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30 Stylish Books for Fashion Lovers (A Gift Guide)

I LOVE fashion books. They make gorgeous vignettes for coffee tables. They look like beautiful decor simply stacked randomly around the house. And if you actually take a peek inside, not only do you find terrific photos, but descriptive insights into so many aspects of the fashion industry. They’re like opening the door to a dreamy fantasy of a distant and unattainable world that inspires creativity and adds color to our own reality.

Fashion photography books by Herb Ritts and street style photography like The Sartorialist are personal style books hoping to help you define your own taste. Designer specific monographs like Chanel and Tom Ford are classics. Seriously, you can’t go wrong giving a fashion lover or any woman, a superbly designed coffee table or style book this holiday season.

I’ve rounded up 30 of my favorites, including books I have in my own personal library, to help you sift through and shop. The ones I don’t currently own, I surely desire.

  • 30 Stylish Books for Fashion Lovers (A Gift Guide) 1 of 26
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    Click through and shop 30 of my favorite fashion and style books that would make the perfect gift for any fashion lover.

     

    Photo is my own collection of fashion books, shoes, and handbags ...love Maegan

  • For The Shoe-Obsessed Gal (aka The Carrie) 2 of 26
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    What woman doesn't LOVE SHOES!?!? We will covet even the most unrealistic pair, just to be able to look at them sitting pretty in our closets.  I have a few fashion monograph books by shoe designers like Manolo Blahnik and Louboutin, which are superb, but I love that this book offers at look at some of the most amazingly artistic and avant-garde designs that beg you to ask if they are in fact wearable shoes or simply art. 

     

    For the Love of Shoes $64.77 at Amazon

  • For The Classic Beauty 3 of 26
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    1. I own this book and adore it.  It's informative and a a lush visual look inside the Chanel archive.  The signature black and white binding makes it a gorgeous coffee table book and who wouldn't want a CHANEL in their living space?

     

    Here the House of Chanel opens its private archives, revealing a galaxy of brilliant designs created by Coco Chanel from 1920 onwards.

     

    Chanel: Collections and Creations $29.73 at Amazon

     

    2. Another stunning CHANEL book, on a more informative note. Great for fashion students and Chanel lovers alike.

     

    Through these dazzling photographs, Chanel: The Vocabulary of Style identifies key elements that have defined Chanel's style for generations, such as jersey and tweed, formerly considered menswear fabrics, and the little black dress, which transformed a hue previously reserved for mourning into a statement of elegance.

     

    Chanel: The Vocabulary of Style $67.71 at Amazon

  • For The Trendsetter 4 of 26
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    Another gorgeous coffee table book I currently own, Christian Louboutin is so beautifully bound, in its textured faux-leather peachy pink flesh-tones, it took me nearly a year to remove the clear wrap because I didn't want it to get ruined. When I finally opened it, the shoe photos captivated me, as they do in real life, and Louboutin's story was quite interesting to read as well.

     

    Christian Louboutin Hardcover $98.86 at Amazon

  • For the Sexpot 5 of 26
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    Yet another book I own and adore but this one just ooozes sex, of course, it's Tom Ford! But its black box cover is a gorgeous decorative piece, just like the clothes he designs and the muses he's inspired by. This man knows how a woman wants to look and feel and though I already know his career story from beginning to end, I enjoyed reading it along with the seductive photographs throughout.

     

     This book is a complete catalogue of Ford's design work for both Gucci and Yves Saint Laurent from 1994 to 2004. It chronicles not only Ford's clothing and accessories designs for both houses, but also explores Ford's grand vision for the complete design of a brand, including architecture, store design, and advertising. 

     

    Tom Ford $89 at Amazon

  • For the Style-Obsessed 6 of 26
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    I am dying for this book! I love the gorgeous black box and binding and the signature PRADA look it has. It documents three decades of PRADA in images and photo-essays and I'm dying to get my hands on it so I can pour over each and every page.

     

    Prada $79 at Amazon

  • For the Artist 7 of 26
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    Who doesn't adore McQueen?! He is an artist in every sense of the word, and his collections expressed ideas about about race, class, sexuality, religion, and the environment. Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty examines the full breadth of this designer's career, from the start of his fledgling label to the triumphs of his own world-renowned London house.  It's a shame he isn't still around to offer the world his amazing talents.

