We decided to pull some of our favourite fashion documentaries that have not only been inspirational, educational but also entertaining. From the hallways and early beginnings of Vogue Magazine, to the shots taken by Bill Cunningham, the splendor and history of the most renowned luxury fashion department store Bergdorf Goodman to the ingenious tailoring of Ozwald Boateng, these following documentaries have struck a cord with us.
We mentioned in our previous post “Tips on Staying Relevant in the Fashion Industry” the importance of building an attitude of awareness in seeking to know what is going on around you and in your respective industry.
“In any industry, it is always crucial to remain knowledgeable on the new developments. This then means that one must find a way to know what is happening in the fashion industry both locally and internationally at all levels. Take an interest, develop a habit of learning. There are plenty of resources out there (magazines, documentaries, short videos, books..etc..) that will provide the necessary knowledge to stay ahead of the game.”
This is not exclude those who are not in the fashion industry. These documentaries are able to watched by those who are not in the industry as it remains informative on varied angles: business, retail, photography, tailoring, magazine business and other topics that affect us all.
As the weekend approaches, we thought it appropriate to select our favorite documentaries which we hope, at least one, will feature in your watch list. Do let us know which one was your favourite and why.
Without further ado, here is out list, in no particular order of importance:
1. The Eye has to Travel
The “The Eye Has To Travel” chronicles Diana Vreeland’s epic career in international fashion over the last 50 years. Beginning in 1936, when she became a fashion editor at Harper’s Bazaar, Vreeland established herself as a controversial visionary with an astonishing ability to invent and discover fashion ideas, designers, personalities, and photographers. She was a memorable writer with a vivid personality and a talent for coining aphorisms.
2. The September Issue
Anna Wintour, the legendary Editor-in-Chief of Vogue Magazine for twenty years, is the most powerful and polarizing figure in fashion. Hidden behind her trademark bob and sunglasses, she has never allowed anyone to scrutinize the inner workings of her magazine. Until now. With unprecedented access, filmmaker R.J. Cutlers new film “The September Issue” does for fashion what he did for politics in The War Room, taking the viewer inside a world they only think they know.
3. In Vogue: The Editor’s Eye
What, exactly, is the job of a fashion stylist? It’s a difficult question to answer—even for the creative women and men who have toiled for years in the role—but one that is explored in the new HBO film In Vogue: The Editor’s Eye. This documentary highlights the visual and historical contribution Vogue editors past and present (including Polly Allen Mellen, Grace Coddington, Carlyne Cerf De Dudzeele, and Camilla Nickerson) have made not only to the magazine, but also to the world of fashion itself.
4. Bill Cunnigham: New York
Before the internet and before the likes of fashion bloggers, there was Bill Cunningham, the street-fashion and society chronicler for The New York Times. After 50 years of cycling the streets of the Big Apple with his camera, snapping the great, the good and the stylish, Bill Cunningham is now in front of the lens in this loving and intimate portrait of a remarkable man and a chronicler of a city.
5. A Man’s Story: Ozwald Boateng
Tailor to Hollywood’s A-list, and a superstar in his own right, Ozwald Boateng is a dynamic force of energy, passion and colour.
What emerges is a groundbreaking film that takes us on an exhilarating behind-the-scenes ride into the world of high fashion with one of one of the most influential menswear designers of his generation. Ending in 2010 when Boateng closes London Fashion Week with the biggest menswear show in history, director Varon Bonicos is able to get behind the headlines and chart Boateng’s singular dream to succeed. Instinctive, flawed and generous, A Man’s Story goes to the very heart of what Boateng has spent an entire career trying to distil: “what it is to be a man.”
6. Visionaries: Inside the Creative Mind (Tom Ford)
The hour-long documentary series Visionaries: Inside the Creative Mind follows some of the world’s most iconic innovators and takes audiences inside their creative process, offering never-before-seen views of true masterminds at work. Tom Ford takes viewers on an all-access journey into the world of fashion and filmmaking. The episode also follows Ford as he prepares to unveil his first womenswear collection after a five-year hiatus to launch his own brand and make his first movie.
7. The Colour of Beauty
In this 18min (which we have placed below) documentary, Renee Thompson is trying to make it as a top fashion model in New York. She’s got the looks, the walk and the drive. But she’s a black model in a world where white women represent the standard of beauty. Agencies rarely hire black models. And when they do, they want them to look “like white girls dipped in chocolate.” The Colour of Beauty is a shocking short documentary that examines racism in the fashion industry. Is a black model less attractive to designers, casting directors and consumers? What is the colour of beauty?
8. BBC: The Secret World of Haute Couture
“Haute couture”, French for “high sewing” or “high dressmaking” or “high fashion”) refers to the creation of exclusive custom-fitted clothing. Haute couture is made to order for a specific customer, and it is usually made from high-quality, expensive fabric and sewn with extreme attention to detail and finished by the most experienced and capable seamstresses, often using time-consuming, hand-executed techniques. “Couture” means dressmaking, sewing, or needlework and is also used as a common abbreviation of haute couture and refers to the same thing in spirit.”Haute” means elegant or high. An haute couture garment is made specifically for the wearer’s measurements and body stance. Here is your window into the world of haute couture.
9. Scatter my Ashes at Bergdorf’s
Bergdorf Goodman is a luxury goods department store based on Fifth Avenue in Midtown Manhattan in New York City. The company was founded in 1899 by Herman Bergdorf and was later owned and managed by Edwin Goodman, and later his son Andrew Goodman. Bergdorf Goodman has found its way into a variety of movies and television shows over the years such as Sex and the City, Boston Legal, The Apprentice and others. In 2013, Bergdorf Goodman was the subject this full length feature documentary.
10. This is My Dream: Yohji Yamamoto
Notoriously private Japanese fashion design icon Yohji Yamamoto lets his guard down in an exclusive, intimate short documentary film about life and the creative process, from Tokyo to New York. Opening up about his artistic motivations, his love of music, and his aesthetic vision, the documentary follows Yamamoto through the entire creative cycle of a collection for his revolutionary line in collaboration with adidas, Y-3.