Vivienne Westwood

VIVIENNE WESTWOOD

(1941; UK) She started her fashion career – together with Malcom McLaren, her partner and future manager of  the famous punk band Sex Pistols – opening a fashion shop at Kings Road 430 in the center of London, its name was “Let It Rock”. It was a totally new and original growing trend: strong, anarchic, chaotic. Born against everything. It was the mirror of the rebellious youth culture in evolution. The shop changed its name different times: in 1972 it was “Too fast to live, too young to die” and the brand was a classic skull and crossed bones, absolutely dedicated to bikers. Black leather jackets full of zippers, chains and safety pins. The ultimate name, in 1980, was “World end”.

Vivienne Westwood made her debut in London in 1981 with the collection “Pirate”. While at the beginnings her creations were inspired mostly from street fashion, today she concentrates more on technique and tradition. She is inspired from every age period but in particular from the fashion history of XVII and XVIII centuries.

She was the first contemporary designer to propose and update the tartan, the classic  “Marie Antoinette style” corsets  and the faux-cul, all classic elements of the ancient English couture. She took inspiration from history but also from art, politic and social engagement.

In September of 2005 she supported the Movement for Civil Rights “Liberty” with a collection of t-shirts: “I’m not a terrorist, please don’t arrest me”. Her latest collections were branded “Propaganda”, “Active Resistance” and “Active Resistance to Propaganda” to strongly disagree against Blair and Bush governments. Then Punk came, a totally new and unexplored style. More than a fashion, a real way of life. To amaze the public her models always  showed an outrageous look: dusty gold colored teeth and union-jack painted lips, for example. She finally reached international success shocking the world with inspiration, unique art instinct and pure passion.

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