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Alexander McQueen

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Who could forget Lee McQueen‘s majestic fall 2006 show, where model Raquel Zimmermann donned the famed antler-and-lace headdress? The collection depicted romantic embodiments of the late designer’s Scottish roots. Fast-forward to the age of Sarah Burton, the creative force that masterfully maintains and recharges the brand’s DNA, who takes us on a journey through what feels like the misty shires of Scotland for fall 2014.

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The show introduces us to dreamy heroines wandering the wilderness, wrapped in moon-and star-shaped crystal embroidery, silver acorn hand jewelry, frayed organza flowers and ivy velvet jacquards. Burton’s fairy tale beautifully weaves two tales of McQueen, past and present.

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Adorned: McQueen Shoes & McQueen Jewelry

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Softly Powerful: Rouched broderie anglaise reveals the delicate nature of the designs.

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The Details: Aubergine organza gown and hand-cut feathers.

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“Drink me, make me feel real / Wet your beak in the stream /
Game we’re playing is life / Love’s a two-way dream”

Lyrics from “Bachelorette” by Björk, the show’s closing tune, which matched the wanderlust mood of the collection.

Qianna Smith

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Photos: GoRunway.com

While it may come as a surprise, this gorgeous model is also a dessert blogger and food photographer! Elizabeth Minett had one of my favorite looks of the day, thanks to her modern take on the sporty chic trend. I am desperate to get my hands on a textural, modified moto jacket, like Elizabeth’s. Some graphic printed pants and casual cool sneakers are on my list, too!

xo,
Crystal

Shop similar styles:
Slip-On Sneakers | Black & White Print Pants | Round Sunglasses

Shop our Editors’ Picks to re-create this look:

Vince Slip-On Sneaker | McQ by Alexander McQueen LeggingsRAEN Sunglasses

I have a total style crush on these two amazing ladies: Shiona Turini, Fashion Market Director at Cosmopolitan, and Zanna Roberts Rassi, Sr. Editor at Marie Claire. They always look chic, cutting edge and comfortable in their skin. I’d expect nothing less from two industry legends!

Today’s look is a lesson in coordination and summertime chic. Loving the blues, loving the shoes and loving the smiles!

xo,
Crystal

Shop similar styles:
Mirrored Sunglasses | Cage Sandals | Designer Cat’s-Eye Sunglasses

Shop our Editors’ Picks to re-create this look:

Tom Ford ‘Nastasya’ Sunglasses | Chinese Laundry Sandal | Alexander McQueen Sunglasses

Arguably the epitome of British sartorial ingenuity, Alexander McQueen has just launched on Nordstrom.com for pre-fall 2013, with a highly covetable assortment of precision-cut jackets, structured separates and fitted dresses. So what better way to celebrate this exciting new designer addition than with expert style advice on how to curate a wardrobe of investment pieces?

The Thread tapped Kyle Anderson, accessories director for Marie Claire, to shed some light on why women need timeless, well-crafted designs—and in the process, he showed us how to personalize a few of his must-have looks from the collection.

Wear To Stand Out: Alexander McQueen Lace Metal Bracelet & Alexander McQueen ‘God Save McQueen’ Ring

THE THREAD: Why do accessories matter, and how can accessories add individuality to a look?
KYLE ANDERSON: Accessories are the most important way to personalize your look and make it your own. It’s all about the high/low mix. I recommend that everyone invest in covetable classic pieces that you can wear forever, like watches, classic fine jewelry, a pointy-toe pump like a Manolo, the classic top handle day bag, a chain bag and an metallic evening clutch. Then mix in personal finds and trendier items to put your own unique stamp on it. You could throw on a cool bracelet you bought on vacation, along with cost-friendly costume jewelry and trendy shoes for a thrill.

If it’s colorful, funky and trendy, don’t spend a lot on it. I suggest that you invest that money in the key ticket items that you wear every day. To me, nothing says personal style like mixing a handmade bracelet with something like a Rolex, or wearing a classic designer bag with trendy flat sandals in the summer. You always want to mix something really classic and chic with something funky and unexpected that makes you feel confident—makes you feel like you are really you.

Fashion’s Finest: Nina Garcia, Marie Claire’s creative director, and Kyle at Paris Fashion Week in March. (Photo by Style by Deni.)

THE THREAD: When you’re at a runway show or at a market appointment, what quality does a look or an accessory need in order to get you excited?
KYLE: I’ve been an accessories editor for eight years, which is a long time, so I’ve seen a lot. What gets me excited is seeing something I haven’t seen before. I like it when designers take risks. I like glamour and things that make me scream, “I want this!”—then I know others will want it too. It’s just a feeling. I get goose bumps and then text photos to Nina [Garcia] and say, “OMG, look at this amazing bag!” I love it when people think outside of the box. We see so much that it takes a lot to stand out.

