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Behind the scenes at Bergdorf Goodman
The master at work.

As the head of Bergdorf Goodman’s personal-shopping service, 86-year-old Betty Halbreich is part style guru, part therapist. She dishes on her 40 years spent dressing everyone from Upper East Side socialites to her good friend Joan Rivers and the cast of a little TV show called Sex and the City in I’ll Drink to That: A Life in Style, with a Twist.

Halbreich was living the high life in 1950s Manhattan when it all came crashing down with the collapse of her 20-year marriage. After an identity crisis and subsequent suicide attempt, she got into therapy and got a job at Bergdorfs. The rest, as they say, is fashion history.

We devoured Halbreich’s alternately sweet and hysterically snarky tales of making her clients feel as fabulous as they look and picked up some sartorial wisdom in the process. Namely, if you don’t feel comfortable, you’ll never look comfortable, and the size printed on the tag means absolutely nothing.

Another reason to pick up the book? Halbreich is the inspiration for an upcoming HBO series penned by Lena Dunham and Girls cowriter Jenni Konner. You know how we feel about reading the book first...

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