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Reunited with Much-Loved Fashion and Sewing Book Trophies

Marcy Harriell savors her carefully chosen tomes

One of the things I missed during our stay in the South during the height of the pandemic was my collection of books—sewing and fashion books, specifically. My husband, Rob, likes to call them my “trophies,” which delights me to no end. They are 100 percent my trophies. I seek out these book trophies on foot and win them.

Although I’ve purchased a good amount of my prizes online, the best way to compete in this sort of sport is in person. It’s a game that’s meant to be played in the giveaway sections of local libraries, under piles of knickknacks in thrift shops, and in the tall, lopsided aisles of brick and mortar bookstores.

Books trophies savored fast—and slow

On the way home, whether I’m strolling to a hotel on a tree-lined street or being jostled on a clamoring subway car to our New York apartment, I honest-to-goodness hug my trophies to my chest, encased in a book bag for protection. Sometimes, they sit untouched for weeks before I allow myself the pleasure of cracking them open. Other times, they’re devoured immediately, sped through for the glossy photos like a movie trailer, ready to be fully watched at a later date. In some cases, I read every page and scrutinize each photograph as I used to do with my favorite comic books, committing every panel to memory before moving on to the next.

Close-up of book bindings on a shelf

Favorite tomes feed a passion

Reunited with my trophy collection, and wondering what “Why Don’t You?” challenge to tackle next, I picked up my copy of Diana Vreeland’s autobiography, D.V. (Knopf, 1984), and read this:

“My life has been more influenced by books than by any other one thing.”

This is the start to Chapter 12. Judging by…

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  1. user-6183249 | | #1

    Thanks for sharing your favorite books! When I can't actually be sewing, I *need* to be reading some great sewing books. I was not able to see that wonderful Christian Dior Exhibition that recently traveled the world, and working on getting my hands on a copy of the catalog!

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