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Hats - Queensland Art Gallery

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by Tracey Lloyd (subscribe)
A freelance writer living by Moreton Bay. Visit my website at
Published March 22nd 2010
Fez, Feathers, Flowers and Fashionistas come together at Hats: An Anthology by Stephen Jones which opens on 27 March at the Queensland Art Gallery. On loan from the UK's Victoria & Albert Museum, Hats: An Anthology by Stephen Jones features over 250 hats from a 12th Century Egyptian Fez to the decadent headpiece worn on tour by Australia's showgirl, Kylie Minogue.

In an arrangement resembling a garden, the hats will be the equivalent of floral displays and the exhibition follows the life of hat from inspiration to final placement on the client's head. In the lead up to the exhibition's opening, you can follow the progress of building via the Queensland Art Gallery's Flickr page.

Stephen Jones is a respected British milliner and has worked in the past with famous fashion houses including Christian Dior, Comme des Garcons and Marc Jacobs. He was also responsible for designing the headpiece worn by Kylie Minogue on her Showgirl Tour and 1993's "Wash & Go Hat" made of clear plastic and resembling a splash of water. Both of these gorgeous creations can be viewed at the exhibition.

Other hats of interest on display are a 62 year old black silk tulle hat from Christian Dior's first collection, a 1968 blue beret from miniskirt legend, Mary Quant and the feathered bridal headpiece designed by Phillip Treacy and worn by Camilla Parker Bowles at her 2005 wedding to HRH Prince Charles.

As well as the exhibition, the Queensland Art Gallery has arranged a series of fun and educational support programs including lectures and daily guided tours, Hats High Tea, the Hats Salon and Top Hats. The Hats Salon lets you take home a reminder of the exhibition with gift lines and many hats from local and international milliners available for sale. Hats High Tea takes place daily and you can enjoy a hat themed treat along with a glass of champagne. Bookings are essential for Hats High Tea. Top Hats is an area for the young and the not so young to live out the dream of being a milliner and create their own hat.

Hats: An Anthology by Stephen Jones opens at the Queensland Art Gallery, South Bank on 27 March 2010 and will continue to be displayed until 27 June 2010. Entry is free and guided tours take place daily at 11:00am. For transport options, the nearest train station to the art gallery is South Brisbane, buses and ferries stop at South Bank or the QPAC, State Library or South Bank car parks are available to drivers.

Images & Videos

Kylie Minogue's Showgirl Headpiece
Stephen Jones' 1993 "Wash & Go" Hat
Phillip Treacy's bridal headpiece worn by Camilla Parker Bowles
Video of the opening night of Hats: An Anthology by Stephen Jones at the Victoria & Albert Museum, London
A video interview with Stephen Jones
Video of hat creation

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Why? See famous & infamous hats and follow a hat's creation
When: Daily between 27 March 2010 - 27 June 2010
Where: Queensland Art Gallery
Cost: Free (some events may have a charge)
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