New Prep

Lisa Birnbach's handbook gets a face lift at 30.

(Lisa Birnbach, photo by Elena Seibert)

Author of The Official Preppy Handbook (Workman Publishing, 1980),

Birnbach returns -three decades later- with a continuation of the original, True Prep (Knopf, 2010), released -yesterday- September 7th.

A cult-classic among readers, 'Handbook,' has helped to open a gate to the world of the rich and elite, a seemingly elusive 'jet set,' as seen via the likes of the cast on the CW's hit television series Gossip Girl, which (like its character Blair Waldorf), is the definition of prep!

(main cast of the CW's 'Gossip Girl')

Prep, is short for preppy, which is derived from the term 'preparatory school or prep school,' which is a private (non-public), institution of learning, that COSTS A LOT OF MONEY! E.g. The Spence School in New York City, is an independent day school for girls and serves students from kindergarten through 12th grade; one of its famous graduates includes Gwyneth Paltrow.

Moreover, to further explore the world of prep -this time around- Birnbach teamed up with co-author Chip Kidd (a graphic designer), whom she met via Facebook. According to the LA Times, Birnbach said, "Chip showed me what a huge afterlife 'Handbook' had online- people were writing about the book and they sounded like they were in a desert dying for a drink of water. It was like, 'Lisa, please!"

Thus, she has re-surfaced with 'Prep,' to satisfy the thirst of her readers. In this book (which has 12 chapters), Birnbach and Kidd's dedication to clothing revisits brands such as Ralph Lauren (a preppy staple), and highlights new brands such as J.M. Weston (shoes), Vineyard Vines, Kenneth Cole and J. Crew (which was not included in 'Handbook').

(a look by Polo, Ralph Lauren)

In the Times, Birnbach continues to say, "The point I'm trying to make in this book is that yes, you can buy new clothes, but you can also rely on the things you have in your closet... Anything old is preppier than anything new- that's just a rule." Yes, STYLE 101: concurs... as we pillage through our pile of vintage Lacoste and Lanvin... lol... Happy Reading!


www.google.com, www.latimes.com, www.amazon.com, www.randomhouse.com

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