This book was published by Ballantine Books in 1986 and it’s a must have for any vintage Banana Republic fan. It’s everything you love about the catalogs in long form. BR Greatest Hits Vol. 1…
The clothing illustrations are large and plentiful and the writing is more expansive. The sense of nostalgia and the culture of adventure is reinforced with photographs of historical figures, writers, stills from classic movies that we all pretended to be in when we shopped BR like Raiders of the Lost Ark and Casablanca. Ernest Hemingway is featured, naturally, as are Kate Hepburn and Marlene Deitrich. There are a number of wonderful full page and double page spread paintings by Banana Republic illustrators such as Rob Stein, Peter McGinn, and others. The forward is wonderful. It describes the creation of the company and the Ziegler’s philosophy. It has several pictures of Mel and Patricia Ziegler in the field and best of all, it has several great shots of the interior of the Banana Republic Stores!
If you want to get the nostalgic hit of the Banana Republic catalogs nothing beats the real deal, but this book is a handsome and well designed trip through Banana Republic’s Golden Age. You can easily find used copies on eBay and Amazon and elsewhere.
I put together a video going through the book page by page so you can get a sense of what’s in it. There’s a few shots in the gallery of things that really caught my eye. Enjoy!