Jan Vanvelden is a Dutchman who trained as a dress designer in Amsterdam and London, where he now lives. He came to England in 1962.

In 1964, he set up his own company which he ran until 1989. Thereafter, he acted as a consultant working closely with Tomasz Starzewski. He also designs for selected clients.

In the 80's, he became a favourite designer of Princess Diana. He was introduced to her by Vogue's Anna Harvey and Beatrice Miller. He made a range of maternity wear for her. Thereafter she bought several outfits from him.

She not only bought his dresses in 1982, when she was expecting Prince William, but she went back to him in 1984, when she was expecting Prince Harry also. Princess Diana said that his skirts were the most comfortable she had ever worn.

The Look

Vanvelden liked to frame her face in big puritan collars, as though she was a van Dyke portrait. He made maternity dresses of gathered skirts on basques of sheer elastic.

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