Despite a little help from friends in high fashion places, including a foreword written by Manolo Blahnik, Morton's follow-up to her debut book How to Walk in High Heels is an unsuccessful pastiche of historical facts, shoe styles, recipes and juxtaposing tips like "How to be A-list" and "How to say something meaningful." The book is arranged in calendar form, with each month including cultural tips and information and a "Muse of the Month" profile of famous women like Jane Austen and Cleopatra. While trying to appeal to both sides of the Atlantic, the London writer misses the mark by trying too hard to be all-inclusive, especially where holidays are concerned. The sheer volume of historical facts-including when Clara Barton founded the American Red Cross, when Disneyland opened in America and when Mata Hari was born-seem like they were compiled purely to fill in the bits between international dispatches from famous fashionistas like Giorgio Armani and Diane von Furstenberg and are out of place next to a section titled "How to moonwalk the Michael Jackson way." B&w illus. (Nov.)Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
A Year in High Heels: The Girl's Guide to Everything from Jane Austen to the A-listby Camilla Morton, Manolo Blahnik (Foreword by)
From rocking red shoes in summer to perfecting your postholiday thank-you notes, A Year in High Heels is the ultimate style guide for all fashion-forward females. Fashion journalist and bestselling author Camilla Morton has gathered together an eclectic collection of inspiring suggestions, sensible advice, and surprising how-tos to guide every glamour girl/b>
From rocking red shoes in summer to perfecting your postholiday thank-you notes, A Year in High Heels is the ultimate style guide for all fashion-forward females. Fashion journalist and bestselling author Camilla Morton has gathered together an eclectic collection of inspiring suggestions, sensible advice, and surprising how-tos to guide every glamour girl through the year—with witty, smart, and fun tips on how to walk the red carpet, curate an exhibition, blog your way to fame, spice up your public speaking, and make even the mundane magical.
Gisele Bündchen, Diane von Furstenberg, Matthew Williamson, and other fashion icons share secret tips on where to find inspiration; while Dita Von Teese, Anya Hindmarch, and Christian Lacroix explain how to tease, how to go green, and how to appreciate opera. Filled with unique challenges and infinitely fun ideas, this is the guide to a guaranteed extraordinary year!
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Read an Excerpt
A Year in High Heels
The Girl's Guide to Everything from Jane Austen to the A-list
January was named after Janus—the Roman god of gates and doors, of beginnings and endings. This god was usually depicted with two faces looking in opposite directions (Janus Geminus—twin Janus). It is his head that was part of the original logo for the fashion House of Fendi. The two faces represented the sun and the moon, and symbolized change and transitions.
Today is the perfect date to put your dreams into action. New Year, New Resolutions, New Diary, New You.
If moving from the sofa is difficult, if not impossible, especially after last night's festivities, today's the day to think about areas for improvement. Start with some honest self-analysis—you can manage that. Be sure to upgrade mind, body, and soul as well as your wardrobe. No point looking the part in next season's labels if your head is stuck in last year's groove.
Bette Davis commented, "I have been uncompromising, peppery, intractable, monomaniacal, tactless, volatile, and at times disagreeable . . . I suppose I'm larger than life."
Best foot forward
In English and Scottish folklore first-footing decrees that the first visitor to your house, after midnight, will determine your year. So this could be where things have been going wrong . . .
A male visitor is said to bring luck (no, you don't say?). Getting specific, he should be dark, so why not just add tall and handsome to the wish list and be done with it? Tradition says he will come bearing gifts such asmoney, bread, or coal. Just turning up is a good start . . .
If he's blond, red-headed, or, worst of all, isn't a he but a she who's first at your front door, you're going to have bad luck. Be very cautious whom you invite over and use your peephole before opening the door. You could always refuse to answer. Or tell blond friends to come back tomorrow; they should understand.
How to Pepys
"This morning (we living lately in the garret) I rose, put on my suit with great skirts, having not lately worn any other clothes but them. Went to Mr Gunning's chapel at Exeter House, where he made a very good sermon . . ."
