August 23 2014

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11 posts tagged "Anna Piaggi"

The Mystery of the Missing Stiletto Hat



Dio mio! According to WWD, an overzealous fan of the late Anna Piaggi stole one of her most iconic chapeaux—a stiletto hat designed by Bill Cunningham—from the Stephen Jones-curated Hat-ology exhibition in Milan. Jones told the Telegraph, “It was one of her most cherished possessions. I hope that the thief will wear it with as much aplomb and chic as Anna did—especially if it’s a man!” Keep your eyes on the street style sites for the well-hatted bandit.

Hat-ology runs through November 30 at Milan’s Palazzo Morando.

Photo: via the Telegraph

Milan Tips Its Hat To Anna Piaggi


Anna Piaggi

From her tiny top hats to stacked bowlers to sculpted, plumed creations, Anna Piaggi‘s chapeaux are nearly as well-known as the late Italian editor herself. And this fall in Milan, they’ll be getting their own show. Curated by her good friend and milliner Stephen Jones, the exhibition, titled Hat-ology, will open during Milan fashion week on September 22 at the Palazzo Morando, reports WWD. The headpieces will be displayed inside a re-creation of Piaggi’s Milan apartment, thus giving viewers a sense of the eccentric editor’s lifestyle. Featured toppers will include everything from a McDonald’s baseball cap to Chanel’s couture headgear—a range that speaks to Piaggi’s singular, and inventive, approach to fashion. Piaggi, who died last August at the age of 81, once told the International Herald Tribune, “I feel better if I have a good hat on.”

Photo: Bardo Fabiani / Courtesy of the Victoria and Albert Museum

A Total View of Alfa Castaldi


Tomorrow in Milan, 10 Corso Como’s Galleria Carla Sozzani will open Alfa Castaldi, a retrospective of the iconic Italian photographer’s work. “It was never about the beauty of the girls. It was more about an intellectual perspective,” says Paolo Castaldi, Alfa Castaldi’s son and the curator of the exhibition, of his father’s images. “Of course, it’s photography, so you need to look at the pictures to understand what I mean,” he adds.

Known for his studied (but, as his son notes, “not academic”) approach to photography, Castaldi began his career in the early fifties, documenting the scene at Milan’s artist hangout, Bar Jamaica. Thanks to the encouragement of the late, great Anna Piaggi, whom he met in 1958 and married four years later, Castaldi soon expanded beyond behind-the-scenes cultural reportage and dove into the world of fashion photography. In 1968, he became the first photographer to travel to Eastern Europe for a fashion shoot, snapping looks from designers like Walter Albini, Jean Baptiste Caumont, and Krizia in Prague. And he and Piaggi were collaborators in life and work (often for Vogue Italia) until his death in 1995. Continue Reading “A Total View of Alfa Castaldi” »

Exclusive: A Magazine Curated by Stephen Jones


Antwerp’s A Magazine has always been much more than a magazine. The key to its cultish allure lies in the subtitle: Curated by. The first issue, in 2004, was curated by Martin Margiela, the most recent by Rodarte. And in between, the likes of Yohji Yamamoto, Haider Ackermann, Riccardo Tisci, and Proenza Schouler have corralled their favorite photographers, artists, and writers to make A Magazine.

Issue Number 12, which launches at Bookmarc during Paris Fashion Week, belongs to Stephen Jones, fashion’s favorite hatter. “I like a magazine that looks like a magazine,” he said yesterday. “It’s not a book. I didn’t want it to be page after page of slightly meaningless photographs. That’s why I thought illustration. I love illustration, I draw every day. And that’s the way designers communicate, through drawing.”

Jones’ choice of medium couldn’t be more timely, with the revival of interest in the work of Antonio Lopez and the spotlight that Anna Piaggi’s recent death threw on Vanity, the mythic magazine she produced with Antonio in the eighties. Piaggi was a close friend of Jones’. It was actually Vanity that brought them together. (Jones’ single interaction with Antonio was when he asked if he could see the picture the artist was drawing of him. Antonio crumpled it, threw it in the trash, and offered a flat “No!”). And Jones sees this current project as a kind of tribute to his late friend and inspiratrice.

