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McQueen mourned

Alyssa Pageot | Interrobang | Lifestyles | September 27th, 2010



Friends, family, coworkers and admirers all gathered at the St. Paul's Cathedral at 11 a.m. on September 20 to celebrate the life of a dreamer. It's been over a year since Alexander "Lee" McQueen took his life, and the fashion industry is still paying its respects and condolences.

Right in the heart of London, England, nearing the end of International Fashion Week, a magnificent celebration took place that summoned a ton of famous fashion icons and celebrities. You can see how loved someone was by the amount of people that turn up to their funeral, especially when they die young; a friend of mine died a few summers ago and the funeral service was overflowing with people whose lives she had touched. It brings a smile to my face and a sense of comfort in my heart to know that a year later, McQueen is still being remembered and honoured and is far from being forgotten. Fashion week wasn't quite the same without him — everyone is stuck wondering, if he had been with us still, what miraculous creations he might have dreamed up. It was always what I looked forward to the most.

The ceremony took place in a church that actually seemed like a location McQueen would have chosen for a fashion show. On the chilly morning it gave off a gothic feel and everyone came dressed fabulously — most were head to toe in McQueen. Sarah Jessica Parker was there wearing a stunning white gown with a long black trench, her hair in an elegant and appropriate up-do. Naomi Campbell came looking fabulous in feathers, as well as Kate Moss looking sombre but beautiful.

Stella McCartney came, as well as Vogue's editor-in-chief, Anna Wintour, who spoke beautiful words describing McQueen as "a complex and gifted young man … who as a child loved nothing more than to sit on the roof of his tower block and watch the birds circling overhead." Addresses were also given by Suzy Menkes, a British fashion reporter who had attended every single one of McQueen's shows; Shaun Leane, a jeweller who collaborated with McQueen creating some of his most stunning pieces created; and Philip Treacy, a famous hat designer.

The music, however, was the most beautiful and breathtaking part of the service. I would have given anything to have been there — I cannot imagine the feeling, it gives me shivers just thinking about it. Michael Nyman performed The Heart Asks Pleasure First, a piece he created for Jane Campion's The Piano. A talented woman I adore and admire performed as well: Björk gave an exhilarating performance of Gloomy Sunday, famed for its interpretation by Billie Holiday. She wore McQueen's famous pierced wooden wings and a skirt of trailing ostrich plumes, and was one of the best dressed there.

The ceremony finished with a lone bagpiper followed by a marching band of pipers in mourning kilts and the McQueen tartan sashes, as the impressive audience leaked out into the bittersweet sunny London streets.
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