Three’s the charm for Alexander McQueen, who dressed Liv Tyler in a glorious black gown for the Los Angeles premiere of “The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King” last week, just as he had for the first two films in the “Rings” trilogy. “His tailoring is sensational,” gushed Tyler, otherwise known as the elven royal, Arwen, as she made her way down the red carpet. “You feel pretty and womanly. He cuts great for curves, but you also don’t feel like you’re hanging out at all.”

While Tyler said finding new outfits for each premiere was “hard work,” the star’s habit of calling on McQueen certainly makes it look easy. In 2001, she chose a smart red suit for the London debut of “The Fellowship of the Ring,” while in 2002 at the Paris premiere of “The Two Towers,” Tyler went for full-throttle glamour in a pink corset gown McQueen constructed from 273 yards of silk organza.

This story first appeared in the December 8, 2003 issue of WWD.  Subscribe Today.

Each was inspired by McQueen’s theatrical runway collections, but crafting a premiere-appropriate look requires a different approach, the designer explained. “When I design for the red carpet, I am aware that this is one woman on her own in front of the world press,” McQueen e-mailed from London. “For me, it is not about how many foxes you can get around your neck or how big the rock on your finger is. It’s about the individual.

“You wear the clothes, they shouldn’t wear you,” he added. “Liv embodies this idea beautifully.”

McQueen, of course, considers Tyler a friend as well as a high-profile client — and he’s a huge “Lord of the Rings” fan. “I think the films are incredible — beautiful and epic,” he said. “And you know how much I like the macabre.”

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