Woman to Make Clothes Out of Alexander McQueen 'Skin'

She says it's 'completely legal'
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 18, 2016 9:21 AM CDT
Woman to Make Clothes Out of Alexander McQueen 'Skin'
This jacket made from pig skin shows what the final product might look like.   (Tina Gorjanc)

Alexander McQueen "was always pushing the boundaries" in fashion. That's why Tina Gorjanc thinks he'd love her new project, which aims to make clothing from McQueen's skin—or rather skin grown from McQueen's DNA. The recent fashion school graduate plans to use DNA from McQueen's hair, included in a 1992 collection, to grow skin that can be tanned and turned into bags and jackets, per Quartz. "You extract certain genetic information from it and then you use that information to reprogram already existing skin so it is the exact texture and color and everything of the original source, so in this case McQueen's skin," Gorjanc tells the Telegraph. The goal isn't to sell the items, though she might hear offers from collectors. Instead, Gorjanc—inspired by the case of Henrietta Lacks—wants to start a conversation about safeguards for genetic information.

"There are huge gaps in legislation because the technologies are evolving so quickly," Gorjanc says. "Because of those loop holes we are able to extract genetic information from a human source ... then produce something out of it like a product and then patent it." In other words, her idea is "completely legal." She's already applied for a patent that would give her ownership of the lab-grown skin—which would include McQueen's DNA, freckles, moles, and even tattoos—though she can't patent his DNA itself. Though Newser originally quoted Gorjanc as saying reps from the Alexander McQueen brand "were really fascinated" with the undertaking, the fashion house says in a statement, "Contrary to some press reports the company wasn't approached about this project nor have we ever endorsed it." (More strange stuff stories.)

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