Saturday, 13 April 2013

ALEXANDER THE GREAT- The Mcqueen version


I have felt recently a strong urge to pay homage to one of my most iconic fashion designers and this article was certainly overdue in my eyes.
Anyone and everyone involved or interested in the fashion industry will know Alexander Mcqueen. If you don't then you can as good as say goodbye to being a true fanatic of fashion.
Alongside fellow greats such as Valentino, Christian Dior, Giorgio Armani, Mcqueen was physically at the top of his game. From a normal background, brought up on a council estate he left school at only 16, only to bag a position in Saville Row Tailors before following on to Gieves and Hawkes.
The experience gained from working in some of the most well thought of tailors, allowed him to gain some valuable experience which led to his success in later life and the iconic introduction of some of his most outrageous, yet stunning pieces.

The introduction of his catwalk show, Spring/Summer 2011, brought in a new revelation which quite literally stated 'weird, wacky yet physically beautiful' with the inspiration of a giant mirrored cube containing 'mental patients' dressed in his newest collection whilst walking the lengths of the cube grabbing at the windows as if to be let out of the asylum. The raw disturbing picture that developed through his show may have shocked some audiences, but with the introduction of Kate Moss (one of our most iconic British models to date) and Erin O'Connor we knew immediately that Mcqueen had just upped his game. A whopping £70,000 pounds was spent on this one show but the true moment came with what I can only describe as the fat lady who sat placed within the center of the cube, naked, whilst wrapped in leaves, artistically placed in order to act as the main focus but not detract away from the mental dancers.... Fair to say the addition of 'the breathing tube' was a brilliant and rather inventive touch.
Women in a box (Spring/Summer 2011)
Spring/Summer 2011

Amongst his shows were numerous different themes, including the 'Paint theme' in his Spring/Summer 1999 show, which involved a woman standing on a rotating disc in the middle of his stage spinning, dreading the second the rotating robot looking machinery would ruin her beautiful pure white dress. The beauty however that came from that single 2 minutes or so, created a dress which spoke volume, style, glamour and playfulness  What about the Spring/Summer 2005 collection which displayed bright yellow colour on most of the models, often in the form of big skirt dresses, whilst the theme led them to be 'pawns' in a large game of chess. The sophistication and level of depth Mcqueen puts into each one of his shows makes it special for every member of the fashion world present.

Chess game (2005 collection)

As many of us know, Mcqueen passed away in February 2010, due to hanging himself in his home, only days before Fashion Week. It has been widely reported that the tragic loss of his mother who was his 'personal rock in life', caused him to take his own. The level of depth of his creations and the twisted themes they portray hint at a level of darkness within him that none of us could probably imagine. We can only speculate that a mind that dark, that inventive and that deep and complex, could use it in a personal manner. Sometimes the stress and difficulties in life over weigh the successes we achieve and feel, causing us to make bad decisions. For Mcqueen, he inspired others to trek the road he was on, achieving more success with every show and collection, but the loss we feel for him will not ever be removed.

I ask myself at this moment 'what direction would fashion have taken if Mcqueen had never existed, never
made it, never added his iconic touch to our catwalks?'. Well I can sum this up in one.
Life couldn't have existed without Alexander Mcqueen. He shaped us as a nation to open up to our  individuality and we are truly grateful.
R.I.P Mr Mcqueen. You are terribly missed by all. Don't stop ever stitching those clothes....wherever you may end up in the heavens above.
Mcqueen at his best