HERO

THE THREAD: Tell us about the first McQueen show you ever attended. What makes a McQueen show so special?
KYLE: My first McQueen show was just last year, for the spring/summer 2013 collection. McQueen is such a cutting-edge brand that takes risks and does unexpectedly mind-blowing shows.

Flowers and bees inspired the collection; there was huge screen of buzzing bees for the backdrop. I loved it, and I loved the accessories. We shot their runway Lucite shoe for a full page in our April issue. I adored the floral with the tough shoes, because that’s what McQueen does really well—the mix of pretty and hard. McQueen is known for having the most standout statement shoes every season; the shoes become collector’s items, and people who wear them make a statement that they are confident and know who they are—or who they want to become. Women who own their look and who are never forgotten wear McQueen.

THE THREAD: Any standout looks from McQueen’s FW13 collection that made you say, “I absolutely need to style/shoot that”?
KYLE: For FW13, I liked the pearl accents; they were very punk. The looks were medieval and pearl-encrusted, but there was something bondage and punk about it—the perfect editorial combination.

THE THREAD: What do you appreciate most about Sarah Burton’s aesthetic/creativity?
KYLE: I think Sarah gave McQueen a much softer, more feminine look. Since Sarah took over design, it’s had a bit more wearability and overall femininity, and that’s been a buzz in the industry. I think Sarah identifies well with female consumers.

KYLE’S GUIDE ON COOL

For the Love of Leather: Alexander McQueen Oversized Collar Leather Jacket & Alexander Wang Jade Sandal

The Look (pictured above): “I like this oversized-collar leather jacket because I’m obsessed with black leather,” says Kyle. “Whether it’s the ’70s, ’80s, ’90s or current trends, people always are looking for the perfect black leather jacket. I think this one is feminine and cool.”

How to Wear It: “I’d wear this jacket in the spring with a tank underneath, skinny black jeans and sandals—think a fall-meets-winter look. Why not pair it with these red Alexander Wang sandals? The look doesn’t have to be biker head to toe. These platforms still have a hard-edge look, and I think all black with a red summer sandal would look cool.”

Instant Classic: Alexander McQueen Flounce Leaf Crepe Dress & Saint Laurent ‘Janis’ Bootie

The Look: “This little black dress is super-versatile. It’s great for everyday wear and especially for work. You’ll get the mileage out of this dress, and it’s a great buy because of the sleeves,” adds Kyle. “Most offices are freezing in the summer.”

How to Wear It: “I like the flirty shape of the skirt on this dress and the more structured fitted sleeves. You can dress it down, add some edge or keep it classic. Make this look your own with these Saint Laurent booties. The combination is a little sexy: rock-‘n’-roll-meets-daytime professional. It’s about mixing it up!”

Discover the masterfully crafted world of McQueen.

Check out Kyle’s blog for more drool-worthy accessories and daily snapshots of his often-photographed style.

Qianna Smith

Runway images courtesy of McQueen

Welcome to the first installment of “House Call,” a new series in which we take a peek inside the home of a Nordstrom employee. Our inaugural post takes us to the downtown Seattle condo of Denise Junell, a designer handbags buyer. Denise has worked at Nordstrom for nine years, beginning with an internship on the Bellevue sales floor. Now she’s traveling to Europe six times a year on buying trips for Lanvin, Chloé, MARC JACOBS, Gucci* and Balenciaga*. Join us as we take a look at her extensive collection of designer shoes, handbags, clothing and more.

“When it comes to my personal style, I like powerful pieces,” Denise says. “I’m not so trend-driven; I just buy what speaks to me.” Here, she’s wearing a Rick Owens leather jacket and a vintage Chanel* necklace found at Renaissance boutique in Paris.

“Most of my outfits begin with the shoes. I have 55 pairs,” she says. “Right now, I’m really into color and texture. I think that’s why I’m so attracted to Fendi shoes.”

Her latest Fendi find is this pair of peep-toe booties, which she affectionately calls her “armadillos.”

“These YSL heels have a very ‘Tron’ vibe to me,” she says. “I wear them with a feminine skirt and blouse.”

If you’re wondering who’s in the background, that’s Goblin, Denise’s 5-year-old pug/chihuahua mix.

As a designer handbags buyer, Denise’s collection is unparalleled. We spotted styles by Lanvin (pink clutch above), Gucci* (black patent leather bag) and more.

“Many people invest in black for their first Chanel* bag,” she says, “but I think red or another pop of color is a great way for the bag to have a point of view.”

“This is my Oscar de la Renta watercolor dress, worn with pink Manolo Blahnik pumps and a vintage pearl collar inherited from my grandmother. I think it’s is a great way to wear a print to work.”

Next up is a butterfly cape dress by Alexander McQueen*, paired with Chanel* heels. “This dress is from the second-to-last collection that McQueen designed before he passed in 2010. It’s definitely one of my favorite pieces.”

