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A Stitch in Time: Charles and Camilla continue their visit to Scotland with a day at Dumfries

One could say The Duke and Duchess were ‘in stitches’ during their day at the Dumfries Estate.

Built between 1754 and 1759 for the 5th Earl of Dumfries, Dumfries House has remained the same for the past 250 years.

Built between 1754 and 1759 for the 5th Earl of Dumfries, Dumfries House has remained the same for the past 250 years.

After two busy days in Edinburgh and Glasgow, The Duke and Duchess of Rothesay spent the day at Dumfries House, the estate Prince Charles saved from ruin.

Charles and Camilla attended the Dumfries House Textiles Festival on Thursday.

The Festival is a celebration of the British Textile industry.

Charles and his wife toured the manufacturers’ exhibition and visited a young people’s activity tent. The royal couple also took the time to meet school children and representatives from the industry.

Charles and Camilla are keen supporters of the British Textile Industry which includes Scottish production that is known worldwide.

After a 2013 visit to Robert Noble in Peebles, Johnstons of Elgin in Hawick and the School of Textiles in Galashiels, Prince Charles founded the Dumfries House Sewing Skills Steering Group. The group was created to examine what could be done to increase awareness of the exceptionally high-quality of work produced by the industry. Its goal was also to urge designers to use British manufacturing; and to highlight employment possibilities that exist, especially for young people when there are notable skill deficiencies in some parts of the industry.

The Steering Group, at Charles’s request, organised the “Future Textiles” programme at Dumfries House, with sewing skills courses for teachers and pupils being extremely successful.

The classes now have a permanent home in the Atelier in the attic of Dumfries House.

In 2014, The Duke of Rothesay along with members of the Steering Group met with local manufacturers. It was during this meeting that the idea of a Textiles Festival was formed. The Dumfries House Textiles Festival, dubbed ‘A Stitch in Time’, celebrates the British textile industry but also intends to highlight career opportunities and promote the repatriation of textiles manufacturing back to the U.K.

Guests attending the Festival on Thursday ranged from teachers and schoolchildren to industry representatives.

Highlights of Thursday’s Festival included a manufacturers’ showcase including the famous Mackintosh of Scotland, traditional kiltmakers and tweed makers and a cashmere accessories company established with the help of a Prince’s Trust grant.

Those in attendance had the chance to learn a new skill or perhaps enhance their knowledge at the skills theatre that gave live demonstrations ranging from lace-making to tailoring.

Fashion went to the dogs, literally in the style tent. The tent included a fashion show of dogs sporting Scottish manufactured and designed dog coats. The Atelier ran various guest lectures and seminars covering fashion related topics. Guest speakers included Patrick Grant, from BBC2’s ‘Great British Sewing Bee’ and Caroline Rush, the CEO of The British Fashion Council.

Following the visit to the Festival, Prince Charles attended a panel discussion.

Friday will be the final day of the visit to Scotland as Charles will attend engagements on the Isle of Islay. Next up for Charles and Camilla is Wales week that begins on 6th July.

Featured Photo credit: UK Northern Ireland Office via Flickr
Photo Credit: Amanda Slater via Flickr

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