Alexander McQueen Critical Thinkings Example

Type of paper: Critical Thinking

Topic: Label, Fashion, Brand, Design, Designer, Internet, Celebrity, Trade

Pages: 4

Words: 1100

Published: 2020/11/24

Communication Strategies of a Fashion Designer

Based on the concepts covered in class, we have established that one of the functions of fashion is to communicate a message or vision to its target audience. Communicating this message or vision in fashion, however, necessitates the use of different communicators that serve as channels for the diffusion of this message. Our primary objective is to focus on the communication strategies adopted by a fashion designer. The succeeding discussion focuses on Sarah Burton’s work as the head designer for Alexander McQueen.

Lee Alexander McQueen worked for other labels before the designer was able to establish his own. McQueen’s work for labels such as Givenchy made him a respected designer in the business (“Lee Alexander McQueen”). After McQueen’s passing, McQueen’s head designer Sarah Burton, was named the Creative Director of the entire label (“Sarah Burton”).
As formerly noted, the main goal of the project is to determine the communication strategies adopted by a fashion designer. To explore the strategies employed by the McQueen label as headed by Burton, the discussion will cover the five communicators – the fashion designer, retailers, consumers, critics, celebrities, and culture.

Communicator 1 – Fashion Designer

McQueen’s designs epitomize the notion of fashion as a means of artistic expression. McQueen’s designs are known for their artistic value that stands out compared to the works of other designers. Furthermore, McQueen was known for combining form or structure and art, as well extreme concepts that made his designs both ambiguous but also well put together.
During the beginning of the McQueen label, the fashion designer rose to fame by capitalizing on the ‘shock value’ of his works, particularly during the designer’s runway shows. For a time, the McQueen label thrived due to controversies surrounding the label’s shows (Vincent, 138). Some of the issues raised about McQueen’s runway shows include misogyny, indecency, violence, and mutilation. Despite the controversies, McQueen was apologetic, a trait that made him an admirable designer to most, and which cemented his vision of his brand as unconventional yet artistic (McQueen). McQueen’s label rose to fame in the late 1990s and early 21st Century due to the designer’s unconventional practices. McQueen himself was once called “the hooligan of English fashion” for the foregoing reasons.
Hence, the appeal of the designer’s label is in the way that it allows consumers to differentiate themselves from others, while attaching themselves to the McQueen vision of luxury and fluidity, and tradition and modernity (“Lee Alexander McQueen”). The ‘essence’, so to speak’, of the McQueen label is mainly communicated through the designs seen on the runway or in media, particularly in the sustained presence of the label in events showcasing actors and celebrities – a topic which will be discussed in depth in the latter part of the report.

Communicator 2 – Retailers

McQueen designs are available through various upscale retailers such as Harrods, Neiman Marcus, Selfridges, and Saks Fifth Avenue among others. The aforementioned retailers all cater to the upscale market. Hence, the selection of retailers for the McQueen label contribute to its image as a high fashion, luxurious brand. McQueen designs are also available online through Net-a-Porter. Similarly, Net-a-Porter is an online retailer of luxury brands in the fashion industry. McQueen stores are also located in cities with a high upscale population such as New York, Milan, Los Angeles, Miami, Doha, Dubai, and the Roppongi Hills in Tokyo among others (“Store Location”). Overall, the location of McQueen stores all over the world as well as the selected physical and online retailers establish the label as a luxury brand in high fashion since these retailers are only accessible to the upper class market.
While the McQueen label is a luxury brand, it understands the need to capitalize on the existing market worldwide. Nevertheless, the McQueen label is careful in protecting the brand’s image or reputation. McQueen wants to maintain its image as a luxury, high fashion brand but it also needs to expand to other markets, particularly the upper middle classes. To resolve this dilemma, McQueen launched McQ, a new line that catered to young men and women from the upper middle class.

Communicator 3 – Consumers

McQueen is a high end label, which means that the brand’s target market is the upper class. McQueen creates designs for men and women. As formerly noted, the McQ line under the label targets the youth. Due to the fame of the McQueen brand, many consumers – celebrities or civilians – wear Alexander McQueen creations to various events. Based on the target market of the McQueen label, the brand’s consumers are primarily those from the upper middle and upper classes. Many civilians, particularly young consumers, use McQueen designs as a means to establish their image as “fashionable” and to separate or differentiate themselves from others. The McQueen label essentially communicates uniqueness, which is appealing to fashion enthusiasts, whether popular or not (Okonkwo, 117).

