Friday, 6 December 2013

Hugs and Messy Play: Kate visits Shooting Star House Children's Hospice

The Duchess of Cambridge completed a busy week of appearances with a visit to Shooting Star House Children's Hospice in Hampton, Middlesex this afternoon.

Shooting Star

Kate looked casual and relaxed upon arrival.

Bradley Page/Shooting Star

Kate is passionately interested in the children's hospice movement and wider palliative care, which provides a vital lifeline to children and families affected by life-limiting conditions. In her role as patron of East Anglia's Children's Hospices, she has carried out royal engagements and made speeches to bring wider attention to this area. Today's visit to Shooting Star House was an opportunity to expand her knowledge of the work in this field and see the services provided first hand.


Giving her first speech during a visit to an EACH hospice the Duchess expressed her admiration for the work carried out by the organisation: "What you do is inspirational; it is a shining example of the support and the care that is delivered, not just here, but in the children's hospice movement at large, up and down the country."

Shooting Star Facebook Page

EACH tweeted just today about the impact Kate's support has had.

EACH Twitter Feed

You can read more about Kate's commitment to supporting hospices on The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge's official website.

Duke and Duchess of Cambridge Official Website

The Duchess met with volunteers to discuss their experiences.

Shooting Star Facebook Page

Kate toured the facilities and viewed a music therapy session where she played with a frog puppet, before enjoying tea with some of the children and their families.

Shooting Star Facebook Page

The Duchess then had a private meeting with parents who recently lost two young children to spinal muscular atrophy.

Shooting Star Facebook Page

During the visit Kate asked parents about their experience with Shooting Star and revealed baby George has been introduced to messy play and noted how much fun it is.  This form of play is known as a fun and interesting way children to explore and learn about the world around them. A wide range of materials can be used for messy play, including; paint, sand, pasta, shaving foam and cornflour.

Shooting Star Facebook Page

Kate sat in a large circle next to music therapist Sarah Hodkinson and joined in with nursery rhymes and Christmas carols.

Shooting Star

More from The Mirror's story:

'During the farmyard nursery rhyme Kate offered five-year-old Demi Leigh Armstrong a toy to pass to another child. "Do you want to give him this one?"she asked. "No!" the young girl replied, leaving Kate laughing and feeling shocked.
 Later Demi-Leigh, who had a kidney transplant after being diagnosed with a rare condition called hemolytic uremic syndrome, hugged the Duchess tightly and the pair gave each other a thumbs up.'

Demi-Leigh looked very pleased :)

Shooting Star Facebook Page

Shooting Star CHASE is a leading children's hospice charity caring for 650 children, young people and their families. Their tailored support is free of charge and is available 365 days of the year. Care services include short breaks at their two purpose-built hospices, a comprehensive hospice at home service, day care, end of life care, a symptom-management service and a comprehensive range of therapies and groups for the whole family.

Shooting Star

The hospice was officially opened in 2006 by Prince Charles and The Duchess of Cornwall. Calling the centre a "remarkable achievement", Prince Charles said, "It makes it possible for the parents of children to be able to bring them here and for an enormous difference to be made to their lives." As patron of nine hospices he praised the "enthusiasm and dedication" of its supporters.

Shooting Star

It's wonderful for the hospice to have another royal visit today, particularly in terms of raising awareness.

Shooting Star Facebook Page

With a musical floor, fibre optics, mirrors, lights and water tubes the Sensory Room is a magical place for all ages. The specialist equipment provides an environment which gently stimulates the senses through touch, sight and sound.

Shooting Star

If you wish to donate to Shooting Star, you can find all the relevant information on their website. Alternatively, you can visit the charity's Online Shop where you can find a fabulous selection of Christmas cards.

Shooting Star

Kate chatting with a little girl.

Shooting Star Facebook Page

The Duchess wore the REISS Delaney Seam Detail Fit and Flare Coat. The grey jacket retails for $520, it's a collarless wool-rich coat with seam detail to the front, back and sleeves, with slit pockets to the front and fastens with a single conceal button. It's available in sizes XS to L on the REISS website.

REISS

The dry clean only jacket is from the AW13 Collection and is a perfect piece for the current season. As the Duchess demonstrated it looks stylish with jeans and boots and would look equally well with a fitted dress worn underneath. The 'Delaney' also comes in navy. It's also available at Bloomingdales.

REISS

Kate's jeans are quite possibly by J Brand. There's a very nice selection of their jeans at Shopbop, Net-A-Porter and Nordstrom (Free Shipping, Free Returns). It is believed they are cord pants by the brand.


Kate debuted a new pair of booties today; the New-Dry Fur Trim Wedge Boot are available at Russell and Bromley (with thanks to Cambridge Follower), the Aquatalia pair are also known as the Neptune Bootie.


They are described this way.

'In weather resistant black suede, this luxury ankle boot by Aquatalia is an essential for chic, cold weather dressing. With a comfortable wedge heel and platform, finished with a buckle trim and faux fur lining, these luxe boots will keep your feet warm and dry with compromising on style.'

The boots retail for £225 and feature buckle trim, gunmetal hardware, padded footbed and a full inside zip. I have a feeling opinion will be very much divided on these. Some will the love them whilst others may feel they're too casual for an official engagement.


Russell and Bromley

Kate accessorised with her Kiki McDonough green amethyst earrings, Tissot watch and a new open circle pendant.

Kiki McDonough

Kate's pendant has been identified by Jenny and Anna from My Small Obsessions as a piece from the Mappin & Webb Fortune Collection in white gold and diamonds. The £3,950 piece is described as a "contemporary classic, mid-length necklace set in three 18 carat white gold infinity loops; a celebration of luck and good fortune". Mappin & Webb holds a Royal Warrant as Silversmith to HM the Queen and to The Prince of Wales.

Shooting Star Facebook Page

Below we see piece in yellow gold.

Mappin & Webb

It was a lovely visit, Kate was simply wonderful with the children and the photos of her hugging Demi-Leigh were darling. Volunteers and parents had a great time meeting her and noted how interested she was. Richard Palmer revealed Kate plans to further her work with the hospice movement by launching an initiative to encourage more people to volunteer. You can watch a video at youtube!

Shooting Star Facebook Page

I hope you all have a terrific weekend, and thank you all for reading and commenting throughout this week!

191 comments:

  1. That picture of her with the frog puppet is so cute! I love the sleek jacket, and while the booties aren't my favorite, I don't think they're too casual for the event. I'm just not a wedge fan.

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    1. Also...ARE those jeans? They almost look velvet.

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  2. That sensory room is amazing. My son with Autism would be in heaven! Not that she wasn't caring before, but this cause much have so much more meaning now that she has a child. Keep up the great work Duchess!!

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  3. Imagine the joy Kate gives to those kids in palliative care just by the warmth of her kind and beautiful smile. And she a mother of a four-month-old child. Some would say it is all part of her job but I think it must be really hard sometimes. She is a brave lady. How is it that people always focus on what she wears and never on what she does?
    Thank you for your post, dear Charlotte!

    Monica, France

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  4. Theresa from Austin, Texas USA6 December 2013 16:56

    I think she looks chic, stylish and comfortable for a chilly afternoon spent with children and their families. What an amazing organization!

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  5. I hate to be too negative, but I don't know what to say about this outfit except she needs a stylist. I realize she does not have to be in a dress with heels for this event, but a nice pants suit would have been better than this matronly jacket, jeans and booties. To me, these outfits just look uncoordinated - including last night's dress (which I loved the first time around) - studs in her ears would have completed this look and her hair looked like she threw it in a ponytail at the last minute. She might not want to be known for her clothes, but for better or worse, like Diana, people want to see what she wears and this translates into publicity for her causes. Without photographers taking her picture at every event, there would be much less visibility for all her patronages. Sorry to be so negative.

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    1. Jean from Lancs.6 December 2013 17:19

      Sorry Melissa---but did you look carefully at last night's ponytail? You are perfectly entitled not to like it---but it certainly didn't look as though she threw it at the last minute!

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    2. It was certainly thrown together at the last minute for me too.

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    3. I love that Catherine decided to don a more comfortable look. When visiting children there is no doubt play will be involved and getting down to their level. Being in a skirt or dress would limit connectivity with the kids. I love seeing Catherine mixing it up a bit. :)

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    4. I couldn't agree more with Melissa. Stylist necessary! (In my opinion) This outfit is horrendous. The jacket is dull, shapeless and a drab colour. The boots are clunky and while fur can be funky, to me these look something a senior citizen would choose for warmth, with the wedge heel for safety, rather than something a stylish 30 something with a fab figure would chose to wear. The jeans are fine, but I would dearly love to see her in pants. At this stage we all know she has great legs so it's okay to conceal them once in a while in something that isn't skin tight!

      Just to note on the above, this is my opinion on her outfit, and at the end of the day both the outfit and my opinion on it are inconsequential. The important point here is the work the charity does and raising its profile. The fun part is that on this site we can all be fashion critics for a minute or two and then back to the humdrum of daily life!!

