I put it together with sparkling silver greys in the form of a spiked and studded necklace from New Look and matching suede clutch.
The metallic, bow shaped clutch bag was found in a charity bargain bin where everything was £1, raided by me last week (along with my blogged Festival 8 attire!). It has no label, but was a great find, being a lovely soft, silver-on-black suede, nestling among the plastic 'pleather' bags. I added a bit of drama with tangerine coloured shoes from Office and nails in Rimmel 060 Hot & Spicy. The spiked black bangle is from Topshop. The black biker jacket is from Reiss.
So this dress has a back story (don't they all!) and was a completely accidental and unintentional purchase until fate stepped in. That's my explanation anyway and if anyone asks, I'm sticking to it.
The story is, I went to see the McQueen show 'Savage Beauty' recently at the Victoria and Albert Museum, London and Wow! What an exhibition. There are lots of reviews on the web about the show and if you want a really good idea of what it looks like go here for Tinie Tempah's brilliant private view tour on iplayer (he might be another guest on my party list by the way ... swoon!). Tinie is well known as a sharp dresser and all round stylish dude of course, but he's also the British Fashion Council's ambassador for menswear and therefore also knows his onions about British fashion design icons. Anyway, to cut to the chase the show blew my mind and I honestly felt as though my brain couldn't take in the level of detail, design, creativity and daring that McQueen put into his creations, increasing with each collection as they unfolded over the years. It was poignant and sad and a little bit haunting, but at the same time an unashamed and dazzling celebration of a life full of vitality and genius. I felt as I walked around that I couldn't open my eyes wide enough, couldn't stare long enough, couldn't capture the dazzling exhibits in my mind's eye vividly enough.
My friend Nat would say that clothes are like people, they have their own experiences and memories and they are imbued with auras and evoke feelings independent of the wearer. I agree with her and often when wearing a garment or outfit, I am reminded of past experiences when I was wearing the same thing. Mostly these are good memories and feelings of happy times (though not always - Paul Smith sheath dress I'm looking at you! A story for another day, I think. Prosecco may have been involved, enough said). For me clothes evoke memory as vividly as scent or perfume and when a piece of clothing has an association with a special event or a memorable day or person, that feeling stays in the very warp and weft of the cloth somehow. I wondered as I looked around some of the McQueen collection about the hours of concentration, dedication and frustration that may have shaped and created them. Where those finished dresses and coats had been in their lives, who had worn them and what parties and backstage dramas they had taken part in.
The rest, as they say, is history. Serendipity? Perhaps. A twist of fate? Surely.
So it's Happy Birthday to you Woody! Some fabulous memories of a fun night with you and Elvis, some slightly blurrier than others!
One amazing show, and one rocking night with gorgeous friends, together make all the right ingredients I need for a dress to remember.
Dress in silver and black silk by Alexander McQueen
Metallic suede clutch, unnamed from charity shop
Suede shoes in tangerine from Office
Necklace in pewter with spikes and studs from New Look
Spiked black bangle by Topshop
Leather biker jacket by Reiss
Savage Beauty is at the V&A London until 2 August 2015. Iplayer private view is available from March 2015 for 7 months.