Communicator 4 – Critics

Many critics have praised Burton’s work as the successor of the McQueen label. In 2014, during the Paris Fashion Week, the McQueen label introduced its Fall/Winter and Spring/Summer collections for men and women. Burton was inspired by Japanese history, which is why McQueen’s collection illustrated hues and details attributed to the Samurai armor, the kimono, and common clothing worn by geishas. Critics praised Burton’s work for her attention to detail, artistic layering of the pieces, and the affinity of the collection to the McQueen brand and what the label stands for (“What we can Learn from PFW and all FW SS 2015”). For McQueen’s most recent collection put together by Burton, many regarded it as ingenious due to Burton’s unique take on the theme while remaining true to the ‘spirit’ or ‘essence’ of the McQueen label (Cartner-Morley; Harris).
McQueen’s collaborations with other designers and labels contributed to the brand’s success. Some of McQueen’s notable collaboration that generated buzz for the designer and the brand include that with Puma in 2005, MAC in 2007, and Target in 2008 among others.
Another factor that contributes to the brand’s success is the critics’ praise of McQueen designs publicized in fashion authorities such as Vogue magazine, Vanity Fair, Marie Claire, among others. Moreover, these magazines feature celebrities wearing McQueen designs, which is a means of promoting the brand to a wide readership.

Communicator 5 – Celebrities

McQueen designs prior and after Burton’s takeover of the label are staple in the red carpet and the world of celebrities in general. During events featuring famous celebrities, McQueen has long been one of the designers providing celebrities with attire, a strategy that further advertises and publicizes the brand. The arrangement works such that the media covers celebrity events and in their coverage, they include advertisement of fashion labels. When the media interviews celebrities on the red carpet, they ask them about their clothing. Celebrities then mention the brand. Many celebrities wear McQueen designs. Famous celebrities who often wear McQueen designs include famous British model Kate Moss, Lady Gaga, actresses Cate Blanchett and Sarah Jessica Parker, and even the first lady of the US, Michelle Obama.
Overall, the involvement of the McQueen label in highly publicized events contributes to the brand’s advertising and promotions strategy. Burton for McQueen, for instance, designed Kate Middleton wedding dress in 2011. Aside from this, McQueen designs also make appearances in film. One of the more recent collaborations of the McQueen label in the film industry is in the film Hunger Games by Lionsgate. The Hunger Games series was a blockbuster hit as it continues to earn millions due to its large following. In the film, one of the protagonists constantly wear McQueen creations (Barron). In this scenario, the brand capitalizes on the wide viewership of the film to promote the brand.

Works Cited

Alexander McQueen Trading Limited. “Lee Alexander McQueen”. Web. 24 Feb 2015. <>.
Alexander McQueen Trading Limited. “Sarah Burton”. Web. 24 Feb 2015. <>.
Barron, Nick. “The Hunger Games gets an Alexander McQueen Makeover”. Telegraph. 6 Mar 2013. Web. 24 Feb 2015. <>.
Cartner-Morley, Jess. “Alexander McQueen: Into the Light”. The Guardian, 10 Feb 2015. Web. 24 Feb 2015. <>.
Harris, Sarah. “Spring/Summer 2015 | Ready to Wear: Alexander McQueen”. Vogue. 30 Sep 2014. Web. 24 Feb 2015. <>.
McQueen, Alexander. Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty. Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2011.
Okonkwo, Uche. Luxury Fashion Branding: Trends, Tactics, Techniques. Palgrave Macmillan, 2007.
“Store Location”. Alexander McQueen Trading Limited. Web. 24 Feb 2015. <>.
Vincent, Laurence. Brand Real: How Smart Companies Live their Brand Promise and Inspire Fierce Customer Loyalty. AMACOM, 2012.
“What we can Learn from PFW and all FW SS 2015”. Fashionbi. 13 Oct 2014. Web. 24 Feb 2015. <>.

