Ralph Lauren has been awarded France’s highest honour by French President Emmanuel Macron.
The American designer was bestowed with the Ordre national de la Legion d’honneur (Legion of Honour) at a ceremony held in the Elysee Palace in Paris on Friday, nine years after being given the title of Chevalier de la Legion d’honneur by former President Nicolas Sarkozy.
“What matters most to me is having my family here,” said Lauren after receiving the accolade.
Macron also heaped praise on the fashion veteran in a 20-minute speech, noting the designer’s “timeless elegance”.
“The American dream that you imported is the spirit of America that we most admire,” he praised. “You incarnate the American spirit.”
A representative for the Ralph Lauren brand shared a photo of the designer decorated with his new medal on Instagram too, and in the accompanying caption, noted that the 80-year-old received the honour in recognition of his “global contributions as a designer, business leader, and philanthropist”.
The post also noted his “deep connection to French heritage”, such as his restoration of a 17th-century Hotel Particulier on Boulevard Saint-Germain.
Nathalie Rykiel was also on hand to celebrate the achievements of Lauren at the star-studded event and told WWD that her mother, the late Sonia Rykiel, was such a fan of the designer that she only slept in Ralph Lauren bedding.
“He is so faithful to himself, to an image, to a country, and what he believes in,” she gushed.
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