The Little Black Book of Style Info

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From Nina Garcia—fashion judge on Bravo’s
hit Project Runway and author
of Style Strategy andstyle="mso-bidi-font-style: normal"> The One Hundred—comes her
wildly popular New York
Times
bestseller The Little
Black Book of Style
. Here,
in one indispensible volume, are Nina’s ultimate rules of
style to help you uncover your own signature look. = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office"
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Average Ratings and Reviews
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3.75

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Reviews for The Little Black Book of Style:

2

Mar 16, 2012

Somehow it's pretty difficult to say that this was a COMPLETE waste of my time. There are some interesting historical tidbits here and there, some smart/snarky remarks. But that's it. Is this truly one of those indispensable coffee table-like books about fashion? It is marketed that way, it is seen as a bible by many, many people. That being said, it is a huge mistake to ever mix fashion with literature. Pretty people seldom read, & although this is called a "little book" it is not because Somehow it's pretty difficult to say that this was a COMPLETE waste of my time. There are some interesting historical tidbits here and there, some smart/snarky remarks. But that's it. Is this truly one of those indispensable coffee table-like books about fashion? It is marketed that way, it is seen as a bible by many, many people. That being said, it is a huge mistake to ever mix fashion with literature. Pretty people seldom read, & although this is called a "little book" it is not because of its length (144 pgs-- with pretty lil illustrations!), but because of its degree of insight. The privileged position of its writer is surely indicative of masterful observations and tips from the fashion world itself, but it is devoid of this. It is written horribly (who uses parenthesis as much as me? Well, it seems Nina Garcia, that's who!), that sometimes goes back to highlight a particular "tip", which is really too nice a term to stand for good ol "common sense."

There are about 30 pages on tips by other designers and this totally cements that sinking feeling most of us already have: these modern artistes are complete and utter idiots. How strange that they all adore and worship originality when they all sound so similar, pretty much embodying lemmings. Sad...

My boyfriend will hate this review, and he was a big fan of this, fashion's "beacon of light." I can see it for what is is: solely a pretty book for a pretty individual. Readers beware: you will feel slightly insulted, slightly nauseous by the Little Black Book. ...more
1

Feb 19, 2008

If I could, I would give this book negative points. The fashion advice is all common sense and mediocre, but what made it the polar opposite of stellar is when I got to the section where it basically says, "screw the animals, fur is in, so wear lots of it!!" I don't care if you eat meat, but *no one* should wear fur. And even if you do, you shouldn't rub it in people's faces. Because I'll stick pictures of how that fur was procured in your face.
3

Nov 01, 2016


Didn't learn much about style. Fashion history, sure. And collection of opinions from different well-known fashion makers and icons. I was hoping there were some illustrations because I admit, I don't have that much fashion sense. I wear my clothes comfortably and if the mood gets me, sexy or preppy.

This could have had its potential, but the author mainly focused on letting the reader know the name of clothes without illustrations. So I had to open my Google Image and search for decollete
Didn't learn much about style. Fashion history, sure. And collection of opinions from different well-known fashion makers and icons. I was hoping there were some illustrations because I admit, I don't have that much fashion sense. I wear my clothes comfortably and if the mood gets me, sexy or preppy.

This could have had its potential, but the author mainly focused on letting the reader know the name of clothes without illustrations. So I had to open my Google Image and search for decollete Sabrina, coke-head sunglasses, Lobster Dress, gingham bikini, Twiggy, pouf skirt, to name a few.

I like the mix of fashion and movies, though. It made me appreciate movies in different angles. Something to keep a keen eye on.
...more
3

May 13, 2008

This book gives some great advice for coming up with your own style. I love that Nina admonishes carrying the "it" designer handbag which fits in well with my views against carrying/wearing trendy, name brand clothes and accessories.

I do mark this book down though for Nina's unashamed promotion of fur. "PETA be damned, I'm a huge fan of fur," she says. Yes, fine, Nina, PETA be damned. But it's not about PETA, it's about the poor animals who get skinned alive or electrocuted anally so you can This book gives some great advice for coming up with your own style. I love that Nina admonishes carrying the "it" designer handbag which fits in well with my views against carrying/wearing trendy, name brand clothes and accessories.

