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Different Like Cocoby Elizabeth Matthews
Synopses & Reviews
The rags-to-riches story of Coco Chanel plays out in a wonderful picture-book biography as full of style and spirit as its heroine.
Gabrielle "Coco" Chanel was always different. And she vowed to prove that being different was an advantage! Poor, skinny, and orphaned, Coco stubbornly believed that she was as good as the wealthier girls of Paris. Tapping into her creativity and her sewing skills, she began making clothes that suited her (and her pocketbook) — and soon a new generation of independent working women craved her sleek, comfortable, and practical designs. Now an icon of fashion and culture, Coco Chanel continues to inspire young readers, showing just how far a person can come with spunk, determination, and flair.
"Matthews makes her children's book debut with panache with this portrait of the famously avant-garde Coco Chanel. 'At a time when France was the center of all that was wealthy, grandiose, and fashionable, Gabrielle 'Coco' Chanel was born poor and skinny. Coco was always different,' the text begins. Colorful snippets about her 19th-century girlhood will be the most likely to captivate youngsters: Coco preferred to play alone, pretending to act like the grand ladies in stylish shops. Sent at the age of 12 to live in an orphanage after her mother died, she learned to sew and made lovely rag dolls. She could not afford to dress like 'the corseted ladies of high society,' so instead blazed her own unique fashion trail. She designed practical, simple (uncorseted!) clothes while working in a tailor shop, and later sold her dresses from a Paris boutique, financed by her wealthy British suitor. Matthews reveals how Chanel's designs took off through their sheer practicality at the onset of WWI, and how the designer's rebelliousness reached beyond her fashions. The woman demanded to be treated as an equal by her wealthy clients, challenging the established social order: 'Coco offered women not only freedom from corsets, but freedom from social constraints as well.' Thus, Matthews offers a snapshot of European history through one extraordinary woman's life. (The author saves some of the juiciest tidbits — of special interest to fashion buffs — for a concluding timeline.) Airy, at times wry pen-and-ink and watercolor wash drawings capture the spunk — and sans doute the style — of this independent-minded, influential fashion maven. Ages 5-9." Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
Mitford is a giraffe.
But not your everyday, live-on-the-savannah giraffe.
Mitford lives in the city.
But not your everyday, filled-with-people city.
This city is filled with animals.
Animals who like to dress up,
especially the animals who work at COVER magazine.
Mitford would do ANYTHING to work there.
But first Mitford must prove himself.
Can Mitford survive the Fashion Zoo?!
Gabrielle "Coco" Chanel was always different--and she vowed to prove that being different was an advantage. The rags-to-riches story of the fashion and cultural icon plays out in this picture-book biography as full of style and spirit as its heroine. Full color.
About the Author
Elizabeth Matthews makes her chic picture-book debut with this lively look at a legendary woman. Says the author-illustrator, "When I look in my closet, its easy to appreciate what Coco Chanel accomplished for herself, for women, for fashion, and, of course, for little black dresses everywhere." A graduate of the Rhode Island School of Design, Elizabeth Matthews lives in Cumberland, Rhode Island.
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