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16 May

Katy England talks McQueen at V&A

They met in 1993, when McQueen showed his first collection, Taxi Driver, after graduating from his MA at Central Saint Martins. It was part of a collective show of young designers at the Ritz hotel, and he had a rail of pieces of tailoring – already with the elongated proportions, low-rise bumster trousers and signature sharp edges. ‘I remember him explaining some things to me and I was thinking, “Oh wow, this is quite amazing!”‘ She recalls seeing his Banshee show, at the Café de Paris, six months later. ‘There were some beautiful pieces in that, like a little military dress that has all this distressed lace coming out, and he put it on a pregnant girl. It was where military and romance meet. He took that theme over and over again and perfected it. But that was the first time you saw it.’ So already she recognised, and admired, a unique talent. And McQueen recognised something in England too. At the time, she was working at the London Evening Standard as the stylist to the fashion editor Lowri Turner, producing shoots to go with Turner’s words. When the paper launched its weekly magazine, ES, she started to shoot for that too. ‘He said, “You work for the Evening Standard, don’t you? Do you want to do my next show?” I remember saying, “I don’t really know how to do that!” And he just said, “Oh don’t worry, we’ll manage.” And we cobbled it together with absolutely no money.’ Katy England talkes McQueen on Monday June 1st from to Book your ticket HERE