I do mark this book down though for Nina's unashamed promotion of fur. "PETA be damned, I'm a huge fan of fur," she says. Yes, fine, Nina, PETA be damned. But it's not about PETA, it's about the poor animals who get skinned alive or electrocuted anally so you can "feel fabulous and stylish". Fuck that. I feel wonderfully fabulous and stylish without hurting anyone. Bitch. ...more
1

Jan 21, 2012

I should start this review off by saying that I have never seen Project Runway, so perhaps if I had I would have come to the book with different expectations. I've been slowly working on my wardrobe, updating things to fit my newly shaped, postpartum body. I'm looking for a book that will help me maximize the bang for my buck since I can't afford to repurchase an entire wardrobe. I want to know what basic pieces I need, and how I can reinvent them in a variety of ways to look stylish instead of I should start this review off by saying that I have never seen Project Runway, so perhaps if I had I would have come to the book with different expectations. I've been slowly working on my wardrobe, updating things to fit my newly shaped, postpartum body. I'm looking for a book that will help me maximize the bang for my buck since I can't afford to repurchase an entire wardrobe. I want to know what basic pieces I need, and how I can reinvent them in a variety of ways to look stylish instead of momish. With chapters like "The Basics," "What to Wear When" and "Insider Tips and Tricks" I thought I had found my ticket. However, Garcia's book was a disappointment. I'm not clear what audience she was writing for here. She drops names of designers left and right, but to someone like me these names are meaningless. If she's writing for those who are already into high fashion, I don't think they need to be told that a white button-up is a classic look that will go with anything. It felt like she didn't have a clear direction, blending obvious things (don't wear low-cut shirts to the office) with ridiculous things (there are very few moments when it is acceptable to lose the high-heels and wear ballet flats instead. If this is true, there is no hope for me).

The book has beautiful illustrations by Ruben Toledo throughout, but they are just illustrations of stylish women and nothing pertaining to what's directly on the page. Photos would have been more useful here, especially with the amount of references Garcia employed. She frequently mentions stylish women in film, even devoting a section of her inspiration chapter to it, but a lot of these are films I haven't seen (my own problem) or outfits I don't specifically remember (if I noticed/remembered things like that I wouldn't be reading this book!). Uma Thurman's outfit from Pulp Fiction comes up multiple times so I finally had to google the thing.

The end of the book is a series of excerpts from interviews with those same big-name designers mentioned throughout, and it's clear where Garcia got the content for most of her book. I'm not sure why she included this little mini-interviews, unless it was a chance to name drop. But it didn't add anything to the book and just made Garcia look unoriginal.
...more
3

Oct 28, 2011

"Every time I see a woman with the 'it bag' du jour I do not envy her; I pity her, the poor thing. She just dropped ten grand to look like a wannabe. ... It's like carrying around a white flag of surrender - a rather expensive white flag of surrender, usually made of black leather."

This is my kind of style book. After subjecting myself to a slew of useless, smug fashion-related reads, it comes as a surprise to find that Nina Garcia's views on personal style completely jibe with my own. "Every time I see a woman with the 'it bag' du jour I do not envy her; I pity her, the poor thing. She just dropped ten grand to look like a wannabe. ... It's like carrying around a white flag of surrender - a rather expensive white flag of surrender, usually made of black leather."

This is my kind of style book. After subjecting myself to a slew of useless, smug fashion-related reads, it comes as a surprise to find that Nina Garcia's views on personal style completely jibe with my own. Refreshingly, Nina doesn't spend her time dishing out a list of fashion "don't"s or raving over the latest "must have" items. Instead, she uses her book to encourage women to be confident and proudly own their personal style, whatever it may be. Charmingly illustrated by Ruben Toldeo and peppered with inspiring and sometimes humorous quotes from everyone from Coco Chanel to Albert Einstein, Little Black Book is your own personal cheerleader.

