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Fab Book: The One Hundred by Nina Garcia

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The One Hundred, a book by Nina Garcia

I recently got a chance to check out former Elle fashion editor Nina Garcia’s new book, The One Hundred: A Guide to the Pieces Every Stylish Woman Must Own.

If you read CF regularly, you know that I don’t review books very often, so the fact that I’m reviewing this one means I loved it!

Here’s what the book is about: Nina Garcia, former fashion editor for Elle magazine, and Project Runway personality, lists her one hundred most important items – the 100 things that every woman should have in her closet. (It’s kind of like my Wardrobe Essentials For College Girls article, except with more designer pieces.)

If you love to follow fashion trends, but also want a wardrobe that’s going to stand the test of time, Nina’s book is a must-read. It’s also a great read for those of us who want to build a high-end, fashionable wardrobe, but don’t know which pieces are the best investments.

Read on to learn more about the book, plus see my top 10 favorite One Hundred pieces.

Nina Garcia
Nina Garcia

Pro’s

One of my favorite things about The One Hundred is that Nina makes it clear it’s HER list – she’s not telling you what you must buy, she’s listing the items she recommends. The book encourages you to develop your own style, and even make your own One Hundred list. I agree with that idea 100% – you shouldn’t follow the book to a T.

Another great thing about the book is that with every item, Nina recommends ways to wear it, the brands she loves, and where to buy them. This makes everything easy to understand, and also makes shopping for the items a cinch.

What’s great about this book as opposed to other “fashion must haves” books is that The One Hundred is realistic. The list mixes classics like the Trench (#86), and Jeans (#42), with fun stuff like Bangles (#6), and Cowboy Boots (#24). Nina doesn’t expect you to have only five pieces in your wardrobe, and knows that real women don’t wear little black dresses and strands of pearls every day! It’s such a nice change from your average style book.

Con’s

Of course, as with any book, there are some things I didn’t like about The One Hundred.

First off, Nina includes entire sections dedicated to fur and exotic-skin bags, two things that as an animal lover I’m completely against. With all the technological advances in fabric-making, there’s just no reason to kill a chinchilla, mink, or ostrich in order to look fabulous. To her credit, Nina does mention that faux-fur can be just as fabulous as real, but it’s more of an afterthought than anything else.

I also didn’t agree with some of her other choices: Brooch (#13), One-Piece Swimsuit (#61), and Striped Sailor Shirt (#83) seemed more like filler than fashion essentials, while Blackberry (#9) and iPod (#41) were odd additions that just didn’t fit with the rest of the book.

Overall, I really enjoyed the book aside from these few problems.

My 10 Favorite “One Hundred” Items:

Here are the top ten items from The One Hundred that I was really happy to see in the book.

  • Ballet Flat (#5) – Because, really, who except Victoria Beckham wears heels all day every day? Flats are stylish AND practical, something we all can get down with.
  • Black Opaque Tights (#10) – They’re hot for fall, ever so classic, and they can instantly transform a mini skirt from trashy to classy. Plus, they keep your legs warm.
  • Converse (#22) – I love them to death, but never would have expected Nina Garcia to endorse those fabulously classic shoes!
  • Havaianas (#37) – If you read this blog regularly, you know all about my love for these flip flops. They’re the most comfortable shoes on Earth, no lie.
  • Old Concert T-Shirt (#60) – Nina prefaces this one with “Under no circumstances should anyone wear a shirt from a band they do not listen to. Very, very uncool.” So very true.
  • Plain White Tee (#67) – Because you can’t make a fashion must-have list without one.
  • Push-Up Bra (#70) – If you don’t own one of these, you don’t know what you’re missing. Truly a must-have in every woman’s closet, no matter what her cup size is.
  • Spanx (#80) – The best kept secret of skinny-minnie Hollywood starlets on red carpets everywhere. They really do make you look a size smaller!
  • Wayfarers (#95) – An iconic pair of movie star sunglasses – if they’re good enough for Audrey Hepburn, they’re good enough for you.
  • Zippered Hoodie (#100) – That’s right, a Project Runway judge is endorsing zip hoodies! You’ve got to love her for that.

