Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Coco and the Little Black Dress” as Want to Read:
Coco and the Little Black Dress
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Coco and the Little Black Dress

3.60  ·  Rating details ·  255 ratings  ·  76 reviews
"Hurry up! You may only go to bed when all the sheets are ironed." Little Coco grew up in the orphanage and had to work hard for a living sewing and embroidering like an angel. Until her eighteenth birthday . . . Coco knew one thing for sure Coco. She would never, never be poor again. A beautifully illustrated picture book biography of Coco Chanel. Coco Chanel (1883-1971) ...more
Hardcover, 32 pages
Published September 30th 2015 by North South Books Inc. (first published January 1st 2013)
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Coco and the Little Black Dress, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Coco and the Little Black Dress

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 3.60  · 
Rating details
 ·  255 ratings  ·  76 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of Coco and the Little Black Dress
Sep 15, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: ng, biography, fr, children
Cinderella without Prince Charming

Hmm... this was interesting and the images were cute and cleverly formatted. They reminded me a bit of Madeline. The originality depicted in the cover image is representative of the style and thinking of the other illustrations.

This is a very simplistic biography as is benefitting a children's picture book, but clearly this is for slightly older readers than the preschool through 2nd grade. Assuming that the message one is imparting to young girls is that hard
Scarlet Cameo
Jan 09, 2016 rated it liked it
Can a woman build their own path? Of course. Really need be rich or get marry to be someone important in this world?not at all. This books present us to Coco Chanel, one powerful women that could create their rules and get successful thanks to that.

I must say that the format of this books is absolutely pretty, the pictures are so simple but transmit the scene message and the colors are pale but strong with the aesthetic. For a biography gives information enough to meet Coco but, because it is ma
A Reader's Heaven
(I received a free copy of this book from Net Galley in exchange for an honest review.)

"Hurry up! You may only go to bed when all the sheets are ironed."
Little Coco grew up in the orphanage and had to work hard for a living sewing and embroidering like an angel. Until her eighteenth birthday . . . Coco knew one thing for sure Coco. She would never, never be poor again.
A beautifully illustrated picture book biography of Coco Chanel.
Coco Chanel (1883-1971) was a famous French fashion designer. B
Originally published in Holland, this picture book with minimal illustrations tells the story of Coco Chanel, an orphan who grew up to become a fashion designer in France. She worked hard and learned to sew quite well. Eventually, she begins designing hats and clothing that allowed women to abandon the tight-fighting corsets necessary for the clothing that had been the fashion up until recently. While youngsters may not understand the impact of this woman on the fashion world with her perfume [t ...more
Jennifer Bacall
May 18, 2016 rated it liked it
Coco and the Little Black Dress by Annemarie van Haeringen

