Ever since returning to work in September after her summer vacation, Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, has been ahead of the curve when it comes to making her PPE fashionable. Though she’s gotten some competition from Princess Anne and Kate Middleton, Camilla’s Liberty floral masks and face shields have made her the royal to beat, but ever since the beginning of this month, Prince Charles has also found a few masks to fit his singular sense of style.
On Wednesday, the couple made a visit to the Bank of England, and while Camilla opted for an intricate floral pattern, Charles sent a subtle message with his protective gear. His turquoise silk mask was made by Turquoise Mountain, a charity he helped found in 2006. The charity works with artisans to preserve traditional crafts and provide job training, and since the beginning of the pandemic, they have partnered with weavers and seamstresses in Myanmar to make masks featuring traditional fabrics. Charles also wore a Turquoise Mountain creation when he first wore a mask in public on his trip to Northern Ireland earlier this month. He accessorized with a tie that features the zig-zag pattern of Fleet Air Arm, the Royal Navy squadron he trained with in the 70s.
While at the bank, the couple spoke to employees who work in its education programs and looked at the bank’s redesigned £50 note. Later, they participated in a virtual summit with bank tellers across the country. Charles also signed a promissory note worth £1 million, a royal tradition that Queen Elizabeth has participated in since she was a child.
According to the Daily Mail’s Rebecca English, Camilla used the signing as the moment to crack a joke. When the duchess was told that the note would be held in a vault for safe-keeping, she said, “So, I can’t pop it into my handbag?”
Despite the U.K.’s rising COVID case count, Charles and Camilla have kept up a busy schedule of engagements. Yesterday, Camilla went to Paddington Station to thank the staff of the British Transport Police and Network Rail for their work through the pandemic, and on Monday she visited the Westonbirt Arboretum. Last week, Charles had a socially-distanced meeting with Mustafa Al-Kadhimi, the prime minister of Iraq, at Clarence House.
More Great Stories From Vanity Fair
— Monica Lewinsky on the Pandemic’s Forgotten F-Word
— Why Harry and Meghan Won’t Spend Christmas With the Queen
— What One Book Critic Learned by Reading 150 Trump Books
— How Ghislaine Maxwell Recruited Young Girls for Jeffrey Epstein
— More Details Emerge on Prince Harry and Prince William’s “Bitter Explosion”
— Tracing Photographer Richard Avedon’s Bohemian Coming of Age
— From the Archive: The Mysteries of Princess Diana’s Fatal Car Crash
— Not a subscriber? Join Vanity Fair to receive full access to VF.com and the complete online archive now.