‘Vivienne Westwood’, by Ian Kelly

(book review)

“I was a punk before it got its name. I had that hairstyle and purple lipstick.”

This quote describes Vivienne Westwood the best. She is the great woman, who was turned from simple teacher into a powerful designer, whose collections have become classic for future designers. Fashion accomplishments of Vivienne Westwood were marked by Queen Elizabeth II twice. In 1992, the designer received the Order of the British Empire from the hands of the Queen herself, and in 2006 she was awarded the honorary title of “Lady Commander.”

The autobiography of Vivienne Westwood was recorded by Ian Kelly and supplemented by the memoirs of relatives and friends of the punk queen, this is how this red-haired designer is called. It′s exciting story that will not leave anyone indifferent. During the reading, it was very interesting for me to follow how she was formed as a person, how her style was formed, what had influenced her. And archival photographs have become a great addition to the text. But was everything easy?

Not really. Financial difficulties, other’s condemnation, ridicule of journalists, confused relationships with her boyfriend, raising her sons and the need to work to exhaustion in order to provide for her family ― Vivien’s path to fame was not an easy one. But she didn’t give up. Never. Perhaps, in my opinion, hard work and perseverance are the main features of her character. I am incredibly inspired by this punk style icon. She is 78, and she still works, creates collections and leads an active political and social life.

The only drawback that I can highlight in this book is that there are so many repetitions. On the same page the same information could appear several times but in different words. This doesn’t spoil the impression of the book, but it makes the process of reading a little bit complicated.

It seems to me that this book is suitable not only for those who are fond of fashion but also for those who can be motivated by the stories of successful people. After all, Vivienne Westwood is a woman who changed British fashion forever.

What grade would I give? I think that 4 stars is exactly as much as she deserves.

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