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    5. Agree, Mrs. D.! Kate looked very relaxed and engaged with everyone today and I'm sure her visit was very much appreciated and will not be forgotten :)

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    6. Mrs d I love what u said! No one means to criticise kate on her appearance I guess as woman we r naturally interested in fashion and yes it's a luvly peek into another woman's wardrobe and tastes. Lovely and well said. Annie London

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    7. Another negative vote on this hideous outfit. Her style seems to be "missing" a lot for me lately and I know the DM ran a story about Kate taking fashion advice from her friend Emilia. I don't like Emilia's style and ever since the story ran, Kate's looks have been way off her usual pulled together class and elegance. She needs to dump Emilia as her stylist right away! But I watched the video over at the DM and I quickly forgot about her outfit as she interacted with the children. Wow, she's amazing with children!

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    8. colorado carrie7 December 2013 15:02

      Blue and mrs d, she does have stylist

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    9. I disagree with jeans (or cords) being fine - the rest of the staff took pains to look appropriate and professional for the photos - I think Kate forgets that is what raises the profile - the photos - and she looks out of place in her more casual attire. Even the kids dressed up.

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    10. I totally agree with Melissa!!

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    11. @Colorado Carrie... If she does have a stylist and this outfit is what they came up with, then I'm afraid I don't think they are very good at their job!! Time for a new one... The Duchess is beautiful, has amazing hair, a fabulous figure and a hefty clothing budget (based on the clothing IDs above). She has the capacity to look a million dollars every time she steps out for an engagement. And very often she does, just not this time I think!

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    12. I thought she looked great, loved the hair and necklace, not so much the dress

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    13. I agree with you about this oddly put together ensemble - all useful, attractive pieces but not all at once - but I loved the pony tail, probably because it's a go-to style for young American actresses in evening gowns at Oscar time, and works well with a good head of lustrous hair.
      Big pleasure of this event was to see how natural and interested she is with the children and this worthy cause. Good for her. That's all that matters, I give her a pass on dressing in a jumble this day.. Wager that all anyone noticed was her genuine kindness and focus on others.

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  6. Love the slim trousers on the models! Wish Kate had opted to wear something like that instead of jeans. I love the sleek and modern cut of the jacket, though. I think slim trousers would look a little more polished and professional.

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    1. I quite agree. Looking at the photo's, I wonder if there was ever a moment where she thought she might be wearing a mini-skirt.

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    2. I also agree. I quite like how the jacket looked on the models, and I think Kate's outfit would have looked much better if she wore slim trousers and different shoes. On a postive note, I thought her hair looked nice.

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    3. The slim trousers are certainly gorgeous, but I don't think they would enable Catherine to crouch down the way she needs to when dealing with small children, as that type of pant is rather unforgiving.

      I think the wedge heels, movable yet tailored jacket, and comfortable jeans were the right way to go on this outing.

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  7. I don't love the jacket. Even on the model it looks like something's missing in the styling. The skinny jeans are fine and I don't mind the booties, but I don't like them together with this particular jacket at all. That said, from what we can see, Kate looks nice. I love that she joined in with the puppet...which is truly what this visit is about.

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    1. colorado carrie7 December 2013 15:08

      I love ur comment. You disagreed with her choice but u did it so respectively, saying u didn't like it, but she looks nice overall in her own way. U didn't say it was inappropriate or horrible and explain what she should have worn. I love her outfit, but I entirely respect ur opinion and comment. This is construtive criticism that most people on here don't know how to do.

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  8. I think she looks great, but I am anticipating she will get a lot of flak for wearing jeans.

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  9. Oh, I do so wish Kate would get out of the habit of wearing such drab colours for visits to children's hospitals and hospices. She wore grey in Canada and at the Royal Marsden with William, head-to-toe black around Alder Hey in Liverpool and grey again today. Why such dreary, depressing tones?This is something that Diana never did - she always wore bright, cheerful colours on such visits because she knew she was there to bring some cheer and brighten people's day. You make that task so much more difficult to achieve if you're wearing black or grey! Please Kate, I implore you, take a leaf out of the Queen's book and ditch the dull colours.

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  10. Love the wedge booties. I would love a pair, but heaven knows I don't need any more shoes. love wedges for the simple fact it provides height and they are easier to walk in.
    Not a fan of the jacket.
    LOL Anon 16:24 looks like we are gonna have to agree to disagree.. CHEERS!

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  11. We've had lots of Kate these last few days, how fun :)
    Yay! She finally wore pants to a public appearance! Although I don't think skinny jeans are the most appropriate to this kind of official engagement, I'm glad she changes her style every now and then. I'm not a fan of the boots either, but I think it gives a modern-european-princess twist to her look. It reminded me princess Letizia's style (although with significant differences..). That coat is simple and elegant. Shame we don't get to see her face very well.
    Hugs! Have a nice weekend Charlotte!
    Z. from Portugal

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  12. Omg! Awful shoes and skinnies, it is her worst look I have ever seen on her.

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    1. Firstly she does look nice I love the boots!! But... Is it me am I being 'old' but really jeans at a royal engagement just makes me think slovenly, can't be bothered which I know is not her attitude. Gr8 she can be casual and not too formal but nice tailored trousers would be fine with the rest if the outfit. I wouldn't let my children dress in jeans to meet a duchess or on any other formal occasion for that matter. But... Apart from that and even in jeans she looks luvly more glowing than we've seen her of late and a wonderful cause which her presence highlights. Good stuff. Bella Wiltshire

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    2. Btw... Love her hair. Straight and sleek perfect. Bella Wiltshire

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  13. I also love the booties! I want some for myself -- they'd be perfect for this weekend!

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  14. Kate looks lovely in that jacket. I do not like the shoes or jeans much though. Thank you for another great post Charlotte. Music therapy is very important for children especially artistic ones.

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  15. She is probably exhausted from dressing up the past 2 nights!

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    1. It's her job!! Would u expect that attitude from the queen? Annie London.

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    2. Jean from Lancs.6 December 2013 20:43

      The Queen has 12 people and a whole floor at Buckingham Palace to care for her clothes.
      All the staff are named in Angela Kelly's book.
      I don't think Catherine even has a dresser and we know she does much of her own shopping.

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    3. Great cause and not an easy task. The outfit though, is just horrible...with the clashing colors and yucky clunky boots. The pants are very wrinkled and look like gym wear. Boot cut jeans go with boots not skinny jeans or whatever those pants are. The jacket looks like something that would be worn for hunting or horse riding. Tired of the blue skinny jeans. I have always hated that look anyway. Just a terrible outfit on a wonderful woman doing a terrific service

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    4. I'm sorry, but I laughed with your comment. I know it is meant to defend Kate but you make it sound like she is a limited person. I mean, surely a 31 yr old woman can handle dressing herself more than one day a week. She isn't "handicapped" (for lack of a better word). Jeez...

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  16. Kate is probably worn out from dressing up and taking care of George and she had a fashion day off.

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  17. Kate probably has fashion burnout after her dressy events this week!

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  18. Jean from Lancs.6 December 2013 17:36

    Love the jacket--and though not usually totally enamoured with the skinny jeans, they do look good with this jacket. Surprisingly like the boots with this outfit too.
    Glad to see she had her hair loose today---children seem to like it like that.
    All together thought she was dressed to play with a lot of children--though they were more likely to wish she had come wearing the tiara from two nights back.
    The main thing is that she continues to highlight the work of hospices---particularly those for children.--we need more to give the these children some joy in life and parents precious memories.

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  19. Jean from Lancs.6 December 2013 17:37

    Love the jacket--and though not usually totally enamoured with the skinny jeans, they do look good with this jacket. Surprisingly like the boots with this outfit too.
    Glad to see she had her hair loose today---children seem to like it like that.
    All together thought she was dressed to play with a lot of children--though they were more likely to wish she had come wearing the tiara from two nights back.
    The main thing is that she continues to highlight the work of hospices---particularly those for children.--we need more to give the these children some joy in life and parents precious memories.

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  20. I think the message is clearly "concentrate on the charity, not me". She doesn't want to be known for her clothes. I am more in favour of the low key approach rather than the "look at me" that Diana, as lovely as she was, couldn't resist, in my humble opinion.

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    1. Yes I agree doesn't have to be a clothes horse but have u ever seen the queen have an off day? Annie London

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    2. The Queen had years and years of off days until Angela Kelly came along.

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    3. i have never seen the Queen hug children, play with children, joke, sing and join in. Completely different generation, and that doesnt mean better it means different.

      CAtherine is not Queen, she isnt even the married to the heir to the throne. she can join in and make people happy. Richard Palmer said today that she is confident, puts people at ease. that is what we need in our younger royals.

      time enough to be formal on alloccasions , but hopefully she never will be just when appropriate.

      I knew that the same people would criticise what she wore today but she dressed in an appropriate style for the event and that is a good thing. My only thought is that she should try slim trousers as per the model, as I think she would look good.

