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Who is Stephen Jones, the favorite hatter of celebrities and fashion houses?

YesYouMag looks back over the career of an iconoclastic milliner with gigantic talent. 



For 40 years, the celebrated English dandy has been making hats for all the great fashion houses, from Dior to Jean Paul Gaultier passing by Schiaparelli and for stars like Rihanna and Lady Diana.

By Léa Zetlaoui

Stephen Jones by Studio Harcourt

Stephen Jones, the milliner of celebrities and great fashion houses 

Besides their exceptional artistry, what do the designers Jean-Paul Gaultier, Rei Kawakubo, Kim Jones, Raf Simons, Maria Grazia Chiuri, Vivienne Westwood, John Galliano and Marc Jacobs have in common? The answer is Stephen Jones. For the past 40 years, this English dandy has excelled at making hats, to the point where all the big fashion houses, not to mention the young designers, seek out the services of this great milliner, who also has his own label. “I’ve known Stephen for a very long time,” confides Kim Jones, artistic director of the menswear collections at Dior. “When I was a teenager [in the 1980s], he was one of my idols. Our collaboration began when I arrived at Dior, and I respect him enormously.” 

A past master at exalting the evocative power of an accessory that is today considered secondary, Stephen Jones will lavish as much care on a simple leather beret, like the one he made for Dior’s autumn/winter 2017–18 runway show, which was afterwards worn by Rihanna, as on a spectacular headdress in black feathers for the spring/summer 2014 Louis Vuitton show, the last under Marc Jacobs.

The hats of Stephen Jones between simplicity and extravaganza 

 “A true visionary, Stephen is able to dream up memorable creations. Even when they’re simple, everyday kind of hats, they’re unique,” explains Maria Grazia Chiuri, artistic director of womenswear at Dior. “I also remember my first Dior haute couture collection [spring/summer 2017], she continues. “After the show we threw a party inspired by the Bal des Têtes [a sumptuous ball put on by Baron Alexis de Redé at the Hôtel Lambert in 1956]. Stephen created extraordinary pill boxes for us. That was when I really understood what that hat is all about.” For Jones, whose enthusiasm for his work is infectious, the style of a hat is of no importance as long as it pushes the boundaries of the milliner’s art, whether through volume, proportion, materials or ornaments. “A hat is a visible accessory that gives character and personality,” says the Cheshire-born designer, an origin he shares with Lewis Carroll, inventor of the famous Mad Hatter in Alice in Wonderland (1869).

In a fashion industry constantly seeking novelty, Jones’s exceptional longevity cannot only be explained by his overflowing imagination and unrivalled knowhow. “His hats are creative, iconoclastic and revolutionary,” explains Adrian Joffre, a long-time friend of Stephen Jones and the co- founder, with Japanese designer Rei Kawakubo, of the concept store Dover Street Market. “He breaks the rules, but at the same time respects the traditions. His work is like him: extravagant, magnificent and very particular.” Jones himself has no problem admitting that he likes to play with contradiction. He first attended High Wycombe College of Art before studying fashion at London’s celebrated Central Saint Martins, from where he graduated in 1979. “When I was a student, I loved leafing through old editions of Vogue. In the 70s, easy-to- wear wardrobes and rustic styles were in fashion. I hated all that. But I loved the photos of gowns by Balenciaga, Dior and Jacques Fath taken by Henry Clarke, so full of elegance and refinement – angular poses and a graphic aesthetic, which for me you also find in Johnny Rotten, the Sex Pistols singer, with this total desire to be the best and the most energetic. It’s an extreme attitude that I find very glamorous and which contrasted with all the comfortable clothing fashionable at the time.”

Stephen Jones, from New Romantics to Lady Diana

During this heady period, when London was the epicentre of street style, Jones evolved from a punk student to a key designer for the New Romantics, who shared with glam rock and David Bowie a taste for androgyny, but also went in for extravagant historic references. To jolly up their endless nights out at the celebrated Blitz club, Jones made outrageous hats for his flatmates – the pop star Boy George and the artist Grayson Perry – as well as for his friends, the French designer Jean Paul Gaultier and the band Duran Duran. In 1980, Steve Strange, the club’s owner, offered to finance Stephen Jones’s hat shop in Covent Garden, and just two years later Princess Diana called on his knowhow. After that, all the avant-garde creators swore by his eye and talent, from Rei Kawakubo, founder of Comme des Garçons, and Jean Paul Gaultier, to the equally audacious Thierry Mugler, the very punk Vivienne Westwood and of course the fanciful John Galliano. When the latter was appointed artistic director at Dior, in 1996, Jones became the first British milliner to make hats and head- dresses for the illustrious brand. “Probably the most exceptional piece I ever made was for Dior’s spring-summer 2004 couture show, designed by John Galliano and inspired by ancient Egypt. It was an enormous gilded column, 1 m high, worn by Erin O’Connor,” he recalls. Previous arrow

