Catherine Walker was one of the most famous British designers of her time. She died at the age of 65, on the 23rd of September 2010. Catherine is known for being the personal designer of the late Princess Diana of Wales and many more famous women.
Catherine Walker was born in France in 1945. In 1977 she established the so-called Chelsea Design Company Ltd. though she had no previous experience. She studied philosophy for a long time and even managed to get a doctorate for it. According to Walker herself she chose to name her company like this because she was not a well-known designer (not even a fashion- educated one), so she decided to conceal her lack of reputation.
Catherine Walker decided to establish a fashion company in 1975, after being widowed. She first started making children’s wear and maternity wear. What inspired her was the purely technical side of designing and making clothes, it took her many years to start considering herself as a fashion designer. During the first 12 years Catherine perfected her technique and as she slowly mastered the craft her popularity grew too, from mouth to mouth. Until, in 1982, British Vogue spotted her and shot her designs for one of its issues. Walker however has always disliked publicity and big media attention and because of this has never held a runway show.
For her achievements in the fashion industry Catherine Walker has received two “Designer of the year” awards. She is currently an expert in pattern-cutting, fitting and sewing. She not only designs ready-to-wear clothes but also hats, jewelry (including costume jewelry) and bridal gowns.
Walker however is best known for being the designer of Diana, Princess of Wales. It’s ironic how this partnership attracted huge media attention to the now famous designer, more than she ever wanted. For more than 15 years Diana received personal attention from Walker and the so needed designs that would match her position and most of all-taste.