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McQueen left a note and hanged himself, coroner says

Fashion designer Alexander McQueen was found dead in his London home on February 11, 2010.
Fashion designer Alexander McQueen was found dead in his London home on February 11, 2010.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Coroner tells inquest designer left note and hanged himself
  • Alexander McQueen, 40, found dead at London home last week
  • Coroner's officer says police are looking at suicide note
  • McQueen's death mourned by fashion world and fans worldwide

London, England (CNN) -- Fashion designer Alexander McQueen hanged himself in his wardrobe and left a suicide note, a coroner told a London inquest Wednesday.

McQueen, 40, was found dead at his London apartment Thursday. The cause of death was asphyxia and hanging, said coroner's officer Lynda Martindill.

A police officer told the inquest that McQueen's death was "nonsuspicious," according to Martindill.

"The coroner said a note had been found and is being looked at by the police," Martindill said, without offering details about the note.

The coroner adjourned the inquest until April 28 in order to complete the full post-mortem report, she said.

McQueen, who had dressed stars from Sarah Jessica Parker and Nicole Kidman to Rihanna and Sandra Bullock, killed himself nine days after the death of his mother. He expressed his devastation at her death on his Twitter account days before he died.

Video: McQueen in his own words
Video: Death of a fashion icon
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McQueen, whose real name was Lee Alexander McQueen, had a reputation for controversy that earned him the titles "enfant terrible" and "the hooligan of English fashion."

British Vogue Editor Alexandra Shulman called him a "modern-day genius."

"His brilliant imagination knew no bounds," she said after his death.

Eccentric singer Lady Gaga, who called herself a big fan and wore McQueen's alien-inspired stilettos in a recent video, dedicated her performance at Tuesday night's BRIT Awards in London to the designer.

McQueen was born in 1970 in London's East End, the son of a taxi driver, according to a biography on the Vogue Web site.

He trained in London's Savile Row at a company that made suits for Prince Charles. One anecdote that helped cement his bad-boy image was that he had once embroidered a suit for the Prince of Wales with a profanity sewn into the lining.

His clothing line was purchased in 1991 by stylist Isabella Blow, who became a close friend. She committed suicide in 2007, five years after his label was brought into the Gucci Group, based in Paris, France.

In an interview with CNN's Jim Bittermann in October, McQueen spoke of the changing nature of runway shows for fashion designers.

His latest show was an invitation event for 1,000 people, and was streamed live on the Internet.

"It's got to progress and it's got to move on," he said. "I've been doing these shows for over 15 years now; I must have done about 60 shows. Even I get bored with the same concept, so this way, I can see a brighter future for fashion."

The designer was honored as a commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire by Queen Elizabeth II in 2003, and won numerous other awards in the fashion world.

 
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