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HRH The Prince of Wales launches the Modern Artisan Project

HRH The Prince of Wales pictured with YOOX NET-A-PORTER Group Chairman and CEO Federico Marchetti and students from the Modern Artisan program

Creativity, e-commerce, craftsmanship and HRH The Prince of Wales… Introducing the Modern Artisan Project, a unique fashion and tech collaboration, designed to make a difference

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Fashion meets data; artisanal skills meet tech; sustainability meets the science of luxury e-commerce… These are the elements powering the Modern Artisan Project, a new partnership between The Prince’s Foundation and the YOOX NET-A-PORTER Group. The program brings together fashion students from Italy and young graduate makers from the UK to design and produce a capsule collection of luxury, sustainable womenswear and menswear that will be manufactured in small batches using artisanal techniques at Dumfries House, the headquarters of The Prince’s Foundation in Scotland.

The collection, which will go on sale at NET-A-PORTER, YOOX, MR PORTER and THE OUTNET in mid-2020, with all profits going to the Prince’s Foundation, takes its design inspiration from Leonardo da Vinci (on the 500th anniversary year of his death). And indeed the great Italian polymath serves as a muse to the project in more ways than one, as the students at Politecnico di Milano had exclusive access to the data insights of the retail group during the design process – truly a marriage of arts and science.

For the UK-based modern makers, who will be intensively trained at Dumfries House in the artisanal techniques required to produce refined garments in the finest tweeds, silks and cashmeres, the project represents a life-changing opportunity to receive a luxury artisanal skill set in a matter of months. Says Federico Marchetti YOOX NET-A-PORTER Group Chairman and CEO: “This project, part of a long-term partnership between YOOX NET-A-PORTER and The Prince’s Foundation, will help equip a new generation of skilled men and women to fuse traditional craft and digitally-infused creativity – and, most importantly, to do so sustainably, following the example of HRH The Prince of Wales, who has dedicated the last 40 years to building a more sustainable future.” Jacqueline Farrell, Education Director for The Prince’s Foundation at Dumfries House, said: “This project is the culmination of our Future Textiles initiative, which starts by giving school pupils an introduction to the textile industry and goes right through to the Modern Artisan project, which offers an inspiring progression route to any young person wishing to enter the fashion and textile industry.”

Luxury fashion with heart and soul? And a mission of sustainability and social change at its core? Our closets await.

The people featured in this story are not associated with NET-A-PORTER and do not endorse it or the products shown