Saturday, 23 August 2014

Kate's Malta Tour: Two Days, Ten Engagements & All the Details

We're back again to share details of Kate's upcoming tour to Malta. In yesterday's post we noted how quiet things have been on the royal front (for those of you experiencing withdrawals, trust me when I say there is never too much of a gap without news or an appearance of some sort).


Kensington Palace released the full itinerary for Kate's first solo trip abroad without Prince William by her side. The two-day visit, which marks the 50th anniversary of the island's independence from the UK, will see the Duchess undertake ten engagements encompassing a wide variety of events including firsts for Her Royal Highness, such as meetings with the Prime Minister and President, usually a task William would have completed on previous tours. Let's take a look at the schedule along with the details revealed thus far.

Saturday, 20 September

Upon arrival the Duchess will call on the President of Malta, Maria Louise Coleiro Praca, at San Anton Palace where she will be staying during her visit. The beautiful Palace is located in Attard, it was constructed as a country villa by Knight Antoine de Paule, a French aristocrat, who named it Sainte Antoine after his patron saint, Anthony of Padua.


Kate is following in the Queen's footsteps; Her Majesty also stayed at the Palace during recent visits.


After a meeting with the President, Kate's next stop is the beautiful Auberge de Castille, where she will call on Prime Minister The Honourable Dr Joseph Muscat and his wife.

Wikipedia

The Duchess will then view a re-enactment of an historical event - the inspection of the fort and garrison by Grand Bailiff of the Order of the Knights of St John, before travelling to the National Library in Valletta where she will view historical documents, including letters from kings Henry VIII and George II, and the original citation awarding the George Cross to Malta.

National Library Facebook Page

The day concludes with a very special event which is considered the pinnacle of the visit; Independence Day celebrations at Upper Barrakka Gardens.

Wikipedia

It promises to be a spectacular evening set against the backdrop of the Grand Harbour.


We expect Kate will pull out a show-stopper for this event. Be it cocktail or full-length this will most likely be the fashion highlight of the trip.


Sunday, 21 September

Day two is equally jam packed beginning with an Independence Day service at St John's Co-Cathedral. After the service she will view the two Caravaggios in the Cathedral Museum.

Wikipedia

Art History graduate Kate will particularly enjoy seeing some of the works of Caravaggio - the artist Michaelangelo Merisi. Born in the town of Caravaggio, he was the first great representative of the Baroque movement. Indeed, he was the archetypal rebellious artist and led quite a turbulent life which matched the high drama of the chiaroscuro style that his paintings became famous for.

Wikipedia

In 1606, while working in Rome, one of his many brawls resulted in Caravaggio killing a young man. With a price on his head he travelled to Naples where he would be outside the Roman jurisdiction and under the protection of the Colonna family. After one of many incidents and in an attempt to regain favour, he painted 'Salome with the head of John the Baptist' in which he depicted his own head on a platter and sent the work to Alof de Wignacourt - Grand Master of the Order of Malta and his patron - as a plea for forgiveness.

Wikipedia

One of the paintings Kate will view: 'The Beheading of Saint John The Baptist'.

St John's Co-Cathedral

Next, the Duchess will visit Agenzija Zghazgh (Agency for Youth), a government agency which runs a number of initiatives supporting young people. Her Royal Highness will hear about the work of the organisation from young people who avail of the centre and support workers. Working with young people is one of the three main goals of William, Kate and Harry's Royal Foundation and it's nice to see that incorporated in an overseas visit.


Kate will take a short walkabout through Vittoriosa Square before being taken to the Church of St Lawrence to view Maltese art. Again we're seeing art included in the visit, and obviously this itinerary was planned with Kate's interest in the subject in mind.

Wikipedia

Kate will then enjoy a boat tour across the Grand Harbour where she will have the opportunity to see some of the most beautiful sights and iconic views between Vittoriosa and Valletta. This promises to be a memorable one for the Duchess.

Voyages to Antiqity

To take a peek at what Kate will see, you can view webcams of the harbour at the Visit Malta website.

Wikipedia

The visit comes to a close with a garden party at High Commissioner Rob Luke's residence marking Independence Day.


It is an important milestone for Kate as a royal. More from People's story:

'This a seminal moment for her, when she will be showing herself to be a stateswoman in her own right,' a palace source tells people. Kate is also giving a speech, which insiders say she is "nervous about".'

As you can see, much thought and consideration has gone into planning this trip. In fact, it is believed Kate discussed it at length with Her Majesty - and will no doubt be asked to report back upon return. Malta holds a very special place in the Queen's heart, and she spent some of the happiest months of her life there as a newly-wed when Prince Philip was stationed there as a serving Royal Navy officer. The royal couple stayed at a villa rented by Prince Philip's uncle Lord Mountbatten.


Royal commentators have described it as a sign of self-confidence in her grandson's wife that the monarch has asked Kate to travel to Malta. William and Kate's roles as members of the Royal Family will change dramatically in years to come (I was chatting to a seasoned royalist the other day who noted it is not beyond the realms of possibility they will be king and queen in fifteen years) and I do believe gradually easing into these duties and responsibilities can only prove a positive for the Cambridges and the monarchy.


Kate's wardrobe for the visit will also have required quite a bit of planning. The Duchess will more than likely want to give a nod to her host country through her selections whilst remaining mindful of being appropriately dressed for the nature of each event. Bespoke pieces may have already been created by her favourite brands Alexander McQueen and Alice Temperley. We're going to see hats and possibly Kate's favoured coatdresses, with evening attire for receptions on both nights. While we won't see a tiara, the occasion will call for a nice piece of jewellery or two. Keep an eye out for red or white pieces!


While Kate's away, William be on parenting duties and like the rest of the world, will see his wife's solo visit covered on the television and in the media (when little George isn't keeping him occupied).


We're very excited about this tour, and feel certain Kate will do a terrific job. What do you think of the itinerary? What events are you most looking forward to?

209 comments:

  1. Thanks for the in-depth look, Charlotte. I am just looking forward to seeing Kate again!

    I am just a little nervous for her though, I have to admit. I know she will have some speeches (or at least one) and in her last one during an evening event (with the fancy necklace), she made a mistake and giggled. This made me cringe and reminded me of a school girl. I just hope she doesn't do anything to embarrass herself with any wardrobe malfunctions or silly giggling during her speeches.

    You caught my attention though, with your mention of them ascending to the throne in 10-15 years. I am not so sure of that....surely Charles will in that time frame but not Will and Kate. I figured if the Queen and Charles both live to be 100 (following the longevity of the Queen Mother), then William will be King in another 35 years or so....when he's in his late 60's. Of course, anything can happen, but I just don't seen either one (HM or Charles) slowing down anytime soon. Unless of course, Charles decides to call it quits early. I could see him maybe doing that...but the Queen definitely won't just based on what she said when she ascended.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well, I know I could understand and sympathize with a nervous giggle. I also happen to think it's endearing.

      And I honestly can't see Charles calling it quits early. First, he has waited too long and, second, Camilla would have him stuffed and mounted above a fireplace if he even suggested it. :)

      Delete
    2. It think your comment about her speech mistake is a bit harsh. I thought that she carried herself through her mistake with some dignity without making a huge deal of it. It must be very daunting to think you have to get up in front a so many people, both in person and those wathcing when its being recorded, and to do something that people are so focused on especially when it is something that does not come naturally to the majority of the population.

      KiwiNic

      Delete
    3. anon from Leominster24 August 2014 at 01:16

      Kate is an awkward public speaker, but practice should lead to a great improvement in time. It doesn't come naturally and speaking in public a great deal is what makes the difference. I noticed that with Diana who really improved over the years. But I'm sure the Maltese will be charmed by Kate and she has a great gift with people on a one to one basis.

      The itinerary sounds wonderful, especially the Caravaggios and the library. Should be a very busy and exciting two days.

      Delete
    4. Sarah in Minneapolis24 August 2014 at 07:18

      My guess is that public speaking skills are not a priority for Kate right now. When she decides to develop that skill, I am certain we will notice an improvement.

      At W&K's wedding, I was so impressed with James Middleton's composure, elocution and cadence when he read from the Bible. Later when I read that James has Dyslexia and that he memorized that passage, I was even more impressed at his dedication to doing a good job. He must have practiced that reading 1000 times in order to get it just right.

      So to Leo's point, practice makes perfect and there's plenty of evidence Kate can and will eventually do better. James is proof positive of that.

      I have to say that I didn't find Lynn from CA's comment harsh at all. I can't speak for Lynn, but IMO, her comment likely reflected a work ethic Lynn expects of herself. In other words Lynn believes it's important to develop competence in tasks regularly performed in one's job. Lynn feeling embarrassed for Kate when she sees her struggle in speeches is a natural empathic response. It’s not a criticism of Kate as much as it is a window into what Lynn expects of herself.

      Delete
    5. I am very excited that Catherine is getting a chance to make the short dash across Europe to Malta for a friendly visit with many engagements. I agree with you all that Catherine needs to practice her public speaking skills, but I do find that she is improving.

      It is no easy task to be relaxed, composed and focus on what to say and how to say it. It is one of the most stressful things that people dread. I too would be shivering in my nude pumps (very funny)Royalfan!) and I am glad it is not me!

      It will be exciting to see if Catherine will be wearing something old or something new or a mixture of seen and unseen. That in itself will be a surprise.

      Good luck and well done Catherine!

      Delete
    6. I hope Kate has taken lessons to help with her confidence. She obviously has been nervous; however, her speeches are not long, and she has cue cards. She's not a child, and should be able to present a simple 2 - 3 minute speech by now. We're not asking for Meryl Streep like delivery; just a competent reading. The Queen may hate it too, but she's done what she has to so she can deliver hers. Kate needs to do the same. If it helps not having them televised, then she should practice with non televised events (which I think has been the case the last time or two) so she doesn't have that to worry about and then televise. But I think she needs to up her game here. She's a stateswoman, for lack of a better term, not a society gadabout.

      And, yes, I've done public speaking and been taped. It takes getting used to, for sure, but you can do it. That being said, it's been a couple of years and I'm going to have to do it again and I'd be lying if I said I wasn't nervous.

      Delete
    7. bluhare, in fairness to Kate, when the average person does public speaking (and I assume you mean job related, as in Kate's case) it isn't personal. If we do it, it isn't about us; it's more about content, although delivery does matter. Naturally. But Kate's situation is very different. Not only will she be judged on content (and on a global scale), but it's also very much about her simply because of who she is. And the reality of that must be quite daunting.

      Delete
    8. It *is* her job, you're right, royalfan. My public speaking was job related, involved holding meetings, informing people of changes, taking questions and handling the meeting making sure it didn't get off track with hecklers, etc. Her speeches aren't personal and they're less than five minutes long. There are no questions and they've been in small enough spaces there are no hecklers. They are about the event she is attending and or the cause she's championing. She's also had three years to practice, and that's since her marriage. She also knew before her marriage what her role would entail. There shouldn't be any excuses for her. She's had time, and she's had the wherewithal to do whatever it takes to get comfortable with it.

