Delray fashion designer Amanda Perna pens children’s book  


By: Marisa Herman Associate Editor

There is a new line debuting from the Delray Beach-based House of Perna in time for the holidays— a children’s book.

“F is for Fashion” authored and illustrated by fashion designer Amanda Perna will be on sale this month at Neiman Marcus and Amazon.

The colorful kids book, co-authored by Perna’s husband, Solomon Strul, helps teach the alphabet with help from fashion lingo. Perna fans will catch her patterns incorporated into the illustrations of A-line dresses and signature style earrings.

Perna came up with the idea as a way to teach her daughter Stella, 3, the alphabet.

In lieu of cards, she asked people to send books as gifts after Stella was born. Now that Stella is learning the alphabet, she said she quickly noticed there wasn’t an ABC fashion book.

So, she started sketching out pages on her iPad. She printed two copies of the book and whenever friends came over they asked where she bought the book.

That is when she decided to pitch the book to Neiman Marcus. They hopped on board and ordered the book this summer for 29 of their stores. Sales will begin early November. The book retails for $28 and can be found in the children’s department or online.

There are two versions of F is for Fashion. One is the original, which can be purchased on Amazon or found at local boutiques. The other is the Neiman Marcus exclusive edition.

The idea of penning a children’s book is meaningful to Perna because she was told she would never have a child of her own after she was diagnosed with endometriosis.

So when she found out she was pregnant with Stella, “It was a huge surprise.”

Stella has been around the fashion world since she was born. She goes to work with Perna and is surrounded by sketches, fabrics and design. She thought what better way to teach Stella her ABCs by using items she sees.

Her inspiration for working on the children’s book also led her to design a kid’s clothing line for the holidays.

“Kids are so fun and easy to dress,” she said.

She said parents often dress their kids in more playful outfits than they are willing to wear and the line shows that off.

Perna also recently completed a contribution to an exhibit that is currently on display at the Cornell Art Museum, “Art Couture: The Intersection of Art and Fashion.”

Displaying her designs in a museum has always been on her bucket list, she said.

“I like to be busy,” she said.

The exhibit brings together contemporary art and the world of fashion design. The exhibition includes illustrations and clothing created by well-known fashion designers as well as contemporary art inspired by iconic designs of the fashion world.

Works included by the following artists: Caroline Dechamby, Sylvestre Gauvrit, Rick Lazes, Jane Maxwell, Amanda Perna, Becky Rosa, Wayne Warren, Andy Warhol, Timo Weiland,  Stephen Wilson and Russell Young.