My Favorite Fashion Books
Reading a book is always the answer to life’s problems and what better time to learn something new or brush up on a particular topic than right now?
For me, that topic is fashion. I can’t get enough of it! When I’m not thinking about what outfit to wear next, I’m catching up with a fashion magazine, or pouring over the pages of one of the books in this post.
I perused my hold history from the library and picked out more than 25 books I’ve read through the years and found helpful.
Be sure to check them out (no pun intended!) if you’re in need a good read right now.
Let’s dive in!
Your Reading List
I know you’re here to read about fashion books, not a long blog post. So for the sake of time, I’ve arranged this list by the books subject matter so it’s easy to navigate and find your new favorite. Happy reading!
Designers & Style Icons
• Visionaries: Interviews with Fashion Designers (Alibris)
The title of this book really says it all. If you’re interested in getting a peek behind the fashion world curtain, pick up this book to learn more about the designers creating the trends you see on the runways today and how they made it to the top!
• The Sparkle Factory (BookShop)
Tarina takes you inside her creative process and shares a behind-the-scenes look at her business and personal life. After you’ve become smitten with her, there’s tutorials for creating accessories in the likeness of her brand!
• Iris Apfel: Musings of a Geriatric Starlet (BookShop)
After reading this book, you’ll want Iris Apfel to adopt you. Her iconic over-the-top personal style and poised way of speaking just make it hard not to fall in love with her. I highly recommend reading her book and then following her online!
• Steal Her Style: Fashion Icons and How To Get Their Look (Alibris)
As the title suggests, this book rounds-up some of Hollywood’s biggest stars from the past and present and breaks down their most iconic looks. It’s a light read for anyone who loves fashion + celebrities!
• Always Pack a Party Dress (Alibris)
I selfishly loved this book for all the celebrity stories. But at the heart of it, the author, Amanda Brooks, paints a really raw and real look at what the fashion world is like. Her journey was fascinating and inspiring to read!
• Fashion Rebels: style icons who changed the world through fashion (Alibris)
This was a fun little read that outlined different icons of fashion throughout many different decades. A great book for beginners in the fashion world!
• How To Tie a Scarf: 33 styles (BookShop)
Even in the digital age of online tutorials for tying a scarf, there’s something nostalgic about having a hard copy that shows you each step on paper. The visuals are striking, too, and help make sense of the different folds.
• DIY T-shirt Crafts (BookShop)
Chances are, we all have old t-shirts collecting dust in our closets. Put them to good use with one of the tutorials found in this book. There’s something for everyone!
• How to Make Jewelry With Tatty Devine (Alibris)
The visuals of this book will make your heart pound. It’s so stunning! But even more than that, it has simple tutorials you can follow to make your own quirky jewelry in the likeness of the radical Tatty Devine brand.
• Thriftstyle: The Ultimate Bargain Shopper’s Guide To Smart Fashion (BookShop)
Think you know everything about thrifting? Think again! This book surprised even me, a lifetime thrifter, with information I never knew about. Thrift store practices, shopping tactics, and style tips are just a few things to expect from this book. I highly recommend!
• Wear No Evil (Alibris)
Fashion is having a huge impact on our environment and I love how this book brings attention to that topic with cold, hard facts but also fills us with hope about how we can change things in our daily lives. I finished this book feeling pretty motivated to make my life more sustainable, which I think says a lot about the content!
• Fashion Victim: Our Love-Hate Relationship with Dressing, Shopping, and the Cost of Style (Alibris)
If you want to dig into fashion at more than the surface level, this is a great book to pick up. It’s packed with sartorial information to make you think and reconsider your next purchase!
• Secondhand: travels in the new global garage sale (Alibris)
All thrifters need to read this book! It debunks so many myths and rumors in the secondhand world and really peels the curtain back on what happens to our stuff once it’s donated or thrown away. Believe me, it’s not what you think at all!
• What I Wore (BookShop)
The OG fashion blogger herself, Jessica Quirk, steps up to help your closet in this light and informative read about personal style. What sets this book apart is that it’s divided by seasons so you can really envision a years worth of looks + learn about mixing & matching the pieces you already own.
