Who is Alexander McQueen?

Who is Alexander McQueen? Over the years, his designs have won over the fashion world with their extravagant, bold, avant-garde flair. Read on to find out how to style Alexander McQueen sneakers, how they fit, and why they’re so expensive

Who is Alexander McQueen

Known as the enfant terrible of British fashion, Lee Alexander McQueen was born in London in 1969, into a working-class family. He developed an interest in fashion from a young age, and dropped out of school at 16 to serve an apprenticeship at a tailor shop. 

Following a brief experience in Milan, where he worked with designer Romeo Gigli, he enrolled at Central Saint Martin’s College of Art and Design, graduating in 1992. The same year, McQueen founded his own label, using his middle name Alexander.

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He rose to success with the introduction of the so-called “bumsters” (low-rise pants), and his controversial and provocative runway shows, with models wearing bloodied, torn, and extremely revealing clothes, quickly earned him the title of enfant terrible—the bad boy of fashion.

In 1996 McQueen was appointed Head Designer at Givenchy, a role that he claimed “constrained his creativity.”  He later admitted to having treated Givenchy “poorly.” Despite this, McQueen won the award for British Designer of the Year in 1996, 1997, 2001, and 2003.

Following his death in 2010, McQueen’s longtime right hand Sarah Burton was appointed Creative Director of the label.

alexander mcqueen runway show

In recent years, the brand’s oversized sneakers have earned a cult-like following: in contrast with the brand’s iconic and extravagant armadillo shoes, Alexander McQueen sneakers are sleek and simple. They’re everywhere: Instagram influencers, celebrities, and sneakerheads love them. And so do we!

How do Alexander McQueen sneakers fit?

Thinking of adding a pair of Alexander McQueen oversized sneakers to your collection? 

Here’s everything you need to know about sizing before investing in a pair:  

  • Alexander McQueen sneakers come in half sizes (men’s EU 39 to EU 48, and women’s EU 35 to EU 40).
  • Alexander McQueen sneakers tend to fit true to size. However, if you have narrow feet or simply dislike the extra oversized look, we recommend going down half a size for the perfect fit. The sneakers also tend to become a little looser with wear, so don’t worry if they feel a little tight when you first wear them.
  • The tongue of McQueen sneakers is usually a little stiff, and might rub into your ankle. We advise “breaking them in” by wearing them with a pair of thick socks.
  • All the designer’s shoes follow EU sizing – however, on the brand’s website, you can find a helpful size chart. If you’re still unsure, read our shoe size conversion article.

how do alexander mcqueen sneakers fit

Alexander McQueen Size Chart

How to style Alexander McQueen sneakers

Alexander McQueen sneakers work well with any outfit. Whether you’re travelling, running errands, or going on a date, these sleek sneakers will elevate and complement your look. They’re a closet staple you will never tire of!

Lounging around the house? For a full athleisure look, pair your favorite McQueen sneakers with a matching tracksuit. To add an edge to a classic outfit, try wearing them with a suit: choose slim, cropped pants to draw attention to the sneakers, and make sure the design of the suit is youthful and contemporary.

how to style alexander mcqueen sneakers

how to style alexander mcqueen sneakers

We also love an all-white look: pair your McQueen sneakers with white jeans and a simple T-shirt, and match the color of your accessories with the shoes’ accent. If you want to turn heads, dress down the classiest of outfits: style your chunky sneakers with a long, feminine, flowing dress.

We recommend wearing Alexander McQueen sneakers with no-show socks.

Why are McQueen sneakers so expensive?

It’s no secret: these sneakers aren’t cheap. Alexander McQueen women’s sneakers range from $520 for a pair of Deck Lace Up Plimsoll to $990 for the Tread Slick Boots, while the men’s range from $520 for the Deck Lace Up Plimsoll to $1690 for the Tread Slick Boots.

Why are they so pricey? It comes down to a few simple reasons:

  • Alexander McQueen sneakers are crafted using the most exquisite, luxurious materials: smooth, supple calfskin and rubber.
  • They are 100% made in Italy, where factory workers make a fair, livable wage.
  • They are extremely versatile, durable, and easy to clean. They will last a long time in your closet!

Are these sneakers worth the price tag? Absolutely. And the good news is that, if you shop italist.com, you can save up to 40% on the full retail price! Discover our wide selection of Alexander McQueen sneakers for men, women, and kids.

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About the Author

Alex English is the Head of Content Marketing at italist.com, building on a lifelong passion for fashion and luxury. After publishing a lifestyle blog for nearly ten years and obtaining an MBA in Milan at SDA Bocconi, one of Europe’s top business schools, he joined the italist team in 2019. His work since then has focused on upper-funnel messaging, brand storytelling, establishing italist as a thought leader in the space, and enriching the customer experience on the platform. Find him on LinkedIn.