      I also am happy that she is taking care of her child instead of a full time nanny. Introducing George to messy play gives us a clear insight to how she wants to be with and bring up her son. that is something that she doesnt have in common with the Queen

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    4. Here I do not want to be negative, however, after watching the video I have mixed feeling. To me she goes there and does that charity work just because Queen requires her to do something. When kids were trying to give her a hug, she seemed to be worry about her make up not the kid. Yes, she was smiling and asking questions, but somehow I did not see any hart being put into this. I remember Diana who was hugging kids and being there with her hart. Even looking at Harry, he is like his mom. Sorry, I do not see it in Kate. Something is missing.

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    5. Did we watch the same video? The one I saw showed an interested, invested Kate who paid major attention to all the kids. Am I nuts?

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    6. Hello Anon: I watched the video too and I didn't think she was too worried about her makeup, I think she was trying to keep the child from hitting her in the face by bobbling around and trying to keep her hair from getting yanked about. She was also quickly trying to turn her face around so people could get pictures???? of her with the little girl. Not that it was a photo op but it was a photo op. I thought she was brilliant with the children and quite witty!

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    7. I thought she was fantastic in the video. Interested and invested is a good way to put it. And the children would not have responded to her as they did if she was worried about her makeup.

      Gillian, I can't help but agree about the Queen and Angela Kelly. The print dresses and little hats didn't do her any favors. I love AK's input...color, texture and a more tailored look.

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    8. I am kind of between you guys. Definitely this is her job. She has to be nice. Does she truly puts her hart into that? Hard to say. For sure she does her job perfectly. What is inside of her, nobody can tell.
      I am not sure if she and her family were involve in any charity work before? Somebody has any knowledge of that? Please let us know.

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    9. Anonymous - I have read that her family was/is involved with the Starlight Foundation. I believe that before William & Kate were married Kate had done some work with that Foundation. There are pictures floating around the internet of that event. And Pippa has done some charity work but for what I do not know.

      Fan from Texas

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    10. As far as I know-according to the interview with one of the style specialist in UK (do not remember his name) Kate has the whole group of specialist who help her look the best. Also, "Kate has asked her new aides at Clarence House to help her find a team of stylists to ensure she looks her very best and doesn't make any fashion faux pas.
      Prince William's personal secretary Helen Asprey, who has helped the couple plan their wedding and is working closely with Kate, is in charge of the appointment and is said to have drawn up a shortlist of stylists who have been asked to assist with the Royal wardrobe." This is from April 2011. So it seems that it is not true what one of you wrote that she is doing everything by herself.
      Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-1375358/Kate-Middleton-choosing-stylist-shortlist-including-Samantha-Camerons-sister-Emily-Sheffield-Bryan-Ferrys-girlfriend-Amanda-Sheppard.html#ixzz2msWDfY7h

      Also, what I have found: "According to new reports, the Duchess of Cambridge spends a whopping £102, 379 a year maintaining her signature style, with hair treatments, facials, personal trainers, and, of course, clothes all contrubuting to the total.""Kate spends over £8,000 a year keeping her hair in check, stopping off at Richard Ward's swanky Sloane Square salon for blow-dries and Keratin Infusion extra moisture treatments, plus organic colour treatments every six weeks.

      Furthermore, Kate reportedly splashes out £7,984 on spray tans, adding extra to her total with the services of an exclusive personal trainer who accompanies her on runs through the royal parks."
      Read more at http://www.marieclaire.co.uk/news/celebrity/539055/kate-middleton-spends-over-100k-a-year-on-being-a-prince

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    11. As far as I am aware, the Queen herself supports over 200 charities. Actually, each member of the family has the responsibility to support charities of their own choice.

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    12. Jean from Lancs.8 December 2013 19:04

      Gosh---treat anything reported in the "Mai" with a pinch of salt.
      Prince Charles pays for her clothes needed for official duties and he refused to divulge how much, so magazines must be guessing.

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    13. Anon 10:45 Wow I have never seen prices mentioned regarding what Kate pays for all this stuff you have talked about. And she does not go to Richard Ward anymore. And again she does not have a person helping her with her style. It was said in a recent article that one of her friends was going to help her but I am not sure that is true.

      Fan from Texas

      We have to remember as Jean from Lancs said above that we can nto beleive what is written in the DailyMail. Jean does live in England so I would belived her before I would believe the DM.

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    14. Jean, I was just going to add the same comment. Pinch of salt indeed. These "stories" are the sort of inflammatory fluff pieces "journalists" love to write because they know they won't get a response from KP or BP.

      Kate always looked pulled together, and effortlessly so, even before she got married. The idea that now she has a "team of stylists" isn't even logical if you consider how much of her own shopping she does and the number of high street pieces in the mix. Naturally, she has access to designers because she can afford to buy their clothes, and she has done so, but a "team", I don't buy it. She looks like a young woman who is determined to make her own choices, even if it means not getting it *exactly* right every so often.

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    15. bluhare in Washington State9 December 2013 00:31

      I don't know whether she's got a team of stylists, but I have no problem believing she spends over 100,000 pounds a year. She gets discounts, sure, but she also gets bespoke pieces and off the rack designer wear on top of the high street brands. And I'd bet her hair costs a fortune.

      And the Daily Mail might not be The Telegraph or The Times, but they don't get everything wrong.

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    16. I have just checked different sites besides DM and tried to add up costs of her dresses and this is not a small sum. I also do not think that DM takes these numbers out of blue. Numbers from different sources are similar to these presented above. Yes, she mixes expensive pieces with Zara etc, but still it does not come cheap. I know also that recently she has changed her hair stylist but again, i do not think he costs $100. So I also do not believe that DM gets it wrong.

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    17. I agree with Gillian. Not only was Kate playing with the little ones there, she was meeting with parents who had recently lost their children. Low key is the classy approach to dressing for this engagement. Kids don't care about tiaras. They received Kate's smiles, hugs, and undivided attention, and I'm sure that was much more important.

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    18. In regards to the Daily Mail I would like to say many-many news-outlets use their reporting, i.e. The Huffington Post, Quien (yes, even Spanish media). Sometimes the Mail is quoted/referenced, sometimes it isn't. After a while you do see how it is the exact article from the DM.

      I do not mean to say they are reliable, just FYI, what they report goes further than to DM readers.

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  21. I love that jacket - so sleek and slimming. Really classy. And I think her jeans were great - if they really were jeans. They certainly weren't casual jeans, all faded and worn, so they looked fine.
    The whole outfit was perfectly OK for this type of engagement. Way better than that flippy skirt she wore to the last children's event. By wearing slacks, she can be much more relaxed about getting down at the children's level and doing projects with them.
    The booties were fine for this event too, except I'm not a fan of wedges. Don't know why she wears them so much. I personally don't think wedges are attractive on anyone - too clunky-looking.
    She sure has a busy week! I'd be exhausted if I had that many public appearances in a week!

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    1. Really? I have 2 jobs 2 children a home, no help ( ok so no nanny for kate but does she do her own food shopping cooking cleaning?) carla. Boston

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    2. I do Agree with you Anonymus 6 Dec. 2013 19:00. I really would like to have such difficult job as she has. I would swap with her right now. I do not think she does a lot at home. They have maids! Besides she has nanny!!! Do no forget that.
      She really is tired because she went to see kids, watched movies and took her son for a walk by herself......really she deserves to be exhausted.
      Please do not take me wrong, I truly like her, but please ............ people are all over her, not because she achieved so much in her life but because she married prince. How come before marriage nobody adored her so much?

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    3. Anonymous 22:36 I guess you are not up to date on the royal household staff. First they have a housekeep/cook. And Catherine does still does most of the cooking for William. They do not have any live in staff nor do they have a full time nanny. William & Catherine have been taking turns doing their charity work so that one of them can be home with Prince George. And if for some reason they both must be gone at the same time then they have either the nanny or Catherine's mother Carol watch Prince George.

      Yes you like Catherine but you still do not think she does enough. And don't forget she married the man she loves and he was not pushed into marrying her.

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    4. Well, I know that after giving birth to my child, I did not have any help at all. To me going to the store to buy diapers was a definitive break and I could not go to the movie theater since there was nobody to stay with my child. Believe me, having nanny even for part time and husband at home it is a big help. The truth is that there is no comparison between us-regular people-and them-the royals. They do not have to worry about money and everyday life but we have to. The fact that she is cooking for William does not make her better then another person. She goes somewhere for an hour or so, and her part is done. We women have to go do regular job, come home, clean, cook, do shopping, take care of our kids, and also doing charity/voluntary work and nobody things we are doing something special.
      Regarding Kathy's statement about stating that Duchess "does enough"-again-if i would have to count the exact amount of time weekly she does for charity- it will not be much. I really spend more time at my job during just single day. If I remember well, going to that center was the only charity wok done this week.She does that charity work because she had to.

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    5. Kathy, thank u for this insight. Which part of the household do you work in to have this inside info? It must be exciting. Helen. Nj

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    6. Jean from Lancs.7 December 2013 21:02

      Anon 14:32.
      What everyone seems to forget is that in this country a paid employee is entitled to take a full year for maternity leave. The Duchess is not a paid employee, so could take whatever she wants.
      The visit to the cinema was a charity performance---raising money, for amongst other things one of Nelson Mandela's charities.
      I am sorry you were alone with your baby and had no family help, but that does not mean that everyone else should be in the same position.
      Whatever you think, the videos and pictures show that the children yesterday enjoyed her visit and their parents will have treasured memories of a few happy hours.