      Your point about global scale is well taken. Quite different than a room of 50 - 200 people which was my average. Which is why I said she should have the cameras off if she's that freaked out by it. I made the mistake of saying I empathized with her a while back, and understood if she had fear, and won't make that mistake again, so for now I think she should be taking lessons, practicing, and going out on those under the radar visits and practice without public attention. All this is understanding that public speaking is not a huge part of her role albeit one she needs to become competent at, not necessarily master.

      Delete
    9. A giggle or self-deprecating moment of humor after a public speaking gaffe is the best way to create an empathetic audience.

      If you can't be perfect, be endearing, memorable and human.

      Delete
    10. Lynn Georgia USA24 August 2014 at 23:54

      I really do agree with Bluhare. Kate is 32 years old and even had experience as an actress in her adolescent years. She should be able to "step up to the plate" and deliver an effective short speech with appropriate eye contact-- and without flipping pages and fumbling around--certainly without giggling and making others feel uncomfortable. If I were she, I would memorize each speech (They are very short!) and then practice making it sound fresh and sincere. She could retain the text as a "security blanket," but should try not to refer to the notes. Her audiences are always friendly and supportive, and I think she should take a deep breath, square her shoulders, and just deliver it. It always seems to me that she has not practiced hard enough and prepared well enough. I don't understand her timidity after all this time--and with her access to professional coaches, I know she can succeed. (P.S. I've had a lot of public speaking "command performances" in my job--certainly not on a global scale with international press cameras rolling, but yet with local media and rooms filled with colleagues and bosses. Sometimes I felt my job--certainly my chances of advancement--were on the line. That's pretty stressful--but I had to learn to do it. I think Kate should learn, too.)

      Delete
    11. Summer, I agree, although I'd say self depracating humor goes a long way. All this talk of public speaking is reminding me of The King's Speech and the impediment George VI had to overcome in order to address the nation. *That* was daunting. But isn't public speaking our greatest fear, even more than death? So I think the audience understands how alone it is standing there with all eyes on you, and will forgive a lot. When I first started, I was so nervous my voice would quaver. And it would still be quavering 15 minutes in when I was a lot more comfortable and not really nervous any more. I hated that.

      Thank you, Lynn . . . I can tell we've had similar experiences and there really is no solution except to get up there and do it, and keep doing it. (I'll come whining to you when I have to do my first one after a few years off!!)

      Delete
    12. Sarah in Minneapolis -- Thank you for your defense of my comment. While I appreciate your insight into my own high standards, I actually was being critical of Kate herself as well. I am old-fashioned among many on these boards in that I feel that the royals should conduct themselves in a distinguished manner. They should not act like they are like us because they are not. To me, they are on a higher level and therefore, held to a higher standard and should conduct themselves with modesty and decorum at all times. A giggle at a joke is appropriate. A giggle at a mistake during a speech is not.

      I work in the business office world and this would be considered unprofessional and immature in my workplace, especially someone approaching her mid-thirties with a college degree. She is not in her early 20s anymore, girlish giggles at mistakes are just not ok in my book. I think they make her look silly and I am hard on her because I really want her to succeed. Making mistakes is ok, but compounding them with unprofessional behavior is not ok, especially for a "statesperson" as others have so aptly called her.

      Lynn from Georgia -- I agree with you 100%. She has the time and the resources to properly prepare and execute a professional and smooth presentation. She really has no excuses at this point.

      Ladies, I know I am hard on Kate and I hold her to a higher standard. It's because I want her to succeed so badly that I do and it drives me crazy when she makes mistakes that she should know better (like the multitude of skirt-in-the-wind episodes). And I also understand that I go against the grain because I want the Royal Family to be modern, but I don't want them to go too far. By being too much like commoners, they will make themselves unnecessary. It's like movie stars....back in the 40s and 50s, they were classy -- now look at them. They are too approachable, too common, a dime a dozen. I don't want to see the RF go that way. QE has kept that from happening but it does scare me that the younger generation will go a bit too far in that regard and once too far, they won't be able to go back and create that barrier again between them and us.

      Delete
    13. bluhare, I still believe it isn't quite the same. And it took Diana years to become comfortable with it, and she was thrown in the deep end.

      Lynn, regarding experience as an actress... Are you referring to her school play? I'm not aware of anything else. Even the Queen refers to her notes, and regularly. And I don't think Kate makes people uncomfortable; actually, I believe she has the audience cheering for her, rather than feeling or expressing any negativity.

      Summer, I totally agree. You summed up my feelings perfectly.

      Delete
    14. It's not the same, royalfan. We aren't on a global stage. I've not said it's the same, but it doesn't mean Kate can't deal with it. Diana was thrown in the deep end, and when it comes to public speaking, it's the best way. You just have to do it, and keep doing it. Another point is Diana was only four years older than Kate is now when she died. And Kate was prepared for this, if we believe what they said when they got engaged. She was prepared, she'd lived on the periphery for ten years. Much better preparation than Diana got. So why do we still make excuses for her?

      Lynn from CA, I agree with your take. Very much.

      Delete
    15. You know what - she puts her jeans on the same way that you and I do: one leg at a time. She's human and she's not perfect but the way that some folk are talking about her speeches you would think she did a terrible job. She fluffed the last line - that's it. And if we are talking about experienced people (actors even) look no further than American presidents Bush and Reagan :-) Simone
      Here's the link "shameful" speech.
      http://youtu.be/7TpkNXHWDj8

      Delete
    16. She doesn't do a good job, Simone. She's stilted, looks at her notes, and doesn't appear to know it. It's probably nerves, which is why practice will make perfect.

      No one said she isn't allowed to make mistakes. I find them endearing actually, like Harry with his speech blowing away from him the other day. She does need to step up her game, though, or else it will get worse, not better.

      Delete
    17. bluhare, perhaps we should agree to disagree on this one. :)

      Overall, what Kate brings to the table is far more valuable to the monarchy (and for future generations) than if she earned an A++ in public speaking. She is an educated young woman and she has the warmth, compassion, and stable background that the RF desperately needed.

      Delete
    18. Bluhare I was responding to Lynn's comments - I didn't make that clear but do understand you agree.
      Of course practice improves but no amount of practising to the mirror or family can prepare you for an event where tv cameras are focused on you and flashbulbs are clicking and flashing at you. Anyone would be nervous in that environment. She has made maybe 3 or 4 speeches in total and of course the more she does the better she will get but I suspect nerves will still sometimes get the better.
      My point was American presidents as the most powerful leaders of the Western world also get it horrendously wrong sometimes and man have they had some practice!
      I don't agree that she needs to "step up her game" or that she is "unprofessional" - I think that is unnecessarily harsh. I actually believe, maybe naively reading some of this today, that people generally love her for who she is, warts and all :-) Simone

      Delete
    19. I never said she was unprofessional, Simone. I said she needs to improve. Big difference.

      I also don't see the traits you guys see, but we can agree to disagree on those as well. Peace out for now.

      Delete
    20. I know you didn't say she was unprofessional Bluhare. That was someone else.
      Be boring if everyone was vanilla flavoured.
      I did try to post the link to her speech in Australia which was good but I think it got lost in the ether somewhere :-)
      Anyway la di da
      :-) Simone

      Delete
    21. I was just reading about Lord Attenborough's passing. What an incredible portfolio of work. And he wrote speeches for Diana at Charles' behest. It makes me wonder if Kate is writing her own, or if she's having them written. Perhaps the key to good, consistent delivery is finding the right formula for construction?

      Royalfan, I so often agree with you that I consider us nuts from the same tree. A very astute tree ...

      The whole forest is full of astute trees in this discussion, though, and I'm enjoying it immensely.

      Delete
    22. Why do so many people want to criticize before an event has taken place? It is almost as though some people are praying for a disaster.
      Can anyone wonder if she lacks confidence?
      Last week Prince Harry's speech blew a way----no criticism

      Delete
    23. Summer, I am happy to be called a nut. :))

      Seriously, when I heard that Lord Attenborough passed, I thought about his role in Diana's life. He seemed to be a very kind and compassionate man.

      Diana: Queen of Hearts (Narrated By Lord Attenborough)
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IGqEm2A2pUo

      Delete
    24. Let's compare with the first speech of the late Princess of Wales - about the same number of words, but almost half in Welsh, a language HRH did not speak. Delivered at 19 years old, a few months after having been "thrown in at the deep end", as Bluhare referenced. Whilst yes, she was reading from her notes, she clearly had to have worked incredibly hard to get the Welsh pronunciation correct (or as correct as she did, Welsh readers will know far more about this than I); and whilst, yes, Charles was there, Diana clearly did a more professional job first time out than I have yet to see the Duchess of Cambridge do - and to another person's point of view - it was the fact that the late PoW was obviously incredibly nervous, but carried on in a high clear voice without a gaffe or a giggle, which won people's hearts, not some attempt at self-deprecating humour (but I rather think in Catherine's case, it is nervous giggles, not self-deprecating humour) - and I second Bluhare in saying it is unprofessional. This is simply something at 32 the wife of second in line, and mother of third, should have down pat. I myself did not like giving speeches on behalf of charities, whether in front of cameras or at Board Meetings, but I was doing it by Diana's age because I had to do it. And the advice I got from professionals who taught me was "of course it is terrifying, but so is half of one's public life, so one simply must buck up and do it". Anyone who is shielding the DoC from such sound advice (regardless of motive) has not got the best interest of the Monarchy at heart.

      Delete
    25. I heard Catherine writes hert own speechs.

      Delete
    26. Gosh Royalfan
      I just watched the documentary that you sent: I had not seen it before. It sent a shiver down my spine - is it one one of those occasions that everyone remembers where they were? (The night of Diana's death I mean?)
      I remember my brother had been on night shift - he is somewhat involved in protection - and came into my bedroom when we still lived in Berkshire and said "sis Diana has died" I couldn't think who he meant at first but when it sank in I remember this feeling of disbelief.
      I also remember when the queens speech came on the tv on Friday afternoon I was on the M25, the orbital motorway around London and it was the most incredible sight as people stopped their cars and turned the radios on and listened to the Queens speech whilst standing together by their cars. I have never witnessed anything like it before or since .... The video brought it all back Royalfan.
      What an incredible week and a week when the Queen very nearly lost the love of her country for a moment too ....
      Sorry for the ramblings but it triggered so any memories ....
      What was it like in other countries?
      Simone

      Delete
    27. Actually Pandora as I have already pointed out, Bluhare did not say she was unprofessional - someone else did.
      Please do state your own opinion by all means - I am interested in others perspectives and open to their influence, but please do not allude to whether I have the "best interest of the monarchy at heart" as, to be frank, I do not believe you are in possession of facts or in a position to comment on this and it comes across as quite an insulting remark. Simone

      Delete
    28. Pandora,
      Your remarks resonated - especially the part about "she is the wife of the 2nd in line to the throne and mother of the third." I sometimes think we have high expectations for someone who is NOT in line to the throne. Does her performance really matter? If she flubs a speech will it cause tension in UK and Malta relations? I doubt it. If she flubs when giving speeches for a charity will it effect donations? I doubt it there too - nobody choose not to give to a cause because someone messed up a speech. I agree that she should be working with professionals to help her do the best she can because she is being asked by the queen to represent her and the country - however if her execution isn't perfect - she's not going to lose her job, lose sales, lose donations, or screw up alliances and trade relations. Because she is simply the consort of the 2nd in line to the throne and mother of the 3rd and it's merely a symbolic visit to honor an important occasion in that country's history. If she can't handle giving speeches in public, then most likely she won't be sent to places where she takes on that public role. And if she is continued to be sent out to do a task she is not up for and reflecting poorly on the country - well then you've just learned the value of electing your representatives, rather then having one family and the people they marry do it because of their blood line.

