In addition to his own collections and collaborations with fashion designers over the last 30 years, Jones has completed countless assignments for film and music. Each of these mediums results in a very different collaboration depending on the effect the hats need to achieve.
Jones finds that designing hats for film, such as Elizabeth: The Golden Age, Atonement and Coco avant Chanel is a completely distinct process in comparison to his work in fashion.
Making hats for a film is all about detail. If you make a hat for a fashion show, people would see it from 20 metres away. As opposed to a film, it is the reverse. If Marlon Brando wears a leather jacket all the way through a film, the design of that jacket is absolutely crucial. Everything depends on it.
For costume dramas, Jones never simply creates replicas if historical hats; directors approach him because they want his unique and unusual signature.
The costume can be period-accurate but the hat can be a little different to give it a bit of more modernity or freshness, or to add a little more of the character of the person who is wearing it.
The list of musicians and pop stars who have called on the talents of Stephen Jones in recent years is downright impressive: Boy George, David Bowie, George Michael, Mick Jagger, Simon Le Bon, Rihanna, Madonna, Pink, Christina Aquilera, Kylie Minogue, …
For a pop star, a hat can be really fantastic because it immediately gives you a specific look.
Stephen understands how tiny details make the difference between a cute hat and a legendary hat. His chapeaux go far beyond the chic and in fact, become the reference for all others. His work manages to reinvent and redefine, rather than merely carry on the tradition of hat making. There’s something special that the masters of millinery from the golden age of hat-wearing knew, and Stephen has that rare talent that sets him apart from any other living hat designer. His joy in his work is visible in each creation, says Dita Von Teese.