Stewart Parvin has been designing for the Queen since 2002. It is almost impossible to find information on the work that he does, such is his discretion.
Although designing for Her Majesty means signing privacy agreements, Stewart Parvin could, if he chose, share his design inspiration. He has only ever let go of small details regarding the Queen’s style tips and practical approach. It is Angela Kelly, the Queen’s Dresser, who has revealed the relationship between her and Stewart as they dress the Queen together for almost every occasion.
Angela Kelly, the Queen’s Dresser
Angela Kelly has written two books describing her work: The Other Side of the Coin – The Queen The Dresser and the Wardrobe, and Dressing the Queen: The Jubilee Wardrobe. In it she describes that contrary to her name, she does not dress the Queen, the Queen dresses herself. Also, more importantly, she describes how she met and began working with Stewart Parvin as a designer.
Angela Kelly and Stewart Parvin Collaboration
Angela Kelly, a Liverpudlian, decided to visit some local designers near Buckingham Palace. The first shop she went into seemed old fashioned and stale and a man at the back stared over the top of his black-rimmed glasses and told her the clothing was couture, not retail.
She left the shop and went to Stewart Parvin Couture. On entering she noticed the difference to the previous shop: it was bright and modern. No-one minded if she looked at the designs, cut and finish of the clothes on the rails. She knew at once she was looking at not just the work of a skilled designer, but a skilled tailor.
She only had to wait ten minutes for Mr Parvin himself, and she asked if she could take a cocktail suit she had spotted back to her client and show her. Having no idea who her client was, Stewart Parvin agreed. Having received Her Majesty’s approval, Kelly returned two hours later and asked him if he would sketch some designs for a high-profile female customer.
Stewart spent some time with her sketching some designs, and finally she disclosed that these designs would be for Her Majesty The Queen.
Stewart Parvin Recognised for His Work
In 2007 Stewart received his Royal Warrant in recognition of his contribution to the Queen’s wardrobe. He and Kelly have worked together for over twenty years now. Sometimes, Kelly will design a dress. Together they have made the Queen an icon in the last twenty years of her life. In 2016 he received a Royal Victorian Order (RVO) presented to him by the Queen for his work.
Philanthropy During Covid
During Covid, Parvin designed and made scrubs for frontline workers. Anita at Classics Textiles donated the fabric and Parvin’s workers made it into scrubs for Frimley Park Hospital.
Subscribe to FIB’s Weekly Breaking News Report for your weekly dose of music, fashion and pop culture news!