• The Book of Styling: An Insider’s Guide to Creating Your Own Look (Alibris)
If you really don’t know where to start with your style, start with this book. It covers all the basics of different fashion personalities and has cute illustrations to match.
• Penny Chic: How to Be Stylish on a Real Girl’s Budget (SecondSale)
This book is written by a former fashion blogger (miss you, Shauna!) and is packed with real-girl outfit inspiration + advice for getting dressed. It was made during the height of the 2014 print mixing so don’t be too surprised to see a lot of that!
• Your Ultimate Guide to Style: Tips, Tricks and Ideas For Getting Your Best Look Ever (BookShop)
While this book isn’t breaking any ground, it’s still a light read that can spark some sartorial ideas and help you understand fashion trends just a little better.
• The Way She Wears It: The Ultimate Insider’s Guide to Revealing Your Personal Style (BookShop)
I almost love this book more for the pretty images than I do for the information. But fortunately both are really good in this book which means you get a step-by-step guide at finding your personal style + an eye full of visual goodness.
• Know It All Fashion: The 50 Key Modes, Garments, and Designers, Each Explained in Under a Minute (Alibris)
Fashion is kind of it’s own language, right? This book is great at translating it whether you just love fashion or want to get into fashion design. It will help make sense of everything from darting to what in the world Anna Wintour does!
• The Curated Closet (Alibris)
If you’re struggling with your personal style, shopping habits, or overflowing closet; you need this book! I read it after doing a deep dive into my own closet and personal style and found that a lot of the techniques were the ones demonstrated in this book. It’s a great refresher for longtime fashionistas or new ones needing some guidance.
• What we wore: An offbeat Social History of Women’s Clothing (Alibris)
While I have a few books on this list that breakdown vintage fashion, this one is unique in that it’s written back in the 1980s and covers styles that were worn by everyday women like you and me. It gives you a slightly different perspective on the trends you’ve seen in vintage magazines!
• Fashions of a Decade: The 1980s (BookShop)
You didn’t think I’d have a list of fashion books without mentioning the ’80s? Dream on! This book talks about the styles of the ’80s as well as the influences that inspired them. It’s a little bit historial and a whole lot of fashion!
• Style Me Vintage Series (BookShop)
I can’t recommend this series enough to anyone wanting to get into vintage fashion! Every book from this series does such a great job at covering vintage fashion terms & trends plus giving you detailed tutorials that are simple enough for even me to follow. LOL
• Bikinis, Bell-bottoms and Little Black Dresses: 70 Great Fashion Classics (BookShop)
If the 1970s are your thing, you need to read this book. The images are fun and inspirational, and the information covers everything about the decade that you can think of.
• The Vintage Fashion Bible: The Style Guide to Vintage Looks 1920s -1990s (Alibris)
The terms & styles used to describe vintage fashion can be overwhelming but this book breaks it down and makes it easy for anyone to understand the trends of the past. Highly recommend!
• Unseen Vogue: The Secret History of Fashion Photography (Alibris)
Every coffee table would be lucky to have this book on it! It’s a masterful look back at Vogue through the years with editorial shoots and high-fashion looks to get your creative juices going.
• Women in Clothes (Alibris)
This book is unlike any other on this list as approaches the topic of fashion through conversations with everyday women. Through their interviews it reveals how they get dressed, some of their biggest sartorial mistakes, and even more in-depth topics. It really puts the “personal” in personal style.
• The Tattoorialist: Tattoo Street Style (Alibris)
This book is such a creative take on the usual street style compilations we’re used to seeing. It puts tattoos at the forefront and frames them with amazing outfits. It’s such a visually appealing read!
• The Coveteur: Private Spaces, Personal Style (BookShop)
Fashion and interior design have a lot in common and this book goes to show that better than any other! You’ll want to replicate the outfits and drool over the magazine-worthy spaces.
• Self-styled: Dare To Be Different (Alibris)
Who doesn’t look browsing street style and learning about people with interesting backgrounds?! I was enamored by this book! The only thing I didn’t like is that I need more; an entire series!!
That covers everything! If you have a fashion book recommendation that you think should be on this list, leave me a comment so I can check it out.
Please be sure to Pin this post to refer to later. Thanks for reading!