      Delete
    29. Simone, it was impossible for me to watch the documentary without a box of tissues within reach. Diana was one of a kind and if ever there was an example of life not being fair, well, just consider hers.

      In the US, I didn't know she died until I saw the headline in the Sunday paper and, even though I was looking at her face below it, I couldn't believe it. It felt like a very, very bad dream. Once it sank in, my first thought was of her boys and how they had "lost their sunshine." My exact words at the time.

      Delete
    30. Speaking of other perspectives, here is mine.

      The Duchess is not a corporate career women, a stateswoman (think Prime Minister or Secretary of State or some such for that designation) or indeed a professional of any kind. She is a Princess pure and simple, and will be the Queen in due course. In large part, the point of royalty these days, especially in the UK and its former Commonwealth, is to provide Romance with a capital R. You will notice that HM is entirely aware of that fact and takes good care to appear with plenty of lace, sparkling clothes, and a lavish display of diamonds. (Good example in photo above.)

      As such, the length of the Duchess's hair, the shortness of her skirts, the endearing hesitation of her speech, the youthfulness of her clothing are appropriate for what she needs to project into the less exciting lives of others, and millions of people adore her for it. Her husband made a wise choice.

      Delete
    31. Pandora, Kate is not Diana. Different roles...different times...and a different attitude within the royal family. (Thank goodness.)

      When Diana first married into the RF, it would have been unthinkable for her to use humor to come across as human. God forbid. My goodness, she wasn't allowed to faint. Unfortunately, it took her death to give the royals a serious reality check on the qualities the public wants, respects, and values. And giving a speech in a "professional" tone worthy of Meryl Streep's character in Devil Wears Prada, is not at the top of the list.

      "Martin Bashir: When you say, when you say you were never given any credit, what do you mean?

      Diana: Well anything good I ever did nobody ever said a thing, never said, ´well done', or ´was it OK?' But if I tripped up, which invariably I did, because I was new at the game, a ton of bricks came down on me."

      As I stated in another post, Kate brings qualities to the table that the royal family was in desperate need of. She's educated, warm, compassionate, and has a stable family background.

      If Kate was running for President or Prime Minister, public speaking would be much closer to the top of the list. But for the wife of a future king, and the mother of another, I believe the other qualities I mentioned are far more important.

      Delete
    32. anon from Leominster26 August 2014 at 03:03

      I have to respectfully disagree with Simone and Royalfan this time. Public speaking is top of the list for princesses; learning to do so with grace and elegance is extremely important. I did a bit of research and listened to speeches by Mette-Marit and Maxima. Both of these women are just a decade older than Kate and have been making speeches for years. Mette-Marit is not as well educated as Kate and had no experience of that kind before her marriage. Neither Mette-Marit nor Maxima were speaking in their native language. Yet both were doing a wonderful job on their own, speaking at length on very important subjects. The difference between their's and Kate's halting performances was marked.

      As I've mentioned before, it's a pity that Kate didn't pusue her stated interest in teaching in the ten years before her marriage since that would have done much for her poise and confidence.

      There is still time, and far from wishing Kate ill, I hope she has been using her copious free time to advantage and will show enormous improvement when and if she speaks in Malta. As pointed out, her brother did a masterful job at the wedding. Kate did acting in school and showed no particular sign of stage-fright. The best way to gain confidence now at somthing she will need to do frequently and well throughout her life is to get out there and work on it.

      While she may not be a politcian, Kate is a public figure. I would hope that she doesn't want to live down to Hilary Mantel's expectations and just be a pretty brood mare, but will soon start to make her mark on the world like her European compatriots, all of whom are warm, compassionate and good mothers, but who also manage to shine at public speaking and address important issues of the day,

      Delete
    33. Leo, in no way do I wish to minimize the accomplishments of Maxima or Mette-Marit, but I disagree with your statement that "public speaking is top of the list for princesses." If Kate delivered a flawless speech, but didn't exhibit an ounce of compassion, warmth or empathy while doing her engagements, how far would her public speaking ability take her?

      Diana came a long way in the public speaking department, but it was not at the top of the list of things people missed or talked about after her death. Diana was human, warts and all, and people loved her for it. If Kate feels comfortable enough to interject a bit of humor, I assume she does it with the knowledge that it is acceptable (within the firm) to do so.

      Delete
    34. Sorry Leo but I am aligned to Royalfan's thinking on this one - no surprises there I think :-)
      I believe that Kate shows an enormous amount of poise - when you think back to the wedding, or during the South Seas Tour when the "topless" photos were published (I'm not raising the rightness or wrongness of the photos per se) she handled the entire incident with absolute professionalism and got on with the job on hand. I have never seen her in tears at the polo or airport, as we did with Diana, and neither can I ever imagine a Martin Bashir interview with Kate. She is 3 years into the "job" and she is handling it with style and a calmness greater than her years of experience. I think that's down to her relationship with William, her relationship with The Family and her own innate ability to carry herself. Anyway, let's agree to disagree as we're beginning to go around in circles :-)
      Cheers Simone

      Delete
    35. LizzieUSA,

      brilliant and brilliantly said.

      Camilla

      Delete
    36. royalfan,

      well said. Absolutely agree.

      Camilla

      Delete
    37. Lizzie, I'm not sure I understand what you're saying. Is it because princess worship is something that most girls grow out of after their pre-teen years, it's best for Kate's public image to be stunted at that level of development? Do we like her because she reminds us of a child, with her curls and Peter Pan collars, her giggling? Might Kate think we like her best if she reminds us of a little girl? Is being endearing -- "adorable," "cute" -- before all other qualities, a healthy aim for someone in her 30s? I think that's worrying, esp. when one also considers Kate's physical transformation after her marriage.

      Delete
    38. No disrespect to those who so strongly disagreed with me, but the Monarchy is the Monarchy - and heaven forbid a princess cannot speak in public. One may disagree with the Princess Royal, but she can and does speak very ably in public. The Countess of Wessex speaks very ably as well, as does Princess Alexandra. These are the three most prominent successful women of the House of Windsor other than the Queen. The Monarchy has not changed that much since the late PoW's time, and if the younger generation thinks it has, I am extremely glad I shall most likely not be around to see a King William and Queen Catherine - for there very well may not be a Monarchy over which they preside. There are a frightful number of Republicans in the UK (no offense meant to frightful Republicans) :-). Simone, I am sorry you found my remarks insulting but as they WERE only my own opinion - apologies if I "misquoted" Bluhare; I was just agreeing in general with the gist of her comments and I hope she did not find that offensive - Simone I am quite baffled as none of mine were addressed to you in any manner whatsoever, and, as you put it, "to be frank", you have no Earthly idea what I do or do not know, other than you disagree with my post. As is your perfect right.

      Delete
    39. Leo, I agree. It might not be that important for Kate to be able to deliver a decent speech now, but her profile will continue to rise and now is a good time for her to get out and get comfortable with it.

      One minor quibble. I don't think Hilary Mantel's expectations are that she's a pretty brood mare, more that she's trotted out as the equivalent of one. If I were Kate that would have set me free, and I'd have gone out of my way to prove I was a lot more than a pretty brood mare (while producing the heir of course!). :)

      Delete
    40. Quite agree, Anon from Leo.

      Delete
    41. anon from Leominster26 August 2014 at 15:31

      Not sure I agree, Royalfan. Certainly people loved Diana for many reasons, but the content of her speeches was part of that equation. I suspect many people would associate Diana with "hugs" and that came both from visual images but most strongly from two important speeches she made. From her early effort at speaking Welsh, however struggling (I found it quite charming for a first effort of a very young, not very well educated girl) to her powerful later speeches, Diana used the podium to define what she stood for. When she was the same age as Kate is now, she was making speeches that would be quoted long after her death. She is said to have worked very hard to improve her style.

      I had no expectations for Kate's first speech, I thought it charming but, as with many things with Kate, from fashion mishaps to assuming more charitable roles, she seems to have stalled a bit. It is as if Kate doesn't learn quickly from her slight problems. If your skirt blows up once or twice, you take precautions. If you stumble on speeches once or twice, you work hard to improve. People will readliy forgive mistakes but if you make them over and over, it starts to look like a lack of effort.

      I think what Rebecca said below is both accurate and kind; that Kate isn't lazy but she seems not to be terribly motivated either at this stage. Hopefully, that will develop in time.

      The prolonged confusion over William's future plans has made me increasingly think his was not an uncontroversial decision in the royal family despite the final show of unity from the palace. This Malta trip may be an effort by the queen to try to keep Kate on the royal track. I'm sure it will be a huge success and hope Kate shines to full advantage.

      Delete
    42. Wow, I had no idea that my one little statement about Kate's giggle would open a whole Pandora's box of discussion about public speaking. I guess I should be more careful what I say!

      My only point was a very simple one: I only hope that Kate doesn't giggle after a mistake (if she makes one) in her scheduled speech. In her defense, she only giggled following a mistake once. I have no problem with her flubbing a speech, just don't giggle after the flub. That's all.

      Delete
    43. Pandora
      I am unsure if you are using the ladies you mention as a comparator? If so I agree they are strong public speakers but they have between 18 and 35 years more experience under their belts.
      In the UK 84% are in favour of retaining the monarchy and crucially of those under age 30
      74% are in favour of retaining the monarchy - details from a poll in late 2013.
      Simone

      Delete
    44. Well, Pandora, no disrespect to *you* :) but if able public speaking is the way to ward off those "frightful Republicans", and if Anne, Sophie and Alexandra are so proficient at it, then why are we even discussing said Republicans? These royal ladies have been giving speeches for many, many more years than Kate has been in the family. In my humble opinion, the fact that Republicans may be a concern would suggest that public speaking is not at the top of the list, or the key to success. Perhaps being human, and not acting like one is "better than", may be a better strategy....

      If the Queen has to send troops on her behalf to deal with the frightful lot, I suspect she would call on W&K in a heartbeat before any of the accomplished public speakers you mentioned. My guess, but only the corgis know the truth. :))

      Delete
    45. mm: I notice that the Duchess's fans are of all ages, and in fact seem to be mostly adults. I don't think princess worship is so much the term as is love of the fairy tale. I suspect that the Duchess is aware of this and is quite happy to play along at least in public. I will be very curious to see what the future brings. I wonder what she thinks when she look at HM and sees what lies ahead.

