Ralph Lauren might be a long-acclaimed pillar of the fashion world, known for his “sartorial ease” encapsulated by the label’s iconic stand-out piece, AKA the polo tee. At present, he is the first designer to be recognised with an honorary knighthood. The ceremony was held at Buckingham Palace on Wednesday June 19th where Prince Charles handed the traditional insignia to Lauren – who in the past has also been given a Key to the City of New York and the French Chevalier de la Legion d’Honneur.
Celebrating 50 years in the business back in 2018, 79-year-old Ralph Lauren has been an abiding fan of traditional Englishness, captured across his clothing. When the knighthood was first announced last November, Antony Phillipson, U.K.’s Trade Commissioner for North America, cited Lauren’s “key role in forging transatlantic cultural and economic connections” as a core purpose for the honour, along with his imperative contribution as a “vanguard for the global fashion industry and American style for nearly half a century.”
Furthermore, in a press release, Ralph Lauren’s Corporation cited many more contributions that starred beyond his role as a designer: Lauren owned profound empathy that was recognition-worthy, acting as a philanthropist towards charities related to cancer – act which lead to open the Ralph Lauren Centre for Breast Cancer Research in 2016, dedicated to the designer himself.