Monday, 2 February 2009
Monday is a day to look at pretty things... especially when you're still full of illness and have very cold toes and need something colourful to brighten up your day.
Today I'm loving these fabulous illustrations by Rene Gruau, which capture so perfectly the spirit of late 1940s and early 1950s fashion and design, evoking all the glamour and elegance of the post-war "New Look". Famously self-taught, Gruau took inspiration from diverse sources, looking to art nouveau, traditional Japanese prints, and the work of artists such as Toulouse-Lautrec to develop his distinctive graphic style and colour palette. Today, he is probably best remembered for his fashion illustrations for Dior, which epitomise Parisian chic: Dior first commissioned him back in 1947 for the launch of the Miss Dior fragrance. However, he also worked for a range of other "grands couturiers" including Pierrre Balamin, Marcel Rochas and Givenchy, illustrated for magazines including Harper's, Vogue and Elle and designed posters for Paris institutions such as the Lido and the Moulin Rouge cabarets, as well as iconic French brands including Cinzano, Martini and Air France.
Other things which have cheered up my Monday include: perfect orange tulips; leopard print socks; a new blog find, little brown pen; dairy-free chocolate brownies; and of course, watching the snow fall - the view from my window has been transformed into a white fairytale world. (So much better of course when you don't have to go anywhere and can sit at home under the blanket, listening to reports of snow related chaos on Radio 4)
What has brightened up your Monday?