The Killer Detail

The Killer Detail : Defining Moments in Fashion: Sartorial Icons from Cary Grant to Kate Moss

3.5 (10 ratings by Goodreads)
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Striking photographs of 126 influential celebrities of the twentieth century highlight a sartorial detail that the stars wore first and that, as a result, redefined fashion.

The killer detail: a singular feature that catches the eye, encapsulates an attitude, or refines a style, distinguishing the wearer from the crowd. A ribbon on a hat, a belt knotted around a trench coat, the lining of a jacket, the lacing on a boot. Ephemeral, and yet timeless.

Written and curated by seasoned journalists whose intimate backstage knowledge is matched only by their assiduous research, these rare, often candid portraits by celebrated photographers from Helmut Newton and Linda McCartney to Peter Lindbergh and Annie Leibovitz reveal as much about the ethos of the star as about their sartorial choices. Covering all aspects of the wardrobe from head to toe, the authors provide astute analysis of the killer detail as an element of the celebrity's own iconic style, and as a lasting contribution to the history of fashion.

From Marlene Dietrich's pant suit to Chloe Sevigny's leather "Perfecto"; from Liz Taylor's leopard print swimsuit to Jimi Hendrix's military jacket; and from Marvin Gaye's vinyl raincoat to Frank Sinatra's fedora, this book tracks the making of fashion legend through the icons that inspired it; the individuals who dared to invent new perspectives in fashion that continue to be reinterpreted on runways and in the street.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 264 pages
  • 190 x 260 x 28.19mm | 1,400g
  • Flammarion
  • Paris, France
  • English
  • Illustrated in colour throughout
  • 2080201530
  • 9782080201539
  • 839,282

Review quote

"Francois Armanet and Elisabeth Quin, two of the best-known (and best-dressed) journalists in France, have turned this concept into a photographic and psychological study of the allure of 126 male and female writers, artists, performers and fashion figures of the 20th century." ~New York Times

"This book offers a different raw insight into the eyes of fashion icons from decade to decade. If you're a fan of fashion and the history of the world's most famous style icons from every generation, this is a must read." ~Zink Magazine

"This 264-paged tome has found a comfy home on our coffee table and has wooed every curious reader who's ever wanted to take a trip back in time."
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About Francois Armanet

Francois Armanet is editorin-chief of Nouvel Observateur and former editor-in-chief of Liberation. He directed the feature film Dandy and published three novels and an encyclopedia on Kung Fu film.

Elisabeth Quin, a respected journalist, presents a daily television program on Arte and contributes a weekly column in Madame Figaro. She has published several works of fiction and non-fiction.
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Rating details

10 ratings
3.5 out of 5 stars
5 20% (2)
4 40% (4)
3 10% (1)
2 30% (3)
1 0% (0)
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