Cite this page
Choose cite format:
  • APA
  • MLA
  • Harvard
  • Vancouver
  • Chicago
  • ASA
  • IEEE
  • AMA
WePapers. (2020, November, 24) Alexander McQueen Critical Thinkings Example. Retrieved March 22, 2023, from
"Alexander McQueen Critical Thinkings Example." WePapers, 24 Nov. 2020, Accessed 22 March 2023.
WePapers. 2020. Alexander McQueen Critical Thinkings Example., viewed March 22 2023, <>
WePapers. Alexander McQueen Critical Thinkings Example. [Internet]. November 2020. [Accessed March 22, 2023]. Available from:
"Alexander McQueen Critical Thinkings Example." WePapers, Nov 24, 2020. Accessed March 22, 2023.
WePapers. 2020. "Alexander McQueen Critical Thinkings Example." Free Essay Examples - Retrieved March 22, 2023. (
"Alexander McQueen Critical Thinkings Example," Free Essay Examples -, 24-Nov-2020. [Online]. Available: [Accessed: 22-Mar-2023].
Alexander McQueen Critical Thinkings Example. Free Essay Examples - Published Nov 24, 2020. Accessed March 22, 2023.

Share with friends using:

Related Essays
Sample Article Review On Understanding Non Profit Capital Structure Sample Book Review On Answers Of Questions From Chapter Two Sample Case Study On Groupon Case Study Sample Biography On The Early Years Sample Case Study On Finance Sample Case Study On Housekeeping Issues At The Excalibur Hotel Good Report On Marketing Strategy Report Good Report On How Social Situations Influence Our Behavior Operation And Human Resource Plan Business Plan Examples Sample Case Study On 6a. Office Setting Configuration Good Report On Financial Analysis: Priceline V/S Expedia Good Report On Practical 3: Diffusion Of Small Molecules Across Semi-Permeable Membranes Using Dialysis Good Report On Regulations On The Legal Drinking Age Good Report On Practical 2: Action Of Alkaline Phosphatase Sample Article Review On This Paper Was Prepared For Course:______________for Professor:________________________________ On This Date:___________________. Good Report On Leader Self Assessment Sample Business Plan On A 172” Samsung Plasma TV, $ 19,497.99 Good Report About Warehouse Manager Sample Case Study On Capital Budgeting Sample Case Study On Health Open Minded Essay Example Good Report On Dietary Analysis On Love Or How Love Changed Me Essay Good Report On Academic Expectations And Responsibilities Good Report On CNN Heroes Good Report On Heat Of Solution Of Cacl2 Sample Case Study On Google One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest Essays Example Sample Book Review On The Relevance Of Hudson, J. W On Adult Education And Its Development Opinion Research Paper Operation Eligible Receiver Research Paper Samples On The Beginning Of Slavery Essay Examples Online Reputation Management Essay Sample Business Plan On Leadership And Management Online Education Essay Examples Good Report On Comparative Market Size And Growth Forecasts For CVS's Product/Service Online Assignment; Activity 1 Essay Example Sample Case Study On Cues From The Patient Presentation Good Report On Marketing Plan For My Consulting Business On Mortgage Banking Good Report On Biology 1020, College Name Opioids Research Papers Examples Good Report On Advanced Approaches To Media Analysis Group Major Research Project Sample Business Plan On Boutique In Geneva Business Plan Opinion Poll Research Paper Examples Sample Case Study On Bethesda Clearly Captures The Belmont Report And Tries To Expound On It, Especially The 45 CFR Part 46. Good Report On Marketing Opportunities For American Studios In Bollywood And How Should Hollywood Approach Indian Film Market Case Studies Examples Operational Management: Auis Case Study Case Study Samples Sample Book Review On Get That Freak: Homophobia And Transphobia In High Schools Good Report On Communications Services Operational Efficiency: Midas Case Essays Examples Operationalize A Policy Statement: Goals, Objectives, Strategies And Tactics Essays Examples Sample Business Plan On Mini-Project (Developing A Web Page For Others) Sample Case Study On Ethical Case Sample Case Study On Hotels Market New Comforts Just For Millennials Good Report On Research Study Good Report About Trains Operations Management Reports Examples Online Resource Assignment Essay Good Report About The Best Culinary Help: Operant Conditioning - Superstitions Essay Examples Operations Management Case Study Examples Opening Up Combat Roles To Women Argumentative Essay
Related Premium Essays
Contact us
Chat now