Thursday, September 29, 2011

Hats: An Anthology at Bard Graduate Center (Part 3)

We had so much fun at the opening for Hats: An Anthology by Stephen Jones that we did not have time to see the entire exhibition, and simply had to go back last Sunday. Here are the pictures we took from our second trip, which we've incorporated into our third installment. (More about the locale of our photo below.)

Below is a hat from Tudor England. Since hats are made of soft, natural material that perishes easily (humidity and animals with various numbers of legs are often to blame), clothing that survives as long as this in a moist climate is very rare. (The feather and ribbon are both replacements, but the leather base is original.)

This hat, open and box-shaped, is almost the anti-hat. Takes thinking outside the box to new levels!

A still from a wonderful video, Hat Modes (1941). In two minutes, we see how a single felt hat can be shaped five different ways (low over the eye, high toward the back of the head, pinned on both sides, encircled from crown to chin with a veil and decorated around the crown with a ribbon) for five completely different looks.

The latest Marc Jacobs hat, making the rounds in several iterations.

This hat was made and worn by Leigh Bowery, outre leading light of the '80s London club scene.

Below is the entire outfit. This photo is also the cover of Leigh Bowery Looks, Fergus Greer's amazing compendium of Bowery's fantastical costumes.

What look could be hotter than a hat made of matchsticks?!

A Gaultier hat worn over the eyes, with tassel tears.

Another rare hat from the 17th century England, this one made of beaver fur. The 17th century hat box is also preserved.

Stephen Jones often collaborates with fashion houses. This is a Comme des Garcons hat.

This feathered hat is a stunning evocation of a bird in flight.

It's WONDERFUL to see Elsa Schiaparelli's fanciful shoe hat up close. It's actually made of black felt, except for the heel, made of luscious red velvet.

Stephen Jones pays homage to Schiaparelli's shoe hat with his own great design. The updated Jones version is made of sheer molded plastic black netting, with glass 'taps' at the toe. So playful!

New York's own Bill Cunningham, a milliner before he became the iconic photographer for The New York Times, made a shoe hat using a real shoe.

This hat in Burberry plaid belongs to Italian Vogue editor Anna Piaggi. The internet has endless pages of Piaggi in hats (more than 71 verifiably different hats, not counting photos too small to see and thoughtlessly, heartlessly, cropped photos). Where does she keep them all? DOES she keep them all? And none of the photos show this hat. Might Piaggi have a hat for every day of the year? If there were annual tours of private closets the way there are annual tours of private gardens in flower, the Piaggi closet tour would undoubtedly be the hot ticket of the year.

We don't understand why anyone calls Andy Warhol's toupees fright wigs. The later ones were marvelous to look at, and beat hell out of baseball caps for the follicularly challenged.

A third 17th century English hat - called an apprentice's cap. Gargantuan old English estates, with their endless storage space and generations of devoted caretakers, must have had something to do with the remarkable preservation of hats like these.

This hat, by Kirsten Woodward, is entitled Sex on the Brain.

Want still more Stephen Jones hats? We went to Comme des Garcons the other day (in the photo above, we posed in front of the entrance to their Chelsea boutique, bedizened with little Maos at the entrance), where there are several on display (hats - not Maos - and only a few - hats - for sale). We were not allowed to photograph, but we found the picture below from Fashion’s Night Out online on An Unknown Quantity, a wonderful street/fashion photography blog by Wataru “Bob” Shimosato. We HAVE to point out that the igloo hat, in the upper left hand corner of the display, is accompanied by a small Eskimo attached by a delicate foot long white strand.

By the way, Roberta Smith, art critic for The New York Times, has written a review of the show. Read her review here, and check out the reverence apparent in the clever title.

The Wall Street Journal also covered the show, rolling its coverage into an article about the upswing in the popularity of hats this fall. (Pictures in the article demonstrate [accidentally] that royals do not know how to wear hats. Or maybe they just don’t know how to match them to their outfits.) To see the article, click here.

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Since we're going on about hats, and since several weeks ago we did a posting about nothing but men's hats, we have to show you this great picture (below) of Vogue editor Hamish Bowles in a Philip Treacy hat for his recent appearance under a pseudonym on The X Factor. (You can see the full article in the October Vogue.)

Click here for coverage of Bowles' adventure and more photos from And we just HAD to show you a close-up of the Christian Louboutin shoes (below). Isn't it interesting that when a woman wears flats everyone says 'BORing', but when a man wears flats everyone gasps at how beautiful they are? These are FABulous, and we want a pair too!

But we have to end with these photos, taken only yards away from Comme des Garcons, because we came across the largest cocktail we've ever seen. LOL, as they say on Twitter, which we have yet to use!

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