The 70-year-old heir to the British throne teamed up with sustainable fashion discovers Vin + Omi to create an avant-garde collection of clothing made entirely from nettles, a common weed found around the world which will be supplied from his private Highgrove estate in Gloucestershire, reported People.
“It was actually his idea to use nettles from his estate and turn them into clothes,” Omi, co-founder of the brand told People from his London studio. “And what do you do with a suggestion like that? It was almost like a challenge for us!” he added.
The talks behind the project started last May at an event hosted by the British Fashion Council to promote sustainability, equality, diversity, and craftsmanship. It was then the designers were experimenting with using cow parsley to make fabric. Vin and Omi got excited when the royal heir offered to donate the weeds from his garden.
“He casually said that he had loads of nettles if we wanted them. We thought it was a nice gesture and then next thing we knew we were at Highgrove with his team harvesting nettles over two days!” said Omi.
With the help of eight students from Oxford Brookes University, the designers were able to harvest more than 3000 nettle plants which took most of the summers.
“It’s been really humbling because at Highgrove they know so much,” says Omi. “It’s becoming a learning process for us both. The way his estate is run, it’s mind-blowing to think that these ideas were implemented 20-25 years ago. He really knows a lot about gardening and the environment.”