Hat by Stephen Jones for the Dior men’s Fall-Winter 2022 showHat by Stephen Jones for the Dior men’s Fall-Winter 2022 showHat by Stephen Jones for the Maison Margiela Artisanal 2022 showHat by Stephen Jones for the Maison Margiela Artisanal 2022 showHat by Stephen Jones for the Schiaparelli haute couture Fall-Winter 2022-2023 showHat by Stephen Jones for the Schiaparelli haute couture Fall-Winter 2022-2023 showHat by Stephen Jones for the Schiaparelli haute couture Fall-Winter 2022-2023 sho

Stephen Jones, guardian of Dior’s know-how

While many other artistic directors have come and gone at Dior since Galliano, Stephen Jones remains a faithful Dior collaborator, a sentinel even, who continues its traditions. “Stephen has been the milliner to Christian Dior for 25 years – for me, he is the brand’s oracle. He has absorbed all its facets, and all those of a couturier too,” declares Kim Jones. His words are borne out by the 2020 book Dior brought out on Stephen Jones’s hats, as well as the exhibition on his work the brand organized at its Granville museum in 2022. Rare are the milliners who have achieved such recognition uniquely for their savoir-faire (Chanel, who started out as a milliner, achieved fame as a couturier). In 2009, Jones cocurated the exhibition Hats: An Anthology at London’s Victoria and Albert Museum, with a title that referenced Cecil Beaton’s 1971 show Fashion: An Anthology. These past five years have been Jones’s most prolific yet. Besides his two annual collections under his own name and those he does for Dior, he has worked with SchiaparelliMoschino, Rochas, Thom BrowneMarc Jacobs and the British designer Grace Wales Bonner, as well as on special projects for Rihanna, Lady Gaga and Kylie Jenner – a list that is far from exhaustive. “I’ve worked with many designers over the course of my career, but never so many as right now. Each time, I look at it as a conversation between people who are very different. They nourish me and I nourish them. I have my own per- sonal vision of beauty and ugliness, and they have theirs. Do I necessarily have to defend my point of view? No, with them I want to learn, I find the child in me again,” analyses Jones. Here we have the secret to his exceptional career: a radical vision of fashion coupled with a deep knowledge of its techniques and methods; an insatiable curiosity paired with a sincere and heartfelt modesty. 

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The Skinny Scarf Is Back and Better Than Ever for Spring

This time around, it’s a little more sophisticated.





2023 has been a year of seasonless dressing. Think about it: tights as pants, sheer dresses, underwear as outerwear, a lot of this winter’s viral trends pretty much ignore the fact that it’s 30-something degrees in most of the country. And with winter winding down, it follows that spring’s warm weather would bring about some equally off-kilter trends for the temperature. Case in point: the rise of the skinny scarf.

Bella Hadid in a skinny scarf

If your TikTok FYP looks anything like mine, you may have heard of last fall’s kooky “Frazzled English Woman” trend. An ode to messy layering, the aesthetic is all about embracing the rom-com side of Y2K fashion (aka dressing like your love interest is Colin Firth). In this iteration, the skinny scarf acts as quirky add-on to a frazzled outfit ideal for spilling coffee on yourself as you jaunt around in the fall splendor of your chosen backdrop. And while it’s not necessarily the warmest option, it does the trick in autumn temps—plus, part of its charm is its very impracticality.

This spring, the trend is back, but with a different attitude. 2023’s crop of skinny scarves are even more impractical, sporting even less coverage and coming in sophisticated fabrics rather than quirky knits. Think of it as the femme version of a tie: It’s there just to look good, nothing else. And while the Y2K era favored a—let’s just call it “random”—approach to styling, the 2023 version is undeniably chic, as celebs and it girls go with a matchy-matchy approach.

Kaia Gerber wearing a skinny scarf

Take, for example, the indie sleaze version of the look Celine sent down the runway on Kaia Gerber. Featuring sunnies, leather skinnies, a sharp tuxedo blazer, and a white tee, the gold skinny scarf is really the exclamation point on an otherwise classic outfit—it’s an outfit formula I’ve already seen pop up on my FYP on more than a few occasions. For a more ethereal version of the look, check out the about-to-go-viral bustier top featuring a built-in skinny scarf from Orseund Iris. With its blousy fabric and matching tube top (that’s two trends for the price of one), this skinny scarf set is giving Greek goddess, rather than harried heroine.

