Fresh Talent: Simon & Mary

PHOTOS Aimee Pozniak, Gareth Place BRANDING AND ART DIRECTION Jana + Koos WORDS Malibongwe Tyilo

The next in our series of Fresh Talent profiles celebrating Youth Day on 16 June is hat designer Dean Pozniak from Simon & Mary.

Fedoras, trilbies, Panamas, porkpies, cloches, Gainsboroughs and Bretons… You’d better brush up on your headgear terminology because hats are back. This autumn is the launch of the Simon & Mary millinery brand in Joburg. Dean Pozniak tells us about the brand that’s named after his grandparents, and of his contribution
to a family business that has been producing and exporting felt hats for 40 years.

What sets your hats apart?
Authenticity with a rich heritage. We take pride in each hat that leaves our factory – moulded and made with the very same machines as those that made and moulded the styles of the 60s.

Aren’t you worried hats might be a passing fad?
Over time, the hat has become a less essential item, but it has always remained significant in expressing individual style. For us, the hat has never been unpopular, and definitely not enough so to cause concern.

How did you manage to capture that special Joburg spirit so well in your visual campaign?
We worked with design team Jana + Koos, who were excited about a genuine heritage brand from Joburg and insisted that a large part of telling our story would be to drive home the idea of “made in Johannesburg”. So we cast real people, the modern hat wearer – Joburg’s creatives, bloggers, artists, stylists, fashion designers, curators and so the list goes on.

Celebrate Youth Month with us and browse more of our Fresh Talent profiles here.

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