Filed under: Article with tags: review
Photography: Gina Garan
Introduction: Junko Wong
First Published: November 2005
Publisher: Chronicle Books
Like many of the Blythe photography books out there, Blythe Style has many pictures and very few words – so if you were hoping for the end-all guide to fashion when it comes to Blythe you will have to look elsewhere.
The book begins with a one-page introduction by Junko Wong, who is the creative director of Cross World Connections (CWC). The introduction is nothing short of fascinating, as it goes through her first meeting with Gina Garan, and how Blythe came to be an icon for Parco in 2000. She goes on to talk about how Neo Blythes did their part in raising money for charity – notably the Make-A-Wish Foundation – and how the dolls in Blythe Style were ‘customized’ and dressed by artists and fashion designers. Pretty neat!
The list of designers is like a be-all and end-all list of who’s who in the fashion world. It begins with Valentino, Versace, and Prada. Some names that die-hard Blythe fans may recognize, due to past collaborations, include OVER THE STRIPES, MILK, and MONO COMME ÇA, and many more.
The book is divided into sections. The first is titled “Blythe in Vogue Nippon [Style Child] March 2002-February 2003”. The photographs are feature dolls (and fashions) that were created and auctioned off to support UNICEF. All the dolls in the first section are BLs.
Designs by Christian Dior and John Galliano.
Then there is “Big-Eyed and Beautiful June 2002” for the “first anniversary event”. These dolls were auctioned off to fundraise for the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Japan, a worthy cause if there ever was one. The second anniversary event, for June 2003, is titled “Fun and Fabulous”, which I believe is an accurate description of our favourite dolls. These dolls were also auctioned off for the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Japan.
Design by OVER THE STRIPES.
The next section, for the lovely third anniversary in 2004 is entitled “Art Attack”. At the time that the book was being put together, the auction hadn’t happened yet, but the proceeds were also earmarked for the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Japan. This also the section with one of my favourite photos, because they remind me of the three fairies from Disney’s Sleeping Beauty.
Styling by Cutie Magazine.
Blythe Style ends off with a note from Gina Garan herself and “A Short History of Blythe”, which is nothing short of lovely to read. I always find myself learning more about Blythe whenever I read publications about her.
Many of the dolls used in this book were EBLs, which does make sense when thinking about when photographs were taken. At the bottom of each photo, the designers’ name is mentioned so you can know exactly who designed the garment. It’s a nice feature, and helpful to allow me to consider if I like a certain designer’s work. The photographs are primarily full-page. There are some that have white borders around, but it’s nice to have some difference in the page layouts as you flip through the book.
The construction itself is nice. The pages are thick and a bit glossy (this makes photography a pain!), the colours are bright and vivid. The size of Blythe Style makes it a very nice coffee table book, if one were inclined to both have a coffee table and to have books on it. Blythe fans will greatly appreciate this book, I think, because it shows off the best sides of Blythe – fashionable and how she can lend a hand to worthy charities that support so many people.
Blythe Style is no long readily available, but you can find used copies of it on Amazon or eBay. It is no longer available directly from the publisher, Chronicle Books. The book was originally retailing for $19.95USD, according to the inside of the book. I had received my copy as a gift from a friend for Christmas one year, she had found it in a used bookstore (lucky for me!) If you can find a used copy that is in good condition and not terribly overpriced, I think that it’s a great addition to any Blythe collector’s book collection. And it’s a very subtle way to have more of a Blythe presence in your home without having more dolls.
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This product review is of my own opinion. I was not monetarily compensated to do this review. All opinions are my own. I was not gifted this item for the purpose of review.