Wednesday, May 22, 2024
Home / Fashion & Beauty  / By Royal Appointment

By Royal Appointment

A recent private behind-the-scenes tour of New Zealand fashion house Untouched World by Her Royal Highness Princess Anne was a highlight for the company whose   leadership in sustainability practices in the fashion industry is internationally recognised.

Anne, Princess Royal was accompanied on her visit to the company’s Christchurch workrooms and retail space by her husband Sir Timothy Laurence, together with Untouched World staff, members of the Agricultural and Pastoral Association and Defence Force personnel.

“We were delighted to host the princess,” says Untouched World Founder and CEO Peri Drysdale. “She was warm and friendly and keen to meet with all the members on our team, extending her visit longer than scheduled because she wanted to keep chatting. As President of both the UK Textile and Fashion Associations Princess Anne is very knowledgeable about textiles and sustainability and she shared with us her learnings in terms of sustainability initiatives she has come across in her travels.”

Peri first engaged with the British monarchy in 1995 after being invited to create garments as gifts for all Commonwealth Heads of Government attending CHOGM in New Zealand.

 “Queen Elizabeth II and the Duke of Edinburgh were present at CHOGM and during their stay at Government House they were introduced to our clothing , subsequently placing an order which we sent to Buckingham Palace.”

Peri also met with Princess Anne at the sixth Commonwealth Study Conference in 2003 and with Prince Charles, now King Charles III, on one of his visits to New Zealand.

“That was the beginning of our relationship with the Royal Family,” says Peri. “They were impressed with how we were using possum fibre in knitwear as a solution to a major ecological problem in New Zealand. Prince Charles had his people contact us to ask if we would do a feasibility project around using grey squirrel fur, similar to possum. The grey squirrels in the UK do a lot of damage to the environment and threaten the red squirrel. As it turned out the fur was too short, so it wasn’t suitable for knitwear.”

Quality timeless design, durability and transparency are Untouched World’s hallmarks and account for the label’s significant appeal worldwide.

“Over nine per cent of our merino wool is sourced from Glenthorne Station in Canterbury less than two hours’ drive from our workrooms,” says Peri. “Glenthorne is a ZQRX certified farm and sets the standard in regenerative farming.”