      As to the health of it, of course it is not healthy. To be adored simply for your beauty and bright smile and athletic ability while detractors wait in the wings (as we see here) to attempt to tear you down under the guise of being helpful, cannot possibly be heathy. But unlike her husband and his relatives, she took this on in full awareness of what lay ahead and so far she is being a trouper.

      Delete
    46. Oh yes, Leo, of course I remember Diana's first speech...vividly. I was close to her age and really sympathized with her that day. Diana was nervous and rushed through it a bit. When she finished, the relief on her face was obvious and, as she looked over at Charles, her expression spoke volumes; she desperately wanted reassurance that she got it right.

      But as much as I respected her accomplishment that day, I do not believe that a politically correct and anticipated speech introducing her to the people of Wales is among her greatest or most memorable accomplishments.

      I would offer the following as being more memorable and significant......going against the "safer" preferences of the Palace and tackling issues like Aids...trying to modernize the monarchy and make it a more approachable institution people can relate to (and raising her boys to appreciate the need for that)...reaching out to people society may prefer to forget...being a caring and compassionate human being...AND, while she may not be here to love and enjoy her grandson, I do believe that many of the choices that are being made on his behalf have her fingerprint on it.

      Actions speak louder than words and, IMO, Diana excelled at it. She didn't just give speeches, she exemplified the message. And *that*, IMO, is her real legacy.

      Delete
    47. Wow royalfan! "She didn't just give speeches, she exemplified the message."
      Everyone else can go home now.
      No need to drag this subject out any longer.

      Delete
    48. Good point, Simone G.!

      Delete
    49. Knowing how much knowledge and how well read many of you are I just wondered if you had seen this? You most likely have. Diana was 31 at the time and so 11 years into her "job". I'm only offering an insight into the difficulty that public speaking causes and that Diana too had to kelp working at it, but I don't think that her public speaking was the magic of her - as I don't think that's the magic of Kate ....
      But Royalfan put it far more eloquently :-)
      Simone
      http://youtu.be/JrAF5IESSmw

      Delete
  2. Rebecca - Sweden23 August 2014 at 10:26

    Wow, that's one heck of a schedule. Country officials, history and art, a speech, 2 evening engagements, a youth group, being alone etc. This is a big step for her and a lot of confidence from the queen. I expect her to be quite nervous. This is a good sign also. While they may not be able to do more engagements the coming years, maybe the quality of the engagements might be what eases them in to their future role.

    And on a more shallow note. Can't wait to see what she will wear! How many changes of clothes do you guys think it will be? 4?

    (maybe some long gloves?....)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think this schedule is more the royal norm. Camilla and Charles were in Canada earlier this year and did something like 40 engagements in four days.

      Delete
    2. Rebecca - Sweden24 August 2014 at 16:39

      You are probably right. But I have seen comments on a lot of other royals and they usually don't do this much. Crown Princess Victoria for example don't do that many a day. And she is a really dedicated, hard working royal. I think even if we think outside royals this is a pretty packed schedule. I'm not saying that it shouldn't be. But Charles is a workhorse :P.

      I was also pointing out the gravity of the engagements. Especially for a newbie (which she kind of still is). 2 meetings goverment officials is what I call kind of heavy engagments. And guest of honor (and a speech that I think will be here) is kind of a heavy engagement too. So is fitting in a chairity-meeting. Just in times of minutes it is quite heavy to. Especially if she will fly in on the morning of the 20th and fly out the evening of the 21st. Then you loses some more hours in the public eye but you yourself have been going for quite long. (4,5 an hour flight). I'm not saying this is not an ordinary schedule, but I think it really is a full schedule.

      Delete
    3. It's definitely full, Rebecca, no doubt about that. Personally I wouldn't like that many events in one day, but I would console myself that it's only two days and I can deal with it. Hopefully!

      I think she's being pushed a bit on this, I agree, and I don't think it's a bad thing. She is a future head of state, even if it's only a ceremonial role. She's a mature woman and should be able to handle it.

      What really surprises me is how little work they do in Britain. Seems like most of what they've been doing lately is foreign.

      Delete
    4. Rebecca - Sweden24 August 2014 at 19:52

      Ok, so we we're more or less on the same page :P. I read it as you didn't think it was much. And you probably read me as making excuses or something for her.

      I agree with your point on how to get yourself through it. And this must be quite a deal for her. She is not used to being much alone I think. Especially while working. (I'm not gonna comment on any good or bad feeling I have about this.) So that combined with her not being with George, meeting officials (which she is not used to) plus making a speech. I would really understand her being nervous from her standpoint. And many of ours.

      I too think she is being pushed a little. I agree that it is quite good. I think she is the kind of person that is quite comfortable humming about. I'm not saying she is lazy, because I have seen no sign of her being lazy while working or doing things. I just don't think she has much of an inner drive. That being said I don't think she has many complaints about working, just that it doesn't come natural to her. And I think being lazy and not having "go" is two different things stemming from to different emotions. Lazy is "I don't like the thing I am going to do, I don't want to do something" while lacking the "go" is "I am content doing what little I am doing now, I am happy doing nothing special". (Sorry for my little monologue, don't know where that came from :P)

      I have also thought about the lack of work in the UK. If I were brittish I would feel kind of snubbed. It feels a little insulting (in a very non-strong sense). I wonder why that may be? How is the national/international ratio with the other royals? Does anyone know that?

      Delete
    5. I would never want to be off your page, Rebecca. That's the truth!

      I totally get what you're saying about being comfortable and not wanting to get out of that zone. Most of us are that way, and most of us need a bit of encouragement. I remember when I started having to go out and make presentations to people I didn't want to do it in front of my boss because I was terrified of his criticism. So I asked him to stay in the office until I was more comfortable and better equipped to deal with any critique of my performance. For the most part he didn't have any other than I could be "a bit chatty". :) Now I'm comfortable enough I ask for feedback. Back then I just wanted to get it done and over with. So I do have empathy for Kate; however, I also think we need to stop with the excuses and expect her to perform. This is someone who was comfortable enough acting and singing in school plays, so you wouldn't think a few minute simple speech would be beyond her capabilities.

      Having to get up and give talks to people helped me tremendously with shyness. Yes, folks, I was one of those people who couldn't think of anything to say in social situations and would avoid them as a result. Now I can mingle with the best of them. :)

      Delete
    6. Rebecca - Sweden25 August 2014 at 00:33

      I don't understand your first line, sorry... :/

      But the rest, I don't want to make excuses. But I am the kind of person that always thinks people want good, so I have a hard time not doing. And I don't mean it as excuses. More as theories or hypothesis of what leads to a certain behavior in them.

      I get your point about she being able to act. But say for example, Jim Parsons (the actor who plays Sheldon in the big bang theory) was so nervous about making a speech (thank you speech at the emmys) that he almost wished he hadn't won. And that's coming from a guy that delivers full monologes in front of live audiences and then gets viewed by millions on tv. I myself am quite confident (and somewhat good) at preforming theater. Also at taking the lead and talking if front of 20-30 people to plan something, hold a dance class etc. But making a 3 minute speech in class and I shake alot and talk way to fast. Talking as yourself in a rehearsed speech can be alot more intimidating.

      But you're right. Practice makes perfect.

      (And again, not making excuses. Just analysing)

      Delete
    7. Rebecca, your English is so good I keep forgetting you aren't a native speaker and don't necessarily pick up on idioms. You said in your comment before mine we were on the same page, and I just meant to say that I hope we always are. And if we don't always agree, at least we can agree to disagree.

      We don't even disagree that much about this. I just think Kate needs to take a deep breath and do it, realizing she won't be perfect, it's OK if she's not, and every time she does it she'll be better at it.

      Delete
    8. I think I read that William and Catherine flew to Belgium on Friday afternoon, in order to be there for the morning engagements. I wonder whether Kate will do the same when she travels to Malta, given that the flight would take all morning if she left on Saturday. Probably she will fly back to her family late on Sunday, as she and William also did.

      This visit to Malta may originally have been intended as a joint trip, since William is actually the future head of state. Also, Malta was so important to the Queen and Prince Philip as a couple. Once William decided on the training program for the ambulance work, perhaps the Queen asked her or Kate volunteered to do it alone. Not alone, of course, since she will have staff and security with her. Nevertheless, she will have all of the responsibility she might have shared in a more supporting role.

      It is a great opportunity for her to carry off a solo trip with a crowded schedule.

      Delete
    9. This engagement was announced way before William decided to become a pilot again. I do not beleive this was ever going to be a joint engagement.

      Delete
    10. Do we know when William's decision was made? It may have been well before the public announcement. But it doesn't really matter. Kate's assignment is now her own, to carry out in her own charming way, and obviously with the Queen's full approval.

      Delete
    11. I must be the only person who does not see the greetings with the President and the Prime Minister as any big deal. It's like when you travel and you have stop by and see your great aunt, and then go visit with your other great aunt at her house as well. You'll have some tea and talk about your flight, discuss how the family is doing and comment on the weather. At one of these visits she might exchange presents as well. (I am confused as to why there is a President and a Prime Minister of a country but it is what it is. Seems there is a High Commissioner too!). They are going to be very kind and treat their guest very well - THEY are experienced statesmen and their profile will be raised slightly because of the media interest in Kate. So long as she doesn't use foul language and flash everyone she'll be just fine. I think the full schedule is intentional - she can't really go out and about by herself shopping and poking around. It's just like when you have out of town guests - you occupy and entertain them as they do not know their way around.

      Rebecca from Sweden - they are showing Greg Poehler's "Welcome to Sweden" here in the US this summer and we are all falling in love with your country! We are learning quite a bit about your culture and I predict you will have lots of tourists in the next year! The Big Bang Theory is HUGE in America and is the #1 show - it's neat to hear that other countries are aware of it and enjoy it as well.

      Delete
    12. Rebecca - Sweden25 August 2014 at 12:08

      Bluhare - I got that it had something to do with the line I said but not if it was positive or negative :) And I also think she should just do it. Again and again. Maybe start in smaller venues without cameras.

      Delete
    13. Rebecca - Sweden25 August 2014 at 21:20

      Moxie - I have heard of that show, never seen it though... I'm usually not a fan of Swedish made TV or film :P But good that they are showing it in a good way! :)

      Yes, big bang theory I think is number one in a lot of countries.

      Delete
    14. This is a long thread for a subject that has been discussed a lot. I am still a little surprised by the demand that Kate be measured by the standards of business employment. I am also a little surprised that, given her education, she seems to find it challenging to make a short talk. But I agree with those who say that her performance is improving. She speaks clearly, and with obvious dedication to her chosen issues. A small stumble is perfectly OK. Kate's speech in Australia was very good, except that the wind came from behind her and blew her hair into her face. She will learn to control her hair, since she can't control the wind! I do appreciate those who give Kate some leeway to develop her skills as she goes along. I don't think her age is a factor. She is just as new at her role as if she were twenty.

