This is Alexander McQueen, waving and smiling at the cheering fashion crowd at his latest show for Paris fashion week earlier this month. Although he may look like the local school caretaker, you certainly couldn’t mistake his unbelievable tailoring and use of texture and colour that we have grown to love and admire every season. Once again, the female silhouette was perfectly framed by his flattering creations, and although a lot of this collection slanted towards the monochrome palette which has proved popular with many of the designers recently, the bold colours that he also used help to create the sense of ‘reinvention’ he was hoping for.
Despite the (now so boring) talk of the recession hitting hard, no expense was spared by Mcqueen who boldly sent mink and heavily-feathered pieces down the catwalk. Coupled with the huge painted lips and interesting headpieces (upside umbrellas etc) the collection, titled Horn of Plenty, very much reminded me of multiple Leigh Bowery inventions. And has anyone seen so much houndstooth in one catwalk show? In its original black and white form it looked classic and dramatic (how fab is the giant houndstooth print mink coat?) and in its rocked up black and red form, which slowly drifts into yet more bird imagery, brings a real sense of identity and risk taking which we have somewhat come to expect of McQueen.
Black and orange wool, goat hair, PVC, organza, silk and beading all helped to make McQueen’s credit crunch (yeah right) collection as fabulous as it was, and even though not really designed with buyers in mind, McQueen’s autumn winter show really demonstrated his never ending stream of imagination. It was also nice to see something which included romance, colour, risk and luxury in a time where some designers are cutting back in line with the crunch.