She was at the museum to present the Queen Elizabeth II Award for British Design. Below, the Duchess was greeted by Caroline Rush, Chief Executive of the British Fashion Council, and Tim Marlow, Chief Executive of the Design Museum.
The event was hosted by the British Fashion Council (BFC).
The Duchess with Ms. Rush and Stephanie Phair, chair of the BFC. Ms. Phair is the chief customer officer at online retailer Farfetch.
The Duchess met with recipients from the BFC Foundation’s designer initiatives, including the BFC/Vogue Designer Fashion Fund and BFC/GQ Designer Fashion Fund.
A news release notes, “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.”
The Duchess also spoke with representatives from the BFC and the wider fashion industry.
And with Richard Quinn the first winner of The Queen Elizabeth II Award for British Design pic.twitter.com/QD5CYZi2Bm
— Rebecca English (@RE_DailyMail) May 4, 2022
A view of models wearing British designers at today’s event.
The Duchess watching a presentation.
A number of people spoke at the function, including Ms. Phair.
More about the Queen Elizabeth II Award from The Evening Standard.
The award was established back in 2018 to recognise the role the fashion industry plays in society and diplomacy and to spotlight young designers who are talented and making a difference to society through either sustainable practices or community engagement.
The Duchess delivered brief remarks before announcing this year’s winner.
The award went to designer Saul Nash.
A quick video of the presentation.
WATCH: Kate presents the Queen Elizabeth II Award for British Design to dancer and fashion designer Saul Nash pic.twitter.com/wDcv4PAlbr
— Emily Nash (@emynash) May 4, 2022
More about Mr. Nash from this Women’s Wear Daily story.
A Central Saint Martins and Royal College of Art alumni, Nash was recognized for his “innovative take on design,” and “developing new materials while actively pioneering a new frontier within the industry – imbuing sportswear design with an exploration of heritage, performance, and technical innovation,” which was well demonstrated with his Woolmark Prize capsule collection.
Back to the WWD article.
The British Fashion Council revealed that Nash, who is also a professional choreographer, was also chosen for his role as “a cultural innovator whose work opens conversations around identity, masculinity, and class.”
The designs, which fall somewhere between luxury, activewear and streetwear, are rooted in his Caribbean heritage and Northeast London upbringing. He often showcases his designs in self or co-choreographed performances, which best demonstrate how they are intended to move.
Some may recall the Queen presenting the first award back in February 2018 when she made her first visit to London Fashion Week. Below you see HM beside Vogue’s editor-in-chief, Anna Wintour, seated next to the monarch’s dressmaker, Angela Kelly.
The award was presented by The Duchess of Cornwall in 2019, then Princess Anne in 2020, and the Countess of Wessex in 2021.
Here you see the Duchess with Mr. Nash watching a fashion show with his designs.
The Duchess of Cambridge watches an immersive fashion show by Saul Nash, winner of The Queen Elizabeth II Award for British Design👇🏻 pic.twitter.com/e0XRItnDzX
— Lizzie Robinson (@LizzieITV) May 4, 2022
Commenting on his award, Mr. Nash said, “To be recognized in this way is an incredible vote of confidence — it would be for any designer, but I feel especially proud as this is a moment of validation for sportswear. The focus of my work has always been to push and open up new possibilities, from tackling preconceived notions of sportswear to attempting to challenge perceptions of gender norms in menswear. It’s important to weave my own story into my work, keeping it personal and true to myself.”
The Duchess chatted with Ms. Phair and Ms. Rush before departing.
A quick video as the Duchess leaves the museum.
— Cameron Walker (@CameronDLWalker) May 4, 2022
A wave goodbye.
Now for our look at what Kate wore for today’s engagement.
The Pedernal Dress (£785, about $980 at today’s exchange rates) has a loose-fitting bodice, high neck, dropped shoulders, and fitted waist with a removable belt. The slim skirt flares at the hem, and there are adjustable ties at the elbow. The Edeline Lee site notes that the design “works beautifully on a wide range of body types. It is easy and comfortable, but simultaneously sleek and elegant.”
The fabric is a blend of 96% polyester and 4% elastane, described as “Flou Bubble Jacquard woven in Italy.” This photo gives you a good look at the side seaming.
Pedernal means flint in Spanish, and the Pedernal Mountain in New Mexico was one of artist Georgia O’Keefe’s favorite vistas to paint; it is where her ashes are scattered. I don’t know if that is an influence on the style name or not. Here you get a good look at the textured fabric.
More about Edeline Lee from Draper’s Online.
Lee grew up in Vancouver, Canada, before moving to London and graduating from Central Saint Martins in 2008, and then working at luxury labels including Zac Posen, Alexander McQueen and Dior. Lee launched her eponymous label in 2014, and has been showing at London Fashion Week since 2018.
“As an intern, I was lucky to be given the opportunity by Zac Posen to design a dress that ended up being worn by Britney Spears, Natalie Portman, Naomi Campbell and Jennifer Lopez, and was featured on the covers of magazines. I think that is what led to him offering me my first job.”
A Vogue story notes, “her business is rooted in dressing the professional woman; most of her fabrics are immune to wrinkling…”. All of the designer’s pieces are made in England. Here you see Ms. Lee in February when she launched her collection at Harrods.
The Duchess carried her Emmy London Natasha Clutch ($375) in a colorway called greenery.
And wore her Rebecca Heels ($420), also by Emmy.
We saw the return of the Nadia Irena Maya earrings ($75) first worn during the Caribbean tour.
A quick scheduling note: next Tuesday, the 10th, the Duke and Duchess will attend the official opening of the Glade of Light Memorial on 10th May. The memorial commemorates the victims of the 22nd May 2017 terrorist attack at Manchester Arena.
Here is one more image from today’s event.