Alexander McQueen – 2 Zeitgeist Elements

Consumer Segment:

Depending on collections, McQueen’s designer are varied in prices due to different fabrics used.  Since pieces are so expensive, only the upper classes are able to afford the designs.  Out of the Ready-to-Wear dresses available on the Alexander McQueen website, the cheapest dress is $1,495 and the most expensive dress is $7,735.  Pricey fabrics such as silk and leather are used in a lot of his designs so the prices usually reflected this.  With prices being so expensive, the lower and middle classes are not able to afford pieces in McQueen’s collection, which leaves the upper class his biggest consumers.  Sarah Burton’s designs use the same fabrics as McQueen’s and run for about the same prices.  Lipovetsky was missing the fact that you do not need to purchase the fashion in order to the influenced by the fashion.  For example, McQueen’s signature item is his skull scarf which goes for hundreds of dollars.  Celebrities such as Kim Kardashian have been seen wearing his authentic scarf.  Replicas have been made by brands such as Etsy and Forever 21 and sold for around $20.  This shows that the lower and middle classes are influenced by fashion, but purchase the affordable items so they can still be current with the upper class trends.

Celebrity Influence:

Alexander McQueen’s designs are very high end, therefore, wealthier clients are usually his biggest consumers.  Some of his most popular clients are Kate Middleton, Florence Welch, Lady Gaga, Michelle Obama, and Sarah Jessica Parker.  On the Business of Fashion’s website, an article talks about Sarah Burton’s most recent show did not have the “danger” element that McQueen’s had.  The Press was worried if this would turn off the celebrity clients from wanting the designs, but Salma Hayek, one of McQueen’s popular clients, still sits front row for every show Burton puts on.

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