Born in the east end in 1970, Alexander McQueen was to become the most influential designer in British fashion. Influencing the high heeled shoe right through to suit tailoring, his extensive knowledge changed the face of contemporary fashion. Growing up in a council flat in Stratham, Lee McQueen lived with his taxi driver father and science teacher mother. Dropping out of school at age 16, McQueen devoted himself entirely to British fashion. Saville Row tailors Anderson and Sheppard offered him an apprenticeship and before long he was gaining priceless experience. It is in these years that McQueen developed his sharp, timeless tailoring skills. By the time he was 21, he had gained experience at Gieves and Hawkes, Costume makers Angels and Burmans and the designers Koji Tatsuno and Romeo Gigli. In later years this made him extremely sought after for his wide range of skills and experience. In 1994, Mcqueen then went on to complete a master’s degree at Central St Martins in fashion design, although he was originally only planning on completing a pattern cutting degree. His degree catwalk show attracted a lot of attention from the media, and especially from gifted fashion editor Isabella Blow. She acquired every piece from his collection and devoted herself to building him a successful career. (nytimes.com) In October 1995, McQueen was arguably at his most controversial. He released the “Highland Rape” collection, a representation of Scotland being ravaged by England in the Jacobite Rebellion. The evening standard reported “The models appeared wild and distraught, some theatrically staggering, others driven down the catwalk as if possessed by demons”. This collection gave McQueen the reaction that he wanted. It built his controversial image and threw him into the fashion world with a reputation for attitude, drama and most importantly, exquisite clothes. Included in this collection were military jackets, wide legged trousers and one sleeved...
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