Philip Treacy was born on 26 May 1967 in Ahascragh, in County Galway in the West of Ireland. He lived with his parents, seven brothers, and one sister across the road from the village church. He moved to Dublin in 1985 to study fashion at the National College of Art & Design, where he made hats “as a hobby” to go with outfits he designed.
In 1988 he won a place on the MA fashion design course at the Royal College of Art in London, and in 1989 he took one of his hats to Michael Roberts, fashion editor of Tatler magazine, and his style editor, Isabella Blow.
In 1990 Treacy graduated from the Royal College of Art with first class honours and set up a workshop in the basement of the house of Isabella and Detmar Blow, on Elizabeth Street, Belgravia.
Philip Treacy has designed hats for Alexander McQueen's white Haute Couture collection at Givenchy, for Karl Lagerfeld at Chanel, and for Valentino, Ralph Lauren and Donna Karan. He was awarded the title of British Accessory Designer of the Year at the British Fashion Awards on five occasions during the early 1990s. Isabella Blow, style editor of Tatler, helped Treacy launch himself as a well known milliner and wore many of his hats.
Treacy was awarded an honorary OBE (Order of the British Empire) for services to the British fashion industry by Prince Charles and the Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall at a ceremony in Clarence House in November 2007. Treacy designed the headdress that Camilla wore when the couple wed.
He has designed hats for various films, including some to all of the Harry Potter films, and the hat Sarah Jessica Parker wore for the première of the film Sex and the City. He has also designed hats worn by Lady Gaga. One of his notable designs for her was created with Malinda Damgaard, a telephone-shaped headpiece with removable handset, worn for her appearance on Friday Night with Jonathan Ross in 2010.
Thirty six hats designed by Treacy were worn at the Royal wedding of Prince William and Catherine Middleton on 29 April 2011, including the fascinator worn by Princess Beatrice of York that was controversial, and to some evoked a toilet seat.
In popular culture
In 2010 Treacy was one of six contemporary, internationally renowned Irish fashion designers featured on a set of Irish postage stamps issued by An Post. The other designers featured were Paul Costelloe, Louise Kennedy, John Rocha, Lainey Keogh and Orla Kiely.
- Paula Reed; Meredith Etherington-Smith (2001). Philip Treacy. Charta, 2001. p. 72. ISBN 978-88-8158-355-3. Retrieved 11 December 2010.
- Lucia van der Post (2008). Things I Wish My Mother Had Told Me: A Guide to Living with Impeccable Grace and Style. Da Capo Press. p. 56. ISBN 978-0-7382-1278-4. Retrieved 11 December 2010. ""Philip Treacy, generally acknowledged to be Britain's greatest milliner...."
- "Philip Treacy 'Hatforms' at IMMA Thursday". Raidió Teilifís Éireann. 5 April 2001. Retrieved 11 December 2010.
- Roberts, Glenys (9 May 2007). "Isabella Blow: Eccentric to the end". Daily Mail. Retrieved 11 December 2010.
- The g Hotel — Galway . website.
- Susan d’Arcy (19 February 2006). "The g Hotel, Galway". The Times. Retrieved 11 December 2010.
- "Lady Gaga's telephone hat".
- Philip Treacy: King of Royal wedding hats Irish Independent, 2011-04-29
- Newscore (11 May 2011). Princess Beatrice's ridiculed wedding hat to be sold on eBay New York Post
- "Magnificent Irish fashionista stamps". World Stamp News. 18 July 2010. Retrieved 23 January 2014.
- Official Philip Treacy website
- Tracey clann genealogy website
- Philip Treacy at the Fashion Model Directory
- LUX Magazine: Hats off to the preacher man
- The g Hotel Galway