The Best of Flair was one of my favorite birthday gifts this year.
It’s been on my wishlist since my time at FLAUNT, when their creative director and co-founder, Jim Turner, showed it to me and explained that FLAIR was what inspired them to start FLAUNT (and that they actually tried to get the name FLAIR) and that there are a lot of qualities about FLAIR that they used as the foundation for FLAUNT, such as always having a double cover, one featuring art and one photography, the use of multiple non-standard types of paper, creative die-cut covers and interior pages, and unique fold-out advertisements and mini-booklets printed within another story.
This was also, believe it or not, one of the first luxury coffee table books I’d seen in person, or paid attention to for that matter. I rememeber the striking red slip-case that held the giant book filled with whimsical images and a look that was far ahead of its time.
So seeing how influential FLAUNT was on my entire editorial style and obsession with independent magazines and the actual ART of creating a magazine — you can only imagine how pressed I’ve been to own a piece of the magazine that inspired them.
The book was always extremely expensive, even on amazon, but a second edition was recently released so I let the beau know it was at the top of my list :) I knew nothing about the editor or how it came to be so it was such a treat to read her introduction and find what kindred spirits we were:
“The birth of FLAIR was one of the happiest events of my life. Jewels, race-horses or yachts were not things I wanted. I jumped at the invitation to create a completely personal new magazine — one that would reveal my full inventiveness, my love of art and literature.” — Fleur Cowles
Sixty years after it ceased publication, FLAIR is still one of the most talked-about and influential magazines ever created. / It is remembered for its innovative design and production quality, it’s superb coverage of the arts and its intuitive discovery of many artists and writers well before they achieved fame and fortune.
The Best of Flair.