A Show in the Sky: Alexander McQueen Ready-to-Wear Spring 22

The first physical post-pandemic show from Alexander McQueen creative director Sarah Burton was a theatrical experience perched on a carpark rooftop.

Credit: Paper Magazine

Named a “show in the sky,” the designs focus on the power of nature. As the first Alexander McQueen womenswear show in London for 20 years, the collection is centred on the link between the present moment and the ephemeral wild. Natural imagery appears throughout, from sunset-inspired cocktail dresses to jackets adorned with crystal raindrop detailing.

Creative director Sarah Burton associates the changeability of the weather with the unpredictability of the modern world.

“There’s that sense that the sky is ever-changing—this constant change that’s uncontrollable. Some days it can be kind of very calm, a very beautiful dappled sky. And then this kind of ferocious sky…”

“And I’ve been thinking about what we’ve all been through: this constant feeling that you don’t know what the next day is going to be. And how you have to just face it with bravery. The fact is, we’re not in control of the situation. Nature is more powerful than us. Sun, rain, storm—whatever comes, you have to just keep going.”

Source: Vogue

Attendees were encased in a transparent tent that exposed the sky above; a fitting backdrop for garments inspired by sunsets, clouds and bright blue horizons.

Steely Skies

This latest collection fits in effortlessly with the label’s oeuvre of steely underground British fashion, merging the ultra-feminine with masculine broad-shouldered silhouettes. Pleated skirts splashed with stormy blue and grey are balanced by boxy pantsuits and trench coats. And hints of shocking pink and yellow break up the blue-sky serenity.

Burton commented on how the pandemic has changed her creative process, with anything close to a stylistic imposition left on the cutting room floor.

“Because of the situation we’re in, it’s been very much working 3-D, one-on-one with models, and people from different walks of life, not all of them models.”

“They’re each so different, so individual. There’s been a sort of community of women; a great relationship with a group.”

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