So began Samuel Pepys' Diary, in 1660.
Pepys (February 23, 1633May 26, 1703) was an English naval administrator and Member of Parliament who rose to be Chief Secretary to the Admiralty, under King James II. To be honest he would have been totally forgotten had it not been for his private diary that he kept religiously for nine years and five months (until his eyesight was too poor to continue). It was published posthumously and his name became linked to that period of history forever. It's not revealing any great scandal or state secrets, but it is the most important primary source of the English Restoration, and includes eyewitness accounts of the Great Plague and the Great Fire of London.
So, as dawn breaks on this first day of January, isn't it time you committed to finally committing? Whooah! Not to a him or a her but to you. Record in a book your deepest thoughts, wild nights, and inner feelings, as well as noting the more bland appointments, like when the meter reader is coming—any time between dawn and dusk.
While the thought that your diary could be read decades, or even centuries, later might seem unlikely, it really depends on you. It's all about content. Aim to make it a page-turner and it could become a pension fund.
As Mae West said, "Keep a diary and one day it will keep you."
Famous diary keepers to read and be inspired by include:
Real Life: Ossie Clark, Anne Frank, Kenneth Tynan, Andy Warhol, Virginia Woolf.
Fiction: Bridget Jones, Adrian Mole, or, depending on how the week's panning out, Nikolai Vasilievich Gogol's Diary of a Madman. But let's hope this is the year your own day-to-day does not make the National Enquirer pale in comparison.
How to blog it
Forget the padlock.
Increasingly, diaries are no longer private. Everyone loves to read a diary, from handwritten scribbles to weblogs for the more technically inclined. If the Internet is anything to go by, diaries are back in fashion—big time. If you feel like giving the world immediate access to your musings, rants, or inner turmoil, rather than leaving your diary open on the bus it's time to embrace technology and start a blog. Expose your angst to cyberspace. As author Kingsley Amis said, "If you can't annoy somebody, there's little point in writing."
Blogging is an open forum to express your opinions on everything and anything . . . and a way for everyone, and anyone, to write back. Be warned— they will.
The best sites to go to for help when setting up your own blog are www.blogger.com, www.wordpress.com, and www.livejournal.com. At www.mac.com, they have even included an easy-to-install blog/weblog option within their iLife upgrade packages if you can't persuade a techy-friend to take pity and do it for you. Google has a Blogs of Note section that includes everything from a New York cabdriver's rant to many a dieter's agony.
Making your opinion heard has never been so easy.
So, first things first . . . what to do?
Follow the steps on your selected program:
1. Create an account.
2. Name your blog.
3. Choose a template.
The most established website, and therefore the most experienced in looking after nervous first-timers, is www.blogger.com. Before clicking on the options decide what you want to use your blog for. What do you want to say, show, discuss, or record?
Download a template, follow the instructions and registration steps 1, 2, and 3, . . . Let your host site worry about the layout, graphics, and HTML. All you need to do is work out the content.A Year in High Heels
The Girl's Guide to Everything from Jane Austen to the A-list. Copyright © by Camilla Morton. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.
Meet the Author
Camilla Morton is a London-based fashion writer and the author of the international bestseller How to Walk in High Heels, which has been translated into twenty languages worldwide. She was the runway reporter for U.K. Vogue.com, covering all international and couture collections. Morton has collaborated with several designers and written for magazines, newspapers and blogs, including Time magazine's "Style and Design," SHOWStudio, the Wall Street Journal's "Off Duty" section, and Harper's Bazaar in both the U.S. and the U.K. This is her fifth book.
Diane von FUrstenberg arrived in New York in 1970 with a suitcase full of her iconic wrap dresses and changed the way women dressed. DVF has pioneered fashion and business, built and sold a cosmetics company and founded a publishing house, and she supports many philanthropic causes—especially for women and the environment. DVF returned from a hiatus to fashion in 1997, relaunching the signature wrap to international acclaim. In 2005 the Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA) awarded her a Lifetime Achievement Award, and the following year named her as the Council President.
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