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MoMu Fashion Museum in Antwerp

This blog features posts from the various departments at the MoMu Fashion Museum Antwerp who share their insights on the Museum's working, exhibitions and projects. MoMu is located in the centre of the Antwerp fashion district. Every year, the museum organises two thematic exhibitions, along with workshops, guided tours,...
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Thanks to United Airlines and the Tourist Office for Flanders MoMu was able to invite American blogger Tavi Gevinson to the vernissage of ‘Stephen Jones & The Accent of Fashion’.

Here’s a film short in which she tells what she likes best about the exhibition!


For this exhibition and accompanying catalogue, Anna Piaggi, international style icon and journalist of Italian Vogue, pays homage to Stephen Jones in the form of a photo collage, especially designed for the exhibition. Together with Jones, Brado Fabiani and Luca Stoppini, she created a series of images of her own collection of Stephen Jones hats, in the familiar environment of her apartment in Milan.

Anna Piaggi is one of Stephen Jones’s most loyal fans. She suggested the title ‘Stephen Jones & The Accent of Fashion’, referring to the unique accent Stephen Jones brings in every new collaboration with designers.

Just as accents in a text can lead the reader to its intended reading, or to pronounce and interpret the text correctly, a Stephen Jones hat brings its own specific punctuation to a silhouette, to the overall image of a collection, a photograph or a film. In language, accents often sit at a 45 degree angle, the angle most often used by Jones when placing a hat on someone’s head. For the British, moreover, an accent in text is something rather exotic since they rarely appear in the English language.

© Photography: Bardo Fabiani, Artistic direction: Luca Stoppini


Coinciding with ‘Stephen Jones & The Accent of Fashion’, still on until February 13th, Hotel Les Nuits (Lange Gasthuisstraat 12, 2000 Antwerp) presents the ‘Stephen Jones room’. You can book a night for two in the ‘Stephen Jones room’ for the fixed price of €218,00 (breakfast included). You’ll sleep in a room decorated in the theme of the exhibition ‘Stephen Jones & The Accent of Fashion’, get a bottle of bubbles, access to the spa facilities and two tickets for the exhibition! Make your reservation at

The Perfect wig for the the perfect hat

For the photography of the Stephen Jones collection at the MoMu Fashion Museum, Antwerp based hairdresser Pascal Van Loenhout has teamed up with Bumble&Bumble to create a number of hairstyles that are the perfect pedestal for Jones’s hats. The result is a series of stylish wigs that accentuates the sculptural effect of the extravagant headwear.

Van Loenhout chose to create variations on ageless, historical hairstyles such as the so-called ‘carré’, the chignon and the afro. What immediately strikes the eye are the strong graphic lines and the platinum blond colour of the hairpieces. His decision to make wigs as white as snow is not an obvious one: these are made out of pure nylon, which is not easy to cut. To solve this problem, van Loenhout used clippers instead of a pair of scissors. It goes without saying that this unusual cutting technique requires some experience. Additional problem: nylon cannot stand that much heat so it was very complicated to stylize using heat sources. Only by using the correct products and techniques,the wigs could attain the perfect shape and volume. And why exactly is it that white wigs were chosen? The platinum blond hair with the white mannequin forms a refined combination of colours. In that way Jones’ extraordinary creations get the ultimate support that they deserve.

Both on Jones’s wigs and in his own hair salon, Pascal van Loenhout uses the British hair cutting technique. He has mastered this special technique perfectly. In this approach, emphasis is on the technical and architectural aspect of a certain hair style: the haircut is constructed out of geometrical forms. Quite different from the more instinctive, French approach which is still the standard in most Belgian hair salons. The long-lasting life span of such a typical English haircut is just one of the many advantages. Apart from that, this hair style can easily be put into shape at home: there is hardly any need for special brushes, curling irons or even a hair drier. According to van Loenhout, the British hair style, which is very easy to keep in shape at home, is gaining ground on the classical, French haircut, which needs a lot of brushing.

