“Sticking to your guns . . . is indeed something to be admired.”
Caroline Charles: 50 Years in Fashion is really an autobiography of one of the world’s most enduring designers. Many have not heard of her, and yet she is the designer of her eponymous brand for over 50 years—not common in the ever changing world of fashion.
Ms. Charles’ story actually can serve as a lesson to aspiring and young designers as well as being a confirmation to those whose have already built a business: Sticking to your guns and not wavering from one’s initial mindset is indeed something to be admired.
Her fashion is not the fashion of Galliano, Tisci, or Slimane but of a designer who operates a hugely successful business without all the media hype we have become so accustomed to and assume is essential to the growth of designer brands.
Ms. Charles’ telling of her life in the fashion world is superbly rendered in a beautifully executed volume emblematic of her business mentality as a whole. The book is not the end all and be all of designer coffee table books, but it clearly tells the reader that the brand and the designer are forces to be reckoned with in a very fickle world of fashion.
Ms. Charles has successfully operated on the international stage under the radar for decades. Instinct tells me that even the most seasoned fashion authority will benefit from reading Caroline Charles: 50 Years in Fashion as illustrative of a creative force’s anomalous yet acute and enduring business acumen.
This reviewer highly recommends the book as a teaching forum for those in fashion who have forgotten that selling clothes is what makes a brand successful. Media hype is a fringe benefit that in no way insures a long and healthy life within the world of rarefied fashion.