      Delete
    7. @Anonymous 14:32 I am sorry you have to do everything regarding your child by yourself. But it seems you are extremely jealous of Catherine and all the that she has.

      Regarding your comment on Catherine's charity work. You do not know what Catherine does while she is at home. Just because she is not seen out doing her or Wiliiam's charity work does not mean she is sitting at home eating bon bons. Working with charities take more that being seen at events for that charity. There has been alot written about this topic regarding Catherine's work load and what I finally decided for myself is this if the Queen is happy with what William & Catherine are doing while not being full time royals then none of us should really care. And it has been said by KP that neither Catherine nor William are still not full time royals.

      Delete
    8. @ Kathy London....

      I'm not up to date on their current household arrangement since they moved into 1A, but it sounds like you're quoting the very same information that Pauline has in the past. Personally, I doubt that Kate runs around KP with a mop, but I do believe she takes care of George full time *as much as possible*. She has to devote some of her time to charities and I'm sure there are other things she wants to do herself to remain grounded.

      I admit to envying one or two aspects of her life and nothing more. :) I admire her for taking on the rest of it. I know I couldn't do it.

      Delete
    9. Well said royal fan. I too imagine she cares slot for the day to day George things and odd lunch for her n will but not the cleaning etc. and I don't like Kathy's tone. No one here appears to be jealous of kate and I don't know how she can say such mean things and personal things to another blogger by simply a few sentences written. Annie London

      Delete
    10. bluhare in Washington State9 December 2013 00:33

      I will add that they have three homes -- KP, Anmer Hall, and a place on the Balmoral estate. And we're supposed to believe they only have one housekeeper/cook. I don't buy it for one second.

      PS Kathy, not everyone who comments about Kate is jealous. Some of us are glad we don't live in that fishbowl getting picked apart by the likes of us.

      Delete
    11. Kathy and other zealous fans! I do not see the point in hanging here and clinging to other people' words and branding them jealous and mean and so on. Instead of this women should let it go and just go with it. Opinion is opinion, the crusade is over, let it overcome by the holiday spirit once and for all.

      Delete
    12. I agree with you girls. I cannot see Kate running with mop and cleaning the palace nor other mentions they have. Moreover, I think that her own parents have maids and cooks,even though Middleton's house is smaller then Kensington Palace. I do not like Kate London's attitude either. Stating a fact is not jealousy.

      Delete
  22. I enjoy seeing Catherine in pants when visiting children. This way she can get down to their level easier without worrying about who's snapping a photo at the wrong moment. When visiting kids, it's more fun to be at their level. :)

    ReplyDelete
  23. Are we sure they are denim jeans? Like another reader I thought they might even be velvet? Certainly a less formal look, but not one I thought inappropriate for meeting and playing with children. Perhaps it's a generational gap thing (I'm in my mid-twenties, but I'm in graduate school and work in an office), but I think that a nice pair of darkwash jeans or pants can be dressed for work/an event like this that's during the day and involved a lot of squatting and movement.
    I'm not a huge fan of the boots, but I'm never one for fur on shoes.

    I love the great works Kate is supporting :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello Laura,

      We're not sure yet and we're looking at several pairs of velvet jeans. The photos of Kate with Demi-Leigh are truly amazing :)

      Delete
    2. Theresa from Austin, Texas USA6 December 2013 18:49

      Yes, those photos are amazing. They both look radiant. I love Kate's hair, today!

      Delete
    3. I think her "jeans" are velvet, but that doesn't make me like them any better. I also am not a fan of booties or wedges.Catherine does not need the "extra" height. Personally, I never put the colors of navy blue and black together. That's a "no no." I think black tights with a skirt would have been much better. Obviously, she is not trying to impress people with her clothes and perhaps that is what she was thinking when she chose this outfit.

      I give Catherine exceptionally high marks for her winning smile and warm personality when meeting people. She doesn't need to change a thing. She is a wonderful representative of the Royal family. Well done, Kate!

      Delete
    4. I also thought the pants were velvet at first glance. Or a fine wale corduroy.

      Delete
  24. bluhare in Washington State6 December 2013 18:49

    Apparently, she spent time with the parents of a child who died this week, and lost another not too long ago. Heartbreaking, and kudos to her for doing it.

    ReplyDelete
  25. Kate looks GREAT! Love the whole ensemble; the hair, necklace, earrings, booties. I WANT those booties -- too bad I can't wear skinny jeans (I am weight-challenged). Also love the necklace and I could have sworn I saw it somewhere when I was looking for a replicate of her 3 disc necklace she wore to Canada in 2011....but I can't remember where!

    One question though: I am not sure the necklace has been ID'd correctly -- from pictures from the Express, the necklace appears to have only one circle, not multiple circles like the Robinson Pelham....It also looks to only be silver/white gold, I don't see any stones....Any thoughts?

    ReplyDelete
  26. glad she took my advice and wore pants instead of a dress! she looked amazing!

    ReplyDelete
  27. I don't mind her wearing jeans, but I think skinny jeans are not a classy choice. I wear them all the time myself because they're comfortable, but they're not appropriate for an official engagement (unless it's a very informal gathering outdoors, like the camping with the scouts). And I really don't like this kind of blue with black shoes: the colors clash. I'm not a huge fan of this coat either.
    Having said that, she looked lovely.
    I don't have much time to keep updated on fashion, new trends, etc. This is a nice way for me to have a look at different styles and decide what could work for me. So I have fun even when I don't like the outfit. ;-)
    Charlotte from MA, USA

    ReplyDelete
  28. Wonderful cause. The jacket and her hair looked lovely. Two thumbs down on the tight jeans and wedge boots. Not appropriate for a royal engagement, in my opinion.

    ReplyDelete
  29. Hello Charlotte,
    Any update on what brand those jeans could be I think they're cute and would love to have a pair.

    I have to say though I'm not loving the jacket at all it's very dowdy and matronly and it doesn't look good on her. I think one of her nice blazers would have looked better. Maybe the smyth blazer even though she's worn it a lot. The boots were unexpected they don't really look like something she would wear. A little too casual for the visit. I'm not really loving this look a lot. I agree with the previous posters that she needs to hire a stylist. Her outfits have really been off lately.

    ReplyDelete
  30. Hmmm I too have mixed feelings about this outfit. I like the coat but not with jeans and those boots. I agree with others that for official engagements she shouldn't wear jeans which is something she is doing more regularly. And I don't think the boots go well with the coat. I think a pantsuit would of been fine but not this.

    ReplyDelete
  31. I just LOVE your blog!! You do a wonderful job! There is a video that came out from her visit today and shows her sweet moments with the children :))

    ReplyDelete
  32. Charlotte

    I believe they are the J Brand 801 Nirvana Blue Velvet Skinny Jeans

    http://www.neimanmarcus.com/J-Brand-Jeans-801-Nirvana-Blue-Velvet-Skinny-Jeans/prod147890145/p.prod

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello Blair,

      Thank you very much. I will check it out right away, from close ups they appear to be cords.

      Delete
    2. Thanks Charlotte,
      To me they appear velvet. Cords usually have a more rugged look to them with ridges and they look more sleek and smooth. It's really hard to tell from those pictures.

      Delete
    3. And I would LOVE to own those boots! They're (obviously) in style again… :)

      Victoria, Oregon

      Delete
  33. Hi Charlotte! I have not commented in quite a long time but felt like leaving my thoughts on Duchess Kate's lovely, classy and comfortable looking outfit. I immediately thought her leggings were dark blue velvet and with the grey coat and black ankle boots, my opinion was............how refreshing, warm and young she looked! Yet I felt she had not departed from representing her position at all! Now mind you I am from across the pond so what do I know? Ha! Ha!! She is a young royal so dressing in this seasonal, stylish manner was very neat, attractive and I bet put those children at ease! All my humble opinion of course! You do your reporting and blogging so very well, and although I rarely post a comment I read your blogs regularly!
    God Bless and a healthy, happy merry Christmas to you and yours!
    Deborah in freezing cold, Denver, Colorado! : )

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello Debs,

      Thank you for such a lovely comment and for reading! I hope you and your family have a wonderful Christmas :)

      Delete
    2. You too Charlotte! Your ever ready to put out the latest on Duchess Kate! Thanks for your labors and enjoyment of it as well! : ) Your quite good with out a doubt!

      Delete
  34. I like the top half of the outfit but I don't think it goes with the bottom half of the outfit. I'm all for her wearing trousers to a kids event as she can get down to their level without worrying but I think those trousers were a poor choice with that particular jacket.
    I also hate those boots, they're like a pair my sixty something year old mother owns. They just seem too old for Kate.
    She needs to start dressing for her age again. Before she got engaged Kate seemed to put more personality into what she wore - even if the outfits weren't as polished.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I agree. I think the jacket is fine but it would have looked better with the pants worn by the models rather than the skinny jeans (they throw the proportion off). Her hair looked gorgeous today and ideal for a visit like this.

