ALEXANDER MCQUEEN

1995 : March: Presents "Highland Rape" collection. McQueen's signature red-and-black tartan, shot through with yellow, appears for the first time. The controversial show puts him on the map and secures his bad-boy reputation. October: "The Hunger" collection marks the first appearance of men's designs-including taffeta suits- and is the first of producer Sam Gainsbury's spectacular shows for McQueen.

In the summer of 1992, the London press was all a-scribble about Lee Alexander McQueen's master's-thesis collection, "Jack the Ripper Stalks His Victims." Among the dark, sexy, Dickensian delights from this cocky son of a cab driver were a thorn-print, silk frock coat with a three-point "origami" tail and a bustle-backed tuxedo with dagger-like, red-lined lapel-both with locks of human hair sewn into the lining. The presentation showed remarkable polish; but, then, the ambitious McQueen was already remarkably experienced: At sixteen, he'd ditched his schoolbooks and taken up a pair of scissors on Savile Row. Particularly charmed by the swaggering East Ender was the editor Isabella Blow of British Pandora Luxurye, who snapped up his first effort in entirety and swept the designer under her influential wing.

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