      That first speech Diana made, with its opening in Welsh, was delivered with some hesitation, and I remember a sigh of relief when she switched to English! Something I recall with pleasure is Diana taking William to a public event in Wales when he was still a schoolboy. By then she was assured in her role, and she introduced him to his with such obvious pleasure. Some of Diana's poise was no doubt due to her hated finishing school term. Kate's university education and facility with languages, her relationship with William and the support of the Queen, are all so much in her favor.

      Delete
    15. Maryland Moxie,
      I was somewhat surprised when you wrote that you were mystified by Malta having a President and Prime Minister and a High Commissioner too.
      Possibly you do not know that countries within the Commonwealth send High Commissioners to other Commonwealth countries in place of Ambassadors.
      The High Commissioner to Malta will be British.

      Delete
    16. Of course, Jean! Why didn't I think of that?

      Delete
  3. I am very glad that she is doing this tour solo because the credibility factor here cannot be underestimated. And God bless her because I'd be shaking in my nude pumps! :))

    ReplyDelete
  4. I must admit I'm rather excited about Kate's first solo tour, and can't wait to see what wardrobe choices will be in store. Do you think Kate will not be making any other public engagements until then? Because that is the impression I'm getting.

    ReplyDelete
  5. A short-lived resolution not to comment again---but having seen Catherine's agenda in Malta, cannot resist.
    A great deal is being packed into a short time and all of it engagements that will include the people of Malta. No state lunches or banquets---in fact no apparent factored in time for her to eat at all! Rebecca will really need her watch that weekend.
    Pity there does not appear to be any engagement for which evening dress and tiara called for, but the engagements seem to be for all the people to join in.
    Malta, of course, came under British rule in 1800 at their own request, having asked for help to get rid of Napoleon's army, but very sensibly arranging what should happen when they wanted independence.
    Not a lot of time in two busy days, for changing clothes, but would guess a hat for Sat morning---for the military things and again for Church on Sunday. and then perhaps a change for the Garden Party and maybe a long dress for Saturday evening.
    Looking forward to it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm glad you're back. I wondered where you were.

      Delete
    2. Sarah from Calif.26 August 2014 at 02:25

      Jean, please don't stop posting! I so appreciate your outlook and experience. If negatively is getting you down just don't read it. Many of us have too much on our plates to dwell on negatives. I just scroll through to people who are more positive...

      Delete
  6. Lin from the Netherlands23 August 2014 at 12:48

    Very excited for this tour and of course, the fashions. Its good to see Kate undertaking something like this on her own. As you say quite rightly, the chances of William becoming King in 15-20 years is not an unrealistic one, so it seems quite appropriate for Kate to do bigger engagements like these on her own. I only hope this tour won't be followed up by weeks of radio silence. Considering the fact that they seem to want to spend the next few years on a family life rather than a more public royal life, this tour is probably going to be something of a one off!
    Kate is an interesting and intelligent woman who has a lot to offer. Id love for her to carve out her own independent position as member of the royal family.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Sarah from Calif.23 August 2014 at 13:11

    It sounds like a wonderful trip and I'm sure Kate will do splendidly! As soon as I finish typing I'm going to check out the web cam and look up Malta. I love the architecture of the buildings and the oldness of it all. We don't have anything like that around my area except a few Missions and old Victorian houses but, even those are not that old. As for seeing the artwork .....what a treat. Kate will be a wonderful representative for England :) and I'm sure George will keep William on his toes!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Pauline Oak Hills23 August 2014 at 23:06

      I would love to be a fly on the wall when William is taking care of George...lol

      Delete
    2. Sarah from Calif.26 August 2014 at 02:21

      Pauline, so would I. I think he will try but it's good he has help :)

      Delete
  8. Are you sure Kate will not where a tiara?

    ReplyDelete
  9. I was so hoping for a formal affair where she might wear a tiara, but I don't see anything in the lineup of events that would call for that, unless it's event 5 - the Independence Day evening. This is such a milestone for her - it's lovely that the Queen has such confidence in her as a worthy ambassador. I expect Rebecca Deacon will be close at hand - now I'm interested to see what she will be wearing as well! I wonder if Jamie Lowther-Pinkerton will be called upon to accompany her too. I look forward to your posts so much, Charlotte and the ones about this trip are bound to be especially interesting with all the background info you give us. You will be busy! Take care.

    ReplyDelete
  10. I hope we see less girlish styling during this trip.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes.. and again she can't please everyone... prior to the complaint about girlish attire... people were complaining that she dressed to old for her age.

      Delete
    2. It's less about fashion and more about infantilizing oneself when presented as a stateswoman.

      Delete
    3. Sarah in Minneapolis24 August 2014 at 08:17

      J. Rosenbaum - It's not fair, but there's no escaping the fact that people judge us partly by what we wear.

      So Jane, what is your view regarding the content of MM's post. Do you think certain style elements in clothes make a woman appear younger? Can her clothing communicate authority or her hegemony? Does that even matter since Kate's royal? Should Kate's clothing choices be part of her PR strategy?

      Delete
    4. I'm not J Rosenbaum, but I think wardrobing counts -- after all you wouldn't wear a sweatsuit to a garden party -- but as long as it's appropriate that's as far as it goes for me. I've said a zillion times I think Kate has a lot of poise -- how many of us could have walked down Westminster Abbey looking as calm as she did -- but she's also got to step up and be who she's supposed to be. Which is the wife of a public figure, soon to be heir to the throne, and future Queen Consort. She's not a celebrity for celebrity's sake like a Kardashian, and she's not an actor (although I imagine there's more than a bit of acting involved in what she does). She's married into the ruling family of Britain (albeit symbolic rather than actual), and she represents them. She needs to take it seriously which in my opinion involves more than going to Net A Porter and picking out clothes.

      Delete
    5. Mm makes an astute observation. I've started to think Kate's long hair makes her look girlish... it was noticeable in Belgium. Mathilde is 41 and looked fantastic. Perhaps it is just different approaches to life ... where Kate spends so much effort on working out for a sporty toned figure and Mathilde presents softer with curves.

      Delete
    6. Moxie, I agree with you about Kate's hair. I do wish she would cut it shorter *and* wear it up for more formal occasions. As far as being tone.....Princess Mary has a similar build, at least in my opinion. I also think the length of Mary's hair is ideal and she always styles it perfectly for the occasion.

      Delete
    7. Sarah in Minneapolis26 August 2014 at 08:56

      bluhare-I agree that Kate is not supposed to be a celebrity like a Kardashian. But what really differentiates royals from celebs? IMO royals are defined by birthright and high profile charitable work. Since Kate & Will are currently putting more time into family life and his career and minimal time into charitable work, doesn't that make them de facto celebrities, or at least tipping the balance on the side of celeb vs royal?

      Delete
    8. I hope dignity and gravitas count too, Sarah. You're making an interesting point, though, and it's the crux of my love/hate relationship with them. They are more on the de facto celebrity side right now, if all we have to talk about is clothes and hair. I'd like to see more substance.

      Delete
  11. Thank you for the post! I will be eager to see the sights of Malta along with our duchess! Looking forward to the documents, books and incredible art!

    ReplyDelete
  12. Fantastic post Charlotte! I can't wait for the Independence Day Celebrations. It might be that the "suprise" I was speaking some posts ago would be there. And I am not speaking of a pregnancy or a tiara. Wait and see! :)

    Monica, France

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Rebecca - Sweden23 August 2014 at 21:56

      God, you're making me so curious! A hint? ;)

      Delete
    2. You should give us a hint, so if it really happens, nobody can say you were faking it :)

      Camilla

      Delete
    3. OMG, yes. A hint please. :)))

      Delete
    4. The queens'a family order perhaps?

      Delete
    5. Anon 02:51, there's a thought! :) You inspired me to look this up to see if it would be announced ahead of time and the answer is NO according to this.........

      http://orderofsplendor.blogspot.com/2011/09/royal-splendor-101-royal-family-orders.html

      Delete
    6. Discovered Anonymous 02:51 and Royal Fan! LOL! :)

      Normally this Order is not announced so I can only keep my fingers crossed but well one must hope. :)

      "The only way to know who the order has been given to is to see the recipient wearing it. The same practice is in place in the United Kingdom as is in the royal families of Norway, Sweden, Denmark, and Tonga."

      Here is the full article from Vikipedia:

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Royal_Family_Order#United_Kingdom

      and the list of known members - deceased or alive - honoured by HM the Queen:

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Royal_Family_Order_of_Queen_Elizabeth_II

      Happy Sunday to all!

      Monica, France


      Delete
    7. Rebecca - Sweden24 August 2014 at 16:41

      Ah, now I see. So it must be some kind of formal event for us to know if she has gotten it?

      Delete
    8. LOL. Monica, I will take that as a definite maybe. :))))

      Delete
    9. Is there any precedent for where the family order is first worn? Would it be for an engagement abroad, or for a gala with the royal family in London?

      Delete
    10. Oooo! Exciting! Hope you're right Monica and then if you are I will want to know how you know :-) :-)
      Simone

      Delete
  13. Thank you, Charlotte, for Kate's itinerary and for the beautiful pictures! Here are a few more.

    The Queen at a state dinner in Malta during her last visit to the island:

    http://cache2.asset-cache.net/gc/158143326-visit-to-malta-by-queen-elizabeth-ii-the-gettyimages.jpg?v=1&c=IWSAsset&k=2&d=GkZZ8bf5zL1ZiijUmxa7QfmwoSEfWz%2FaO5ofiTfanUHfxQNacryp9WPlh5GdeUxi

    Fort St. Angelo - Is this the fort where Kate will inspect the fort and garrison?

    http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/2/20/Malta-Fort-StAngelo-56.jpg

    There are also very ancient ruins on Malta. I wonder whether Kate will be able to see them:

    http://www.breitservices.com/Malta%20Ruins.jpg

    ReplyDelete
  14. Thank you for the post. Looking forward to the fashion on this trip!

    ReplyDelete
  15. I wonder.....The Queen has been extraordinarily successful as an International Ambassador in her own right--I think it's Very possible that she
    recognizes in Kate's warmth and humanity, integrity--and popularity--the potential for her to have the same influence. And she certainly must sympathize with Kate's nervousness at giving speeches--believe it ir not. The Queen feels the same way--after all this time!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That sounds very true Jo.
      I was also thinking that maybe Her Majesty wouldn't send Camilla to a place that she holds particularly dear. Instead she would prefer Catherine, as she has a warm and personable approach.
      Speculation of course!

      Delete
    2. Agree, Florence!

      Delete
  16. How exciting! Thanks for the informative post, Charlotte.

    I feel sure that HM's confidence in Kate is quite justified & that she will make a charming ambassador to Malta.

    ReplyDelete
  17. What a fantastic post! Isn't Malta Beautiful.....I was there in 1994 and I loved it. It is a perfect place for Kate's first solo which I imagine was well thought out.
    Charlotte, I think the Palace should hire you as Kate's social/photo archivist....you always do a wonderful job with the details. I see a biography in your future. :)

    Thanks! Mel in SoCal

    ReplyDelete
  18. Thank you for the update Charlotte! I can't wait for the tour! I am most excited for her speech! Also anything formal so we can see her beautiful outfits!
    When the Queen and Prince Philip was staying in Malta, did they already have Charles?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Prince Philip was stationed in Malta in the Royal Navy. Princess Elizabeth went back and forth between London and Malta. And yes, Charles was a baby during that time.

