Bloom: A Story of Fashion Designer Elsa Schiaparelli

Written by Kyo Maclear, Illustrated by Julie Morstad

This picture book biography tells the story of Italian fashion designer Elsa Schiaparelli, from her difficult upbringing in a wealthy Roman family, to the height of her designing days in 1930s Paris. Famous for combining unconventional materials, like lace with leather, she’s also credited with creating the color “Shocking Pink.” Elsa designed the first see-through rain coat, a hat with a shoe, and the infamous Lobster Dress, modeled for Vanity Fair by Wallis Simpson. But what was most revealing to me was how she grew up with very little love and acceptance from her parents. She even tried to grow seeds on her face to hide her ugliness. I liked how this book doesn’t shy away from Elsa’s painful experiences, but instead shows how she used them to fuel her creativity. The jacket art and illustrations are full of bright colors, very eye-catching. This book would go well with discussions on design, creativity, color, and overcoming obstacles.

Review by Andrea LeBaron, Upland Terrace Elementary Media Center
Rating: ★★★★✩ (4 stars)
Interest Level: 2nd-5th Grades

Bloom: A Story of Fashion Designer Elsa Schiaparelli
Written by Kyo Maclear, Illustrated by Julie Morstad
HarperCollins Children’s Books
40 pages
Release Date: February 6, 2018
A review copy was provided by the publisher.

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