We go back to nature with The Duchess of Cambridge

2nd July, 2019

From Wedding Dress to Garden Den

We are thrilled to have collaborated with HRH The Duchess of Cambridge to help bring her showcase ‘Back to Nature’ garden to life at this year’s RHS Hampton Court Garden Festival.

The Royal School of Needlework first worked for Her Royal Highness in 2011, creating the bespoke lace on her wedding dress, veil and shoes (designed by Sarah Burton of Alexander McQueen). For this latest project, we have created a hand embroidered textile by only using compostable materials to complete the surround of a forest den. The hand embroidery techniques of Appliqué, Whitework and Needlelace were a perfect combination to emulate a camouflage style netting and provide magical, dappled light into the den.

The ethos of the design was to create a piece which employs the traditional skills of hand embroidery combined with the fabrics and materials of the garden. Fine embroidery threads have been replaced with jute garden twine, and fine linens and silks replaced with coarse hessian fabrics.  The unique hand embroidered textile artwork was then set over a Birch tree ‘A-frame’ to create the forest den.

Angie Wyman, Course Leader for the RSN Degree in Hand Embroidery said: “We were delighted to have the opportunity to work with The Duchess of Cambridge again and to be able to showcase the adaptability of needlework. This project was brought to life by RSN staff, Degree and Future Tutor students. It is a perfect example of how RSN students work collaboratively and can successfully apply their design and hand embroidery skills to new contexts and materials.”

The Duchess of Cambridge created the special garden to inspire families and communities to spend time in natural environments and help build foundations for positive physical and mental wellbeing.