Sarah’s Style Corner: Long live McQueen

Sarah Rosenberg

On Feb. 11, the fashion world lost a true artist and pioneer of this generation’s modern style. Fashion-forward, ingenious, creative and utterly unique, fashion designer Alexander McQueen’s death, at the age of 40, has been viewed as an untimely and shocking event. After losing his beloved mother just days before, his death seems to have been the result of suicide—a fate no one could have predicted for the sought-after designer.

A native of London, Lee Alexander McQueen always did things his own way. McQueen was considered a fashion-fueled bad boy; he never handled fashion in a conventional way. According to British Vogue, McQueen’s lengthy experience in the fashion business helped to tailor his own amazing career. In 1996, he succeeded John Galliano as the premiere designer for the house of Givenchy, heading the line until 2001. He was also named the British Designer of the Year in 1996, 1997 and 2001. His many accomplishments within the industry never went unnoticed.

Among McQueen’s most coveted accomplishments were his unparalleled designs. He was an obvious risk-taker, and those risks usually brought him praise and cult followers of his authentic designs. As of late, Lady GaGa has become one of his connoisseurs, wearing his couture in her hit music video “Bad Romance.” She dons his currently popular “lobster-claw” heels, bejeweled and bedazzled to represent the flashy styles of the designer’s latest runway shows. Lady GaGa has been affiliated with his runway shows and has invested in his clothes as a devotee of his creations. Other stars, such as Kate Moss, Rihanna, Sarah Jessica Parker, Sandra Bullock and Cameron Diaz also counted themselves as fans who now have to readjust their red carpet style to accommodate the loss of a man who often crafted their awards show stunners.

McQueen’s spring 2010 fashion line has been hailed once again as ingenious. The show featured stellar pieces—intergalactic creations that almost screamed “otherworldly.” Leather spacesuits were marked by structured shoulders, pointed skirts, and tight leather bottoms. Models wore space makeup—pale, iridescent faces matched their Martian-inspired clothing. One model was draped in head-to-toe silver beading and reflections of pink, green, yellow and blue shone out from the light. Tulle-inspired dresses and blouses draped some models, where others wore mini-dresses of rainbow hues and grand prints mimicking warped flowers, heavy tapestries, animal and reptile skins, and even the feathers of exotic birds. Focusing on the details that highlighted the shoulders and emphasized legs, his latest artistry bore a number of masterpieces that will surely be worn by his admirers.

His spring collection will be remembered and revered, not unlike his past collections that have caused a stir in the fashion world throughout the years. He has made accessories and clothing staples in the closets of the smartest fashion followers—the skull-printed scarf, his plaid gowns, and now, his unbelievably intense heels, will forever be etched into fashion history. His thirst for theatrics and drama within his runways shows will be replicated; however, his unmatched talent for design will never truly be captivated by anyone else.

McQueen had the uncanny ability to capture anything in his creations—the forbidden, the horrific, the timeless, the simple, and the beautiful. He tapped into the realities of life, imitating social issues and taboo situations, yet he played with the fictional and the dreamlike. He created emotion, awe, excitement and surprise with each of his runway shows and kept all of his fans searching for more. McQueen was a visionary in every sense of the word and his talent had yet to be utilized to its full potential at the time of his recent death. Nothing was off-limits for this designer and his fearlessness will never cease to be remembered by all those who appreciated his talent and fell in love with his fantastic sense of style.