Ectasy – Spring/Summer 2007 “ARTIFICE” – Stephen Jones Millinery London
© Photography: Hugo Maertens – Hair styling: Pascal van Loenhout for Bumble&Bumble

Short film: Vernissage

MoMu is proud to announce a collaboration with Leonardo Van Dijl, a talented young videographer who followed the MoMu team during the preparations for the exhibition Stephen Jones & The Accent of Fashion, resulting in a series of shorts. We will gradually post these films, depicting the making of the exhibition, on the MoMu Blog. Enjoy the first video in this series: an impression of the vernissage of Stephen Jones & The Accent of Fashion.

Tavi and Stephen cutting the ribbon

MoMu celebrated the opening of Stephen Jones & The Accent of Fashion, a true celebration of more than 30 years of fantastic millinery, 30 years of craftmanship, 30 years of creative collaborations and above all 30 years of boundless fun and pushing the boundaries of traditional millinery!

© Photography: Tim Stoops

Watch a video report on the opening night

Symposium: Camouflage takes centre stage

From Wednesday October 13th until Friday October 15th, the Royal Museum of the Armed Forces and Military History in Brussels will host a symposium on camouflage, its history, evolution and influence on the world of fashion and design.

Why was camouflage introduced into the army at the beginning of the twentieth century? Which kind of camouflage print is the most effective and why has every nation a different pattern? How will camouflage be integrated in future and NBC clothing? Why do some rock groups and other subcultures dress in camouflage? What aesthetic and sociological explanations are behind this form of display? What is the relationship between an 18th century hunter and a sniper and between Cubism and camouflage? All these questions and more will be answered by a group of international experts gathered together for this symposium.

The museum in Brussels has invited a selection of military uniform experts and costume historians who will speak of their own area of expertise. The panel will include Sarah Scaturro, textile curator of the Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum (New York), Patricia Mears, deputy director of the Museum at FIT (New York), Corinne Thépaut-Cabasset, researcher at the Chateau de Versailles, Martin Markelius, uniform curator of the Army Museum (Stockholm) and Karen Van Godtsenhoven, curator of the MoMu Fashion Museum Antwerp.

Symposium: Camouflage takes centre stage
October 13-15 at the Royal Military Academy in Brussels
Full programme and registration at

Stephen Jones & The Accent of Fashion

From 8 September 2010 until 13 February 2011, the MoMu Fashion Museum in Antwerp will present a retrospective exhibition of the work of British milliner Stephen Jones. This autumn, Jones celebrates the 30th anniversary of his House, Stephen Jones Millinery. We are pleased to mark that anniversary with an exceptional exhibition. The MoMu Fashion Museum houses the largest collection of Stephen Jones hats outside Great Britain, thanks to a long-term loan by the Antwerp private collectors, Geert Bruloot and Eddy Michiels.

The exhibition Stephen Jones & The Accent of Fashion guides you through the unique world of a hatmaker who has worked with many of the greatest names in the international fashion scene for three decades: Jean Paul Gaultier, Thierry Mugler, Comme des Garçons, Claude Montana, John Galliano, Christian Dior, Azzedine Alaïa,Walter Van Beirendonck, Marc Jacobs, and many more. Stephen Jones plays a unique behind-the-scenes role in fashion because of the unparalleled freedom he is given by designers, allowing his work to influence the image of a collection. Just as accents in language lead to the correct reading and rhythm of a text, Jones’ hats add the appropriate punctuation to a designer’s fashion statement.

As well as Stephen Jones’ numerous collaborations with designers, the exhibition also looks more closely at his work in film, music and photography, his early years in the London of the New Romantics, his unique relationship with fashion icon Anna Piaggi, his design process and the sources of inspiration behind his creations.

Stephen Jones & The Accent of Fashion
Until February 13th, 2011 at the MoMu
Every day (except Monday) from 10AM to 6PM
Admission €7 / €5 (Reduction) / €1 (-26) / Free (-12)

photo©Nick Knight, 1985