The designer at his Fall/Winter 2009 show. Photo: JACQUES BRINON/AP

Today would have been Alexander McQueen's 41st birthday. In honor of the occasion, his fellow designers reminisce about their favorite moments from his incendiary career and life. His bright star, burning talent, shocking shows, and unbelievable and masterful creations touched the fashion world with their poetry and intensity alike--they are very humbly remembered below with love and admiration:

  • Zac Posen: "The first I met McQueen was when I was an intern at the Met. He was there to research and he smelled me. I was standing over vertical files, and he smelled my jacket. I must have been 17-years-old. He asked if the jacket was from London. It was. I probably skipped a Science class to be there."
  • Francisco Costa - Creative Director, Calvin Klein Women's Collection: "Lee always managed to make the unobtainable a reality. He set the bar high and his genius will continue to live with us."
  • Diane von Furstenberg: "My favorite McQueen moment is when I wore a white fur jacket of his...I felt like a devilish swan!"
  • Michael Kors: "Lee was a great talent and will certainly be missed. While I was Creative Director at Celine I was able to meet him a few times and he was not only so talented, but down to earth and lovely."
  • Matthew Williamson: "Like many others I always cited McQueen as a hugely inspirational leader of British fashion. In particular I remember being a student at Central St Martins in the mid-nineties and witnessing the huge impact his early shows had on London Fashion week. Fantastical and shocking at times, they were full of energy and showed the promise of his imaginative genius that was still to come."
  • Peter Som: "Every McQueen show has so many amazing moments. I became entranced with his vision at his debut collection for Givenchy-it was a first glimpse into his world, which combined a dark dream-like romance with razor-sharp tailoring and craftsmanship. I was hooked. Alexander McQueen was a designer that I admired-and always will-for his ability to take us on a beautiful-and oftentimes shocking-journey."
  • Chris Benz: "My favorite McQueen moment is definitely when Shalom Harlow twirled around the runway in that giant white dress, all the while being sprayed with those mechanical spray paint machines! Dazzling!"
  • Scott Sternberg, Band of Outsiders: "I remember watching a video, over and over, of that amazing show that was staged on a chess board - which was in 2004 I think, right when I was getting going with Band - and thinking that this guy's imagination is so expansive, so inspiring, and so beyond what I knew of fashion up until that point. Really blew my mind."
  • Rachel Roy: "Alexander McQueen was a thoughtful yet bold visionary. I loved that he was one of the first designers to start featuring Indian models and he completed his look with extraordinary hair and makeup - something that inspires me greatly."
  • Gilles Mendel - designer, J.Mendel: "I discovered his talent at Givenchy and his collections never failed to amaze me. I'll never forget the hologram of Kate Moss in his show, what an innovative use of technology."
  • Jeff Halmos and Sam Shipley of Shipley & Halmos: "McQueen's showmanship was unlike any other designer. This clip shows how he could take an idea and create a spectacle in such a fascinating and inventive way. It is man versus machine – the ultimate expression of mixing classical and modern."
  • Dana Lorenz, designer Fenton/Fallon: "McQueen changed and inspired fashion even very early on in his career. Remember the bumster? I was working for Gucci then, and the collections immediately started including very low-rise trousers. If you think about how deep into mainstream culture that trend dove, think about how many years the low-rise thong was popular! The flare leg bumster inspired the Diesel "Fanker" jean, of which I had about 30 pair...."
  • Lisa Salzer, designer Lulu Frost: "The ghoulish, ethereal, and otherworldly holograph of Kate Moss at the Spring Summer 2008 show was absolutely my favorite moment in McQueen's oeuvre, not just as a designer, but a master showman and entertainer."