When you hear the name Coco Chanel what do you envision? Maybe a stiff clothed fashion mogul. Maybe you recall her perfume and its infamously expensive ad campaigns. What you probably don’t picture is a Cinderella type orphan, scrubbing floors and working long hours of every day. Coco was raised in an orphanage and in that setting she learned to sew and design clothes. When she left at eighteen years of age, she wasn’t sure what she was g
Aug 06, 2015 rated it liked it
It felt like this book doesn't really know what kind of book it wants to be. It calls itseld a non-fiction children book, but I think I wouldn't be interessted in a book like this as a child.
The sentences are simple, but some words are difficult.
The drawings are simple and minimalistic.
The interessting story of the life of Coco Chanel is broken down to:
-she had to sew in the orphanage
- she didn't like the dresses
- she made her own dresses
- everybody liked them
Its made very well, but I don't k
Stacy Fetters
Sep 09, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: sneaky-librarian
Simple but very elegant illustrations. Helps glorify the story of the creator of the little black dress.
The story seemed to jump around a lot. If a child was reading this, it would leave them confused.
A good way to start learning about the great Coco, but if you are looking more than a few bits and pieces, look elsewhere.
Edward Sullivan
Aug 26, 2015 rated it really liked it
How Coco Chanel grew up to become a world famous fashion designer and master of luxurious simplicity. Van Haeringen's spare mixed-media illustrations perfectly reflect Chanel's devotion to simplicity. A charming picture book biography that brings to mind the work of Ludwig Bemelmans.
The woman who taught us that to be comfortable is to be chic, in loose-limbed drawings full of joie de vivre.
Dec 15, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: children-s-books
A minimal book that tells the story of Coco Channel as a young orphan girl and how and why she became a designer.
Jessica Santana
This non-fiction picture book provides a glimpse into the life of one of fashion's most iconic designers- Coco Chanel. Coco grew up in an orphanage where she followed strict orders from nuns. It is there where she discovers her talents as a seamstress and singer, which allow her work for wealthy people, where she made observations of their fashion styles and drew inspiration. She made her first entrance into the fashion industry by designing hats which appealed to the upper-class women. She also ...more
Mar 19, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: preschool-lit
I love what this book was trying to do. Coco Chanel was an extremely important person, both in the fashion world and also just as a courageous woman who chose to make her own way instead of following the crowd. The illustrations are very nice, too. However, although this looks like a picture book for younger children, the text is clearly meant for older children - maybe 2nd or 3rd graders. I could tell too that the author is foreign and this is some sort of translation, as the transitions and ho ...more
Okay, friends, family members, peers in work who are children's librarians, I disagree with your assessment of giving this anything less than a "5". Beautiful illustrations with just a tease of the adult biography of this remarkably spirited, controversial individual. Coco Chanel's life was riddled in conflicts including but not limited to doubts of loyalty & espionage, with aim following a self-made path to success despite her upbringing (or, lack thereof) & unconventional views of fashion and ...more
Mar 16, 2019 rated it really liked it
I read two pictures about Coco Chanel today and even though this one didn't fully go into her biography I liked this one a lot more because it was more body-positive. It showed larger women in a positive light, where the other one was demeaning and left me with a sour taste in my mouth. Needless to say, Coco Chanel had a lot to do with shaping our skinny-or-else culture, but this book didn't make me feel bad about myself by the end of it.
This a nice introduction to Coco Chanel. I think it would do best with a parent/child reading together so that the parent can focus more attention on how Coco worked her way to the top instead of focusing on "looking pretty" and being "rich", etc. But it's a nice intro and maybe kids will want to read more.
Feb 09, 2018 rated it liked it
Simple and easily digested bio on Coco Chanel. Van Haeringen’s heavy use of black and white (with light touches of color) lays a foundation for Chanel’s signature style. Rey well conceived and styled book. The pages displaying various hats and finally dresses are the showstoppers.
Breanna Olson
Jan 30, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: biography
I gave this book 3 stars because the pictures are a little inappropriate (women in bras and underwear) to show to a class of students and does not transition well.

6 Traits: Presentation
Jun 29, 2017 rated it really liked it
Super cute!
Oct 05, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: kids
I love kids books for getting a start on non-fiction topics. I think Coco would approve... or come up with something interesting to say about it-
Jul 02, 2018 rated it liked it
A very simplified picture book biography of Coco Chanel. I would recommend "Different Like Coco" as it has better images and the wording is less jarring.
Oct 29, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Not diverse enough.
Mar 04, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: library
Loved the images, but for a book that was labeled as a biography for Coco Chanel, it was highly disappointing. Sounded more like a fiction storybook instead of a biography.
Sven Robertson
Dec 26, 2015 rated it really liked it
Annemarie Van Haeringen's COCO AND THE LITTLE BLACK DRESS was my daughter's and my first foray into children's nonfiction (other than nature books). This award winning book tells the story of the rise of famed fashion designer Coco Chanel. While the name Coco Chanel is probably familiar to most, I knew little about her life. This book is an uplifting tale for kids about how one can start with a humble upbringing, in an orphanage no less, and persevere to become one of the most recognizable names ...more
I saw this book on *Netgalley and was immediately intrigued. Coco Chanel is an iconic figure and I thought to myself a children's book about Coco? Heck yeah!

