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  • Hannah Fielding - Romance Novelist

Earlier this week I blogged about how high heels can infuse a woman with a sense of style and confidence. While researching the book, I was led on a meandering and enthralling course, which culminated in a wonderful new discovery: the Fashion Fairy Tale Memoir series.

Is there any better feeling than discovering a new book – indeed, books in the plural, in this case – that you adore? I am sure I am not alone in feeling thrilled; and also a little bereft that I had not known of the books before now (as good a motivation as any to perpetually be on the lookout for new books!).

The Fashion Fairy Tale Memoir series was launched by the publisher HarperCollins at the start of this decade, and so far it includes three books. Each fairy tale is reimagined by fashion writer Camilla Morton (American Vogue, The Wall Street Journal) and is illustrated by an idol of the fashion world.

The Elves and the Shoemaker is illustrated by one of my all-time favourite shoe designers, Manolo Blahnik.

Manolo

Fabulous French fashion designer Christian Lacroix takes Sleeping Beauty into stunning new haute couture territory.

Christian

Finally, Diane von Fürstenberg, the designer who introduced me and countless other women to the wrap dress, brings to life ‘a grown-up fairytale that teaches women how to feel creative and empowered’ in The Empress’s New Clothes.

Diane

I love this idea of matching writer with artiste to create unique and inspirational books. I wonder, with the growth of visual mediums like video, will text-only books soon be rarities? Will all books have a visual element beyond the cover art?

I would love to create illustrated versions of my own novels, especially Masquerade, in which the theme of Surrealism is of paramount importance. I can imagine the palette of vivid colours, and the abstract interpretations of key scenes with the characters, such as the masquerade ball.

What do you think of illustrated fiction? Have you read the Fashion Fairy Tale Memoir, or do you intend to? Do you agree that fairy tales are not merely for children, but adults too, and that beautiful works like these belong on any romantic, art- and fashion-loving individual’s shelf? I would love to hear your thoughts.

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