The collection, which offers both men’s and women’s clothes, is also quite radical in so far as it subverts the usual industry dynamics whereby Britain’s creatives come up with the blueprint and other countries manufacture it.
Modern Artisan would be designed by students of the prestigious Politecnico di Milano and made at Dumfries House by Brits, who were recruited from all over the country. One of them, a graduate of Middlesex University, told me she’d answered one of the adverts, “because all it said was ‘do you want to learn to make luxury clothes in a remote part of Scotland?’ and I was instantly intrigued”.
The four British recruits spent the best part of a year working in the outbuildings of Dumfries House, WhatsApping constantly with their design counterparts in Milan. The Prince, who saw the first samples back in November 2019, along with that small group of journalists, seemed happy with what he found and the way the collection married tradition with thoroughly modern insights – it turns out far from being a fashion agnostic, he has long seen its bigger picture. As he emails: “I have always believed that the fashion industry has an important role to play in helping to confront some of the environmental challenges that we face.
“Educating the next generation about the importance of sustainability and the virtues of using natural and sustainably produced materials is something that is very close to my heart and is a critical part of The Modern Artisan project.
“Responsibility in fashion comes in many different forms, from the traceability of the fabric and materials used, to the ethical treatment of workers in the supply chain, through to the life cycle of the garment itself
“The Modern Artisan collection has been designed and manufactured with sustainability at its heart. The trainees have worked incredibly hard to create a collection of garments that will be treasured for years to come, using many natural and sustainable fabrics from both Italy and the UK.”