There’s no theme, unusual for Jones, whose hat collections usually revolve around a story. “When I saw the work coming in, it was very much about the illustrators themselves.” The roster of talent includes David Downton, one of whose pet subjects, Dita Von Teese, models accessories semi-naked and centerfold-style; Peter Turner, Galliano’s illustrator at Dior, who contributes a story on men’s underwear (Jones advertises, “Entirely gratuitous nudity”); and the legendary Howard Tangye, head of womenswear at Central Saint Martins, who illustrates spring for A Magazine‘s pullout calendar.

Jones’ sole brief to the illustrators was that they could draw whatever they wanted. At least half the images are of hats. “It’s you, Stephen,” they told him when he complained that he wanted his magazine to be about everything. He had to shut up and take the compliment. Anyway, there’s always Donald Urquhart’s images of Leigh Bowery to balance the hattage. He drew them with his own genitalia, dipped in ink.

Jones’ own contribution is a selection of ten favorite drawings, which he spent the Christmas holiday picking out of the thousands he’s made since he launched himself as a milliner in 1979. There are also some “conversations in drawing”: Jones would send Mugler or Montana or Kawakubo a suggestion to accessorize a collection, they’d send it back with comments. He’s also included drawings from industrial designers like Zaha Hadid and Marc Newson, as well as some of Raf Simons’ college work. None of it has been seen before.

“I did try to feel like, ‘Think Pink,’ ” says Jones of his guest stint as a magazine editor. “Editing things down is what an editor does. I wanted to edit things up, make it a fantastic showcase. I didn’t want to be restricted by this season’s story. But I didn’t want to be timeless, either. Always what’s interesting for me is doing an amazing hat for Marc or Raf, but then making a baseball cap for a young Japanese guy who comes into the shop. I love variety. That’s what the magazine is about.”

Click here for an exclusive preview of a few illustrations from A Magazine Curated by Stephen Jones >

Illustration: Gladys Perint Palmer, Courtesy of A Magazine. Photo: Atelier Justine

In Memoriam: Remembering Those Who Died In 2012


The New Year is just around the corner, but before we move on to 2013, we pause to celebrate a few of the fashion-world innovators who passed away this year. Below are some of the legends to whom we said goodbye.

Anna Piaggi
A muse to many (Karl Lagerfeld, for instance) and a source of intrigue for all, Anna Piaggi, with her Stephen Jones hats and endless, eccentric ensembles, was the original street-style star. A contributor to the former Vanity magazine and a presence for decades at Vogue Italia, Piaggi lit up the fashion scene with her signature gloves and cane, sometimes blue, sometimes violet hair, maquillaged face, vast knowledge, and unstoppable wit. Piaggi died in August at the age of 81.
Related: Remembering Anna Piaggi and Tim Blanks on Anna Piaggi’s Legacy

Vidal Sassoon
Having coined the phrase “If you don’t look good, we don’t look good,” Vidal Sassoon revolutionized the world of coiffure with his five-point haircut—the one worn by a young Grace Coddington, and that helped make Mia Farrow famous. An enduring force in fashion, Sassoon died in May at the age of 84.
Related: Beautiful Lives: Vidal Sassoon

Donna Summer
There are few who didn’t love to love, or at least love to dance to, Donna Summer. Forever a disco queen, the star churned out hits like “Last Dance,” “I Feel Love,” and, of course, “Love to Love You Baby.” We lost the legend to cancer last May. She was 63.
Related: She Loved To Love You, Baby

Helen Gurley Brown
At the age of 90, Helen Gurley Brown, the world’s most famous Cosmo girl and the woman who helmed the title for three decades, passed away this summer. Her frank discussion of sex within the magazine’s pages forever changed the face of Cosmopolitan, and her editorial work, as well as her then-risqué 1962 book Sex and the Single Girl, helped to shape a generation.
Related: Helen Gurley Brown, Magazine Innovator, Dead At 90

Whitney Houston
Whitney Houston, the six-time Grammy Award-winning superstar, died tragically in February. Though in later years her personal struggles with husband Bobby Brown and drug abuse tended to eclipse her work, her chart-topping hits, like “I Wanna Dance With Somebody” and her rendition of Dolly Parton’s “I Will Always Love You,” helped to define R&B for a generation.
Related: Whitney Houston, R.I.P. and Beauty Icon: Whitney Houston

Tony Scott
English director Tony Scott, famed for blockbusters like Top Gun and Enemy of the State, died in August after an apparent suicide. As our editor in chief, Dirk Standen noted in his farewell piece, his moody film, The Hunger, was a constant source of inspiration for the fashion set.
Related: R.I.P. Tony Scott

Photo: All images courtesy of Getty Images