Book Review: The Real Impact of Accessible Luxury | Bookshelf Monthly #6


This NY Times bestseller was published back in 2007, but is not a household name yet. Let’s have a look into the most ENLIGHTENING book on fashion industry!

If you ever wanted to understand fashion industry, this book is indispensable:


Understanding how old-school luxury became today’s mass-tige business is like reading a thriller. While providing massive knowledge and carefully curated behind-the-scenes, Thomas is never boring. You learn as you smirk (or shake your head in disbelief).

Dana Thomas, a US-American residing in Paris, is an editor, fashion correspondent and a fashion insider par excellence. To learn about the author, check out her website. Dana also has a blog that, sadly, hasn’t been updated since 2010 but still sparkles with insider knowledge and comments. Definitely worth a peek.


Learn about the dawn of a whole industry.
Discover what it means for brands going global.
Find out the role of the stars in fashion business – and see who was the first designer to establish this connection.
See where Hermès’ iconic orange stems from.
Let the author show you what luxury items really qualify as luxury today.
Read why fashion perfumes are not worth their retail price…
…and what brands are able to maintain their very own Rose and Jasmine farms – or in-house perfumers.
Congratulate yourself to not possessing counterfeit goods.
And ask yourself, “are these shoes really Made in Italy“?
See the horrific socio-enviromental impact a.k.a. the real price of outsourcing manufacturing…
…and the decay of authentic craftsmanship.
Meet the most ruthless business men and a few business-savvy women.


Let me finish the review with a beauty-related quote from the book:

The Granddaddy of modern perfumes is Chanel No. 5. World War II GIs fighting in Europe brought it home for their sweethearts. Marilyn Monroe declared it was all she wore to bed. In 1959, the Museum of Modern Art added No. 5’s packaging to its permanent collection, and Andy Warhol produced a silk-screened image of the No. 5 bottle in a rainbow of colors. […] According to Women’s Wear Daily, No. 5 produces a profit margin of 40 percent – more than four times that of its competitors.”

See? If not a thriller, it’s going at least to be a very entertaining business lesson…


Geeking out about all things truly green, healthy and ethical over at (Avatar illustration by A. Goncharenko)

8 Responses

  1. Craftsmanship …..recently discovered that back in the 19th Century some of my people were good at their craft. But, life changed and their skills were no longer required. Sad 😦

      1. LOL, you will laugh; a cordwainer and a blacksmith. Does a carpenter (old school) count? The house still stands! The Blacksmith made prize winning beautiful farm implements which are collectors’ items. Nothing to do with my family but how about this craft I have 3 pieces by Azza Fahmy from 1997; I adore them completely. Probably couldn’t afford any now.

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