Stephen Jones’ Rococo

Rococo at 'Stephen Jones & The Accent of Fashion'

Photo by Frederik Vercruysse

As you may know by now, Stephen Jones & The Accent of Fashion is built around four themes, each introduced by an enlargement of a hat. The ‘Rococo’ theme is introduced by an enlarged version of Damn That Feels Good! (Autumn/Winter 1999-2000), an asymmetrical hat decorated with an arch-shaped structure of jumbled wood and twigs. The cap, to which the structure is attached, is made from hatter’s plush, a silk material traditionally used by hat makers for bowler hats. Jones acquired this specific hatter’s plush following bankruptcy of the firm Rayne, which had been a supplier to the Britsh royal family. The hat’s name is a play of words since the hat’s shape is reminiscent of a beaver dam.

In Jones’ view, rococo is a more lyrical, more charming and more individual style than baroque and is largely concerned with the asymmetry in nature. Leaf and floral motifs are plentiful in Jones’ work, and here and there nature is even literally his matière première.

Rei Kawakubo, from the Japanese label Comme des Garçons, and Vivienne Westwood are the two designers represented in this theme. The work of each, in its own way, rebels against the rule of symmetry as an established aesthetic value in form and in culture.