Luxury items 

How Queen Elizabeth became the champion of British luxury brands – Robb Report

The late Queen Elizabeth II could be accurately described as an ostentatious consumer of British luxury. Not that she did anything as vulgar as flaunting her wealth and status, far from it. Plus she was perfectly and professionally aware of her appearance, choosing to wear bright colors to be easy to spot in a crowd, for example. She was also always aware that her choices would be noticed – and that by wearing clothes from local brands she was championing British luxury as surely as she would later when she joined Anna Wintour in the front row at Fashion Week in London. London in 2018. The Queen “often bought Brits” (as Britons were advised to do in the strife-torn 1970s and 1980s). But no stilland a strong sense of patriotism didn’t stop him from owning countless Hermès scarves, as well as some from Burberry (plus their classic trench coat).

As Prince of Wales, Charles, who became Charles III, showed similar but not identical impulses. He has long been a patron of what is now called ‘slow fashion’, as practiced on Savile Row and Jermyn Street, where the new king has always bought many of his (bespoke, of course) clothes. . But he was a sort of precocious and prescient eco-warrior, which informs passion projects such as the Campaign for Wool, while his commitment to training young people and supporting ancient and modern craftsmanship drives programs of modern craftsmen set up by his Foundation The Prince’s. Meanwhile, Charles’ old Aston Martin DB6, a relic of his carefree bachelor days, is now being redesigned to run on sustainable bioethanol.

But we know all this because, unlike the rest of us, the brands regularly frequented by the royal family become a public affair, often in the form of royal warrants (“by appointment”) that adorn everything from the confection from Savile Row homes to dry cleaners and Waitrose supermarket delivery vans. These are powerful endorsements, but we can also see in the Queen’s warrants the blending of her public and private life – and what the New Yorker has just been described as “a life made up of privileges and sacrifices, and even those who did not appreciate the first recognized the second”.

Sitting with Anna Wintour at London Fashion Week

Yui Mok – Pool/Getty Images

Uniforms – by equestrian specialists Bernard Weatherill or Gieves & Hawkes; royal dresses for state occasions – by Ede & Ravenscroft – all on the Row. These sober, discreet, but reassuringly priced handbags from Launer, based in Walsall, a not very glamorous town in the Midlands which quietly produces superb leather goods, including saddlery for the Windsors, this most equestrian family . Fulton’s Brollies (transparencies in service – again focusing on visibility). Shoes mainly by Anello and Davide of London, who started out making shoes for ballet and theater dancers, before branching out in the 1960s when they made Chelsea boots for the Beatles and patent leather shoes for the queen, usually with a two-inch square heel. But what was the Queen, after all, valiantly launching ships, opening schools and parliaments with a heavy crown on her head, welcoming “friendly” despots in the service of the nation, visiting the Commonwealth or taking walks royal? an accomplished and seemingly indefatigable performer, spending long days on your feet, often followed by long evenings of galas and speeches?

As for making an entrance for such occasions, it’s easy to imagine the young queen gracefully stepping out of a Rolls-Royce Phantom, her Norman Hartnell gown topped with a diamond necklace and tiara. But just as indelible are the images of her in later years (and performed by Helen Mirren in The Queen) in rest mode – driving a Land Rover, a sensibly dressed peasant girl wearing a Barbour and one of those Hermès scarves. And in the warrants, HM’s downtime is represented by Musto (sportswear), Hunter (wellington boots), Kinloch Anderson (kilts, in the Balmoral Tartan his ancestor Prince Albert designed for his Scottish home, where she died this week). And let’s not forget James Purdey & Sons, the London arms company that has enjoyed the patronage of every British monarch since Queen Victoria.

The Queen visiting Fortnum & Mason ahead of her Diamond Jubilee.

Fortnum & Mason hosted her ahead of her Diamond Jubilee.

Jeff Spicer – Pool WPA/Getty Images

Shared hobbies and a shared appreciation of craftsmanship – passed down between different generations of royals – help to explain Purdey’s long tenure and also the fact that many UK businesses have often had multiple royal warrants – providing the Queen, the late Prince Philip and Charles, now Charles III. It was the Queen’s mother, aka the Queen Mother – a woman who had a magnificent appreciation for the finer things in life – who first introduced her daughters to some of her favorite British luxury brands. She gave young Elizabeth her first Launer bag (the first of what would become over a hundred) and introduced her to Norman Hartnell.

The couturier had dressed the eldest Queen Elizabeth for a state visit to Paris on the eve of war in 1938, a task made tricky by the sudden death of her mother, Lady Glamis. Fortunately, Hartnell remembered that white had once been the color of royal mourning and created a collection of frothy white dresses that reminded Parisians of the crinoline dresses worn by the beauties of Second Empire society depicted so dreamily in Winterhalter’s paintings. . They were charmed, just as the Windsors were charmed by the gracious and gracious Hartnell. After the war, the Queen Consort and young Princesses Elizabeth and Margaret frequently visited her chic Mayfair showroom. Here Elizabeth was fitted for the dresses she wore to her wedding in 1947 and her coronation in 1953, while throughout her life the Queen wore gloves made by Cornelia James, like Launer, a refugee of Nazism, presented to him by Hartnell.

The Queen attends the King's Troop 70th Anniversary Parade

The queen had a fondness for Launer handbags.

Hannah McKay – Pool WPA/Getty Images

With the accession of Charles III, some of those long-standing terms look set to expire, unless of course Kate Middleton, now Duchess of Cornwall and Cambridge and in line for her own series of By Royal Appointments, decides to create a fashion for wearing gloves. Each generation of royals brings with it new styles, new priorities to promote. The King certainly loves his English menswear, from Turnbull & Asser to newcomer, Hackett. Fictionalised in The crown we saw young Charles being introduced to his tailors by his great-uncle, Lord Mountbatten – while Charles’ other uncle, the Duke of Windsor, was an object lesson in smart dress (if not royalty) . But Charles’ father, Prince Philip, was also a stylish model, who, like Charles, wore John Lobb shoes and got his naval uniforms from Gieves & Hawkes.

But these two Windsors have more in common there. Philip, like Charles, was a remarkable nurturer of young talent and also an innovator. So he had to endorse Duchy Originals, Charles’ entrepreneurial venture that markets premium organic food grown on its own land, much of it delivered by those Waitrose vans emblazoned with his own royal warrants and those of his late mother. Profits from the company go to his foundation The Prince’s, where they in turn help fund programs such as the Modern Artisan training program. It’s a different approach to her mother, the Queen, but the sense of service is certainly the same.

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