To inaugurate her Fashion Fairytale Memoir series, author and style expert Camilla Morton asked legendary couturier Christian Lacroix to illustrate her take on Sleeping Beauty. For Morton, who has covered shows for Vogue among others, he was her dream candidate: the designer’s nearly 30 years of fantastical collections have referenced everything from religious iconography to the Belle Époque. “He told me his favorite fairytale was Goldilocks and the Three Bears,” says Morton, “but I persuaded him otherwise.” The couturier’s illustrations, previewed above, combine collage with a contemporary baroque aesthetic; they befit Morton’s neo-fable, which entwines the princess’s fate with Lacroix’s own life story. “You can read it as a fairytale or as a light breeze through a designer’s biography,” Morton explains. NOWNESS spoke to the fashion journalist about Disney, escapism and her “Cinderella” moment.
How did your love for fairy tales influence your career path?
I was brought up on a diet of Vera Southgate’s Ladybird book series of Well-Loved Fairytales, and I always wanted to work in a world that created dreams and “happily ever afters.” I started going to couture shows [while I was still at school], and the escapism, beauty and fantasy of the collections pulled like a magnet—it was like a real life Disney extravaganza, and I had to be there to witness it.
Is there something “fairy tale” about being a fashion designer?
The title “fashion designer” isn’t nearly whimsical enough, as the ones that stand out have a certain magic. The really talented designers cannot be captured in a 500-word review.
What’s next in the series?
I’m about to layout Manolo Blahnik’s the Elves and the Shoemaker.
Which fairy tale heroine do you most identify with?
Sometimes when I finish work at five in the morning I feel like Cinderella. Other times I feel like the Fairy Godmother, and then there are moments when I am expected to weave golden thread from my fingers and I need the magic touch of Rumpelstiltskin.