     

    Published to coincide with an exhibition at The Metropolitan Museum of Art organized by The Costume Institute.

     

    Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty (Metropolitan Museum of Art) $37 at Amazon

  • For The Girl With Glasses 8 of 26
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    I collect sunglasses... in fact, I hoard them.   They are my favorite accessory, and even top my shoe lust.  Just recently I've begun wearing glasses and a friend gave me this book Eyewear: Optical Opulence 500 Years of Spectacles which has over 1,000 examples of the most extravagant specs and sunglasses, covering almost 500 years of design.

     

    Eyewear $59.99 at Taschen

  • For The Designer 9 of 26
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    From Azzedine Alaïa, Cristóbal Balenciaga, and Coco Chanel, to Alexander McQueen, Yves Saint Laurent, and Vivienne Westwood, a century's worth of fashion greats from the permanent collection of The Museum at the Fashion Institute of Technology are celebrated in this limited-edition volume and I am coveting this book HARD! It's available as a series of six designer editions, and bound in a fabric created by that specific designer {Akris, Etro, Stella McCartney, Missoni, Prada, and Diane von Furstenberg} and comes in a Plexiglas box. 

     

    Fashion Designers A-Z. Stella McCartney Edition $350 at Taschen

  • For the Emerging Fashionista 10 of 26
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    A stunning Louis Vuitton book combining luxury and art and fashion.  I'm interested in this particular book for the design elements within, but anything with the letters LV on it has got to be luxurious.

     

    Louis Vuitton: Art, Fashion and Architecture $56-$75 at Amazon

  • Personal Style Books from ELLE & Bazaar Magazines 11 of 26
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    1. A great blend of expert style advice with studies of twenty-five unique and modern style icons, The ELLEments of Personal Style is a practical, stylish, comprehensive guide to help you create your own personal style.

     

    The ELLEments of Personal Style: 25 Modern Fashion Icons on How to Dress, Shop, and Live used editions available on Amazon starting at $5

     

    2. A book I bought a few years ago which was originally bound in gold with black font and I've flipped through it so many times, the pages are now bent. It's small enough to fit in a handbag {or stocking!} and a great personal style guide with historically chic style icons to help inspire your own creativity when getting dressed. I love this book!

     

    Harper's Bazaar Fashion: Your Guide to Personal Style $17.83 at Amazon

  • For The Chicest Lady On The Block 12 of 26
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    A dream-come-true holiday gift. Wouldn't it just be so fun to open an Hermes box filled with history and photographs and bound in a signature silk scarf? A collector's dream that any woman would covet.

     

    Le Carré Hermès $600 at Hermes

  • For The Photographer 13 of 26
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    Both of these iconic fashion photographers and their seductive work sends me right back to the '90s and I love it. I'm not sure why exactly I don't own both of these books yet, because the work of these two photographers is not just great fashion photography of the decade, it's art.
     

    Herb Ritts: L.A. Style $39.99 at Amazon

    Helmut Newton: SUMO $102.27 at Amazon

     

  • For Those Who Know How To Make It Work 14 of 26
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    Seriously, who doesn't LOVE Tim Gunn?!  I love that his book is more of a history of fashion than yet another personal style book and I'd love to read it!

     

    Tim Gunn's Fashion Bible: The Fascinating History of Everything in Your Closet $14 at Amazon

  • For The Beyoncé Fan 15 of 26
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    Favored by Hollywood stars, British royalty, and the world's most fashionable women—as well as highly coveted by millions around the world, Jimmy Choos are gorgeous and of the more comfortable of the designer shoes, if I do say so myself! I'm surprised I don't have this book actually, it looks lovely. 

     

    Jimmy Choo $50 at Amazon

  • For The Editor 16 of 26
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    A gorgeous object in and of itself, Harper's Bazaar: Greatest Hits would look divine sitting on the little brass coffee table in my office sitting area. It's a must have and I think I need it NOW! Bazaar has been my favorite fashion magazine since I was about 13 years old and I think I've had a subscription since then.  This book looks like an amazing collection of photographs and history that I can look through and remember reading and seeing for the first time years ago. 

