Paris Fashion Week: Alexander McQueen Autumn/Winter 15
The beauty in decay
The invitation to the Alexander McQueen Paris show displayed a withering decaying rose. An apt image that summed up the theme of Sarah Burton's Autumn/Winter 15 collection, which explored the beauty in decay: "The fragility of life and the fragility of beauty, and how there can be beauty in decay," but also, "The idea of decay and rejuvenation in real life."
The intimate scene was set at the Conciergerie, no real production fanfare was needed for this theme of undoing. Beauty notes set the scene almost single handedly, hair was worn up back-combed and voluminous but fraying at the edges, perhaps once a polished style, we were asked to find the beauty in its haggard state, and we did.
Burton's work with lace and leather was beautifully executed, coats and dresses in leather held up the rejuvenation quota, hardy and enduring but equally delicate. Delicate lace on dresses and gowns was largely sheer and as with many of the pieces in the collection, received a ruffled edge treatment, both on the actual edges of the garment, but also on the edge of detail (this effect was marvellously applied to a pant suit in blush pink raw silk) with hinted at the idea of unravelling. Elsewhere the rose motif returned, without being overbearing, and adorned a black chiffon gown with blush pink roses and one with bold red roses. There's no question that when Burton set out to display beauty in undoing, she most certainly did.