      Delete
    2. Rebecca - Sweden24 August 2014 at 19:55

      Charles lived in Buckingham with his nanny. The Queen flew and visited him (don't know how often). When Anne (I think?) was born she was born in England and the Queen moved there but visited Philip in Malta often.

      Delete
    3. I wonder how hard it was for the Queen to leave Charles w the Nanny ( &family)while she lived elsewhere. I wouldn't be able to leave my child(ren) and live some where else! No matter how often I went to see him!
      Just imagine Will and Kate not living w Georgie, I think the media would go crazy! Remember how upset people were when they went on vacation without him! (I do recall it did have something to do with her going on back to back vacation without work)
      I tried to comment a few different times, darn internet problems!

      Delete
  19. Another fantastic post! Thank you so much, Charlotte, for all your research and wonderful writing style! And thank you for posting interesting info during this lull in the "action". :o)

    Here's hoping that Kate shines in Malta. I don't envy her at all...as royalfan mentioned, I, too, would be shaking in my nude pumps. I can relate to Kate's nerves re: public speaking. I would much rather sing 20 solos than make one speech!

    Julie

    ReplyDelete
  20. Tammy from California23 August 2014 at 20:48

    I love that royal commentators are saying that the Queen has confidence in Kate, to send her to Malta. I am happy about this because here in the US, many of the smut magazines have been saying that there is a private war going on between Kate and the Queen because The Cambridges are moving to Amner Hall. Although I don't give much credence to articles like that, I sometimes wonder if it's true. It's nice to see that this could be very untrue.

    ReplyDelete
  21. Amy, Detroit Michigan23 August 2014 at 21:28

    Looking forward to lots of outits, hopefully new stuff!

    Malta is on my bucket list, so I am certainly interested in this visit. I'm jealous of all of the art and architecture she will be viewing.

    Greatpst as usual!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I am also wishing I could see Malta! We were on a tour a few years ago that included Tunis and Palermo, and how I wish it had stopped at Malta between them. I would really like to see the ancient ruins (much older than Stonehenge) and the medieval buildings.

      I think Kate will do a fantastic job on this visit. It does show the Queen's faith and respect that she has been assigned it.

      Delete
    2. Wow! Sign me up!

      Delete
    3. Amy, Detroit Michigan24 August 2014 at 04:08

      Me too! Sounds amazing, Anon!

      (I just realized all of the typing errors in my first post....geez, go me!)

      Delete
    4. LOL, Amy. I didn't think you were encouraging any exhibitionist behaviour! :)

      Delete
    5. Ha! I just figured out the last post from bluhare!! Typos and all!

      Delete
  22. Has the Queen ever sent Camilla on a solo foreign tour as her representative?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Eve, Camilla's first solo tour abroad was in 2013, a full eight years after her marriage to Charles.

      http://www.hellomagazine.com/royalty/2013053012834/camilla-duchess-cornwall-tour-highlights/

      Delete
    2. 2013 is the year the queen's press office announced she would now travel infrequently outside the country due to her age. Thus, all foreign travel is going to be divvied up by the younger generations.. This is why we are seeing Harry out and about more and more as well. Malta, while a charming country, is made up of less then 1/2 million people and is a good first solo tour for a junior royal to get practice. It is just a 4.5 hour flight and she is going for two days of visiting - most of which match her personal interest. This trip was well thought out to make Kate comfortable while also sending a rep to honor the significance of independence. I'm puzzled why the royal family is invited to independence day celebrations, perhaps someone could explain why you invite the folks you declared independence from? Is it to recognize peaceful transitions of power as opposed to bloody ones?

      Delete
    3. The Queen attended the bicenntial celebration of America's independence which wasn't a peaceful transition. I think it's more to do the with the current relationship with the country and the UK that how it gained independence.

      Delete
    4. I think it has to do less with the past and more with present relations, Moxie. I agree that this trip seems like a good way to get her feet wet.

      Delete
    5. Sarah in Minneapolis24 August 2014 at 07:30

      royalfan - Why do you suppose 8 years passed before Camilla went abroad solo?

      Delete
    6. Reading this post triggered me to find out a bit more on the British in Malta.
      You can read about it here: http://www.visitmalta.com/en/british-period
      It is very interesting and explains well the background between the amicable relationship between the 2 countries.

      Delete
    7. sorry I think I put 2 "between" in there ooops...

      Delete
    8. Sarah, I have my theories........... :)

      I think it's significant that seven years passed (from the time of C&C's marriage) before they went on a tour of Canada (2012) and eight before Camilla went on a solo tour (2013). Charles is next in line. When he was married to Diana, they toured Australia and Canada in 1983, the year after William's birth. And Diana's first solo tour was to Norway in 1984.

      William and Kate were shipped off to Canada immediately after their marriage, and Australia followed after George's birth. William isn't next in line, yet the timing was comparable.

      Charles position certainly hasn't changed; he's still next in line. So why did it take so long to introduce his second wife? And with the Queen being that much older, it makes the timing even more interesting, no?

      I believe the difference is Camilla. The palace wanted (no....needed) her to have more years as a royal under her belt. Her introduction has been a carefully staged process and, by delaying the tours, they hoped to smooth the edges on the inevitable comparisons with the past. I compare it to eating Brussel sprouts....you can't completely eliminate the bitterness, but after eating a few it becomes less severe.

      Delete
    9. This comment has been removed by the author.

      Delete
    10. Camilla obviously by now more represents The Queen at formal events at home, the last time I think was at the Commemoration Service in Westminster Abbey at the beginning of this month. Camilla is very confidently delivering warm and witty speeches, by the way. Kate gets some practice abroad in an amiable yet minor state where it doesn't have such an impact if she's not perfect. My boss did the same with me when I started holding speeches (well, not in foreign states but companies ;-) ) and I love him for that!

      Delete
    11. anon from Leominster26 August 2014 at 03:19

      Camilla did travel independently at least once before her marriage on charitable matters. I remember her being in the States. I don't think she is a very keen traveller though; she has wilted badly on several of her travels with Charles. Nor is she much of a draw, honestly. I suspect there will be more independent tours on occasion for her but they will be short and infrequent.

      I was rather shocked when Camilla when she was made a member of the Royal Victorian Order since Diana never was granted that honour. Since Diana did an enormous amount of beneficial work on behalf of the monarchy and Camilla, quite apart from being frankly a liability to the monarchy, has done a mere fraction of work in comparison, it showed, to me at least, how meaningless those honours really are.

      William sometimes seems indifferent to the many slights his father paid to his mother, but I suppose it isn't something he feels he can deal with. I've wondered whether he will find a way to honour Diana more when he becomes king. I would like to think so but who knows.

      It will be interesting to see if Kate is given the personal order of the queen. It seems about time but I would have thought she would first wear it on an appearance with William.

      Delete
    12. Leo
      I was interested in your comment about William seeming to be indifferent to the slights that Charles made towards Diana.
      I wondered what you meant by that and what you think he should be doing about it?
      Thanks Simone

      Delete
    13. Leo, thank you for mentioning that Camilla was granted the Royal Victorian Order. It *is* amazing, is it not. Perhaps Diana was being punished for not "going with the flow" and having the audacity to stand up for herself. Camilla, on the other hand, could use all the resume boosting they could muster.

      Regarding William being indifferent to the slights Charles paid to Diana, I'm not so sure. He (and Harry) were/are caught in the middle; they loved their mother, but they also love their father. I believe they accepted Camilla because she was a non-negotiable part of their lives. Did I believe Harry when he said they "love her to bits"? NO. That was diplomacy at its finest. And I firmly believe that William's determination to do things his way (for his family) stems from that whole scenario.

      Delete
    14. I think William is dealing with his emotional turmoil by becoming a helicopter pilot to rescue victims of car accidents (mom) instead of taking on more royal duties (dad). It's going to be interesting when Charles loses his mother and William will be encouraged? asked? commanded? to become a full time working royal - if the people still want a monarchy and haven't excused Charles from the role.

      Delete
    15. anon from Leominster27 August 2014 at 03:40

      Well top of my wish list for William would be to have Kate assume the role of commander in chief of the Princess of Wales Royal Regiment. This regiment was named for Diana but she was forced to resign as commander at the time of the divorce. A foreign queen, Margarethe of Denmark, took Diana's place. (I thought this was horribly inappropriate at the time.)

      Margarethe has now been commander for almost twenty years. She is not young, knows something about divorce of a popular member of a royal family (and handled it much better.) I'm sure she would be pleased to yield to Kate. There was talk of this in 2012 but nothing seems to have come of it. William as far as I can tell, has paid little attention to this regiment named for his mother. Would be pleased to hear if this is otherwise -- I'm not too up on military history admittedly, and have never gotten to their museum despite being in Dover several times.

      Having a Spencer as a godparent, rather than a friend, (one who was never closely linked to Diana in life, at least publicly) would have seemed appropriate. There are plenty of young Spencer cousins with no connection to the Earl's comments at the funeral. Chosing one of Diana's close friends or godchildren would have seemed another possibility. Perhaps this will yet happen.

      Making more of a show of the playground than a fifteen minute unphotographed visit by Kate and George would be nice. No member of the royal family attended the dedication and quite a number of people don't even seem to know this playground exists.

      These are all things I think could be in William's power now. Diana's role as a princess has been mostly ignored by the royal family, with the exception of her ring and comments by Harry. (William has often mentioned the loss of his mother but much less about her work with the exception of his work with the homeless, now seemingly on hold.)

      The generation that has followed Diana's death has not really been given a chance to appreciate the amazing work she did, particularly with AIDS but also including a broad range of charities from those helping the old to the very young, most of which have not been taken over by William or Kate.

      I would hope that when William is king he would restore his mother's HRH posthumously and perhaps even award her the Royal Victorian Order which his step-mother, who has done so little for the family, carries proudly. But if I'm lucky enough to see William become king, when I'm an old lady (I frankly think thirty years is more reasonable than twenty, given both the queen's and Philips longevity and the unlikihood of Charles abdicating) I'm not holding my breath for any of this to happen.

      Delete
    16. Yankee from California27 August 2014 at 17:01

      Leo -- Yes, yes, yes to all you said! I work in the family business and I know, even at this completely different level, how hard it is to get the "reigning" generation to listen to my ideas. Often I don't try because it leads to frustration on my part. I fight when I need to fight but I pick my battles. I also find myself in the position of filling in where I am needed, especially where the older generation is unfamiliar - technology, for example! I wonder if William is in the same position with the two generations ahead of him. I think this is why he is going back to flying. It's a full-time charity position doing something he loves. As an added bonus, there is his salary that is donated to charity and his condensed work schedule allows time for more royal duties. I think it's brilliant.

