|Stella McCartney (PA Photos)|
Stella McCartney is today as much a household name as her famous father, Beatle Paul. As the director of her eponymous Stella McCartney label, a global fashion brand whose annual profits are estimated to be around $7-million, the 42-year old fashion designer has attracted her own international following since starting her own business in 2001. Her fans – and they include A-listers like Gwyneth Paltrow and Kate Moss to everyday consumers who shop her stand-alone boutiques and websites – love her because no matter what it is she does, from women’s and children’s clothing to eco-friendly sunglasses and athletica for Adidas, McCartney comes across as straight-forward and honest, a woman designer proudly designing for other women, their real shapes and lives. Like her father and her late mother, the vegetarian activist and photographer Linda (nee Eastman), McCartney is also a keen environmentalist who has managed to create a 21st century luxury fashion brand without using leather or fur in any of her designs.
She is not disposable fashion. She is fashion with a cause, winning three British Fashion Awards, an OBE and the honour of designing her nation’s Team GB Olympics uniforms in 2012. Besides edgy, sexy, uncomplicated design, what gives McCartney an edge is her commitment to sustainable fashion which, as she describes it on her site,www.stellamccartney.com, is a trend as important as recycling: “It’s really the job of fashion designers now to turn things on their head in a different way, and not just try to turn a dress on its head every season. Try and ask questions about how you make that dress, where you make that dress, what materials you’re using. I think that’s far more interesting, actually.” When not helping to lead a fashion revolution, McCartney is a busy mother of four young children and wife to Alasdhair Willis, the recently appointed creative director of British brand Hunter. She is also the devoted daughter of you-know-who, actively supporting Sir Paul in her fashion, like wearing a t-shirt of her own making emblazoned with the words, About Fucking Time, at Sir Paul’s induction ceremony into the Rock and Roll Hall of fame in 1999. They remain close. When Sir Paul married Nancy Shevell in 2012, the bride wore a dress custom-made by her new daughter-in-law. Father and daughter have worked together only once, for the making of a ballet. McCartney describes what that was like, and more, in the following interview.