Acelebrity interior designer is being sued by a former client who claims she neglected her project to focus on renovating the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s Frogmore Cottage.
Vicky Charles, who has worked with a host of A-List celebrities and is known for her designs at Soho House, has been named in New York court documents brought by Andrea Olshan, who claims she hired her to work on two American homes.
Instead of completing the work in good time, the legal papers say, Ms Charles and her team offered “limited attention” before they “walked off the job, never fully engaged with the projects, and never helped Ms. Olshan to create a vision resonat[ing] with [her] needs and lifestyle”.
The lawsuit states: “Ms. Charles, by all appearances, began to separate herself from the project, upon information and belief, to work for more ‘A-List’ clients such as the Duke and Duchess of Sussex who are reported to have hired Ms. Charles to renovate their Frogmore Cottage in anticipation of the birth of their first child, baby Archie Harrison, in mid-2019.”
Ms Charles’s previous clients are reported to include George and Amal Clooney and the Beckhams.
Earlier this year, she was named as the interior designer overseeing the renovations of Frogmore Cottage as the Duke and Duchess moved in in time for the birth of Archie Mountbatten-Windsor.
The restructure of the cottage cost the public £2.4m, with any upgraded fixtures and fittings paid for privately.
The court case, which is intended to recover $239,000 in fees and costs relating to properties owned by Ms Olshan in East Hampton and New York, states that Ms Charles was “entirely apologetic” about a “lack of progress” in a meeting around July 2019.
The plaintiff’s lawyers claimed she “acknowledged that she had been utterly disengaged” and had “chalked it up to her business overseas”.
A spokesman for Charles & co said the company does not discuss any of their clients and as such was unable to comment on the case.
The company’s website says: “Vicky works directly with every client – whether they have a strong vision of what they would like to achieve or look to her to create a vision that resonates with their needs and lifestyle.”
The Duke and Duchess are not expected to have any further involvement in the legal dispute.
The publication of legal papers from the Supreme Court of the State of New York coincidentally follows the Duchess’s trip to New York this weekend, in which she attended the US Open final to support her friend Serena Williams.
She is also reported to have attended a public yoga class in Greenwich Village, garnering “knowing smiles” from around 60 participants, according to a source in People magazine.
Her make-up artist Daniel Martin posted further details of the trip on Instagram, uploading a picture of birthday cupcakes and telling 133,000 followers: “Meg, love you friend for surprising me on my special day.”
The Duchess travelled without her husband and baby son on a commercial flight, returning to the UK after the tennis match.
Images of the trip, in which she was cheered by tennis fans after being filmed waving on the stadium’s big screen, emerged on the same day as the Queen, Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall were photographed in Scotland on the Royal Family’s traditional summer retreat.
The senior members of the family attended the Highland Games and the weekly Sunday church service at Balmoral.
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have declined to visit Balmoral this year, with sources variously citing their busy schedules and their son being too young.