When the 680 News alert came out that designer Alexander McQueen was dead my first response was, “Who?”
He had famous clients, from Sarah Jessica Parker to Katie Holmes. Every obituary called him a “bad boy” of the fashion world. And he was just 40, apparently despondent over the death of his Mother just days earlier. Depression is an awful thing and it’s really tough to tell whether someone is just understandably sad, especially in the aftermath of the death of a loved one, or if they’re in a deep pit of despair.
What an amazing, if short life he led and with cheeky humour and quirky fashions. He came up from virtually nowhere to design suits for Prince Charles and claimed that he always wrote little naughty notes in chalk inside the lining of those suits as his own little tee-hee over dressing a member of the royal family. He first came to the attention of the fashion media for introducing the “Bumster” look : trousers cut low at the back to reveal bum cleavage. Bum cleavage! The patron saint of plumbers! His runway shows were legendary for pairing the silly with the sublime, including boots made to look like lobster claws and dressing models entirely in trash.
McQueen moved in a circle that included supermodels Naomi Campbell and Kate Moss and he apparently shared their fondness for public hissy fits and possessed a bloated ego. But his work was consistently described as daring and fresh. He was named British Designer of the Year four times and his short life was certainly worth looking into. Police indicate there was no foul play and rumour has it he committed suicide. Pity.