Friday, 10 April 2009

Hats: An Anthology by Stephen Jones
picture courtesy colette
As I think I've mentioned several times before on this blog, each with increasing vigour, The Victoria and Albert museum is my favourite museum in the whole of London! It has a gorgeous permanent collection, but recently their exhibitions have been beyond fabulous. Hats: An Anthology curated by Stephen Jones is absolutely stunning.
The exhibition space is split up into four areas. The Inspiration which looks at trends, themes and styles of hat from toppers to tricorn, architecture to animals. Creation which includes a mockup of a milliner's workroom.
The Salon looks at the boutique hat shops of the early 20th century, and the Client section has a selection of recognisable hats worn by celebrities such as Dita Von Teese (who has great taste in headgear!) to the Duchess of Cornwall, or those designed for famous collections such as Giles Deacon's pacman hat!
The hats themselves are interspersed with lovely old Pathe News features howing the latest styles of the 40s and 50s (while a condescending voiceover man makes disparaging comments about the mysteries of female fashion) and features on modern millinery.
Although the exhibition tries to put the hats into historical context, and includes things like bicycle helmets and a novelty plastic policeman's hat in an attempt to, I don't know? Be modern and relevant? I think it's at its best when it freely admits that really it's just an excuse for a lot of hat!porn. I know what a bicycle helmet looks like, but how often is anyone going to design me a hat consisting of a tower of miniture packing cases on a paint splattered fedora to commemorate me moving house?!

And truly, if these hats don't have you salivating at the sight of some of them I just don't think you're a hat person.

The exhibition is at the V&A in South Kensington, London until the 31st May. If you can't make it the V&A youtube channel has some of the videos from the exhibition online.


Unless otherwise stated all photos from
Stephen Jones Millinery


Amber said...

Oh, this is looks amazing!! I wish I could go see the exhibition, I am rather hat obsessed at the moment. Guess I'll check out the videos when I'm in a country that hasn't blocked youtube (sigh).

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