      I can't imagine that William won't restore Diana's HRH as soon as it is in his power. Actually, I dream of Charles showing some respect and doing it himself. I know I'm crazy but I can dream! And I never thought of the Order until the recent discussion here, but I agree that would be ideal, as well.

      Delete
    17. I think you're brilliant, too, Yankee.

      Delete
    18. Thanks Leo!
      I do hope you're right about the Order being granted - that would be a special thing to do :-)
      I love your post Yankee - it makes me feel enthusiastic just reading it :-)
      Simone

      Delete
    19. Moxie
      I do think you're onto something with that theory .....
      I hope he works it all out in his head :-)
      Simone

      Delete
  23. bluhare, in case you haven't beaten me to it....... :)

    Harry at 30

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2732797/Life-love-war-Harry-30-The-revealing-portrait-reckless-gentle-birthday-Prince-ll-Diana-s-boy.html

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Why yes, royalfan, I did happen to see that. :)

      I'm in agreement with the writer, too. Of the two of them, he seems to embody his mother's charisma much more than William. No shade on William for that either.

      Delete
    2. I had a feeling, bluhare. I had a feeling...... :))

      What did you think of the two military photos (one from childhood and then the real deal)? I thought it was touching to see them side by side. Wouldn't Diana be so very proud of him.

      Delete
    3. I quit looking after the photo of him playing rugby in Afghanistan, royalfan. That one, plus the one of him holding a puppy, are the only two I need. :)

      Delete
    4. Thanks for the link! I loved the photos, especially the one at Sandhurst with his grandmother. They have the same nose!

      Mel in SoCal

      Delete
    5. Surely also one of him in dress uniform, Bluhare??

      I once somehow stumbled across Prince Harry fan fiction on Tumblr when I was looking for something else. I couldn't stop reading!

      Delete
    6. Thanks for the link to this article. I loved the first picture of Harry as a one-year-old with Diana. He was absolutely adorable. (And only Diana could pull off wearing bright pink checkered pants!)

      Delete
    7. Included in this video, eelady, is a live version of the adorable Harry at one...and those pink checkered pants. :)))

      Charles and Di: In Private In Public (it was from 1985, and not 1983)

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QjCbAVx5sjM

      Delete
    8. Anne in Manchester26 August 2014 at 10:32

      Not only is Harry going to get £10 million on his birthday but a lot of Diane's possession and jewellery were left in trust to her brother the Earl of Spencer who had them in his museum until last year when it closed. These will be returned to William and Harry once Harry turns 30. Wonder what jewellery Kate might be wearing next!!!

      Delete
    9. Summer, he was wearing a uniform in the rugby photo! Sort of . . .

      Le sigh. I want to tuck him in bed and give him hot chocolate and cookies. And then send him off to work in the morning carrying his Thomas the Tank lunchbox with bacon sandwiches (cut out in the shape of hearts), and a piece of bluhare's world famous home made chocolate cake. How am I doing for fanfiction?

      Delete
    10. Oh, Anne....we can only hope! :) I would love to see Kate wear some of Diana's jewelry. Diana had a few sapphire and diamond pieces that were relatively contemporary looking and not too large (given Kate's preference for smaller pieces).

      Delete
    11. LOL, bluhare, I think Harry might be past that stage but who knows?
      He might be wanting someone to tuck him in bed and bring him hot chocolate (just a guess here but I'd expect none of the leggy, blonde model types he seems to prefer make a decent cup of hot chocolate!)!!
      Anne, I saw the Spencer family collection and Diana's dresses, including the wedding ensemble, when it toured the U.S. Absolutely breathtaking and heartbreaking all at the same time!

      Delete
    12. Anne in Manchester mentions Diana's jewelry. I don't know that I'd be quite that excited for my husband to be giving me his mother's jewelry to wear. Am I the only one that finds that odd? I would perhaps save it for Diana's granddaughters. I think I would prefer new jewelry or pulling from the crown jewels when the mood strikes. Thoughts?

      Delete
    13. Yankee from California27 August 2014 at 16:31

      Hi Moxie! Oh, if I had access to Diana's collection, I would be thrilled! I admit to being a very sentimental person though and personally love borrowing jewelry from previous generations and those pieces aren't even in the same league as Diana's. But perhaps it really comes down to who the actual mother-in-law is and if the relationship isn't a good one, I can understand an aversion to anything they owned (as I had a monster-in-law). Of course I completely understand your preference for new jewelry and the Crown Jewels. Actually, in Catherine's case, I think she's in a win-win situation!

      Delete
    14. Maryland Moxie, i have to say i agree. The thought of wearing any of my mother-in-law's jewellery horrifies me! Not that the pieces she chooses to wear aren't lovely but just very different from my style. I would think IMO that it would be almost impossible to wear jewellery that another, very different, public figure had worn. The comparisons are inevitable and unenviable. We even see it here, on Charlotte's blog, all but in the nicest possible way, when we have spoken about pieces that Kate has worn and how the Queen, Queen Mother, and Diana have worn them. I'm all for new jewellery!!! It will be interesting to watch over the years what jewellery Kate does wear as she settles into her positon(s)

      Delete
    15. Apart from the iconic engagement ring, the few pieces that William has given her from his mother's collection appear to have been reset. Sapphire and diamond earrings come to mind, and there may be others. Jewelry styles seem to date quite quickly.

      Delete
    16. Yankee, I agree. It has much to do with the relationship between mother-in-law and daughter-in-law, and I will leave it at that. :)))

      Personally, I would like to see Kate wear some of Diana's jewelry because it would be a lovely tribute to her. The royals do "recycle" :) jewelry from one generation to the next so it wouldn't be out of the norm for Kate to wear it. Although, the larger pieces may be down the road a bit because it might make "some people" uncomfortable to be reminded of Diana. *C*ough, *C*ough. :))

      What I *do* find odd and in poor taste is the bracelet Camilla gave to Kate with the two "C"s. A woman who pushed her way into the family welcoming the bride of the first wife's son by reminding the young bride of her own status. Lovely.

      Delete
    17. I have to agree too Moxie.
      Even my own mothers jewellery is very different to my own style - I like small and delicate she rather liked her bling.
      You're right Lizzie it dates so quickly ....
      Simone

      Delete
    18. anon from Leominster28 August 2014 at 00:26

      I'm very sentimental and would value any jewellery belonging to my late mum-in-law. (Wish I had some but I value what I do have of hers.) We're all different when it comes to such things. If I were Kate, I would go through Diana's clothes to see if any could be reworked, but some would find that strange.

      The royal family has been about passing down jewellery so hope some of Diana's pieces go to Kate and to Harry's future wife some day.

      Delete
    19. Some of the royal jewelry has been worn for hundreds of years! That's a little different than one's mother in law's jewels, which I agree about. It was also slightly spooky to see Camilla start wearing the Queen Mother's jewelry after her death. But the Queen wears many things her ancestors wore, and they are very beautiful, priceless pieces. Some are set aside for queens to wear. I'm sure a mature Kate will wear them, too.

      Delete
  24. Valerie in Arizona23 August 2014 at 23:54

    Thank you for the post Charlotte! I am a very good public speaker (so people say) and I still giggle a bit when I make a mistake. Unless one is speaking in a slow monotone from a teleprompter, it happens. And people love to see that you are human. I would be frightened to death if I were Catherine. I do wish she could go with William though. It would truly replicate the Queen's sojourn in Malta. Can't figure out why she is sending her solo unless she is encouraging Catherine to step forward more.

    ReplyDelete
  25. I'm not sure, Eve, but couldn't resist the chance to say hello & hope you are well! I am aware of a quick one-day visit to France by Camilla---not sure of the occasion, or if it was to represent The Queen. I think it was in the past year or possibly last year.

    ReplyDelete
  26. Im really excited by this trip! First solo tour, a speech, and the possibility of some beautiful clothes! Im especially excited by the Independance Day celebrations....i'd love it if Kate wore a brand new full length dress and finished it off with some beautiful jewellery!!! September 20 seems so far away!!!

    ReplyDelete
  27. Eve from Germany24 August 2014 at 08:51

    Thank you so much, Charlotte, for this post!! So much valuable information, the wonderful pictures - PERFECT!!
    As far as the Duchess is concerned: great to see that the visit is not just a quick stay with one appearance but obviously a full "state visit". It will certainly help to "appease" the criticism - at least for some time. I understand why William wants to gradually ease her into her role - still, it´s important that he realizes that his wife is NOT his mother. She´s not a 19year old, rather uneducated, shy kindergarten-aide - she´s 32 now, very well educated, knows her husband and the world he´s living in VERY well - so he can expect a bit more of her. It´s one of the biggest mistakes you can make in a relationship - trying to "undo" what has been done to your parents (i.e. your mother in this case). It´s denying yourself as well as your partner - beceause William is NOT his father and his wife is NOT his mother. So I sincerely hope he gives his wife some credit and stops behaving as if she was his mother. I think - some understandable nerves aside - she will cope marvelously in Malta and she will be a credit to the British monarchy, as always. Go for it, Kate!

    ReplyDelete
  28. I'm Maltese who lives abroad and it was great going through this wonderful post! Thanks! I'm really excited to see Kate visit all the places mentioned! Well Malta is a tiny island but packed with more than 6,000 years of history, I'm sure that Kate is going to be impressed! Though Kate's visit is going to last only 2 days, one can see that it was planned carefully and I'm sure that she will still get a good grasp of the island's history and beauty!!

    ReplyDelete
  29. Dear Charlotte. Once again you have created the most interesting and beautiful presentation of the Duchess's life and style. I do hope you plan on continuing to use your skills in a future career (I believe you are in school at the present?)
    I believe if the Duchess followed your blog, she would be so pleased - likely offer you a PR job! Thanks for all you do.

    ReplyDelete
  30. I was hoping she would get to visit one more charity like a children's hospice but her itinerary Is

    ReplyDelete
  31. I wonder if Kate will be packing her camera? She won't have much down time, from the looks of this itinerary. But I can imagine she'll be itching to take a few shots.

    I also wonder if she'll try to work a Maltese greeting or phrase into her speech? The language is beautiful.

    Looking forward to her visit - and reading about it from the No. 1 scribe.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Summer, you inspired me to read about the Maltese language. It's very interesting, and similar to English in that its core structure (Semitic in Maltese) is accompanied by a varied, largely borrowed vocabulary. Maltese and English are now the official languages of Malta.

      Delete
  32. Hi charlotte love they release the whole schedule of the duchess visit to malta i know she will do great in her speech she will be quite busy visit there malta im sure william will be playing and dotting dad to george while william watches the duchess

    ReplyDelete
  33. The anticipation has began as to what Kate will wear on this upcoming tour! I am hoping/wondering: 1) Would Kate wear any repeats of outfits she wore to Australia? ( I hope NOT, I like seeing new things!) and 2) Will she avoid the dreaded coat dresses? (I hope SO; would much rather see a pretty suit, than a coat dress)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Barbara, I too would like to see her wear more suits. The red one she wore for their pre-wedding visit to St Andrews looked great on her. Suits can be very feminine and they have a certain professional "edge".

