Sarah Burton's spring summer 2012 collection for Alexander McQueen was held in a morgue on the outskirts of Paris.
In its heyday (its website's word), 27,000 bodies left the building each year. We saw around 33 here.
With lace and beaded masks encasing heads, eyes, mouths or entirely consumed save for a peak of ghostly white faces, McQueen's countervailing forces of darkness and light were separated by cream, pink, coral or gold and harnessed black tulle and lacquered lace work with bondage strap heels.
The heavenly creations swung between period, S&M subversion, under the sea barnacle-encrusted mermaids and exquisite tailoring. You can see for yourself how intricate the workmanship is. Not for the first time this season, a ready-to-wear collection is compared with couture classifications. That phrase ready-to-wear sounds a little ridiculous when marvelling over these strictly corseted gowns and suits. Unlike Burton's cruise collection, there was nothing utilitarian here. Perhaps, as cruise and pre-fall collections sit in stores for the longest amount of time, that is where the reality is sold and these shows are reserved for pure fantasy and showmanship. What's certain though is that you're unlikely to see these creations in your nearest Harvey Nichols.
It was a magical display and one that had the crowd whoop for joy at a bashful as ever Sarah Burton. Brace yourself for those inevitable "would Kate Middleton wear this?" headlines though. You've been warned...