     

    Harper's Bazaar: Greatest Hits $46.90 at Amazon

  • For The Stylish Teen 17 of 26
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    I adore books like this, filled with pages of beautiful clothes, and the famous faces (and bodies) that put them on the world stage -including Wallis Simpson, Jackie Kennedy, Twiggy and Cher and, of course, Princess Di. I don't currently own this book, but I want it!

     

    Fifty Dresses That Changed the World (Design Museum Fifty) $13.51 at Amazon

  • For The Last Minute Stocking Stuffers 18 of 26
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    I love this little book from Nina Garcia —  The One Hundred, the companion edition to her wildly popular The Little Black Book of Style, is a must-own list of all the items every fashion-conscious woman should have as a solid, stylish foundation. It's quick and easy to read and great to flip through and find fabulous tips and fashion advice from a trusted source. Nina is a class-act.

     

    The One Hundred: A Guide To The Pieces Every Stylish Woman Must Own $10-19 at Amazon

  • For The History Buff 19 of 26
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    Fashion: A History from the 18th to the 20th Century stresses the fact that clothes defines people. I love fashion history book and this one looks amazing! A must have!

     

    Fashion $59.99 at Taschen

  • For The Charming Lady 20 of 26
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    Another great stocking stuffer, this Little Dictionary of Fashion by Christian Dior reveals the secrets of style in this charming little handbook that no woman should be without. An indispensable guide that covers everything from what to wear to a wedding and how to tie a scarf to how to walk with grace, The Little Dictionary of Fashion is full of timeless tips, albeit, a bit old-fashioned, it still makes a cute coffee table book.

     

    The Little Dictionary of Fashion: A Guide to Dress Sense for Every Woman $16 at Amazon

  • For The Adventurer 21 of 26
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    A celebrity himself, Mario Testino's name evokes images of fashion editorials and a-listers alike captured in moments of time, making this a must-have collector's item for any art or fashion lover's library.

     

    The launch of Testino's latest book, to celebrate his inaugural exhibition in China, brings together an exciting selection of his best studio work with glamorous examples of his candid shots. 

     

    Mario Testino. Private View $69.99 at Taschen

  • For The Street-Style Muse 22 of 26
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    We all know and love Scott Schuman from his blog The Sartorialist {and sort of feel like we've grown up together on this world wide web}.  His street style photographs are now iconic and his books are not only inspiring, but offer a glimpse inside his world as well as his subjects.

     

    The Sartorialist $20.87 at Amazon

    The Sartorialist: (Bespoke Edition) Hardcover ~ $595 at Amazon

  • For The Fashion Student 23 of 26
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    Two personal style books I have and adore. I've actually read both of them cover to cover and both are different, inspiring, and right on the money in their own way. Rachel, from a stylist's perspective, offers a glimpse at the glam life and how to live it even on a budget, while I Love Your Style's Amanda Brooks, gives much more fashion history of styles and classic pieces. I'd recommend both to any fashion lover or woman looking to define her own style.

     

    Style A to Zoe: The Art of Fashion, Beauty, & Everything Glamour $14 at Amazon

    I Love Your Style: How to Define and Refine Your Personal Style $17.47 at Amazon

     

  • For The Print Lover 24 of 26
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    There is no print more recognizable than a Pucci.  With their '60s influenced groovy shapes and colors, Emilio Pucci hasn't had to change much over the decades to remain in the fashion forefront.  This book is a great gift for a retro queen, and anyone in love with the mid century modern decades.

     

    Emilio Pucci $69.99 at Taschen

  • For The Queen Bee 25 of 26
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    Two stunningly gorgeous Yves Saint Laurent coffee table books, both unique in their own way, and offering gorgeous photos as well as pop culture references from a time past.

     

    Yves Saint Laurent $43 at Amazon

     

    The book is the companion volume to an exhibition that will travel to The Montreal Museum of Fine Art and the de Young Museum in San Francisco.

    Yves Saint Laurent: Style $38 at Amazon

  • Another Options For The Shoe Lovers! (Because It’s Such A Big Group) 26 of 26
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    Another amazing shoe book I'd love to have. The history of fashion with remarkable photos and essays about shoes that changed the world? Yes please!

     

    Fifty Shoes That Changed the World (Design Museum Fifty) $15 at Amazon

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