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Alexander McQueen’s “Bumster” Trousers

Kate Bethune

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Article

Alexander McQueen’s “Bumster” trousers caused a sensation as one of the most provocative designs of the 1990s. McQueen redefined the silhouette with the Bumsters by cutting the waistband two inches below that of hipster trousers to elongate the torso and expose the lower spine and top of the buttocks. Although a prototype pair was made in late 1992, Bumsters first appeared on the catwalk in McQueen’s inaugural show, “Nihilism” (spring/summer 1994). Reappearing in collections including the controv

Kate Moss

Karen de Perthuis

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Article

Kate Moss is one of the world’s most photographed women, a blank slate for contemporary dreams and desires. With a career spanning three decades, she is a rare enduring phenomenon in an industry defined by ephemerality and a brutal quest for novelty. In the summer of 1988, she was fourteen when spotted by model agent Sarah Doukas at JFK airport—a bored teenager from the London suburb of Croydon with almond eyes, cupid-bow lips, and “God-given bone structure.” She would soon become a fashion model

Alexander McQueen for Givenchy, Fall/Winter 2000

Lydia Edwards

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Article

“I can’t be too literal with my references,” Alexander McQueen said in 2000, when asked to pinpoint the theme of a recent collection. “It’s a number of references culminating together to make one idea.” Nevertheless, with a researched family history dating back to the 1500s, McQueen always acknowledged that “Every part of my background comes from something, be it the Jacobites or the Huguenots,” and influences from Giovanni Bellini to André Courrèges can be glimpsed in his collections. The pieces

Tartan

Jonathan Faiers

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Article

The fabric that’s never out of fashion; tartan is indelibly associated with punk and Vivienne Westwood, but its use in fashion reaches much farther back, to its peak of popularity in the nineteenth century, and forward via Alexander McQueen and on into many of today’s most memorable collections. At once traditional and revolutionary, conservative and subversive, tartan is genderless, instantly recognizable, and infinitely adaptable. Beloved as much by Japanese, European, and American designers as

Koji Tatsuno

Elizabeth Glendinning

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Designer Biography

Couture Shows of the 2000s

Stephanie Edith Herold

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Article

Haute couture’s economic feasibility remained questionable throughout the 2000s, though ateliers were supported by increased patronage from Chinese, Indian, Middle Eastern and Russian clients. Hundreds of petites mains shut down their businesses, while a minority were purchased by houses. Several labels conceded their haute couture memberships; however, the Chambre Syndicale also inducted a handful of new houses and welcomed Armani Privé as a “corresponding member.” Prospective couturiers could m

Copperwheat Blundell

Michelle Labrague

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Designer Biography

Fashion and Surrealism

Victoria Rose Pass

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Article

Surrealism, as an artistic movement, emerged in Paris in 1924 with the publication of the Surrealist Manifesto by the writer André Breton (1896–1966), but artists and writers had exhibited this sensibility long before. The notion of the uncanny is at the heart of surrealism. At its most basic, the aesthetic of the uncanny celebrates the beauty of combining images which are irreconcilable: the real and the imagined, the live and the dead, the organic and the inorganic. The uncanny is also at the c

Alexander McQueen

Aimee Scott

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Designer Biography

Givenchy Couture, Spring/Summer 1997

Aimee Williams

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Article

Alexander McQueen’s 1997 premiere at Givenchy following John Galliano’s departure resounded notably during the spring/summer couture showings, heralding the “revival of couture.” Showing at the École Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts in Paris, the Grecian-inspired collection acknowledged the house’s defining conventions with double-breasted ivory suits and straightened silhouettes that hit above the knee. A generally neutral to white palette of silk, finely woven feathers, and gossamer textures

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