      But MOST importantly, Kate was in her element on this visit. She looked so comfortable and you could see the joy on the faces around her and that speaks volumes.

      Delete
  35. Thank you all for your comments, it's lovely to see your different opinions!

    ReplyDelete
  36. Theresa, from Paris6 December 2013 23:19

    Lovely to see her interact with the children. I loved the video of her singing and talking to the little girl. Her sweet personality really shines through. I found her beautifully relaxed and sincere. Happy to be helping raise the profile of the charity.

    I do agree that grey is dismal for winter. Bright colors would be more cheerful. And I do agree that slim pants are more elegant. Skinny pants ok for informal wear, not so much for a professional engagement. I love her earrings !!!!

    ReplyDelete
  37. Would like her to look at color theory, as different colors have different effects on people. I agree with some of the others commenting grey to a children's event could be swapped for something more cheery.

    Looks like the boots at the Aquatalia site have real rabbit fur whereas the R&B ones are faux. It appears she's wearing the faux ones.

    I am expecting my Sledges today... woohoo!

    ReplyDelete
  38. I will never understand why people comment obout the outfit instead of supporting the cause she's fighting for! First of all, she's human too, she has the right to choose what to ware. I know she is a royal and sometimes details like these matter but... we really shouldn't make such a fuss about that. All we should appreciate is her involvement and her commitment in in helping those kids. Do you really think that the kids judge her outfit??
    I trully believe she was gorgeous and not only because of the clothes she was wearing but because of her love for thosechildren that was reflected in her eyes!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I am an elementary school teacher and I can tell you that children ABSOLUTELY do notice clothing, jewelry, and hair! My students always comment on what I am wearing, anything new I have tried out, any changes in my appearance - much more so than colleagues/ adults.

      Delete
    2. It's not the same situation, unfortunately. We're talking about children with problems. They have bigger issues to deal with instead of judging the Duchess's coat color or the make of her velvet jeans... The would surely appreciate the help no matters the type of clothes one wears.
      This is my opinion, you don't all have to agree with me.

      Delete
    3. Even children who are ill appreciate color and a bit of sparkle!

      Delete
    4. bluhare in Washington State9 December 2013 00:35

      Dana, I think ill children might appreciate glitter and sparkles as much as a well child. And the person's point about children liking color and glitz is a good one. You know what would have been a nice, whimsical touch? A pair of Santa earrings. Bet the kids would have loved them. And that's what it's about, right?

      Delete
    5. I thought a true red blazer would have been a nice touch, but maybe she was playing it safe given some of the issues she would be dealing with.

      Delete
  39. it is nice to see what she wears, but Obsessing over tiny little details, that is just a bit much in my opinion. I love the jewelry she wears, and i'm also happy to see her hair straight ( I got tired of seeing those big bouncy waves)!

    ReplyDelete
  40. I just watched the youtube video again and all I can say is O-M-G...what a natural she is! Kate's interaction with Demi-Leigh was so sweet. (And children are extremely good at picking up on insincerity.)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Theresa, from Paris7 December 2013 08:14

      So true, royalfan :-))))

      Delete
  41. erk!! she shd wear skinny pants instead of the jeans. she has nicer looking boots than this one.
    regards,
    faw fr KL

    ReplyDelete
  42. I love how she gave pants a try on a visit...I just wish they would have been a nicer set then creased jeans....other then that I like the jacket it fits her nice....

    ReplyDelete
  43. Love the jacket on Kate - to me it looks better on her than on the Reiss model. I'd love to see Kate in tailored cropped pants like the models are wearing. She'd look amazing in them. However, she was dressed perfectly to be able to spend time with the children and their families and she obviously relished the opportunity to do so :)
    The only thing I'm not keen on is what Charlotte from MA said - pale blue jacket, dark blue jeans with those black booties! The black boots seem to make the whole outfit look a bit off. Perhaps it worked better together in person than it shows up in photos though. Cool to see Kate out and about for all sorts of occasions!
    Amber

    ReplyDelete
  44. I think a pair of black pants, (cigarette style), would have looked better with a pair of black shoes perhaps with a little kitten heel.
    Linda.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. ditto, even navy would work too. I start digging pictures of princess letizia of spain for her signature cigarette pant looks. :)

      Delete
    2. That sounds pretty.

      Delete
  45. She looks so genuinely taken by the kids. Gotta respect her for that. :)
    Love the jacket but not so much the pants and the shoes. It proves that nearly nobody can wear a pair of cord pants with wrinkle free, even with legs like Kate's. I guess I am totally biased (always hate skinny cords).

    ReplyDelete
  46. Hi charlotte what a wonderful post i lovve the jacket the duchess wore and the duchess have nice touch with children like her mother in law princess diana in wales dana of romania your true on that yes the kids never judge her outfit her presence make them happy she will be a great queen one day

    ReplyDelete
  47. I think Kate is a good stylist herself, in a modern way. I like the long jacket and comfortable skinny pants. The matching pants on the model would be elegant for an office, but Kate's combination is very nice for play with children. And I really liked her combination of gown, hair style, and accessories for the Mandela event. Calm colors are less intimidating than bright hues. The Queen wears those brilliant colors to be visible in a crowd. Kate was in a more intimate environment.

    By the way, I have never heard the term 'messy play,' though I have certainly witnessed it! (Cinnamon all over everything in my kitchen once, and worse.) But how does one introduce a very small child to messy play and avoid having the child eat the stuff? I can imagine George putting his hand into cinnamon, say, and then into his mouth, and the face he'd make! That would be less dangerous than some other things he might want to taste. How is this play controlled, so that a child can explore with its hands but not its mouth, as they always want to do?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. colorado carrie8 December 2013 16:34

      Messy play items can be edible so they can eat it evenvif its not meant to be. I'm a preschool teacher and out paint, playdough, floam, water color, and even our soap, is all edible for them. We help guide them into playing with it intead of eating it. It involves lots of repetition, and lots of face wipes, but kids love it.

      Delete
    2. Thanks for the explanation, carrie. In other words, the play substances are age appropriate and edible. Makes good sense. I expect George is only getting to dabble in applesauce or pureed veggies. He's hardly old enough to eat much food!

      Delete
  48. I commend her on supporting such an important cause. Those photos with the children and her are beautiful yet heartbreaking. It is so sad to know they have to be in palliative care but I am glad they are at least spending the end of their days in such a loving environment. God bless them all.

    ReplyDelete
  49. I like the pieces separately but together they just don't work on Kate. There's no denying her enthusiasm for this event but the outfit was way off. The jacket seems too formal for corduroy skinny jeans. I understand her wanting to wear warm, practical, stylish shoes and I like the wedge boots - with a different outfit. I've got booties similar to this with a fur trim and it's impossible to wear pants that don't tuck into them and make it look halfway neat. The way the pants are sitting at the top of the boot look like she pulled the shoes on at the last minute.
    The jacket with a nice pair of black skinny trousers would have gone great. Or the blue corduroy skinny pants with a less-formal jacket or coat. The jacket is too formal, almost a coat dress style, for the pants and boots.
    I'm not sure what's happened but lately, Kate's style has seemed just a little off in every situation, like she's just missing looking fantastic by that much. She had amazing style and fashion sense before the engagement and before the wedding. She was classic and classy yet young and everything went together and always looked event- and age-appropriate.
    There also was something today about this ensemble that seemed old to me but I can't really define what it is. Maybe the jacket's cut and color but it just seemed old-looking.
    By all reports, she was styling her outfits herself back in those days. I wish she'd go back to it.

    ReplyDelete
  50. Marci in Salt Lake7 December 2013 06:07

    Love your post on this, Charlotte. Hooray for the Duchess bringing publicity to such a poignant need. Like Dickens wrote, somehow Want and Need are more keenly felt at this time of year. The children tug at the heartstrings and she was wonderful with them.

    ReplyDelete
  51. Obviously there are very different opinions on Kate's choice of outfit today and even lately. I myself loved today's outfit. I think it is important for Kate to live her own life and keep her own personality and not be directed by other people's opinions of what to do or how to dress. She is a young royal, belonging to a new generation who does things slightly different. We might not like every choice but I think we all appreciate the general trend and the intent to be a little more informal than the previous generation of royals. Also, it is perfectly ok for Kate to experiment. She truly does not need to be perfect all the time. I certainly do not want to or even can be perfect all the time. She is human. That helps us to relate to her. We look at her beautiful choices and we try them out for ourselves, we look at her style and we aspire to incorporate some style into our own lives, we see her experiment and we do so ourselves. She is doing what we all do. Let her be. I don't think anyone can truly say that Kate has ever jeopardized the Royal Family or any of her causes by any of her clothing choices. And I agree, the work she does is so important. While women love to discuss fashion, there are more to discuss! As a mother myself I am conscious of how difficult and hard it is to see other parents and children have to deal with these difficult circumstances. I look at the video and photos and wonder how I would react to a child with tubes in her body, or address someone who has just lost a child? Don't we all rather avoid these painful situations or at the very least feel very nervous as how to react in such circumstances? Well done Kate for tackling such difficult causes. Watching these causes I am curious as to what is available in my own country? And next time I meet with someone in a wheelchair or whatever difficult situation I might just remember the relaxed normal and friendly way in which she handled it and be brave to do so myself. Let us as women have a heart bigger than only fashion, let us as women have a heart to overlook and allow imperfections and let us as women have the heart to let another woman live her life and do her best.

