The Art of Multitasking by the Princess of Greece
Marie-Chantal, the wife of Pavlos, Crown Prince of Greece, is not only the Crown Princess, a devoted wife and mother to five, but a business woman and established fashion designer, to a luxury Childrenswear label.
Marie-Chantal is a British born, heiress. However, with titles, comes recognition and responsibility, and the Crown Princess delivers beautifully. As a trustee of the Royal Academy Trust, and a board director of DFS Group Ltd, which is a luxury retailer, catering to the travelling public and is a division of LVMH, Marie-Chantal juggles her several roles effortlessly, which is an admiration in itself. As an admirer of fashion, it’s no secret the love she has for fashion houses across the world, including Maison Valentino, which she famously wore for her marriage to Pavlos, Crown Prince of Greece, in their famous wedding in London, England, which was one of the biggest gatherings of Royalty, since Her Royal Highness Queen Elizabeth tied the knot.
Marie-Chantal’s namesake brand, ‘Marie-Chantal‘ is inspired by her inimitable, creative style, and the Childrenswear collections celebrate the heritage and nostalgia of childhood– beautiful clothes that children enjoy wearing. As a mother of five children Princess Marie-Chantal, instinctively knows that children need to be happy and comfortable in their clothes. Her label is based in Notting Hill, London, and her designs are crafted within the finest fabrics; silks, tweeds and cottons, featuring exceptional attention to the finishing’s and detailing. Asking Marie-Chantal, Crown Princess of Greece what inspired her to create childrenswear, she states, “At Marie-Chantal, we curate children’s wardrobes to inspire stylish mothers and children. Our timeless clothes will see your children effortlessly through their childhood.”
It’s also worth noting her success within global retail, as it is sold across three channels: retail, wholesale and online- they have a stunning boutique, a website as well as being stocked at premium retailers such as Harrods in London, and with the Chalhoub group within the Middle East.
The Crown Princess knows the true meaning of consistency- consistency as a mother, consistency as a wife, consistency with her title, and above all consistency as a business woman and designer with a thriving fashion house. This is the story of an admirer of fashion, Marie-Chantal, Crown Princess of Greece.
As a mother, businesswoman and fashion designer, how much of your childhood, and experience as a mother, influence your designs?
I grew up in the Far-East so shopping usually happened when we would travel abroad to Europe. I remember my mother taking us to London to buy cashmere and kilts from the Scottish House or Burberry. Also, we would get all our smock dresses and riding clothes from a shop called Rows of London. Then off to Paris, where we would go to Cacharel, Baby Dior and Petit Bateau. I loved the way she would get all our outfits together for the season. I definitely draw on my childhood, and remember the beautiful Liberty prints on the softest Tana Lawn cottons, and the shapes and style of dresses we would wear as children. I try and keep the collections fresh and beautiful, by remembering my childhood. For me children should be dressed beautifully, but always with a modern twist. My children inspire me so much, but they are big now, so I pull out old photographs of when they were tiny, to see silhouettes and designs. But usually, it’s my childhood and fashion that makes me create.
Can you tell us more about your luxury children’s wear label?
At Marie-Chantal, our aim is to dress children in beautiful yet functional clothes. We design our children’s collections to celebrate the heritage and nostalgia of childhood and add in all the classics, with a twist.
With your collections stocked via Harrods, London and Chalhoub group within the Middle East, do you have any current plans for expansion?
I have designed a luxury range of prams, furniture and bedding with Silver Cross, the leading British nursery brand. I worked closely with the Silver Cross design team, to create an exceptional collection featuring beautiful details and the highest quality materials. The collection launches worldwide this spring. We have some other very exciting plans for the future, but everything is under wraps- it’s a big secret, that I can’t wait to share when the time is right!
Can you tell more about your role as a ‘Trustee’ of the Royal Academy Trust?
I love the Royal Academy of Arts, so I always tell people to visit it when they are in London. At the moment, they are exhibiting the legendary art collection of Charles I. It is the first time since the 17th century that his collection has been brought together. There is always something super interesting going on. I was asked to become a Trustee, 13 years ago, and now have graduated to an Honorary Trustee. The Royal Academy of Arts is an independent charity led by artists and architects, a field that I love dearly, and to think that the founding members were Gainsborough and Sir Joshua Reynolds!
As a board director of DFS Group Ltd (DFS is a luxury retailer catering to the travelling public and is a division of LVMH) how do you see the future of luxury and travel within the economy?
Travel retail is such an incredible sector in the retail world. More and more people are travelling, and shopping, in airports; it has become so luxurious. Plus, who wouldn’t want to get an extra 20% off when buying a bag or all of your cosmetics? That’s what I do more and more! My father was a pioneer in the duty-free travel retail sector, and he is still very much involved in the business. Sitting on the board is fascinating, as the team and board have so much to say!
Marie-Chantal, Crown Prince of Greece, is not only a Princess, a devoted wife and mother to five, but a business woman and established fashion designer, to a luxury Childrenswear label- displaying the art of multitasking effortlessly.
What’s your opinion on the current fashion industry, and who are some of your personal favourite designers?
My daughter Olympia, is a classic millennial X; not loyal to any brand and doesn’t want to be dictated to by big brands and their advertising, so I’m all ears when she has something to say. She is studying Business, Retail and Marketing at NYU, and I think it’s this generation and their shopping culture, that we should be listening to. I’m a classic Gen X, loyal to a tee, so my usual suspects are my favourites, such as Valentino, Dior, Chloe, and Balenciaga.
Follow Marie-Chantal, Crown Princess of Greece @mariechantal22