Sarah Burton

Sarah Burton

Sarah Burton
Born Sarah Heard
1974 (age 40–41)
Macclesfield, Cheshire, England
Residence St Johns Wood, London
Nationality British
Education Withington Girls' School
Manchester Polytechnic
Central Saint Martins
Occupation Fashion designer
Parents Anthony & Diana Heard
Labels Alexander McQueen

Sarah Jane Burton, OBE (née Heard, born 1974)[1] is an English fashion designer, currently creative director of fashion brand Alexander McQueen.[2] She designed Catherine Middleton's wedding dress for her wedding to Prince William, Duke of Cambridge in April 2011.[3][4] In 2012, she was named in Time 100, an annual list of the 100 most influential people in the world according to Time.[5]

Early life

Burton was born in Macclesfield, Cheshire, one of five children of Anthony and Diana Heard.[1][4] She attended Withington Girls' School in Manchester.[3][4] After completing an art foundation course at Manchester Polytechnic,[6] and opting to pursue fashion over studies in fine art, she studied Print Fashion at the Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design in London.[4] During her third year she was interviewed for a year's placement at Alexander McQueen at the suggestion of her tutor Simon Ungless, a friend of McQueen's. She joined the company for a year as an intern, when the company was based in a tiny studio in Hoxton Square.[4]

Fashion career

On graduation in 1997, she joined the company full-time as McQueen's personal assistant. Burton was appointed Head of Womenswear in 2000,[4] during which time she created dresses for Michelle Obama, Cate Blanchett, Lady Gaga and Gwyneth Paltrow.[7] Following McQueen's death in February 2010, and after company owner Gucci confirmed that the brand would continue, Burton was named as the new creative director of Alexander McQueen in May 2010.[8] In September 2010, Burton presented in Paris the first McQueen womenswear collection she had wholly created.[9]

On 29 April 2011, it was revealed that Burton had designed the wedding dress of Catherine Middleton for her marriage that day to Prince William, Duke of Cambridge. Burton's work came to the attention of Middleton in 2005 when she attended the wedding of Tom Parker Bowles, the son of the Duchess of Cornwall, for whom McQueen had designed the wedding dress for his bride, fashion journalist Sara Buys.[7] Made by the Royal School of Needlework, Burton said creating the royal wedding dress had been the "experience of a lifetime".[10][11]

Burton also designed maid of honour Pippa Middleton's dress,[12] and the dress that Kate Middleton wore to the wedding's evening festivities.[13][14]

Personal life

Burton lives in St Johns Wood with her husband David Burton, a fashion photographer.[4]


On November 28 2011, Sarah Burton won the Designer of the Year at the 2011 British Fashion Awards.[15]

In July 2012, Burton received an honorary degree from Manchester Metropolitan University where she was a former student, becoming an honorary Doctor of Arts.[6]

Burton was appointed Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in the 2012 Birthday Honours for services to the British fashion industry.[16][17][18]


  1. ^ a b Charlotte Cox (4 May 2011). "Exclusive: Parents of royal wedding designer Sarah Burton speak of their pride - and how they got first glimpse of Kate's dress through a periscope".  
  2. ^ "Alexander McQueen Men's RTW Fall 2014". WWD. 7 January 2014. Retrieved 7 January 2014. 
  3. ^ a b "'"Kate Middleton's dress designer was a 'brilliant pupil.  
  4. ^ a b c d e f g Helen Wigham (18 March 2011). "Sarah Burton". Vogue. Retrieved 29 April 2011. 
  5. ^ Parker, Sarah Jessica (18 April 2012). "The 100 Most Influential People in the World". Time. Retrieved 15 August 2012. 
  6. ^ a b "Honorary Doctorates announced". Manchester Metropolitan University. 8 June 2012. Retrieved 18 June 2012. 
  7. ^ a b Heidi Blake (6 March 2011). "Sarah Burton of Alexander McQueen to design Kate Middleton's wedding dress?".  
  8. ^ Sarah Deeks (27 May 2010). "Burton For McQueen". Vogue. Retrieved 29 April 2011. 
  9. ^ "Alexander McQueen Spring/Summer 2011 collection". Vogue. Retrieved 29 April 2011. 
  10. ^ "Balcony kisses seal royal wedding".  
  11. ^ "Kate Wows In Second Sarah Burton Outfit".  
  12. ^ "Her Royal Hotness: How Kate's foxy sister Pippa stole the show (leaving naughty Uncle Gary to languish in the shadows)" Daily Mail. Retrieved 30 April 2011.
  13. ^ "Kate wears second Sarah Burton dress" Retrieved 30 April 2011.
  14. ^ "Pippa Middleton’s McQueen bridesmaid dress hits". Retrieved 17 August 2012. 
  15. ^
  16. ^ The London Gazette: (Supplement) no. 60173. p. 9. 16 June 2012.
  17. ^ "Honours for Branagh and Burton". BBC News. 2012-06-15. Retrieved 2012-06-15. 
  18. ^ "Sarah Burton of Alexander McQueen to receive OBE". Retrieved 17 August 2012. 

External links

  • Alexander McQueen Website

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