It seems the brand is never far from our minds at the moment, as a retrospective to the eponymous designer has debuted at the V&A museum in London, and this week sees what would have been McQueen’s 46th birthday.
The Alexander McQueen brand is going from strength to strength, as Sarah Burton presents the brand’s autumn/winter collection at Paris Fashion Week, in possibly their most dramatic setting since her take over in 2010.
Set in the prison that held Napoleon Bonaparte and Marie Antoinette for several years before their deaths: the Conciergerie in the heart of Paris, with it’s history of the French Revolution, saw history repeat itself with air of modern Victorians striding through its vaulted Medieval ceilings.
Burton’s collection centred on the fragile, yet strong, British rose, only this time it was deconstructed into dark romanticism, worked into skin-toned fur-trimmed collars on double-breasted and belted lacquered jacquard coats and jackets in matte and patent black design.
Modern teint dresses in leather with pleated dip crimson hem and matching binding around the waist and hips with matching crimson ankle boot, brought modernity to the proceedings .
High collared ruffled dresses edged in cream lace, with exposed stomach area with in corresponding black lace, paraded down the catwalk next, the delicate high collars were reflected in the laddered and pleated ruffled tiered skirts, matching cream and black over-the-elbow gloves added to strong feminine look to the collection.
Frayed and distressed clothing also ran throughout the history-laced show, with rose appliqué cape coats, with a high collar, belted waist and matching trousers, complete with identical skin-toned boots in leather and a metal and perspex heel.
The blood-red seen at the beginning of the collection reappeared as the period parade drew to a close, this time on sheer ankle kissing gowns with high lace collar and loop buttonhole front, left open exposing the eaten away lace underneath, the detail was in the large red rose pattern design strewn across the see-through fabric.
The hair worked in synergy with its tousled distorted up-do, giving a sense of present to the past inspired proceedings. The make-up was kept pale, with a vampiric complexion with slight cheek contour, and a dramatic eye in sunset orange copper eye shadow with white eyeliner in the water line and matching mascara, completed with a blush matte lip.
Burton has proven once again that the brand is standing tall at the top of British design, my only concern is that there has been a distinct lack of theatre to the shows that the brand was renowned for. Maybe Burton’s influenced on the fashion house has taken away from the spectacles of yesteryear and the focus is now on the clothes, either way her influence on the changing of the brand is apparent, while still in-keeping with Lee’s dramatic historical couture is praiseworthy. The brand is blooming with every passing collection, just like the rose which inspired this collection.