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Celia Birtwell receives CBE, Nick Robertson awarded OBE

Textile and fashion designer Celia Birtwell has been awarded a Commander of the Order of the British Empire in the Queen’s Birthday honours list while Asos boss Nick Robertson has become an Officer of the British Empire.

Celia Birtwell started her career in 1956 with a textile design course at Salford Art School, where she met eccentric fashion designer Ossie Clark who she later married.

In 1965 Birtwell started designing textiles for Clark’s collections and gained critical acclaim as a designer. From 1967 to 1973 the pair dressed a variety of stars from the Beatles and the Rolling Stones to Twiggy.

She has been described as the most important textile designer of her generation and “the face that launched a thousand prints”. In April 2006 Topshop launched Celia Birtwell’s capsule collection and then in 2008 Birtwell launched a new collection of camping gear for Millets, featuring some of her classic archive prints such as Monkey Puzzle and Posh Dot.

Last year Birtwell launched a website selling vintage Celia Birtwell and Ossie Clark clothing and Birtwell’s John Lewis line at Birtwell also has a shop on Westbourne Park Road.

Birtwell said: “I am absolutely thrilled to receive such an honour and to be appreciated for something I really love doing. I have had the chance to dress so many wonderful people over the years – seeing a girl walking down the street wearing one of my designs still thrills me, and I hope I can continue to work in the industry that I love for many more years to come.”

Meanwhile, Asos boss Nick Robertson is now an Officer of the British Empire.

The award tops a stellar year for Robertson. The etailer earlier this month revealed profits rocketed 41% to £28.6m for its year ending March 31 as its international sales overtook UK revenues for the first time.

Robertson has firmly established himself as the poster-boy for online retail since he launched the fashion site in 2000, and is now eyeing expansion into Spain, Italy, Australia and China.

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