This Mexican-American Designer is the Mastermind Behind Taylor Swift’s ’22’ Hat on Eras Tour
Whether or not you’re a Taylor Swift fan, chances are, you’ve at least heard of her record-breaking Eras Tour. Well, a Mexican American designer is actually the creator behind one of Swift’s most iconic tour moments: that sought-after, black hat.
Milliner Gladys Tamez is one of the biggest names in the hat world. Named one of Forbes’ 50 Most Creative Mexicans in 2015, she really rose to fame when Lady Gaga released her 2016 album “Joanne.” The songstress wore one of Tamez’s pink hats on that album cover — and the rest was history.
As per Tamez’s website, she was born in Texas but grew up in Mexico. That being said, it’s a bit more complex than that. The designer explained to Alta, “I grew up in Reynosa, Mexico, and McAllen, Texas, on the border, and when you live on the border, you go back and forth all day.”
She recalled to the outlet, “We used to go to a ranch on the weekends, and the rancheros wear cowboy hats, and of course they do in Texas, too. Hats were always around me.”
Interestingly enough, that vaquero imagery sparked her love of millinery… and yes, led to Swift’s “22” hat. Here’s everything to know!
Tamez designed Swift’s “22” hat for her Eras Tour: “So grateful”
The designer talked to Access Hollywood about designing Swift’s black hat she wears while singing “22” on tour. Even more amazing? The star gives her hat away to a fan while singing the song every night.
Tamez said, “It’s been amazing, it’s been really touching.”
“It is 100% wool, a classic fedora,” she said about Swift’s tour hat. “We made it by hand here in the studio. And then Taylor signs it here, and gives it to the chosen person.”
So how did the collaboration with Swift come about? As per the designer, Swift’s team called her with the opportunity, and she was “super emotional” about it.
Tamez described, “I love working with them. It’s a gorgeous team. And I’ve been working extensively with them over the years.”
“When they called me and gave me the news I was going to create the Eras Tour hat, I was super emotional, I was super happy.”
Tamez shared a video on Instagram of Swift giving away her hat onstage. She captioned it with, “Not only am I so grateful to be part of the ‘Red’ era, but when I found out she would be giving her hat away at the ending of ’22’ it became extra special for me.”
As you can see in the video, the “Blank Space” singer chooses a different fan every tour stop and gives them the black fedora. It’s not difficult to see how a moment like that for a young fan can be life-changing.
“It’s been an honor to be able to collaborate with Taylor Swift,” Tamez wrote on IG. “Nothing but ❤️ for all the #Swifties attending the tour.”
The designer was especially moved when Swift gave Kobe Bryant’s daughter her hat
The designer talked to ABC7 about when Swift gave the late Kobe Bryant’s six-year-old daughter Bianka the hat in Los Angeles. Tamez was especially moved by the emotional moment, just as so many were.
“I woke up with the beautiful news, I was so excited,” the designer explained. “For me, I [grew up] watching Kobe, and it was so sad, what happened.”
She also told the outlet she loves Swift’s idea of giving away the hat to fans. “It means a lot because with my designs, I touch somebody’s heart. It’s been beautiful.”
You can see the heartwarming moment Swift gave six-year-old Bianka the hat here:
As Tamez explained to Purple, she is passionate about handmaking her hats. In fact, she doesn’t like referring to her self-titled line as a “luxury brand.” She calls it a “true luxury heritage product” to be passed down through generations instead.
She told the outlet, “Everything is handmade. I don’t have machines to make four or five at once. I still make them with woodblocks, as you see.”
“Handmade is an old tradition that I want to keep alive,” she explained. The designer even posted a video that shows the special process behind making each “22” hat… and we need one too now:
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