In W magazine’s’s December Issue: titled Simply the Best – Editor in-chief, Stefano Tonchi named Portrait of an Unreasonable Man his number one gift choice. It’s the true story behind the gorgeously eccentric character (played by Daniel Day Lewis) who’s the hero of the film Phantom Thread -now up for six Academy Awards..
“Charles James was a great master of fashion and a pioneer of glamour. As often is the case, the beauty and drama of his creations were matched with a dramatic and dark reality, through different points in his life. A couturier, an artist, and an engineer. Charles’ drama was extended into his work, process and into his life creating some of the most iconic pieces of our time, all documented in this great biography.”
“The genius of Charles James is evident in the extraordinary garments he created — such as the Abstract ballgown, the Eiderdown evening jacket, and the Pagoda suit. According to Cristobal Balenciaga, James was the only couturier who raised fashion “from an applied art form to a pure art form.” Michele Gerber Klein has written the first biography of Charles James, tracing the years of creativity and chaos, and focusing on the importance of his relationships with clients such as Austine Hearst and Millicent Rogers.”
Dr. Valerie Steele, Director. The Museum at FIT
“Charles James is the grand master of American fashion. It’s about time to have a good book to honor him.”
Diane von Furstenberg
“Christian Dior described him as the inspiration for the “New Look.” Inspired by the discovery of long-overlooked interviews conducted just before his death, this is the first biography of the visionary fashion designer Charles James. ” from Refreshing Reads at the Society Diaries.
Lorna Koski recently wrote a charming article about Charles James, the subject of Michèle’s book, for Woman’s Wear Daily. She explained how Michèle came to be his biographer. “Klein, who lives in a beautiful art-filled apartment on Park Avenue with her dachshund Wicket, took up James because she wanted to write a book, and two friends of hers, R. Couri Hay and Roger Webster, had recorded some interviews with the designer, whom they had befriended toward the end of his life. They thought that she would be a good fit as a biographer because of her background in fashion.” She goes on to discuss Michèle’s planned next book about a Bryn Mawr classmate, Holly Maddux, infamously murdered by boyfriend, political activist, Ira Einhorn, who staged Earth Day and ran for yuppy Mayor of Philadelphia.