My Overall Rating

At the end of the day, I give The One Hundred a 4/5. While it’s not a perfect book, it’s one of the better fashion and style books out there right now. Because it covers so many aspects of a woman’s wardrobe, I would recommend it to everyone from the style-clueless to the seasoned fashionista. Even those of us who eat, sleep, and breathe fashion can benefit from Nina’s style knowhow.

If you want to check the book out yourself, The One Hundred: A Guide to the Pieces Every Stylish Woman Must Own is available at Amazon.com for $13.97.

Posted on on September 8, 2008 / Filed Under: Miscellaneous / Tags: , , , , , ,

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12 Responses to “Fab Book: The One Hundred by Nina Garcia”

  1. 1
    September 8th, 2008 at 12:52 pm

    ooh how lucky to get a sneak preview! I read her previous book & enjoyed it (it almost seemed like a mini memoir with all its anecdotes) but had no idea she was releasing another.. good to know! thanks cf <3

    xoxo

  2. 2
    September 8th, 2008 at 1:42 pm

    haha love her comment re: concert tees! That is too true and unfortunately seems to happen waaaay too often. Sounds like an interesting read, I may have to stop by Chapters on my way home today :)

  3. 3
    September 8th, 2008 at 10:53 pm

    I think she’s too realistic to say that hoodies are a nyet. After all, sometimes you just need warmth! Plus a hoodie can be stylish, for example over a floaty dress. It just has to be the right hoodie!

    And I have to say, I’m a brooch lover. I wear them on my winter hats for extra oomph. They’re also nice to pin on scarves…bonus is they keep the stinking things in place!

  4. 4
    September 9th, 2008 at 7:59 pm

    hello zephyr! i’m new to your blog but I just read it since the first post, I love it :) I’m from portugal.. I’m starting college now, but here is different.. I dont need to move,I still live with my parents, my college is 15minutes away. but your advices are really useful, you have no idea how the girls at my college are!! (rich lol) I was just curious, what do u study at college? hope you keep updating! kisses

  5. 5
    September 10th, 2008 at 6:06 am

    Good day Zephyr, Nice thing I browsed your post. Thank you for giving us a preview about the book.

    For sure I will buy that release… Hundreds of Kisses for you…^_^

  6. 6
    September 10th, 2008 at 11:44 pm

    I can’t wait to read it! I have a question. You always mention how much you love flats, but how do you break them in? I just got an adorable new pair of quilted black flats, and the backs of my feet are hating me for wearing them. It’s not practical for me to wear them with socks & I’m rarely in tights when I want to wear them. Thanks!

  7. 7
    September 13th, 2008 at 2:33 am

    I think I will check this out! Thanks for the heads-up!

  8. 8
    September 17th, 2008 at 4:37 pm

    rita – I’m a business major.. my college doesn’t have a fashion program.

    Kristen – Breaking in flats is no fun – you have to suffer for a few days before they’re going to be comfy. After that, it’s smooth sailing.

  9. 9
    October 24th, 2008 at 2:55 pm

    I loved this book. this book is a great fashion guide for everyone.

  10. 10
    August 19th, 2009 at 2:09 pm

    to break in new shoes, is they are leather…try pouring 1 tbl spoon or more (enough for your foot to be damp, not soaking) warm water in them and then walk around until in them until it dries..moulds the shoe perfectly to your foot… works for heels very well…brilliant…totally brilliant…

  11. 11
    July 31st, 2010 at 11:02 am

    I LOVE Nina Garcia. Nuff said.

  12. 12
    January 23rd, 2011 at 12:05 pm

    Another book to look at for those of you intrigued in the history of classic items of fashion is The Class Ten by Nancy MacDonell Smith.
    Everything in the book are on my must have list, but I’m looking into a trench coat next.
    http://www.amazon.com/Classic-Ten-Little-Fashion-Favorites/dp/0142003565

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