    Lize, South Africa

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. thank you Lize, very well said.

      Delete
    2. Very wise words, Lize. How very true...

      Delete
    3. Kristin, San Francisco7 December 2013 15:40

      Lize - very well written...numerous talking points for us all to consider. .

      Delete
    4. You hit on the head. Well said.

      Delete
  52. Sarah from Calif.7 December 2013 12:32

    Loved the post Charlotte. Thank you so much! Such an important patonage to support. I can only imagine what the parents go through and to have all the support during this time in their lives for their whole family is priceless.
    Kate looked beautiful!
    Have a great weekend all my Duchess Kate Blogger friends!!!

    ReplyDelete
  53. There is something off about the ensemble - the pants are too casual, the coat too formal and the boots too "Barbie". She does need to figure out a comfortable style for visiting with kids - where she can get down to their level without looking sloppy or having to worry about skirts and dresses. I really do hate her wedges - not a fan of that look on anyone. I think it is time for a looser pant as well. She also doesn't seem to have a shoe in between her trainers and her "high heels" - besides boots.

    btw, this is a fashion blog - so comments on the clothes and how well she is pulled together = appropriate.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hate to tell you but this blog is not just a fashion blog. It is all about the Duchess. If you want a fashion blog go to "What Kate Wore".

      Fan from Texas

      Delete
    2. Oh! I got confused about the headings that say "Shop Kate's Style", "Jewelry" and the fact that there are close ups of all her clothing and jewelry pieces that are meticulously identified with links to wear to buy things.

      Delete
    3. colorado carrie8 December 2013 16:43

      Still not a fashion blog. Sorry for ur confusion.

      Delete
    4. This isn't a fashion blog, even if that *is* where most of the conversation ends up. LOL. Charlotte always includes links to Kate's charities and, in between engagements, we're very lucky that she takes the time to include posts on fashion or jewelry, etc.

      Delete
    5. bluhare in Washington State9 December 2013 00:36

      I posted a comment about her interacting with bereaved parents, and not one person said anything -- good or bad. Lots have commented on her outfit, though. Draw your own conclusions.

      Delete
    6. Jean from Lancs.9 December 2013 12:11

      Bluhare,
      Tried to put something on when you wrote of her interaction with bereaved parents, but as these things sometimes do---it disappeared into the ether. It can be very distressing--I know because it was part of my job--but we had training. Both Catherine and William seem to do it extremely well. I suppose William saw his mother do it and has been able to help Catherine.
      I do admire them for caring---when I know, bereavement seems to terrify people and many would rather cross the road than speak to a recently bereaved friend.

      Delete
    7. bluhare, I like you. Your comments almost always make me smile.

      Delete
    8. bluhare in Washington State10 December 2013 23:38

      Jean, I admire you for tackling it head on. I fight the desire to walk away as well, but I'm learning not to. Amazing how much people appreciate a little kindness.

      wolfpup: :)

      Delete
  54. Also, forgot to mention - look how everyone else in the photos are dressed - besides the uniformed staff - everyone else dressed up for the occasion - that could make Kate's outfit appear "off" as well. She does need to remember that unless she's outdoors scouting or at a sporting event - her public "appearances" will be photographed and the organization hosting will move toward a more formal dress to represent their organization professionally - no matter how they dress normally for every day work. This is especially noticeable in the photograph with the volunteers. I hope she or her advisors will take note of it.

    ReplyDelete
  55. She is great with kids. I like her informal choice of clothing items but they don't match. Some pieces are age appropriate some are not. It goes to prove money does not give you style you either have it or you don't.
    I am assuming one she will really get criticized for an outfit like the York's, get a stylist and tn like them suddenly dress well for any occasion

    ReplyDelete
  56. What kate wore is reporting that she wore j brand corduroy pants in dark navy and from the pics there I'd have to agree. Glad they weren't jeans!

    ReplyDelete
  57. I am from the US. What in the heck is "messy play"?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. colorado carrie8 December 2013 16:47

      Its a form of art in the us. Art that uses paint, pudding, mud, snow, to play with. My students love sand and glue

      Delete
  58. Canadian Friend7 December 2013 19:23

    Thank you, Charlotte, for your stellar coverage over the past few days!

    There's no doubt that the hospice movement is a wonderful cause to support. Kate chose brilliantly-the cause needs attention and she can bring it.

    But the outfit-for me, it's not working. It either needed a different jacket or different trousers. A more casual jacket with less structure-or even a different colour (the navy blue version?) would have worked better.

    She could have gone with the matching suit pants for this jacket. It would have been very smart but definitely an "older look" for her; maybe more suited to a foundation board meeting than a children's centre visit.

    If she meant to dress so she was ready to join in messy play, etc., then the jacket is too formal and a pale colour which is a magnet for messy fingers!. I don't blame her for wanting to wear pants-all the squatting and bending down and sitting on "little" chairs (the Moms know what I mean!)-just not these pants-too casual.

    The outfit needed a shirt or blouse that might have pulled it all together; even a scarf might have worked. As is, it's three blocks of neutral-gray, blue and black-very blah!

    I'm not able to comment on the boots-just too weird. They seem very cold weather, meant to be paired with a coat or jacket. Some of her other Aquaitalia ones might have been better.

    Just not a win for me. Still, she's gorgeous and her hair is tremendously improved.

    Best to all!

    ReplyDelete
  59. Hello everyone greetings lady Charlotte.

    I honestly didn't know there are such a thing as hospices for dying children. I thought only Great Ormond St was the only place for sick children.

    The duchess has certainly made me aware of this. And I must say, it's heartbreaking for sure. The parents must be so brave. I think duchess Kate is doing fine work to put a spotlight on this and similar charities. Maybe she can add in the future young carers who look after sick or disabled parents. They get no support it seems. Perhaps the duchess csn help with that patronage one day.

    I simply love her shes beautiful and her outfit is fine. It was elegant and practical the colours are ok for the initimate care environment . I still wish she pull her hair back sometimes, so she's not playing with it putting it behind her ears etc. But it's fine. I just love her still .I miss her when she's not around.

    All the best

    ReplyDelete
  60. The hospice care I am familiar with is care for the dying. But many of the children in the photographs, though some are incapacitated, look generally healthy. Are they all terminally ill?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes unfortunately they are terminally ill.

      Delete
    2. I am impressed with how Kate keeps it together, yet shows such compassion. Having two young children myself, I don't know that I'd be able to do it without losing my composure. Kudos to her for taking on such a cause.
      Victoria, Oregon

      Delete
  61. We all know Kate is reasonably tall, however she seems to feel she has to remain consistent to her claim of 5'10' (which she most certainly is not), by wearing towering heels at every opportunity, Lest someone realize her dishonesty. It would be nice to see her at a public function in an average height heel or even a flat. Would make her even more like "one of the people". Why she feels she must be heads and shoulders above every one? I say this as a 5'9" woman myself who even in flats is often taller than most men I encounter.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I disagree and I'm not sure how you can assign that "need" to her.

      Over the years, we've seen Kate in flat boots, ballerina flats, and sneakers. I doubt she cares whether we think she's 5'5" or 5'10".

      Delete
    2. Jean from Lancs.9 December 2013 13:05

      Officially her height seems to be given as 1.75 metres--which I believe is about 5ft 81/2.
      Prince William's height is given as 1.91 m--about 6ft 31/2.
      Why wear flats when your husband is 6 inches taller?

      Delete
    3. I read somewhere that she's long-waisted and wears high heels when she needs her legs to look longer, which would make sense.
      Victoria, Oregon

      Delete
    4. I think she wears wedges and extremely high heels all the time because, even when she is not short, her husband is so much taller than her. Same case as with Princess Letizia (I'm sorry but I *hate* all her custom made platform shoes :p most of the times, they are just hideous and make me think of hooker shoes. Yet, Letizia loves them and is known for them).

      Perhaps her hubby calls her "shorty" :P Mine does (and I am not all that shorty) since he is very tall (big). I have been referred to his "tiny wifey" and I do look very small in some pictures. I really don't care, and I need to walk a lot, so I look for comfort first.

      So maybe Kate is just not comfortable with being that "short" next to her husband or is just fascinated by high heels. I do find her fascination with them odd, again bc she is not short.
      I also believe Victoria's comment to be true. She is long-waisted.

