British fashion designer Stephen Jones knows how.
‘Stephen Jones is the maker of the most beautiful hats in the world,’ affirms Anna Piagga of Italian Vogue. With work stepped in couture and craft, Jones has been producing astounding hats for over 25 years and is regarded as one of the most original milliners.
Born in Cheshire, England, Stephen Jones studied at Central St-Martines College of Art and Design in the late 1970s. By 1980, Jones had opened his first millinery store in London’s Covent Garden, selling hats to rock stars and royalty, including Boy George and Lady Diana.
Defining his aesthetics as ‘chic humour’, Jones creates millinery that is modern and exiting. He uses materials that are often radical, and his creations range from being beautiful and refined to whimsical.
Citing Elsa Schiaparelli, Charles James and Santiago Calatrava as his design icons, Jones finds and varied inspiration, but admits to revisiting the 1940s, 1976 and music for stimulus. ‘Tradition is the anchor,’ he explains, as his design process is based on his passion of sketching: ‘I never stop drawing.’
Jones’s work has been exebited at the Victoria & Albert Museum in London, the Louvre in Paris, the Fashion Institute of Technology and the Brooklyn Museum in New York, the Kyoto Costume Institute in Japan and the National Gallery of Australia in Canberra.
Collaborations are integral to Jones success. ‘They are essential. I have a long history of collaborations and in part I invented it.’ Jones has worked with such artists as Kylie Minogue and Dita Von Teese, but his truly innovative work has been for the catwalk collection of iconic designers including Rei Kawakubo at Comme des Garçons, Vivienne Westwood, Marc Jacobs and John Galliano for Dior. he also created the regal headpieces that Cate Blanchett wore in the films Elizabeth (1998) and Elizabeth: The Golden Age (2007).
In addition to his ‘Model Millenery‘ main collection, Jones designs ‘Miss Jones‘ and “Jones Boy‘ diffusion ranges and a ‘Jones Girl‘ accessories collection made exclusively for Japan. In 2008 he launched his first fragrance in collaboration with Comme des Garçons Parfum. The packaging – a miniature glossy black hatbox – houses a black bottle, the design of which was based on an old ink bottle Jones found in Paris that dates back to the 1890s.
Imagies are taken from:
Alongside with fashion hats is Hywel Davice. Firstly published in a book British Fashion Designers.