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Philip Treacy on Shopping With Sarah Burton, Hating Fascinators And His JFK Grudge

9 May 2012

We’ve always had a niggling feeling that the man behind thousands of famous hats and headpieces would have strong opinions when it comes to style. And we’re pleased to see we were right. Philip Treacy was in San Francisco recently to attend the Acadamy of Art University’s graduate fashion show. While there he spoke to Refinery 29 about his dislike of the word 'fascinator'.

"It's the most ridiculous word. Personally, I think it sounds like some dodgy sex toy. And it's really a head dress. Or a hat. A baseball cap is a hat. A headwrap is a hat. Anything you put on your head is a hat. But I hate fascinators, even though people think my hats are fascinators."

Treacy also rather dramatically blames JFK for the beginning of the end for the hat industry. Quite a statement but we reckon he’s got a point… “He choose not to wear a hat and he was the most important person in the world at that moment. He was the taste maker - I think hair became more important than hats in the '60s and that likely began to kill the hat industry. His wife wore a pillbox, but it was an excuse for a hat, really. It was all about everything but the hat. Halston, who was one of my favorite designers, designed that hat. And I love Halston more than the pillbox. But that's what she wanted."

Our favourite part of the interview was when Philip dished the gossip on a recent shopping trip while in San Fran, with none other than Suzy Menkes and Sarah Burton! What amazing shopping company to keep…can you just IMAGINE the damage they did? "I went to some of the vintage stores. Suzy took us with her on a shopping trip. We went to Reliquary and we went to the African shop across the street, which was my favorite. I bought lots there and so did Sarah. And nothing was for sale in the store! This one piece that Sarah wanted was not for sale. I had to explain to the woman in the shop. I said, 'You know that girl who's standing over there who wants to buy that piece? Did you see the royal wedding?' And she goes, 'Uh, yeah.' And I said, 'She made the wedding dress.' And then she said, 'Okay, it's for sale.'" WOW that’s a good reaction!

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