Posted by Bethan Holt, Fashion Junior at Large

Anna Piaggi, one of fashion's most unique individuals died today at her home in Milan. She was 81. It seems only right to celebrate her contribution as an editor, an inspirer,  an enthusiast and innovator. One of Anna's greatest friends and collaborators was Karl Lagerfeld. In 1986, they collaborated on a "Fashion Journal" which includes wonderful sketches of Anna by Karl, dressed in a vast array of outfits from extensive collection which included everything from 20s Poiret cloaks to warrior tunics from Benin. The drawings and paintings are accompanied by Anna's commentary, this includes such gems as "White feather pompon as his ornament; tall pilgrims staff. The occasion: an after- dinner promenade in the dark, at the time of night when glow worms appear". It's the stuff of fashion dreams, detail and bravery- however much any of us "love" fashion, can we attest to keeping our wardrobes a dreamland which we live out each day?

The book begins with introductions by Lagerfeld and Piaggi to one another. I have photographed (our office scanner is broken this afternoon, I'm afraid) Lagerfeld's summation of Anna as it seems the most perfect and potent way to describe an utterly original woman... 

Anna, dressed as a Belle Epoque Amazon, with Lagerfeld in 1977
(image from Jacques de Bascher archive)

All images from Anna Piaggi Karl Lagerfeld: A Fashion Journal, published 1986. The closest publication available now is Lagerfeld's Sketchbook: Karl Lagerfeld's Illustrated Fashion Journal  of Anna Piaggi


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