Little Coco is raised in an orphanage and is made from a young age to feel different and not wanted. In the orphanage she learns to sew and dreams of bigger things. When she is older she makes friends with rich people and soon begins to design her own hats and clothes. Including the iconic "little black dress".

OK so I loved this book. The dr
Becky B
A picture book biography about how Coco Chanel went from an orphanage to height of fashion designers.

The beginning of this with Coco in a French orphanage reminded me of Madeline perhaps also because of the art style, but it quickly differentiated itself. It was interesting to learn that Coco really got her foot in the fashion design door with hats first and then branched out to other things (at least that's what I understood from this, I'm not sure if that was 100% how it was in real life...bec
Alan Peralta
Oct 22, 2015 rated it really liked it
I find it hard to review a children's book, not having kids of my own with whom to read them. Not everything can be as clever and deep as Dr. Seuss, or as elegant and visually striking as Oliver Jeffers, and judging a book meant for someone 30 years younger, can be a tricky.

That said, I really liked Annmarie illustrations. They’re simple, beautiful and stylish, very fitting for the subject matter.

As for the narrative, I liked it, but i just don’t know if it achieves what it’s looking for. Maybe
Arra Abella
Dec 12, 2015 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Moms, little girls, and fashion enthusiasts
If you haven't heard of Coco Chanel, then I don't know which planet you are living in. She is well known for her infamous Chanel No. 5 scent, the Little Black Dress, and the classic Double C logo on every girl's dream bag. Before becoming a legendary fashion designer, she actually has a rags-to-riches back story that Annemarie van Haeringen was able to depict in this illustrated children's book. It's quite a cute story that not only little girls can enjoy, but also their moms. It actually remind ...more
Cindy Mitchell *Kiss the Book*
Dec 05, 2016 rated it did not like it
Shelves: not-recommended
Van Haeringen, Annemarie Coco and the Little Black Dress North South, 2015 $16.95 PICTURE BOOK/BIOGRAPHY

This bare bones biography features a plain sparse drawings and descriptions of Coco's early life in an orphanage, learning more about what women’s fashion was like, and coming up with her own way to change things.

This book reduces a fascinating, enigmatic, and talented women into an incredibly dull story with drab and uninteresting imagery. I wouldn’t add this to my library, as there are image
Mar 17, 2016 rated it really liked it
This is a really great kids' book about Coco! It is all about perseverance and trying hard to achieve your goals. The art was adorable. It reminded me of classic children's book art, like Madeline or Roald Dahl's book covers. I can see a lot of kids who are interested in clothes or fashion enjoying this book. It also shows a wide range of people in its depictions, which is great for kids to see. Everyone needs strong female role-models like Coco as well. I'm not sure how engaging the writing sty ...more
I didn't know that Coco Chanel grew up in an orphanage! This is an interesting rags-to-riches story that doesn't quite have the depth of Just Being Audrey, but shines a light on a female icon, with loose line drawings reminiscent of Ludwig Bemelmans. It's amazing to think of the difference in women's clothing over the years, especially in how constricting it was.

"I'll make a dress that you won't even feel when you're wearing. A dress you can dance in and ride a bicycle with."

"In a little black
« previous 1 3 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »

Readers also enjoyed

  • Jane, the Fox, and Me
  • Dokter Vos
  • Love, Creekwood (Simonverse, #3.5)
  • Het Ministerie van Oplossingen en de verdwenen Van Gogh
  • Julián Is a Mermaid
  • Period Power: Harness Your Hormones and Get Your Cycle Working For You
  • alfabet
  • Gotta Get Theroux This: My Life and Strange Times in Television
  • Sweet 16
  • Leon & Juliette
  • Tararì tararera
  • Get Set! Swim!
  • Haaientanden
  • Otje
  • The Confession
  • The Ice Palace
  • Japan in honderd kleine stukjes
  • Marie Curie (Little People, Big Dreams, #6)
See similar books…

News & Interviews

Need another excuse to treat yourself to a new book this week? We've got you covered with the buzziest new releases of the day. To create our...
12 likes · 7 comments