22 February 2012

The Stunning Resurrection of McQ

Like a phoenix from the ashes, McQ has been brilliantly resurrected. The diffusion line of the incomparable house of Alexander McQueen, has been reworked and relaunched under the direction of Sarah Burton. Where McQ was once a shadow of the house’s main line, it now offers a fully-fledged, iconic perspective of its own. 

McQ’s first runway show marks the house’s return to the London stage and, rightfully so. The collection embodies classic English codes (plaids, military coats), but recalls the subversion of those same codes seen in 1995’s “Highland Rape,” the highly controversial collection that sought to display the UK’s “rape” of the Scottish Highlands during the 18th century. Sarah Burton did not have to prove that she fully understands McQueen’s legacy and vision, but it seems she did aim to pay homage to her friend and mentor. 

While the collection did not feature McQueen’s bumsters, it did feature the same classic tartan plaids, lace embellished sheer sleeves, and waist-cinching belts. The collection however, is not without Ms. Burton’s touch. Silhouettes recalled Dior’s new look and featured ornate, vibrant floral details. This is certainly a commercially viable collection, but it is very much integrated into the McQueen cannon. 

In a single season, McQ has managed to shift from one of the most underwhelming designer diffusion lines, to the most exciting. It is no doubt a testament to the brilliance and resourcefulness of Burton and her ability to guide the house of McQueen into the future. This collection is by no means a controversial one, but it is a statement on the new direction of McQ. One eye on creativity and innovation, the other on the marketplace.

Images via style.com

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