At left, Denise shows us a memento necklace from her first Chanel buying trip. (Note the carousel charm—the brand’s fall 2008 runway show featured models riding a giant fashion-themed carousel.) At right, she shows off a leather Balenciaga* dress: “It’s just a simple shift, but in the cobalt blue it really feels unique. And it’s fun to accessorize.”

Denise has a vast jewelry collection, stored in a tall chest of drawers. She inherited many pieces from family members and finds other accessories while traveling.

“I like the idea of a wearing a personalized element, like these Nadri initial earrings. It’s a great way to make it your own.” She’s also wearing a Tom Binns safety pin necklace and vintage Chanel jacket.

In keeping with the personalized theme, Denise has started wearing her old namesake necklace from 3rd grade again, paired with a Nadri arrow necklace.

“Even though it’s a small piece, these Chanel* earrings are one of my favorite things I own. They basically encapsulate my style in a piece of jewelry—rock-and-roll juxtaposed against a delicate, dainty drop of Chanel.”

When it comes to her makeup regimen, Denise is all about bright colors. “Eyebrows and lips are where it’s at for me. I love YSL lipstick because the pigments are really deep and saturated. Chanel has the best lip gloss and a great range of nail lacquers. I also like filling in my lips with a NARS lip pencil for a matte look.”

Many thanks to Denise for helping us kick off this feature!

*available in selected stores

-Mary O’Regan

Halloween is creeping upon us (just 6 days and counting), which means it’s time to concoct a frighteningly fab costume. Instead of looking to horror flicks for inspiration, let the runway wow you with the most haunting of styles.

From Riccardo Tisci’s gypsy girl to Sarah Burton’s futuristic proportions, to Rick Owens’s elemental mode, fall was full of masked fantasy. Cast an alluring spell this All Hallows’ Eve by creating your own veiled mystique.

Pictured L-R: Rick Owens Fall/Winter 2012 – Brutal Beauty; Alexander Wang Fall/Winter 2012 – Smoke Screen

Pictured L-R: Givenchy* Couture Fall 2012 – Dark Drifter; Alexander McQueen* Fall/Winter 2012 – 3-D Futurist

*We offer Alexander McQueen and Givenchy ready-to-wear apparel in selected Nordstrom stores.

Photos courtesy of Marcio Maderia for Rick Owens, Alexander Wang, Givenchy and Alexander McQueen

Our Designer Buying Team just returned from Europe after a busy trip devoted to attending Fashion Week runway shows and buying appointments (dream jobs!). Here’s a small roundup of pictures they snapped while on location in Paris, London and Milan.

  View from the window of the spectacular Yves Saint Laurent showroom on the top floor of the Grand Palais.

A very popular canine visitor at the Miu Miu showroom.

Michael with a model at Stella McCartney.

Ready-to-Wear Team at Stella McCartney.

Designer Shoe Buyer, John, at Chloé.

Shopping the famous Via Spiga while in Milan.

John with his mobile camera tent at Dolce&Gabbana.

Browsing the Dolce&Gabbana runway collection.

At Marni discussing shoe possibilities for future campaigns.

All cameras pointed to the stage at Alexander McQueen.

In love with this honeycomb Alexander McQueen gown.

Buying team (and Pete Nordstrom) waiting outside Alexander McQueen.










Selected Alexander McQueen shoes and accessories are available online. Ready-to-wear apparel in store only. Browse all Designer Collections.

Let’s take a psychedelic trip down the Alexander McQueen rabbit hole. Suvi Koponen and director David Sims bring us to a kaleidoscopic futurescape that seems a lot more far-distant than fall 2012.

Radical.

Seattle’s finest came out for a night of shopping, nibbling and ogling as we previewed fall’s top designer looks on the runway at Pier 91. Check out the attendee outfit snippets we managed to capture between glasses of champagne:

We spotted several Herve Leger signature bandage dresses, and with good reason—they’re ultra-flattering and perfect for cocktail hour.

The party was full of Chanel bags—they were everywhere you turned. It was fun seeing all the variations. (Love the Alexander McQueen scarf too!)

Baby got back…and cutouts are the best way to show it off. The woman on the left is Marguerite Parsley, our Marketing Director of Events, Designer & Cosmetics, wearing an ultrachic Marni dress.

It’s easy to spot Christian Louboutins, but those neon/nude mystery heels are what have us drooling. Anyone know the brand?

Think prints for fall! The Asian-themed floral on the dress at right is oh-so-chic and looks perfect with hot-pink heels.

Hello, little white dresses. They’re short, sweet and simple. You can’t go wrong.

We spy a Louis Vuitton bag and Miu Miu heels!

Feast your eyes on this studded yellow Versace dress from the spring 2012 collection. It’s off-the-hook incredible, and that’s all there is to it.

Valentino on the left and a stunning Roberto Cavalli cape on the right. The ideal fashion sandwich.

An amazing sunset capped off the event. Thanks to all who came out! If you weren’t able to make it to the show, be sure to check out our runway images and see fall’s designer collections in action!