Of course, it wouldn’t be a 2023 trend without mentioning a cool-prep option for the Sporty Spices out there. There’s Bella Hadid’s horse girl version—in which she paired a checked jacket and tan blouse with skinny brows (bold) and a matching tan skinny scarf (even bolder)—if you’re feeling weird. There’s also plenty of inspiration from Miu Miu, a brand that’s spurred more viral trends than we can count in recent years (hello ballet flats, leg warmers, and micro minis). The brand’s fall 2022 collection paired crisp white tennis skirts, plenty of layers, and satin ballet slippers with a simple skinny scarf for that added bit of texture—and you can bet these styles will still be around come spring. 

Skinny Scarf on the Miu Miu Runway

When it comes to styling, think of this trend as an alternative (or addition to) your jewelry. It’s not necessarily there to stand out (or even really keep you warm). Go sophisticated and classic with your styling (rather than the loud more-is-more attitude of the ’00s) to keep it current. Think of a classic weekend formula like jeans and a tank top—a cool bomber jacket and a skinny scarf would add a bit of much-needed edge to the look. Or take a page out of the preppy handbook and pair an oversized v-neck sweater (we recommend a solid like navy, black, or white) with a contrasting skinny scarf to take a year-round staple to the next level.

In essence, this trend is about playfulness. While transitional weather continues to confuse and frustrate throughout March, this simple accessory can add a bit of fun to the classics we reach for this time of year. After all, the skinny scarf serves no purpose other than being cute and, as such, can take a “boring” look from forgettable to trendy in five seconds flat.

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Celebrity Style

Hunter Schafer’s Oscars After-Party Look Consisted of a Single Feather

Everyone’s talking about the ‘Euphoria’ star’s revealing avant-garde outfit. Here’s what to know about Belgium’s Ann Demeulemeester, the label behind it.





It’s hard to imagine how a single feather could go viral. But then along came Hunter Schafer wearing a white leather one across her breasts at the Vanity Fair Oscars 2023 after-party.

RELATED: These Oscars After-Party Looks Were More Exciting Than the Show Itself

The top — which is more of a breast belt — was from the Ann Demeulemeester Fall 2023 collection which was unveiled exactly two weeks earlier in Paris. The Mugler fragrance model wore the piece with a white silk bias cut skirt.

Law Roach, the stylist who dresses Schafer’s Euphoria co-star Zendaya, chose the skin-baring look which was applauded on Schafer’s IG by Zendaya, Katy Perry, Julia Fox and Marc Jacobs. (P.S. if you missed FASHION’s cover story on Law Roach, you can find it here.)

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Jennifer Lopez Has Carried This Constantly Sold-Out Bag for Years, and Now I Finally Get the Hype

It’s so soft and spacious.





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Growing up, I remember my mom carrying her leather Coach crossbody bag everywhere. As for me, opening a Coach wristlet for my 13th birthday was a shining moment. Needless to say, Coach has been a household name for years — especially in my own home — and the brand continues to create functional and eye-pleasing designs. Its go-to handbags have captured the attention of shoppers and celebs, including its brand ambassador, Jennifer Lopez.  

Recently, Coach sent me the Pillow Tabby Shoulder Bag 26 to try, which is the same style bag that J.Lo posed with in its previous campaign. I was excited to test out the bag that has graced Lopez’s Instagram, and I took every opportunity to wear this versatile accessory out and about — and it did not disappoint.    

Pillow Tabby Shoulder Bag

Shop now: $550;

Not only is the Tabby shoulder bag just as luxe and buttery soft as I imagined it would be, it’s also practical, having more storage space than I expected. The fabric-lined interior contains three separate compartments made up of two open sections that are divided by a wide-zippered pocket. The separate spaces made it easy to grab essentials like my lip gloss and phone. I was even able to keep a snack bar and a pack of tissues in the bag with room to spare. I filled the zippered pocket with valuables like my wallet and keys. For peace of mind, I appreciate that all of my belongings were securely stored thanks to the sturdy snap closure.

Pillow Tabby Shoulder Bag 26

Shop now: $550;

The Tabby shoulder bag has an ultra-smooth leather exterior with Coach’s “C” emblem on the snap. Its simple yet sophisticated design makes it easy to wear with a casual look like jeans and sweater or to dress up a midi skirt and camisole. It also comes with a wide strap, so I had the option to swap out the comfy, short shoulder strap and use it as a crossbody instead. The bag came along for all my weekend plans from a birthday party to a quick market run. I even styled it like Lopez did in her campaign with Coach last spring and wore the bag with joggers and a crewneck sweatshirt to grab a coffee.

It’s no surprise that shoppers raved about this celeb-worn bag. One reviewer said the inner lining of their Tabby bag “feels so rich,” adding that the color of the leather is “heavenly.” Another shared that they “feel so confident” when they wear this bag, and that the design is “timeless.” A third described it as “useful” and “playful,” noting that the Tabby style “makes a statement.” 

Head to Coach to grab this Jennifer Lopez-worn bag and more styles from the Tabby Collection. Trust me, it’s worth the hype.

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