While I found the quality of content does taper off, the first three chapters are actually pretty inspiring. From being your own muse to editing your closet to mixing things up in unexpected ways, Nina denounces trends, encourages quality over quantity and assures that it's never about how much you spend. From there, chapter 4 is dedicated to what to wear to specific events, 5 is a collection of short Q&As from many big names in the fashion industry and 6 provides a brief description of the major fashion movements in each decade.

I'm not saying you'll discover any top secret tidbits here, but having just finished Clinton Kelly's Oh No She Didn't, it's pretty fabulous to hear Nina recommend tapping into your own instincts and inspirations rather than follow some stranger's rigid style structure.

"Anyone can be 'in fashion,' all one has to do is follow the herd and abide by the rules of the season. But style is personal. There is no herd to follow. There are no rules. There are no seasons. Style comes from within." ...more
3

Jan 03, 2015

The first two chapters were just what I was looking for. Lots of great tidbits for developing your own personal style from one of today's fashion gurus. Although I read it cover to cover, everything after chapter 2 felt like filler to me. The fabulous illustrations by Ruben Toledo make the book downright fun. A very quick read.
5

Jun 06, 2011

one of the best style books I've read. The best thing about it is that it's not pretentious. Down to earth and not trying to highlight herself as a fashion icon (even though I think she is). She's so relaxed and well documented about it - this book is a total treasure
2

Jan 21, 2009

The author is from Heidi Klum's, Project Runway. This was a quick read with great illustrations. The suggestions were basic, and the overall theme was that confidence to pull of an outfit, comes from within. One good thing about this book is that it finally gave me the push needed to completely clean out my closet, discarding many pointless items. That felt good!
3

Nov 28, 2016

I expected more from Nina Garcia. Nicely bound book and a good title, but the content seems trite. A few revelations but not enough. The sketches are annoying. Photos emphasising points made in the text would have served the reader more effectively. It's on my bookshelf but I'll probably never look at it again.
2

Jan 25, 2015

A altogether unsatisfying read.

Nina Garcia repeats the same tired things that every magazine ever has said. Just complied into one book. She thinks women should wear thongs (never gonna do that Nina). Its made clear she is pro-fur (also, never gonna do that).

Just all an all not worth your time.
4

Jan 17, 2011

I adored this little gem of a book! It was well-written and a pleasure to read. A great addition to the bookshelves of those who are more into personal style then following fashion trends - Mrs. Garcia puts it plainly and elegantly -- style is a personal, innate thing that comes from what inspires you and is a way to express yourself--ones style is how they present themselves to the world, hence why it's important. It communicates to others something about you, but most importantly, honing and I adored this little gem of a book! It was well-written and a pleasure to read. A great addition to the bookshelves of those who are more into personal style then following fashion trends - Mrs. Garcia puts it plainly and elegantly -- style is a personal, innate thing that comes from what inspires you and is a way to express yourself--ones style is how they present themselves to the world, hence why it's important. It communicates to others something about you, but most importantly, honing and recognizing your own style is one of the keys to knowing yourself. ...more
1

May 29, 2010

if you really don't know how to buy clothes or to dress, this book is great. She provides basic advices Like for example, don't wear the IT bag, you look ridiculous, it means that you don't have any personality. You are just copying what people said what to wear and when to wear Also know your body, don't buy a clothe because is in trend for this summer, if you don't have the body type. This type of advice look simple and obvious, but when I am walking in street, I would like some women buy this if you really don't know how to buy clothes or to dress, this book is great. She provides basic advices Like for example, don't wear the IT bag, you look ridiculous, it means that you don't have any personality. You are just copying what people said what to wear and when to wear Also know your body, don't buy a clothe because is in trend for this summer, if you don't have the body type. This type of advice look simple and obvious, but when I am walking in street, I would like some women buy this book and take note. ...more
3

Oct 11, 2013

"If a girl looks swell when she meets you, who gives a damn if she's late? Nobody. -The Catcher in the Rye"

This book is very informative, very fashionable and very amusing. If you are so into fashion, this book is for you, though I think it is for everybody. The basics in styling are here. What to do, wear and what not to do and what not to wear are here, it would be a big help for us all.

