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Subject: Fashion designer Catherine Walker dies ages 65

Written By: Philip Eno on 09/26/10 at 8:02 am

The fashion designer Catherine Walker, whose clothes were favoured by Diana, Princess of Wales, has died at the age of 65, her family has said.

She passed away at a hospital near her Sussex home on Thursday, following a battle with cancer.

She provided Diana with many of her iconic outfits, and the princess was buried in a black Walker dress.

Walker first worked with Diana three months after her wedding to Prince Charles in 1981.

In a statement, her family said: "Catherine Walker overcame young widowhood and fought cancer twice with enduring bravery.

"She built one of the most successful British couture brands and at the same time raised a loving family. Catherine Walker has dressed many of the world's most beautiful women."

Walker, who had suffered from breast cancer, was born in France but made a name for herself in Britain as a leading couture designer.

She studied philosophy at the Universities of Lille and Aix-en Province, then moved to London after meeting solicitor John Walker.

He died in an accident in 1975, leaving Walker to raise their two daughters.

She started studying fashion at night school the following year, selling clothes from a basket on Kings Road in Chelsea during the day, before setting up her own business.

Walker was named Designer of the Year for Couture at the British Fashion Awards in 1990 and Designer of the Year for Glamour the following year.

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