Posts tagged ‘alexander mcqueen’

May 4, 2011

Alexander McQueen: Plato’s Atlantis video


Read the “Savage Beauty” exhibit review in The New York Times

May 4, 2011

Alexander McQueen: Kate Moss hologram Fall/Winter 2006-07 “Widows of Culloden”

April 29, 2011

Much Ado about Nothing: The Royal Wedding as a fashion moment. (Don’t be a drag, just be a Queen)


With all the fuss made about  the dress that Kate Middleton would wear –ok, let’s be honest, the unbearable hype form the networks–I expected some kind of wow moment.

No, not the wow moment that every network hack keeps telling me I really did experience. I happen to be watching ABC News with Tina Brown, Tim Gunn (now a professional fashion sycophant/ gay Stepin Fetchit lap dog for hire), Diane Sawyer and Barbara Walters. So invested is ABC in the coverage of the wedding, so many on-air hours and television specials devoted to the hype,  that one could hardly expect anyone present to tell the truth about the bride: she looks OK, and nothing more.

Truth be told, sister and maid of honor Pippa provided the only wow fashion moment. And I mean WOW, as in she completely upstaged the bride!

Princess Katherine’s dress is demure, tasteful, and  reminds one of Grace Kelly’s. That, my dears, is polite chit chat for BORING. Chelsea Clinton–think about that–made for a much more beautiful bride.  Did someone as vulgarly American as Ivanka Trump not look about the same  in a modest dress for her conservative Jewish wedding? Katherine is a beautiful woman and would have looked good in a paper bag. This was a designer paper bag.

Perhaps you may not be able to fault the craftsmanship of the Alexander McQueen gown, but you can certainly fault the timidity of its vision. Speculation was that Sarah Burton, who now heads McQueen, was chosen because of the brand’s ability to balance well researched historical references with an exquisite theatrical  aesthetic.  For all the talk about what a great tribute this dress is to Mr. McQueen, he was  a man known neither for his timidity in life nor especially in his designs.

See Ms. Burton’s most recent designs for the label and then look at this dress again and then you will understand my utter disappointment.  Given the ability of the house to produce an intricate patterned bodice, the bodice  of the dress is a pure waste of the McQueen aesthetic.

I cannot speak for him–unlike the ABC anchors and the demi monde of journalists/sycophants–but I will say that for me, all of this was much ado about nothing.

But nothing may just be the point. A tasteful, understated and arguably age inappropriate dress may indeed serve both an economic and political purpose. England is going through tough economic times and a too-lavish gown might give the impression that the monarchy is out of touch with the hardships facing everyone but it. (Prince Charles doesn’t  put the toothpaste on his own toothbrush. That’s someone else’s  taxpayer funded job.)

On a personal level for Catherine, a commoner–though from  a “pull yourself up from your boot straps pushy/savvy/socially ambitious family”–a reverential, tasteful  (and  borderline matronly) dress can signal that she intends to straddle the  fine line of ascending to the ranks of royalty without betraying her commoner lineage. We have already heard how she intends to live with Prince William without the help of any staff and even do her own cooking and laundry.

It wouldn’t take much imagination to hear the palace announce that she plans on reworking this wedding dress into a housecoat.

The Duchess of Cambridge, as she will be known–according to British protocol, she will not be able to formally call herself Princess Catherine because she was not born a princess–may share more than a milliner with Lady Gaga. She may be humming to herself  “don’t be a drag, just be a Queen,” just loud enough to drown out the noise of the spin cycle.

Tom Kolovos is Editor In Chief of aControlledSubstance.

 


April 12, 2011

Savage Beauty, Savage Marketing

The Beauty of McQueen

See inside Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty, courtesy of New York Magazine slideshow, an exhibition celebrating the extraordinary creations of the late fashion designer, set to open at the Metropolitan Museum’s Costume Institute May 2, 2011.

Not be missed by anyone serious about art.

To coincide with the museum opening, reports Page Six,  “style queen [Daphne] Guinness and Barneys are collaborating on a six-week exhibition, “Fashion as Art,” where Guinness will conduct several performances — one of which will be the fashion muse prepping for the gala in full view of shoppers and passersby. The installation will also include items from Guinness’ wardrobe, including pieces acquired from style icon Isabella Blow, and a short documentary on Guinness.”

Not to be missed by anyone serious about public relations.

April 7, 2011

Clutch Cargo: Knock them out with the Alexander McQueen Lace Four-Finger Knuckle Duster

My clients constantly request clutches that are actually practical  in size and, increasingly, with some sort of shoulder strap.

Yes, the Bottega  “Knot” is the go to red carpet clutch, but ever try putting in anything more that your lipstick and credit card and a breath mint?

Enter the newly enlarged Alexander McQueen four finger knuckle clutch. Not only will it hold your phone, your makeup and reading glasses, it will add four rings to your jewelry collection every time you slip it on.

Carry it this way and you can carry your drink and a sparkling conversation at the same time. Just don’t get carried away by  all the compliments you’ll receive.

I’ve just bought a client a different version of the one pictured above and it is an absolute husband proof TKO.

This version is made of buff kidskin with ivory floral-lace overlay with skull and jewel accents adorning the four-finger top. Available everywhere the Black American Express card is welcome (see Bergdorf Goodman, Neiman Marcus, Helen Yi Chicago).

April 6, 2011

The Fashion Vampiress claims yet another victim: Christophe Decarnin at Balmain

Franco Moschino had a term for the havoc the  business of fashion can wreak on the  creative soul.

He called the entire industry the fashion vampiress. “Not only did his clothes question what became known as the fashion system – the ludicrous cost, ubiquitous ‘styling’, and 15-minute relevance – but his very advertising underscored his anarchic scepticism. Flicking through glossy magazines your eye would suddenly be arrested by Moschino’s black humour. A full-page advertisement depicted a vampire admonishing you, ‘Stop The Fashion System,” read in part his obituary in 1994 in The Independent.

The 15 minute relevance was Moschino’s way of describing the pressure that designers feel to produce something new and relevant every 6 months in a new collection. It is   this intense pressure, which has surely heightened since the 80’s when giant conglomerates had not yet begun to dabble in the fashion business,  that is the now  at the center of the recent infamous dismissal of John Galliano from Dior and perhaps also yesterday of Christophe Decarnin  at Balmain. Writing in The International Herald Tribune, Suzy Menkes, its chief fashion critic, noted recently

“While the vile statements seen coming from Mr. Galliano’s drunken lips on the Internet video deserved the nearly-universal condemnation they were receiving, there is pathos in the vision of one of the world’s most famous — and best paid — designers alone, clutching a glass in a bar. The pressure from fast fashion and from the instant Internet age to create new things constantly has worn down other famous names. Marc Jacobs, design director of Louis Vuitton, ended a wild streak in rehab. Calvin Klein famously rambled across a sports pitch and admitted to substance abuse. And the late Yves Saint Laurent spent a lifetime fighting his demons.”

Mr. Decarnin, who in a very short time established the once irrelevant Balmain into one of the world’s most coveted labels, seems to be the vampiress’ latest high profile victim. Cathy Horyn writes today in The New York Times that:

“Despite, or perhaps because of, a phenomenal run at Balmain, where he made ripped jeans and $5,000 motorcycle jackets seem the coolest thing since, well, Bardot and Brando, Mr. Decarnin hit some kind of personal impasse and lost control of the label.”

Surely, the entire story for Mr. Galliano and Mr. Decarnin (or Mr. McQueen for that matter) has yet to emerge. But it sure does look as if the fashion vampiress is on a feeding frenzy. Stay tuned.

Related Post: “J’adore Dior?”