Incredible Fall 2008 Alexander McQueen 'The Girl Who Lived in the Trees' Black Silk Chiffon Dress
McQueen's Fall 2008 collection was called 'The Girl Who Lived in a Tree' and it was inspired by a combination of his trip to India and a 600 year old elm in his garden. I have included two photos from the runway that year and you can see how the elements from these pieces were combined to create this dress. Pieces from this collection are some of the most valued by collectors. The V&A Museum says of this collection: 'McQueen’s Autumn/Winter 2008 collection centered on a fairy tale narrative devised by McQueen about a girl who descends from a tree to marry a prince and then become a queen. It was inspired by a 600-year-old elm tree in the garden of the designer’s Sussex home. At the center of the set stood a giant tree swathed in fabric, inspired by Bulgarian artist Christo, who is renowned for wrapping buildings with material.' This dress feels a bit like the embodiment of that center piece they refer to, as you are wrapped an swathed in fabric once it is on. The impact of this dress is not truly conveyed on the photos and the way that the chiffon trails behind you is fantastic once on the body.
The dress is beautiful. Rarely does one see this level of workmanship in ready to wear. The fabric is a silk chiffon with a soft almost waffle finish texture. The silk is feather light and once the dress in on the body it feels like you are wearing air. The cut is classic McQueen with an almost scandalously low cut squared off neckline. Underneath he has suggested the presence of a seam with a line of hand placed stitches. This tiny little detail adds shape and gives that dress its empire feel. It is lightly gathered over the bust. Inside the bust is structured and supported. The support is genius and done mainly by couture level seam work and fabric rather then extensive boning. The skirt falls to the floor from beneath the bodice and there are many yards of silk used to create that magnificent skirt. On one side under the bust there is a extra panel of the silk that is caught up and drapes to attach to the top of the opposite shoulder. This creates this curved line that sits off of the dress. The skirts are long and extend even longer at the back. The skirt extends out there to trail out behind you in a long train. I love how the fanbric there extends out from the back upper seam ... as you walk this creates this billowing feel behind you that is extraordinary. It is a work of art from one of the greatest designers of our time. The dress has its original hang tags in place and is in its original uncut length. Excellent condition.
Fully lined in black silk satin through the bust and black silk chiffon through the skirt. It closes with a hidden set zipper at the back. The interior bust is shaped and lightly boned at the sides. Original tags attached. Tagged a McQueen 38.
Bust: to 17" flat across from side seam to side seam
Seam under bust: 13" flat across from side seam to side seam
Natural waist-hips: open
Bodice: 10.5" from shoulder to seam under bust
Length: approx 60" from shoulder to shortest point of the front hem, approx 90" to the longest point of the back hem
Modern Sizing Equivalent: XS-MED
Reference Photos: (1-2) F/W 2008 Alexander McQueen Runway Collection (Look 7 & Look 27).
This garment has been professionally cleaned, pressed and is odor free. Thoroughly checked over before shipping, it will be ready to wear upon arrival.
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