      Delete
  62. Having watched the video I feel that at long last we have a better idea of Kate as a person. Judging someone just by facial expressions as we have had to do in the past can be misleading and I am sure many more people will be supportive of Kate having seen how wonderfully she interacted with the children and in such a very caring manner. It must be very hard talking to people who have such very sick children and must take very real strength of character and a caring personality to be able to do it. It is such a worthwhile cause to be highlighting as is Action on Addiction which is another of her major charities. Well done Kate

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  63. I love it! I love the post and all the nice pictures. But most of all I really love Kate's outfit. I think the coat and jeans go well. I'm in love with her boots and of course will be on the look for my own pair sometime soon. Thing that touched me from watching the videos, was the warmth and friendliness Kate has for everyone she meets - both the children, parents and the staff alike. It makes me wonder what she is like with her little boy and Wills. George is a lucky little baby indeed =) Thanks for the wonderful post and look forward to many more!

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  64. bluhare, I just read an article in The Telegraph with the headline "The Queen takes the Duchess of Cornwall under her wing." CH is getting double duty out of this one....first, that the Queen must like her and, second, a reminder that Camilla is next.

    Just wondering what your take is... :)

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/theroyalfamily/10502851/The-Queen-takes-the-Duchess-of-Cornwall-under-her-wing.html

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    1. bluhare in Washington State9 December 2013 03:20

      I think that the transition has begun. Charles has been taking on more duties, and is going to Mandela's funeral in lieu of HM. I read today that she's been cautioned about too many long haul flights. We keep forgetting she's 87!!

      But Camilla. This is the second engagement the two of them have done together; I saw when they went to an inner city charity that teaches children to ride. An absolutely perfect venue for the two of them, being horse mad. I've been re-looking at Camilla based on your "shrewd" assessment, and this appears to me the start of the making of Camilla, the Queen Consort. Not Princess Consort, but Queen.

      It's not that I'm a giant Camilla fan; I'm not. But I also don't see any reason why she shouldn't be Queen when Charles becomes King. And I'm glad to see HM taking her out.

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    2. bluhare, your last sentence is screaming for a comeback, but I will bite my sarcastic tongue. :)

      I do agree that the transition has begun. But I believe it was *always* Charles' intention for her to be Queen Consort. I never bought the Princess Consort fairytale; that was just a spoon full of PR sugar for the masses. And yes, as his wife she should be Queen, but the Princess Consort sales pitch just proves how carefully the marriage had to be presented to the public.

      Fingers crossed that HM has the QM's genes.

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    3. bluhare in Washington State9 December 2013 17:36

      royalfan, stop it!! I'm agreeing with you!

      I absolutely agree Charles has always wanted her to be Queen Consort, and the Princess Consort title is just a nod to (old) public opinion. If s/he/they didn't care, there wouldn't have been the PR campaign to rehab her image. The way the Queen keeps going, by the time Charles takes the throne there will be a lot of people who weren't even born during Diana's lifetime, never mind when all Charles/Diana/Camilla rigamarole went on. So it's becoming less and less of an issue, I think.

      She should be titled Queen; there's no reason not to unless being divorced in and of itself is a barrier (which I don't think it is?). If it isn't for Charles, it shouldn't be for her. I think she's starting to come into her own now that there's a bit of latitude for her, and it suits. I was quite impressed with her idea for the toiletry rape kits to give to women when they (finally) get to shower after a rape. Sometime it's the little things that make a difference, and I understand she got donations from companies and her office put the first batch of kits together. I hope that's something everyone could get behind. I should go google to see if it went past the pilot program. I just did, and couldn't find anything past the rollout, but here's a link to the article.

      http://www.thetimes.co.uk/tto/health/news/article3679295.ece

      I do agree that the way HM is going, this is a moot conversation!

      PS Charlotte, I know your licensing agreement prohibits right clicking, but is there any way to get around it? It makes it hard to post a back up for a debate point when the reader has to remember the entire link and type it out. Although royalfan and I technically aren't debating right now as she hasn't posted anything I don't agree with. :)

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    4. bluhare, I think it may appear to be less and less of an issue while the Queen is still "in charge" and enjoying good health. And a good portion of this "acceptance" could also be described as resignation. But when the time comes for Camilla to walk down the aisle at Westminster Abbey, the red carpet beneath her feet may not be completely smooth.

      Recently, The Telegraph reported that Charles had a birthday bash at BP that cost 500,000 pounds. Although it was paid for by an Indian tycoon, it does make him (and Camilla) appear to be out of touch with the man on the street if you consider periodic images of the Queen boarding commuter trains or articles describing her desire to keep her own celebrations *lower* key as an acknowledgement of difficult economic times.

      PR can be bought and paid for; logic and good judgment cannot.

      http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/theroyalfamily/10470236/Prince-Charles-takes-over-Buckingham-Palace-for-party-fit-for-a-king.html

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    5. Kristin, San Francisco10 December 2013 15:09

      Hello Royal Fan - your word choice fits perfectly - 'resignation'- accepting the realities of today's world and to move forward with the people that HM's children have chosen. I have come around to Camilla - her name will forever be recorded with that familiar asterisk.

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    6. Jean from Lancs.10 December 2013 17:47

      It is 77years ago to the very day, that Edward VIII abdicated. In all the discussions prior to that Churchill had brought up the possibility of a Morganatic marriage and had been told very firmly that the wife of the King was the Queen and that Britain "Did not do Morganatic marriages".
      The law on Royal Marriages has not been changed since then, though divorce has in general become more acceptable, but calling Camilla by one of the Prince's lesser titles
      seems as though it has.
      The title of "Queen" has been withheld from the wife of only one King---George IV and what a hullabaloo that caused!
      I really cannot see anyone saying the lawful wife of a rightful King is not fit to be Queen.

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    7. Hi Kristin...I wish I could be as generous (regarding "coming around to her"). :)

      And Jean, if I may take your reference to the "hullabaloo" a step further, then it really does show just how carefully their marriage was packaged if the suggestion of her not being styled "Queen" came from BP. It was very much a preemptive strike.

      This may not be a popular thing to say, and I recognize that the circumstances were not identical, but I have more respect for Edward VIII for abdicating and not insisting on having his cake and eating it too.

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    8. bluhare in Washington State10 December 2013 23:43

      I don't think the Queen was shocked at Charles and Camilla, even when Charles was married to Diana. What shocked her was all the negative PR that came out of it. So if the Queen doesn't care for Camilla and is just resigned to her, I don't think it has anything to do with the Diana situation. The Queen appears to be remarkably pragmatic sometimes, and her own family is no stranger to scandal. Plus Charles and Diana's marriage wasn't much different than a lot of other upper class marriages that were mostly business deals. And despite Diana's protestations, she wasn't a whole lot better in the cheating department either.

      Consider the gauntlet thrown, royalfan!! :)

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    9. bluhare in Washington State10 December 2013 23:44

      PS 70 years since Edward VIII abdicated. Without that we would not be talking on this blog, would we?

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    10. bluhare, two wrongs don't make a right, but not having been in her shoes, I can't blame Diana for reaching out after the harsh reality of what she was up against (in her marriage and w/in the RF) set it. Diana didn't go into marriage for practical purposes. She was not the one to respond with a beyond awkward, "whatever in love means". She couldn't help that Camilla never intended to stay out of Charles' life.

      I do agree that the Queen was shocked about the negative PR rather than Charles and Camilla, but she and the rest of the RF contributed to their own bad PR. If she couldn't put her foot down and stop Charles from seeing Camilla, at the very least the Parker-Bowles should not have been continuously included in the royal circle. By not doing that, she added to the public humiliation Diana suffered. And let's not forget that the Queen Mother also supported the affair and allowed C&C to stay at Birkhall when they were both married to other people. So I guess one of the things she despised about Mrs S was okay for her favorite grandson.

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    11. bluhare in Washington State11 December 2013 20:37

      We do seriously disagree on this one, royalfan. The Queen is under no obligation to mitigate anyone's public humiliation or bad PR. And Charles is her son. Whether they're close or not, that will always come first (or it should!!). Diana contributed in a big way to the disaster that was the break up of her marriage. Had she been a bit more discreet in who she talked to, things would have been much different.

      And as to the QM condoning Charles and Camilla, I never said the royal family didn't have a large hypocrisy gene. They do, and the Queen Mother was at the top of that heap. And if you read Lady Colin Campbell's bio of the QM, she says it's because Edward VIII wouldn't marry her so she went with George VI instead. I have no idea whether that's correct, but it certainly lends a different tone to the events.

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    12. yes, bluhare, we do disagree on this one. I recognize the loyalty of a mother towards her son, but in this case, she is also the Queen and as such has put duty before her family on more than one occasion. She should have put her foot down for the sake of the monarchy that she has served so selflessly for most of her life. Had she taken a stand, it wouldn't have been strictly for Diana's benefit. And while I do think she lead from the heart on this one, I can't fault Diana for the way she responded to the situation. It wasn't HER indiscretion that started the ball rolling. At the very least, the P-B clan should have been sidelined and not seen smiling away with the QM or Princess Anne.

      But I *do* agree the "alternate" theory regarding the source of the QM's real irritation with Edward VIII.

