Prince’s Foundation textile skills programme launches luxury fashion collection

A luxury fashion collection has been launched as a result of an artisan training programme involving The Prince’s Foundation in Ayrshire.

HRH The Prince of Wales, pictured before the Covid crisis, has supported the fashion skills project throughout. Picture: Mike Wilkinson

The capsule collection of womenswear and menswear, branded Yoox Net-a-Porter for The Prince’s Foundation, is the culmination of a programme which aims to strengthen textile skills training in the UK and Italy.

The collection, comprising 18 pieces, was designed in Italy by students from the Politecnico di Milano’s fashion research laboratory then manufactured at Dumfries House near Cumnock by four students as part of an “intensive” training programme.

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Prince Charles, who holds the title of Duke of Rothesay when in Scotland, has supported the project throughout.

The collection was designed in Italy then manufactured at Dumfries House near Cumnock by students as part of an intensive training programme designed to help preserve traditional craft skills. Picture: Mike Wilkinson

The collection design, carried out during the 500th anniversary year of the death of Leonardo da Vinci, is said to have taken inspiration from the convergence of art and science in da Vinci’s work.

Jacqueline Farrell, education director of The Prince’s Foundation at Dumfries House, said: “The modern artisan project is a unique collaboration that champions sustainability and prepares trainees with the skills and confidence needed to gain employment in the fashion and textile industry, or start their own business.

“Managing the project on behalf of The Prince’s Foundation at Dumfries House and overseeing our skilled tutors teach the trainees artisanal skills and traditional methods of production to a new generation of makers has, for me, been a dream come true.

“I am very much looking forward to seeing what the artisans do next and am confident that each and every one of them will use the skills they have developed throughout the modern artisan project to make a positive impact on the fashion and textile industry and help preserve these invaluable heritage craft skills.”

All profits from the sale of the collection will be donated to The Prince’s Foundation to enable the charity to develop and deliver training programmes that will help preserve traditional textile skills.

Federico Marchetti, chairman and chief executive of Yoox Net-a-Porter, added: “I’ve long been inspired by uniting seemingly opposing worlds. The modern artisan project harnesses big data and artificial intelligence to transform the ancient profession of craftsmanship into a contemporary career.”

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