Alexander McQueen Pre-Fall 2021 is a culmination of creative director Sarah Burton’s house codes: Frilly dresses styled with a leather boot, exaggerated sleeves, always a touch of leather, mixing materials within one look, and McQueen’s take on power suiting. Continuing themes and silhouettes explored within the Spring 2021 ready-to-wear collection, this pre-fall collection creates a through-line between the two seasons —almost like an ‘A side’ and a ‘B side’ on a cassette tape.
Let’s get into a few looks and explore various themes throughout the collection:
Utilitarian takes on classic silhouettes
One of the things we’ve come to know and love Burton for is the way she takes a classic piece and turns it on its head, creating hybrid silhouettes. Take the reworked camel coat (below), for instance. She’s constructed the frame of the coat in a standard way, notched lapels and all ,then attached MA-1 bomber jacket arms. The bomber arms give the garment a twist. The same can be said for the reimagined denim jacket (see below) with slightly more exaggerated, fluted sleeves of the same nylon material.
Great Gowns, Beautiful Gowns
This cerulean, scoop necked, celestial motif-embroidered gown with corseted bodice is a highlight of the collection. It runs heavy into the soft component Burton straddles. It’s an unexpected look within the collection which makes it a stand out. It’s extremely prim, whereas the black lace version of the exact make takes on the McQueen, broody, Victorian-gothic essence we’ve come to know from the brand.
Also, can we just say, we love a mix-matched earring moment.
Juxtaposing hard and soft
A longstanding staple of the McQueen design ethos is this combination of hard and soft, light and dark. It’s taking, say, a white poplin dress and pairing it with a belted leather vest, then in that same look (!!!) bringing back some delicacy with the addition of a ruffled appliqué. We see that same concept in both these looks.
It’s giving drama! Drama — as we all know — is synonymous with McQueen. It’s a component that Burton has carried over from Alexander ‘Lee’ McQueen’s time at the eponymous label to present day. The proportions of the two dresses (below) are voluminous in nature. Both the crimson, ruffle skirted dress with exaggerated puffed sleeves and ruffled scoop neckline and the azure sweetheart neckline dress of the same build, just exude drama.
Also note the soft, ruffled frock is paired with the brand’s leather, chunky sole Chelsea boot, tying back to that juxtaposition of soft and hard.
Category is power suiting
Saville Row runs deep within the McQueen brand DNA so the tailoring is always a highlight. It’s meticulous tailoring but with an added flair. Take Look 6 (below). It’s an unassuming grey suit, that’s impeccably crafted. Upon further inspection, it looks like a hybrid fusion of two suits. Through the use of two grey colors — using one lighter grey for the upper torso and the darker grey for the waist — it creates the illusion of a deconstructed, re-assembled suit but its sewn all together.
Select looks from the collection are available for pre-order now on the Alexander McQueen website. SHOP NOW
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