1. Grace Coddington.
2. Grace Coddington & Anna Wintour.The author invites us to take a journey of her life, through a vast selection of anecdotes, which starts in 1941 on the island of Anglesey, North Wales, and continues until she reaches the zenith of the luxury universe. But before she joined the fashion elite, she made an important pause as a student at the Cherry Marshall Academy during the last years of the 1950s. “To be a model was to enter a world of richness and excitement with the opportunity to travel and meet interesting people (…) I also loved seeing nice clothes in beautiful photographs, and I dreamed to be a part of it,” she said.Every page of her book is like an essential part of a carefully curated haute couture collection. We find the asymmetric haircut Vidal Sassoon created for her in 1965, the exaggerated eyelashes from her Baby Doll makeup, the minis, the frills in pastel tones, the seasons with Catherine Deneuve and Mary Quant, and also the car accident that changed the course of her life. In 1968, Coddington, the model, retired, and the Vogue stylist was born.
2. Karl Lagerfeld & Grace Coddington.
From there the book becomes even more special for fashion lovers. The Kaiser Lagerfeld, Manolo Blahnik, Newton, Bourdin, Linda and Paul McCartney make their appearances, beginning in 1970 through well into the 1980s, alongside Coddington and emerging geniuses such as Annie Leibovitz and Pat McGrath. And then we arrive at the moment when Coddington found herself face to face with her classic antagonist and controversial monstre sacré: Anna Wintour, two formidable personalities who complement each other and confirm the principle that opposites attract.
“One of the aspects of my job that I find most exciting is to give people something to dream about, just as I dreamed, as a child, looking at photographs. I still have dreams and look for inspiration in whichever way I can.” That is her life, in essence, and what inspires us to witnesses the exquisite ways she reveals it to us in Grace. ■