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    13. bluhare in Washington State13 December 2013 00:37

      Frankly, I wonder about the "Diana didn't know what she was getting into" stuff. She was born to an aristocratic family for whom it was all about the heirs. Specifically the boy heir. She herself talks about her parents being disappointed she wasn't the boy they wanted. She had aristocratic friends. Her sister dated Charles. To say she was the lamb led to the slaughter might be overstating things a bit. I wonder if Diana didn't rewrite that history as her marriage unraveled.

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    14. bluhare, I think it's C&C (and their PR people) who have tried to rewrite history, and it's been much easier to do since 1997.

      Diana had some reservations (she even admitted as much), but the wheels were in motion and there was pressure on her to go through with it. But more importantly, as a 19 year old young lady who was in love, she wanted to believe that things would work out. (Women who are a lot older have kidded themselves into believing it.)

      But I don't believe for one minute that she wasn't in love and was marrying for any "other" reason. People who were in her close circle before the marriage have stated that publicly. They're on record as saying that she was absolutely besotted with Charles and one of her nannies even said that from the time Diana was a very young girl, she talked of having a happy marriage and never getting divorced. (And this was stated long before the public was aware of a single hiccup so it isn't a rewrite on her behalf.)

      Charles and Diana may not have been an ideal match, but I do believe that Diana was prepared to give it her all and would have continued to do so had she received the love and support she needed.

      Ironically, Diana had Camilla's stamp of approval because she thought this young woman would be an easy pushover and not threaten her ties to Charles. But when Diana showed some backbone and refused to go along with their script, Charles' camp tried to make her out to be unstable. I cannot imagine what it was like for Diana to be in that "system" and not have the support of her own husband, or her in-laws, and live with the fear of being separated from her boys.

      When you consider that Diana celebrated her 20th birthday 4 weeks before she married a 33 year old man who was getting married for slightly less than romantic reasons...with his shrewd 34 year old "former" girlfriend watching from the shadows...well, suddenly the lamb to the slaughter scenario doesn't seem quite so absurd.

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  65. Just a small point on protocol regarding William & Kate's forthcoming engagement at the Natural History Museum. As Kate is the Patron of the Museum does William still take precedence over her when arriving at the event. I vaguely remember that when they attended the unveiling of her portrait at the National Portrait Museum, where she is also Patron, they walked in side by side.

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  66. I love how unexpected and fresh this outfit was from the standard long coat plus court shoes! It is very appropriate for the outing and cold winter weather.The navy cords feel rich for the holiday season as well as the suede booties, a great alternative to a pump for winter time. Kate's hair and makeup look great too. Plus new jewelry is nice to see. I would have preferred the navy sapphire earrings to the kiki green amethyst pair for this color combination.

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  67. Has the idea of Carole, helping Kate, with her wardrobe choices, ever been discussed? Carole seems to always be elegant and appropriate; certainly her girls have taken style lessons from her. Who styled for Kate's trip to Canada and the U.S., because that is when I fell for her.

    I don't think that we will ever be able to compare Diana and Kate...like apples and oranges. But as to what is appropriate dress, I wonder, how did the Queen use the popular styles in her appearances when she was Kate's age. Certainly, we can all agree, that it would be foolish to style oneself, after a much older, beloved Queen. But style tips from when she was a younger woman...?

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    1. wolfpup, yes, I believe that Kate *has* taken her lead from Carole over the years. As I stated yesterday, Kate looked pulled together long before her marriage so I don't believe she suddenly decided to rely on a team of stylists.

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    2. Princess lessons...

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    3. The Queen ss a princess wss heavily influence by her mother, who known for being stylish. Her chief designer Norman Hartnell became the Queens designer.

      Diana went for versace and Chanel as she became older. She was very young when she married snd most of her style wasn't very good, but as she matured she became sensational. That was down to Versace.

      Catherine being older than Diana is of her time also. Kates style is contemporary modern high st. She could go shopping in Topshop in Oxford Street and nobody would notice she is royal. Kate style is very very high st. Imo. Skinny jeans and trainers; sometimes a little jacket and wedges, fascinators and heels
      Her look is a little bit of everything. She can mic and match. It keeps everybody waiting to see what she'll do next. I think being on a team of buyers for the jigsaw chain put her in a position to know trends. She must have gone to fashion shows in those days too.

      I think Kate holds her own.

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    4. bluhare in Washington State10 December 2013 23:45

      I think Carole should be spending some time with Pippa if she's the stylish person in the family.

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  68. I guess I'm just looking for the jewels, or whatever it is, that makes her stand out as a princess. I'm not saying what that is...I don't know. I do think that she looks fabulous most of the time. I want her to look royal. I do not know what that entails, and all of you in Europe are much more aware of that something-something. Here, I see Michelle Obama, who just rocks her clothes, especially her evening wear. It is so sweet to see President Obama's pleasure, in accompanying her, because she is the focus of attention when they walk out, and he stands tall. She's like a plumed bird. I'm looking for more than high street, and I'd love Kate to have the same budget as Diana did. Maybe it is just the relentlessness of the skinny jeans that is bothering me...all blue...over and over. I guess I will spend some time looking at other queens-to-be, so I'll try to get a little bit of education to inform me better. I think that Kate was completely beautiful on their trip together to Canada and the U.S. And I'm sure she has more education about being royal, than I have. Can't go wrong with Versace and Chanel, or with tips from the queen's designer. Please don't think that I'm criticizing Kate - I just want an upgrade. And maybe she just wants to be pedestrian, what do I know? Time will tell. Or maybe someone should tell Charles, the pocketbook. Not everyone is jealous.

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    1. Jean from Lancs.11 December 2013 12:58

      I find it hard to accept that Mrs. Obama always "rocks her clothes"--I have vivid memories of her visiting one of our great universities wearing black leggings under what could only be described as a ballet "tutu".

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    2. wolfpup, I honestly believe that a huge factor here is her desire to stay away from any potential resentment from within the RF (she's not dumb and she knows the history. If not her then Carole does for sure). Kate already has age and looks going for her and if she really steps it up in the fashion department, it won't be pretty. Pardon the pun. :) Another factor may be the economy and that's a wise thing to consider.

      And since you mentioned MO, I have to disagree a bit. Although she does "rock" some of her evening gowns, I think most of her daywear is not flattering and sometimes not even appropriate. The mini-sweaters worn with print dresses don't flatter her figure at all and they often look too casual (the recent arrival in South Africa was a prime example of this.)

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    3. Thanks for telling me the truth. One of the things that I like about Michelle Obama is that she does not try to hide her figure - she is friends with it.

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  69. I have enjoyed all the comments here on Kate's latest outfit - and work. Personally I was a bit relieved to see this outfit, I thought it suited her. I understand the complaints posted here and certainly can see that point of view. I did think to add two minor points for consideration. I know from my reading of Diana's work that she often choose to wear velvet when visiting the terminally ill, elderly or children - she thought they could react to her outits through a sense of touch, that it could even be a way to connect. While I don't think I ever heard her mention it, I am struck as well by her choice of colors. While it is true that Diana oten wore bright colors, I do also recall when visiting those suffering from leprosy in Indonesia, that she wore a pale blue/grey dress, when she was first photographed shaking hands with an Aids patient, she wore dark blue, etc. It may be she wanted the fact of the visit to take center stage - she may have also felt the color was less intimidating to those she was meeting with. Kate has shown consisently that she puts a great deal of thought into her visits....so perhaps there were reasons for her choices that we just aren't seeing. Again, just a thought to throw out there. Follower in Vermont, USA

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  70. Post after post, your followers are writing a complete and interesting dissertation on the outfit semiotics :) very very interesting dear Charlotte.

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  71. I haven't been able to comment recently but have stopped by. Too many comments to catch up.

    Unfortunately, I absolutely disliked this outfit. I think this is the worse outfit so far (at least in my book). Perhaps ea. item isn't so bad, but the combination of those boots, with those tight pants and that blazer was just horrible. Those booties are just ugly. I am bored of the tube/skinny jeans. They just weren't a good match with that blazer or the boots.

    I volunteer at a nursery twice a month so I can definitely understand why she chose jeans (although I'm tired of them, in this case practical and comfortable should take precedence). Still, they just needed a different top and shoes.

    Ladies, let's not fight over it. So I hate the outfit, so do some, some just love every single thing about it. That is just life :) it's fine. No need for name calling.

    Like I said, in my book, she had a bad outfit day. Whatever. Her hair looks great (although, again bc of the kids and possible hugging I would wear my hair up. Some little ones like to pull :P and I don't like to have my hair in their face either).

    Visiting a hospice must not be that easy...

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  72. Thank you,dear Charlote, that you share with us information not only concerning Catherin's style, but mostly her charity and other patronage work, royal duties. I appritiate your kind, respectful and clever minded way of representing information. It is always very interesting for me to read your blog. Thank you once more!!

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  73. bluhare in Washington State11 December 2013 20:32

    First time I've ever seen anything on the Daily Mail where you don't already have something up, Charlotte!

    Kate looked amazing today, she really did.

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