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Sex on the Brain

  • Object:


  • Place of origin:

    London, England (made)

  • Date:

    1989 (designed)
    1996 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Woodward, Kirsten (milliner)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Straw, esparterie, Russian braid

  • Credit Line:

    Given by the designer

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

This hat titled 'Sex on the Brain' was designed by milliner Kirsten Woodward in 1989 as part of a series she was working on, creating bodies shaped in straw.

Woodward trained at the Royal College of Art and made a name for herself in the 1980s designing surreal hats which frequently featured 3-dimensional objects, such as a miniature armchair or a torso worn on top of the head. After finishing her training, she designed for Karl Lagerfeld at Chanel.

Physical description

Hat made of straw and esparterie covered with Russian braid featuring two 3-dimensional figures entwined.

Place of Origin

London, England (made)


1989 (designed)
1996 (made)


Woodward, Kirsten (milliner)

Materials and Techniques

Straw, esparterie, Russian braid

Object history note

Registered File number 1996/643.

Descriptive line

'Sex on the Brain' hat with top decoration of lovers, cream straw, designed and made by Kirsten Woodward, London, England, designed 1989, made 1996.

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

de la Haye, Amy, ed. The Cutting Edge: 50 Years of British Fashion 1947-1997. V&A Publications, London, England, 1997, p. 147.

Exhibition History

Hats: An Anthology by Stephen Jones (Victoria and Albert Museum 24/02/2009-31/05/2009)
The Cutting Edge: 50 Years of British Fashion 1947-1997 (Victoria and Albert Museum 06/03/1997-27/07/1997)

Labels and date

Kirsten Woodward's surreal and amusing designs achieved international coverage when they graced Chanel's catwalks, teamed with Karl Lagerfeld's fashions. This provocative hat, created under her own name, was stimulated by the notion that women think of sex eight times a day. [1997]


Straw; Russia braid; Esparterie

Subjects depicted

Lovers; Erotica


Hats & headwear; Accessories; Fashion; Women's clothes

Production Type


Collection code


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