As far as millinery goes, few can rival the talent of Philip Treacy. Vastly imaginative, his work pushed the boundaries of the medium of hat-making so that it borders on sculpture. A long-term collaborator of Alexander McQueen, he was behind many of the fantastical headpieces features in the designer’s famously theatrical shows: from the “Butterfly” headdress of SS08, to the ones made of woodcock wings for AW06. He and McQueen shared an unorthodox approach to design, something that was heightened when the pair worked together. “We blowtorched laundry basket lids for his ‘Horn of Plenty’ show. There was a little bit of Ikea shopping going on, there!” he said in a recent Dazed interview.
Aside from McQueen, he’s designed hats for Karl Lagerfeld at Chanel and Valentino, along with pop icons such as Grace Jones, Lady Gaga and Madonna. This new book – which shares the hat-maker’s name – spans Treacy’s illustrious career, bringing together images from some of the industry’s most feted photographers, including Irving Penn and Richard Avedon, Steven Meisel, Mario Testino, Bruce Weber and Patrick Demarchelier. It’s a long-overdue document of this designer’s vast contribution to fashion. Check out the gallery above to see some sneak peeks from the book.
“Philip Treacy” – published by Rizzoli – is available now.