For me it is just simple, be confident with your own skin, not to overdo anything and we are all set. Less "If a girl looks swell when she meets you, who gives a damn if she's late? Nobody. -The Catcher in the Rye"

This book is very informative, very fashionable and very amusing. If you are so into fashion, this book is for you, though I think it is for everybody. The basics in styling are here. What to do, wear and what not to do and what not to wear are here, it would be a big help for us all.

For me it is just simple, be confident with your own skin, not to overdo anything and we are all set. Less is more I guess. And with just the LBD, a plain white men's shirt, flats, high heels and a tote bag will actually look good plain and simple as it is. We don't need all those super expensive stuff to look good. Just be yourself and be confident with who you are. Importantly love yourself. ^^ ...more
3

Mar 16, 2013

3 stars

The Little Black Book of Style is a guide on timeless and effortless dressing style.

Nina Garcia starts by helping you see your body and fashion on a different and unique light (Be Your Own Muse) and introduces some of the key pieces you should have on your wardrobe (The Basics) and how, when and by whom they became iconic pieces (Inspirations). She then explains the basic lines on what to wear to various events (What to Wear When), with tips and tricks from well-known fashion people ( 3 stars

The Little Black Book of Style is a guide on timeless and effortless dressing style.

Nina Garcia starts by helping you see your body and fashion on a different and unique light (Be Your Own Muse) and introduces some of the key pieces you should have on your wardrobe (The Basics) and how, when and by whom they became iconic pieces (Inspirations). She then explains the basic lines on what to wear to various events (What to Wear When), with tips and tricks from well-known fashion people (Insider Tips and Tricks).

This book is a simple and light read on an overly (but poorly) explored theme. It did not teach me anything new, but it may be helpful for someone who has absolutely no sense of style and how to dress correctly.

The constant mentions of fur and PETA were disturbing as much as they were pathetic. Nina Garcia advises you to be smart when shopping but apparently you must go brainless as well and buy fur (and, for Nina Garcia, it is never about the animals that are harmed and killed, it’s only about PETA…)

The Little Black Book of Style is an okay read that I would recommend to anyone who is curious about timeless style. ...more
5

Aug 15, 2019

Essential guide for anyone wishing to solidify their style as timeless and their own.
1

Oct 17, 2018

I can't in good conscience forgive this book - or this author - for her pro-fur, anti-animal disregard and disrespect. The cruelty and lack of compassion, the disgusting (stupid) jokes, but mostly just the fact that she actively insists on encouraging fur in this book, and is clearly aware of PETA, so most likely also what happens to the animals whose skin winds up in her stupid fucking coats - pardon my french, this pisses me off to no end - I just can't stand, or accept in any way at all. I I can't in good conscience forgive this book - or this author - for her pro-fur, anti-animal disregard and disrespect. The cruelty and lack of compassion, the disgusting (stupid) jokes, but mostly just the fact that she actively insists on encouraging fur in this book, and is clearly aware of PETA, so most likely also what happens to the animals whose skin winds up in her stupid fucking coats - pardon my french, this pisses me off to no end - I just can't stand, or accept in any way at all. I think I sort of hate her, and to be honest...her advice is preachy, vaguely useless and completely vapid...because, it's all well and good if you can hack wearing heels twenty four hours a day without dying, if you've got a job that doesn't require a lot of standing or walking or doing anything at all...then more power to you. But advice like that does not work for a regular person who works in the real world. Anyway...this was useless, and sort of terrible. Don't waste your money on this, or worse yet, your time. ...more
2

Mar 10, 2018

I have a fashion & style-related presentation coming up (I'm an image consultant) and I was hoping Nina Garcia would offer some incredible tips and advice I could share. Her book was a quick, easy read and the illustrations were cute. Unfortunately, there wasn't much here that I could actually use.

I wanted to like this book. I really did! Sadly, I can only give it 2 stars. It skews to a younger demographic (teen? early 20's?) and reads like advice your cool older sister gives you about what I have a fashion & style-related presentation coming up (I'm an image consultant) and I was hoping Nina Garcia would offer some incredible tips and advice I could share. Her book was a quick, easy read and the illustrations were cute. Unfortunately, there wasn't much here that I could actually use.

