Since her appointment as Creative Director in 2010, Sarah Burton has produced critically acclaimed collections, demonstrating an ability to marry the design codes of the house of Alexander McQueen with lightness and her own feminine touch, creating a new personal aesthetic and blueprint for the future. Burton was named Designer of the Year at the British Fashion Awards in 2012. That same year Time magazine listed her as one of its 100 most influential people and she was awarded an OBE for services to the British fashion industry.
In 2011, the Costume Institute at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York organised the retrospective Savage Beauty in recognition of Lee Alexander McQueen’s talents and achievements. In 2015, the Victoria & Albert Museum in London hosted the exhibition, adding a brand new ‘London’ gallery. It was to become the most visited exhibition in the museum’s history.
Alexander McQueen shows are known for emotional power and raw energy.
With its modern, romantic collections and commitment to unbridled creativity, the house of McQueen has become synonymous with contemporary British couture.
Integral to the McQueen culture is the juxtaposition between contrasting elements: fragility and strength, tradition and innovation, fluidity and severity. Alexander McQueen values uncompromising craftmanship combined with visionary technique, pushing at the boundaries of both modernity and tradition.
Founded in 1992 by the uncompromising and hugely talented designer Lee Alexander McQueen, in less than ten years the house of Alexander McQueen became one of the most respected in the world.
McQueen began his career as an apprentice for Savile Row tailors Anderson & Sheppard and Gieves & Hawkes. From there he moved to theatrical costumiers Angels and Berman’s, mastering the pattern-cutting techniques and razor-sharp tailoring that became the signature of his house. McQueen completed a Masters degree in fashion design at Central Saint Martins. His graduate collection was bought in its entirety by the British fashion editor Isabella Blow. Sarah Burton met Alexander McQueen in 1996, completed her degree at Central Saint Martins in 1997 and joined the company on a permanent basis immediately after that. She was promoted to Head of Design, womenswear, in 2000.
The Alexander McQueen Autumn/Winter 2018 collection was inspired by metamorphosis and extreme nature: the delicate emergent beauty of butterflies and moths and the opalescent shine of softly-armoured Scarab beetles. A sense of the magical transformation of femininity, pride, joy and optimism prevailed. Alongside fluid dresses featuring magnified butterfly and beetle prints and three-dimensional embroideries, signature sharp tailoring featured flamingo pink or crimson satin
bows evocative of tremulous butterfly wings. Looks were accessorised with sculpted riding boots with a high lacquered heel or black suede sandals with a metal pin heel. Antique silver and gold crystal jet enamelled chokers, pendants, earring and cuffs were decorated with butterflies, moths, beetles, spider and asymmetric freshwater pearls.
In 2019, Alexander McQueen will open a flagship store on Old Bond Street, London, introducing a new retail concept envisioned by Sarah Burton.
ALEXANDER MCQUEEN 4–5 OLD BOND STREET, LONDON W1S 4PD +44 (0)20 7355 0088