The Duchess of Cambridge presented The Queen Elizabeth II Award for British Design, this week at The Design Museum in London.
The Duchess met and viewed designs of recipients from the British Fashion Council Foundation’s designer initiatives; NEWGEN, Fashion Trust and BFC/Vogue Designer Fashion fund and BFC/GQ Designer Fashion Fund.
These funds provide up and coming designers with financial support, showcasing opportunities and mentoring as they work to build their brands. Previous winners have included Alexander McQueen and Erdem.
Among them was Chet Lo, whose jacket with knitted spikes on caught Catherine’s eye, and she couldn’t resist reaching out her hand to touch it!
Catherine wore a dark teal midi dress from Canadian designer Edeline Lee. The dress included dropped shoulders with a hanging tie, a belt buckle and a flared skirt.
The Duchess also spoke to Steven Stokey-Daley, who has an up and coming menswear brand, SS Daley, inspired by the history of the British aristocracy.
Catherine also engaged with representatives from the British Fashion Council and the wider fashion industry, including British Vogue editor, Edward Enninful. Enninful spoke about the Duchess and her evolving sense of style: “I feel like she has been able to grow so gracefully. Her style is inspiring to a lot of people, they relate to her, but without losing what’s important to her.”
Now in it’s fifth year, the award was presented to British-Guyanan designer Saul Nash. Nash is a menswear designer and professional choreographer. His work combines the two to create clothing designed to allow for movement.
The Queen Elizabeth II Award for British Design was created to recognised the role the fashion industry plays in society and diplomacy. It is presented by a senior member of the Royal Family to an emerging British fashion designer of womenswear, menswear, or accessories that demonstrate exceptional talent and originality. The designer also has to demonstrate demonstrating value to the community and sustainable policies.
The trophy itself was inspired by the Queen Elizabeth rose and has been hand-produced by Lucy Price at Bauhinia Studios in Birmingham’s famous Jewellery Quarter.
Kate said on stage: “I’ve heard so many inspiring stories about British creativity and seen such incredible work from many talented designers.
“It therefore gives me great pleasure, in this Platinum Jubilee year, to announce the winner of the Queen Elizabeth II Award as Saul Nash.”
Caroline Rush, Chief Executive British Fashion Council (BFC) commented: “We are delighted to announce Saul Nash as the fifth recipient of the Queen Elizabeth II Award for British Design. Nash has a unique way of combining function, tech and tailoring in his design practice which has resulted in a new take on luxe sportswear.
“His work explores the relationship between performance and menswear and is often showcased through beautiful and show-stopping choreography. We are incredibly proud to recognise Saul and look forward to seeing his brand grow.”
The Award was thought of by Her Majesty’s Personal Advisor, Angela Kelly, who is in charge of The Queen’s wardrobe. Following Her Majesty’s 90th birthday celebrations, it was agreed that an Award would be created to recognise emerging British Fashion Talent in the name of The Queen.
The inaugural Award was announced and presented to Richard Quinn in February 2018 – when The Queen made her first visit to London Fashion Week.
The Queen Elizabeth II Award for British Design was presented by The Duchess of Cornwall in 2019, The Princess Royal in 2020 and The Countess of Wessex in 2021.