I wanted to like this book. I really did! Sadly, I can only give it 2 stars. It skews to a younger demographic (teen? early 20's?) and reads like advice your cool older sister gives you about what to wear, until you realize that your (not so cool) mother tells you the exact same thing! Is common sense in such short supply that women need to be told not to wear low-cut tops to the office?

For what it is, the book is fine and the advice is solid and well-meaning but, I would imagine, a little too basic for most. I expected more insight into the industry and more advice that I hadn't already heard a million times before. ...more
4

Dec 19, 2016

I'm a sucker for these style guides, but this one has some real flair.
Nina Garcia and I do not agree on a lot of stylistic points (Fur? High heels always? Really?), but she believes in it so firmly, and so wholely, that I feel her advice is more genuine than many other style guides deliver. You get the impression that her advice is actually what she thinks, not just what she thinks people will want to read. I appreciate that.
My copy is also beautifully illustrated, with lots of color and I'm a sucker for these style guides, but this one has some real flair.
Nina Garcia and I do not agree on a lot of stylistic points (Fur? High heels always? Really?), but she believes in it so firmly, and so wholely, that I feel her advice is more genuine than many other style guides deliver. You get the impression that her advice is actually what she thinks, not just what she thinks people will want to read. I appreciate that.
My copy is also beautifully illustrated, with lots of color and drawings that are part fashion sketch and part cartoon. Its a fun surprise, an unexpected splash of delight inside that serious black cover.
Its not a long read, but its most certainly enjoyable. ...more
4

Aug 26, 2018

It was an easy ready and it was nice having a glimpse of what goes thru a fashionable woman’s mind. I enjoyed her personal opinions about style, “it” fashion and the like. I must say I was put off by her “PETA be damned, furs are great” (somewhat to that effect) comment. I thought that was inappropriate to be published even if it was her own book!

I think overall it served it’s purpose. I didn’t spend any money on this book although I do find the price tag expensive for what it’s worth. Better It was an easy ready and it was nice having a glimpse of what goes thru a fashionable woman’s mind. I enjoyed her personal opinions about style, “it” fashion and the like. I must say I was put off by her “PETA be damned, furs are great” (somewhat to that effect) comment. I thought that was inappropriate to be published even if it was her own book!

I think overall it served it’s purpose. I didn’t spend any money on this book although I do find the price tag expensive for what it’s worth. Better to borrow like what I did. Lol. ...more
5

Sep 04, 2017

As a fashion fanatic, I fell in LOVE with this book. I didn't go searching for this book, it kind of found me. I was browsing the local library and I loved the cover, so I gave it chance and read the entire book in one sitting! It was INCREDIBLE! I love all of the tips/tricks, lovely quotes and illustrations that I found within it. I will definitely be purchasing on Amazon or Barnes and Noble. Fun read, especially for CHIC fashion loving women!
5

Jul 30, 2017

Fun little book with gorgeous illustrations. Nina gives the same advice that everyone from Audrey to Oprah have been giving. It's just Nina's spin and I enjoyed it. The quotes from fashion, cinema, and music icons are well selected. And the Q&A chapter with her peers is interesting. What you've really got here is a nice book to decorate your boudoir with.
2

Sep 28, 2019

A swift review of style, or rather of stylists and frankly, I’m being a word-stylist if I point out the platitudes. For a review of famous names, it’s great. But there is a kind of style which women have everywhere and when it’s lacking, it seems to be a symptom that the environment is sick in some way. I was hoping for a different book.
2

Aug 01, 2018

Most of this could have been covered in a magazine article. I picked this up because I was in a bit of a style rut and wanted a fluffy read.

One good piece of advice she gave was to look to films for inspiration. As a cinephile, I'll probably take this advice to heart and rewatch a bunch of Almodóvar.

If you are a fan of Nina Garcia/Project Runway, you'd probably enjoy this.
5

Nov 20, 2017

this book is more than just what to wear. its about expression and passion and exhibiting who you are- communicating with a glance. its about confidence and style as opposed to trends and doing what you think other will like. this book supports who you are as a free thinking independent woman and guides you on what will let others see your own light. i really loved it.

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