Sarah Burton took the Romantic poet, painter and printmaker William Blake as her inspiration this season, filling the collection with ruffles, shredded tulle and pastel prints inspired by the artist’s work.
The designer said she wanted to “draw on the concept of imagination as a pure form of escapism,” and said the collection was based around lightness, air and water, “and on beauty emerging from darkness.”
Her man has rarely had such feminine flair, what with the single, asymmetric ruffle tumbling down the front of a printed cotton blouse; the long skirts with frills made from shredded tulle, and the tuxedo jackets with shoulders that looked as if they’d been slashed by a swashbuckler’s sword.
This was a new McQueen man, ready to unleash his inner poet and unshackled from gender stereotypes. Who else would dare wear a tough white tank top with delicately swirling tree branches inspired by Blake’s illustrations of Dante’s “Inferno”?
Burton pulled those delicate — but menacing — Dante illustrations across coats, cotton blouses and tank tops, which she paired with the long frilly skirts.
Tailored, double-breasted suits came in a rainbow of color inspired by Blake’s illustrations, such as ice pink, cream and cerulean. There was a punk touch to the collection, too, with zippers winding their way around the arms of a black tailored jacket, or tempering the sweetness of a cotton candy pink suit.