It’s a large, lavish coffeetable book, this expensive ($50) book that celebrates the fashions of Mackie and the women he (un)dresses. The Art of Bob Mackie (Simon & Schuster) has Mackie’s approval, but it was written by two die-hard fans.
Yet nearly 50 years, Mackie himself wrote (with co-author Gerry Bremer) Designing for Glamour (A& W Publishers), a smaller $14.95 volume that is packed with lots of color BM costume photos,
scores of dos and don’ts for fashion-driven success, even a (first) foreword by Carol Burnett. Sure, the book is long out of print,. but I stole a copy on eBay for $5, postage included.
The Art of Bob Mackie is an embarrassment of riches. Balancing the book on your lap is tough enough, but after a while, page after page after page of Mackie illustrations look that same, as seen below.
Most of the same ladies are covered in both books (Carol, Cher, Diana, Ann, Mitzi, Bette, Barbra) and some of the photos are duplicated.
Perhaps if Dressing for Glamour was updated, and there was less Carol Burnett gab and more of Cher’s (or reversing the two). The Art of Bob Mackie would have more style.