“It’s absolute fashion genius,” squeals fashion designer Rob Boong-Moll, as he prepares his controversial new collection for Scunthorpe Fashion Week. “To be found hanging in a wardrobe, amongst your latest creations – it’s just so chic!” The twenty-six year old is adamant that recently deceased fashion guru Alexander McQueen was making an important fashion statement with his suicide. “Why else would he have hanged himself in wardrobe? Why not just take an overdose?” he asks. “It’s clear that he wanted to show that being dead is totally fashionable.” Indeed, Boong-Moll is claiming McQueen’s suicide as the inspiration for his new collection. “Trust me – nooses are going to be the next big thing in neck ware,” he declares. “They’re just so versatile – you can have them in any colour and a whole variety of materials from rough hemp to silk!” Indeed, Boong-Moll’s new show will feature cadaverous models in blue face make up emerging from a coffin, before gliding down the cat walk. In addition to nooses, some models will be sporting simulated slashed wrists, whilst their outfits will be inspired by burial shrouds – all featuring special ‘pill pockets’ for carrying prescription drug overdoses. However, the designer has dismissed press reports that his show is to culminate with a model dousing herself with petrol before setting light to herself. “That’s just ridiculous – all of my designs are made from non-flammable materials,” he says, snorting with derision. “Besides, health and safety regulations at the venue would never allow it!” Fears have been raised that Boong-Moll’s new ‘suicide chic’ collection could prove a malicious influence on the young. “Quite apart from being tasteless, this proposed show is also utterly irresponsible,” says Randy Ferwilliger, fashion correspondent of the Sunday Bystander. “By glamourising suicide on the catwalk in this way, Boong-Moll risks encouraging his audience to try and take their own lives in order to make their own fashion statements. Before you know it, impressionable young girls will be trying on his shrouds in a boutique, before taking an overdose in the changing rooms to complete the ‘look’.” Boong-Moll is dismissive of such claims. “Fashionistas are simply not that stupid,” he says. “I mean, when there was that vampire fashion craze a while ago, they didn’t go around biting each other in the neck and drinking each others’ blood, did they? The average fashion fan will be well aware that whole point of ‘suicide chic’ is to be able to capture that fantastic ‘just dead’ look without actually having to die!”

Not surprisingly, Boong-Moll’s plans have been met with a hostility in the fashion world. Variously described as ‘sick’ and ‘disrespectful’, he has found himself accused of trying to exploit McQueen’s personal tragedy for cheap publicity. “It’s what Alex would have wanted,” says Boong-Moll – who admits that he never actually met Alexander McQueen – in response to his critics. “He lived for fashion, so it’s only fitting that his death should inspire a whole new look!” The designer also points out that McQueen’s suicide was, itself, a post-modern celebrity death. “Post-Jade Goody, every celebrity death is public property,” he says. “Just look at the way Sky News had exclusive coverage of McQueen’s last journey in the mortuary van. Apparently the crime scene photos had already been sold to OK magazine, and the post mortem was outsourced to Hello.” Many TV companies and celebrity lifestyle magazines have now set up their own crime scene investigation units and teams of forensic investigators. “It’s the best way of securing an exclusive,” opines Boong-Moll. “Plus, by outsourcing, the police save money!” Consequently, the designer argues, it is essential that celebrity corpses should look their best. “All too often when people – even celebrities – commit suicide, they just don’t stop to think of the devastating effect leaving an ugly, poorly dressed corpse could have on their loved ones,” he says. “Just look at Marilyn Monroe – she was found completely unmade up after taking an overdose! Was that really the way she wanted to be remembered? She was just lucky that she snuffed herself in the days before famous corpses were public property!” With death now no barrier to celebrity, the rich and famous are increasingly insisting their corpses are guaranteed five star service. “Nowadays Hello is said to possess the most modern mortuary in the UK, with some of Europe’s top pathologists under contract. The public sector just can’t compete with the level of care they can give celebrity corpses,” says Boong-Moll. “That’s why Alex signed up with them – he didn’t want just any Tom, Dick or Harry poking him around after he topped himself!”

The designer is now planning to bring this level of post mortem fashion to ordinary people. “I’m aiming to offer designer makeovers to the newly dead,” he announced at the press launch for Scunthorpe Fashion Week. “Even if someone was frumpy and lacking fashion sense when they were alive, I’ll guarantee them a beautiful corpse.” Boong-Moll is partnering with a local undertakers firm in Scunthorpe to offer clients fully accessorized funerals, including designer body bags and burial clothes, bespoke mink-lined coffins and full pre-burial hair stylings and manicures. “No more will people have to suffer the sight of their loved ones with those ghastly undertakers make up jobs,” he declared. “We’ll be bringing in professional make up artists to ensure that no matter how horrendous the manner of their deaths, these corpses will look a million dollars! Let’s face it, if they can make the average soap opera slapper look presentable, then a mangled corpse shouldn’t present them with any problems.” However, the whole basis of Boong-Moll’s fashion schemes has been challenged by fashion correspondent Randy Ferwilliger, who is claiming that Alexander McQueen didn’t commit suicide. For God’s sake, it’s so bloody obvious – a fashion designer found hanged in a wardrobe amongst his latest creations? Far from being a fashion statement, this can surely only be the work of a bizarre murderer of celebrities,” he says. “The authorities are obviously trying to cover it up in order to prevent mass panic amongst Britain’s rich and famous.” Indeed, the journalist is confidently predicting further bizarre murders, as the elusive killer continues his murderous spree. “It’s only a matter of time before they find a celebrity chef like Gordon Ramsey baked in his own oven,” he muses. “Or maybe Heather Mills beaten to death with an artificial limb.” Boong-Moll is unfazed by this latest development, claiming that it simply provides him with further fashion inspiration. “Even if he was murdered, it just means that Alex was a martyr to fashion, as jealousy of his talent was clearly the motivation for this hypothetical slaying,” he says. “The whole murder itself is a fashion statement! Victim chic could be the next big thing. I can see it now – the slashed throats, the entrails, the ligature marks. All colour co-ordinated, of course!”