Ralph Lauren gets Honorary UK Knighthood for services to fashion
One of the biggest names in American (and global) fashion received the kind of honour that’s not granted to many on Wednesday when Ralph Lauren collected an Honorary Knighthood from the UK for services to the industry.
Officially, he’s now an Honorary Knight Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire, which doesn’t mean he can call himself Sir Ralph as he’s neither a British nor Commonwealth country citizen. But it certainly underlines the impact that Ralph Lauren, KBE, has made in a career stretching back to the early 1960s.
The insignia was signed off by Queen Elizabeth but he received it from Prince Charles at Buckingham Palace, and he’s the first American designer to become a KBE.
It’s one of a number of awards he’s notched up in his career spanning more than five decades with his trophy cabinet also containing the Key to the City of New York that he received from Mayor Michael Bloomberg, for his outstanding civic contributions. And there’s also the French Chevalier de la Legion d'Honneur, in recognition of his contributions as a designer, business leader, and philanthropist.
He was also awarded the James Smithson Bicentennial Medal, “recognising his lifetime contributions as a great American and his leadership role in the preservation of the Star-Spangled Banner.”
And The Council of Fashion Designers of America has named him both Womenswear and Menswear Designer of the Year, plus Retailer of the Year, and has given him the Lifetime Achievement Award.
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