Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Paris, Pat, and me

Hey shorties,
I just finished the BEST book. I've been meaning to read THE BEAUTIFUL FALL: FASHION, GENIUS AND GLORIOUS EXCESS IN 1970S PARIS by Alicia Drake since it came out to much fashion fanfare last year, but I just got around to it. GIRLS! If you are at all interested in fashion history, Paris, the disco-and-debauchery-drenched 70's, scandalous supermodels and soul-sucking gigolos, then this is a must-read. It's all about the famous rivalry between the two kings of couture in 1970s Paris, Yves Saint Laurent and Karl Lagerfeld (who, at the time, was designing for Chloe and Fendi). There's crazy gossip, tons of fabulous gay sex, and yummy name-dropping.

I especially loved reading all about early black supermodel Pat Cleveland's sassy exploits on and off the catwalks...and if you don't know about her, start Googling! As a ballsy New York City teen, Pat up and moved to Paris and, after a scintillating social debut at a hotspot restaurant involving a sheer gown and a series of well-timed pirouettes down the aisles, she became the toast of the town. Also, she all but INVENTED the "personality" runway walk (there she is in a 1971 issue of Vogue, photographed by Irving Penn). But I'm babbling. The point is, the book is a fabulously dishy summer read. And now I'm totally in love with Lagerfeld and YSL.

Which brings me to my latest product obsession, YSL Top Secrets Flash Radiance Skincare Brush ($52). Yes, it's a tad pricey, but it's also completely magical. It's a silky brush coated with a special radiance-boosting skincare formula...it's blended with caffeine to erase signs of fatigue, silicon to erase fine lines, and light-reflecting pigments to add luminosity to dull complexions. If you've been up all night carousing, or studying for the bar, or wrestling with pregnancy insomnia, simply swipe the brush over the problem areas and watch in amazement as your skin instantly wakes up. I love it. Actually, I've been keeping my in the fridge, for an extra-cooling treat. Go ahead and splurge! Treat yourself! I feel that Pat would approve.

PS...Here's me and Pat in 2004, during a shoot for the book I co-wrote with Iman, THE BEAUTY OF COLOR. Seriously, one of the highlights of my life.


Blogger Caramel Magazine said...

I'm definitely going to check out that book. I've got a long road trip to take...in a winnebago...with my whole family. I'm going to need a good read to survive it. Thanks!

10:02 AM  
Anonymous tabitha said...

So...she essentially never aged, based on the photos I'm seeing?

Glad you're catching up on your summer reading! I'm still working on finishing books I bought last fall:(

I'm trying to cut down on pricey beauty (TRYING, I said!). That said: I cannot, cannot, cannot wait to try Avon's new Magix product. It's only $10 and it's supposed to make my oil-slicks disappear. If it works even half as well as Smashbox's primer, it will be worth the money.

BTW: What do you ladies think about L'oreal's latest SNAFU? First that business last year, and now the skin-lightening? Hmm....I'm just saying...

10:50 AM  
Blogger olajuwon said...

I want that book, it sounds interesting. My cash flow issues are going to prevent me from trying that YSL product out for some time. But it's on my list. Thanks Tia!

12:44 PM  
Blogger Schanina said...

What a glamorous post Mademoiselle Williams. I am sure after reading this book I'll have to book my next flight to Paris. When I was there in March I only got to see the storefronts of the Haute Couture shops. It was Easter Monday and many of the stores were closed and/or the public transit system was on a vacation schedule.

FYI...Ladies if anyone is planning on taking a trip to Paris you MUST signup for Black Paris Tours (No, you don't have to be black to enjoy it!). Read all about it in this article(http://www.nctimes.com/articles/2008/02/12/travel/15_09_252_9_08.txt).
If you express an interest in fashion like I did they may take you by the Haute Couture shops (hopefully they will be accessible on your visit :-) )

1:22 PM  
Blogger Schanina said...

The link to the article won't post, so just google Black Paris Tours.


1:24 PM  
Anonymous Julia said...

Tia, that book was so delicious. That's a great photo of you and Pat.

3:26 PM  
Blogger 1969 said...

That book sounds wonderful. Loving the picture of you and Pat. She is truly gorgeous ( as are you!)

4:53 PM  
Anonymous Natalya said...

I have the Beauty of color and I love that book. It's kind of like my beauty bible. And as for L'oreal. . .I have no words. Supposedly they darkened her skin for their Essence ad but lightened it for Elle? I'm glad Essence pulled the ad.

7:11 PM  
Anonymous orchid said...

Loved the Beauty of Color. Have you read Property by Valerie Martin? amazing and so shocking.
btw, Tia love raisin glaze as well! You know what gloss is awesome too? Armani's lip shimmers- great formula, fine shimmer and there's a shade (#2 i think) that is FABULOUS on brown skin.

7:35 PM  
Anonymous chloe said...

That book is officially on my wishlist, I may get it for my labor day trip, the two books I am trying to read now are a bore :-(

Shanina, thanks for the rec, I hope to go to Paris next year and that sounds like a great tour!

9:35 PM  
Blogger May Nguyen said...

I love " Shake your Beauty" very Great blog btw!

12:20 AM  
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