence you in making fashion choices, whether you have a mild interest or a full blown passion for fashion. (I'm a poet and I don't know it!)

Not only does the book interview 'industry legends', such as Marc Jacobs, Stella McCartney, Alexanda Wang, and Karl Lagerfield, just to name some of the 'big guns', the book also focuses on up and coming individuals; whether it be designers; models or photographers. They share their stories, and tips. 

But the tips aren't just things we've all heard before; "Be yourself!" "Love what you do!" , as I was expecting. I was expecting a bit of a 'candy floss' book - pretty pictures and some typical advice, but not solid advice. However, much to my amazement I was proved incredibly wrong, with an abundance of real, helpful, advice provided throughout.

However, although the book advertises a free one year subscription to Teen Vogue, this is only to American readers. So if you're only interested in the free subscription and live in rainy old England, then you're unfortunately out of luck.

For the dead-hardened fashionista's out there who are eager to enter the fashion world, then I'm quite confident then this will become your fashion bible. If on the other hand, you, like me, have no life long dreams of becoming the next Anna Wintour or Cara Delegvingne, and simply have a mere interest in the fashion world, with a pursuit to look, and feel good, then this book is also for you. It's fun, chatty, informative and beautifully presented. For £10, what's really not to love?

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22 comments :

  1. I love books like this. Any fashion related book is a great read! If you ever get chance, pick up/nosey through Paris Street Style: A Guide To Effortless Chic! It's such a great book, I reviewed it not too long ago. That also inspires you and your wardrobe! I'll definitely be giving this a flick through if I see it!

    Rosie xx
    Rosiealexandraa

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    1. They seem to have a lot of sources of inspiration and just general tips which anybody can put into practise. I'm certainly one for discovering new books, so I'll definitely be checking that out! Thanks for the lovely comment Rosie! Lauryn x

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  2. Awesome book so much to read and learn from.
    http://tifi11.blogspot.com

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    1. I agree-there is a lot to learn from it! It may be in a magazine style, yet its still incredibly informative!

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  3. Thank you so much for doing this review. I was thinking about buying this book but I wasn't sure if it was worth it. Great review :) x

    ~www.brunette-wavez.blogspot.com

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    1. I felt the same way for months but was finally brought it this christmas!Thank you, I hope you like it just as much as I do!:-)

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  4. This books looks really interesting!

    http://relocatewonderland.blogspot.gr/

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    1. It has some great tips, and it provides a surprising insight into the fashion industry which is what interested me the most:-)

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  5. Wow Lauryn this is absolutely amazing, you're writing skills never cease to amaze me! I'll be popping this little beauty on my birthday list! (Is it bad I already have a list and my birthdays in April?!) xxx

    http://vintagevanityblog.blogspot.co.uk/

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    1. Do not fret Eleanor, my birthday is in August and I already ahve a list *cough Canon 600d cough*. Thank you so much, I love writing and comments like that keep me going!:-)xxx

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  6. I'll definitely be taking a look at this soon, sounds very interesting! although your writing could sell anything to me, incredible skills here :)
    http://laura-louisee.blogspot.co.uk/

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    1. Seeing as I am supposedly selling an Ad Package to you for I quote, "millions of pounds" then I do not doubt that statement. Mwhahaha. Aside with the Jokes laura, thank you so much:')xxx

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  7. Not only do I love this book (my favourite fashion reference book since Christmas 2009) but I loved reading this post - it was incredibly well written xx

    www.fashiongalaxiesxo.blogspot.co.uk

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    1. I think it has become my firm favourite fashion reference book too! Its full of such helpful tips, and the tips are a lot more solid and realistic than I was expecting! Thank you so much Thalia:-)xxx

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  8. thank you for this review! very interesting, well written and helpful. :) Xx
    www.sparklethiscity.blogspot.com

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    1. Thank you roline! I'm glad you enjoyed it๐Ÿ˜Š

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  9. This book sounds great, I want to be a stylist so this sounds really interesting. I'm defiantly buying this! x

    http://myfashionkicks.blogspot.co.uk

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  10. Uuu this sounds like a very exciting book! Would be interesting to read! ^_^

    www.amiciarai.com

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  11. Great post and blog. Followed.
    itsaleyna.blogspot.co.uk

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  12. great review! i really want to purchase this now! :) X
    stella-et0ile.blogspot.com

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  13. Awesome post! I was thinking about buying it last month, I'll might buy it this month :)
    Xoxo,
    Vanessa Almeida.
    http://fashion-dossier.blogspot.pt/

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  14. Would love to get this book. Think it would just be perfect!

    xxx | daisydaisyxxo

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Thanks for commenting, I'll get back to you as soon as possible!