      Delete
    2. Jennifer from Wisconsin26 August 2014 at 14:35

      Barbara and Royalfan,
      I agree on the suits- she really had a professional look. I do like the coatdresses though, just not some of the starker ones. My theory is a 50/50 mix to avoid controversy on new and old pieces, but Barbara I really hope all new comes true.

      Delete
  34. British paper speculating about the number of children the Duchess and her husband will have. http://t.co/O1QGI6EMJK

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Rebecca - Sweden27 August 2014 at 10:36

      I don't think this person have any insight at all. But none the less I think it is an interesting topic to discuss.

      I think (if all works well in their bodies) they would want around 3 kids. For a few reasons.

      Kate adore and love her family life and how she grew up. She is extremely close to her siblings. Many people with happy childhoods subconsciously try to recreate a similar family. That's why family Christmas traditions etc exists. You want your kids to feel the same good feelings as you did as a child. So that I think is a main reason for my guess.

      Another is a quite vague one. They both seems to like and be drawn too kids.

      William did not have such a happy childhood but in some ways he did. His mother loved kids and many believe that if Charles and Dianas marriage had been good they would have had more kids. I think William is more torn in his relationship to his childhood. But he likes having a brother so at least a sibling I think he wants for George. But I think Kate's feelings in this matter might be stronger and that's why I think 3 or 4 kids.

      This is all speculation ofc. And no one knows if they have a hard time conceiving etc.

      What do you guys think?

      Delete
    2. I think they will have 3 children. And I do not thin k Kate had a hard time conceiving. I feel George's birth was planned because of all that was happening in their lives at the time they got married.
      But it was not to long after they returned from their Asin tour that she got pregnant.
      It's hope we here of another baby soon.

      Delete
    3. anon from Leominster28 August 2014 at 00:29

      William stated in one interview he hoped to have two children but he wouldn't be the first to end up with more than he intended.

      Somewhere, I read that Charles wanted to stay at two because of the enviromental concerns of overpopulation but given such things as air travel, one more royal hardly seems that burdening. Most likely, if he and Diana had been happy they would have tried for a girl.

      Delete
    4. It is fun to speculate how many children Kate and William will have. I suspect if she had another boy, she would try a 3rd time for a girl. With twins running on her side of family tree, there is always that possibility and then she would have her total of 3. Wouldn't that be fun twins to talk about and then wonder if Kate would ever appear in public. I suspect with Kate nearing age 33, that after the Malta trip, we can begin to count. :)

      Delete
  35. I hope that Kate will not wear Alexander McQueen on this trip. The beautiful picture of her carrying flowers to the monument in Belgium reminds me that their outfits have such obvious faults. This one has beautiful sleeves and a wonderfully graceful back. I like the much criticized Peter Pan collar. But the front is so strange and so badly made! Each of their outfits that she has worn has had construction problems, except her wedding dress. It was perfectly made, although the bodice was a very stiff design. Kate would be perfectly justified in looking elsewhere for outfits that are beautifully designed, carefully fitted, and perfectly constructed.

    It will still be warm on Malta when Kate is there. I would guess we will see her wearing dresses rather than coats or coat dresses. Maybe she'll finally wear the pretty green dress from the butterfly exhibit where we can see it! But probably she will have a mostly new wardrobe for her first official visit abroad. I'm looking forward to her trip!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well I think her wedding dress had a problem also. If you look at all the formal wedding pictures, the one side of the gown is longer than the other....or someone should have fixed her dress prior to taking the pictures, because it's too long on the side where William is standing......I could be wrong, I'm not a dressmaker...but they should have looked at the dress when taking the pictures!

      Delete
    2. You may be right, Linda. Below, I mentioned the very lowcut gown Kate wore in Malaysia. I think it was also a McQueen, and someone should have realized that it was not especially appropriate for an official Muslim banquet. This should have been the role of her advisers, but the designers at McQueen should be sophisticated enough to consider cultural norms, too.

      Delete
    3. Looking at other photos of the wedding gown, the very front seems slightly shorter (for walking) than the sides. I think, in the formal picture, the dress simply was turned slightly so that one of the longer sides was more visible than the other. If you compare with pictures of Kate walking, and the exhibit of the gown at BP afterward, you'll see what I mean.

      Delete
    4. The wedding gown was a bit shorter in the front and you can see that clearly in the photo of Pippa holding the train before Kate and her father enter the Abbey. But it looks good, I think. The sides flow out into the fuller part of the back of the dress. Overall, I have more of a problem with Emilia Wickstead. Her pieces look unfinished. I see stitching (or what looks like it) where buttons should be.

      Signed, NOT a seamstress. LOL.

      Delete
  36. Did anyone else see the kitty at the bottom of the first picture? Perhaps he/she will greet the Duchess with a standard, "Meow!"

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, Lacy...this cat lover did. :)))

      Delete
  37. Will be fun to see Kate on her own. I am not a Diana fan, she and Charles both had there issues at the time of there marriage. Charles had all his own issues but to portray Diana in a super favorable way and Camilla and Charles in a super negative way seems naive. More importantly William and Catherine are their own couple and to keep comparing either one to Charles, Diana, Camilla, Elizabeth, Phillip, Zara, Margaret, etc is ridiculous.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Rebecca - Sweden27 August 2014 at 10:43

      I don't think it is ridiculous. There is little of a staked out role for royals. And there is very few to look at for precedence at the matter. I agree that sometimes the comparisons can get to personal. They all have different qualities and personalities and should not try to be each other. But talking about when or how things happend with the others, or how they did things gives us something to value their actions against. And it also helps us predict what might happen or how they might do it. Diana is mentioned alot not only because she was liked (loved) but also because she has changed alot of the precedence in the royal family. Kiss on the balcony, childbirth at a hospital, close charitable work etc etc. We can't analyse Kate and Williams work within the firm without looking at the others and that includes a lot of Diana since William might be prone to following Dianas decisions.

      Delete
    2. With all due respect Rebecca, Diana was the wife of the heir.and Catherine the wife of the heir to the heir. It is hundred years since we had that situation.
      You might possibly compare the two when William becomes Prince of Wales.

      Delete
  38. This is pretty neat... Artist AleXsandro Palombo sketched Kate as a Simpson character (American TV) and there is one panel where he pretty much nailed all the outfits she's ever worn!

    http://scstylecaster.files.wordpress.com/2014/08/princess-kate-middleton-duchess-of-cambridge-and-queen-elizabeth-simpsonized-the-simpsons-buckingham-palace-art-cartoon-illustration-style-best-dresses-look-fashion-royal-icon-artist-a9.jpg?w=1000&h=2086

    ReplyDelete
  39. Have you seen our favorite Duchess "Simpsonized" in scores of outfits? http://www.hellomagazine.com/fashion/2014082620645/kate-middleton-simpsons-lookalike-portrait/

    The fashion comparisons are genius!

    ReplyDelete
  40. Ok…so, this is what many of us have been waiting to see – really substantive, challenging, work on a major platform. It’s not even on the charity circuit but rather HM’s delegated duties as head of state. It’s a big deal. BIG. So, I wish her ALL the best. In support, and in my humble opinion, I submit three wishes in hopes that this tour is seen as the point when the Duchess made her mark as a royal in her own right. (1) Fashion wise: I don’t need to see daring terribly trendy clothes, but I do want to see elegant, classic, and professional. Something that when we look back in 5 years at what will be likely photos of a historic visit still “works.” I agree with some other posters who noted that she looked terrific in the red suit. I think the dark green peplum jacket number from LK Bennett a few years back did this as well. (2) Please please please Rebecca Deacon – or someone – please wardrobe malfunction proof every outfit. I am totally willing to give the Duchess a “pass” up to this point (because really, she seems like a lovely lovely lady), but the rest of the world likely will have declared the learning curve period to be “up.” No mistakes this time. (3) If she’s doing a speech, and its been announced in advance, well yes the scrutiny will be intense, so I say EMBRACE it and tell yourself “Game ON!” If she’s nervous about the speech, I really hope she uses those nerves to inspire her to practice and hit it out of the park. As others have said anyone, but anyone, can be a great public speaker. It just takes practice (and yes her brother did a fabulous wonderful job at the wedding). If she does the hard work early on she can even learn to look forward to and enjoy these events. The Princess of Wales used to shake like a leaf before she got out of the car… However, within a few years she actually found she looked forward to and enjoyed those events, and took strength from them. She always felt most at ease with “ordinary” people but she learned to handle any crowd. Anyway, those are my three wishes…I will be watching in September with keen interest to see if any or all are granted! (I am curious to hear what other posters will be looking for). Follower in Vermont.

    ReplyDelete
  41. royalfan 25 August 2014 02:23
    “Overall, what Kate brings to the table is far more valuable to the monarchy (and for future generations) than if she earned an A++ in public speaking. She is an educated young woman and she has the warmth, compassion, and stable background that the RF desperately needed”

    This is the post that my wife and I think says if all on HRH Catherine likely “seminal moment” on her up-coming trip to Malta.
    At the present time the Monarchy does not have an enthusiastic, dynamic female stateswomen and Catherine is the perfect person for that position. The Queen knows it and is moving Catherine to be that indispensable individual. Rather than write a couple hundred word postulation, let’s just say the Monarchy needs “an educated young woman” who has “the warmth, compassion, and stable background that the RF desperately” needs. John and Joan, E-Tenn.

    ReplyDelete
  42. Going to be an interesting visit, not particularly earthshattering and I think the "stateswoman" designation is a bit of an overstatement but a nice opportunity for Kate to undertake some more duties on her own.
    I'd expect, given the mixture of cultures in Malta and also given the tensions in North Africa, just to the south, to see Kate wearing modest pieces, with knees and arms covered, nothing too low or too revealing and nothing too blingy.
    I'd be surprised if we see a lot of - or any - new pieces. Given that Kate and Wills are leaving royal duties for a life in the country, there's not much need for bespoke couture in north Norfolk!!
    Also, I think the thought that Will and Kate will be on the throne in 15 years is a little overenthusiastic.
    Prince Charles is 65, will be 66 in November. The queen is 88, Prince Philip is 93. Charles comes from long-lived stock on both sides of his parentage.
    Even if Charles accedes to the throne when he's 70 or 75, he still could be king for another 15 or 20 years or so. That will put Will and Kate well past middle age when they accede to the throne.
    Anything is possible, of course, but I think it silly to say that, given a natural lifespan for all the players involved, that Will and Kate would be on the throne in 15 years.
    Keeping in mind how far ahead the Palace plans for every eventuality, when considering who's doing what and where, I don't think Will and Kate would be leaving London to spend a few years in Norfolk if their accession to the throne was seen as that imminent.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Elizabeth, no disrespect to Kate, but I do agree with your comment that referring to her as a "stateswoman" is an overstatement.

      When Camilla joined the royal family, the PR folks went out of their way to emphasize the fact that her role would be "to support her husband." (I thought that was rather ironic considering what was expected of Diana from day one, but that's another story.) If supporting one's husband is good enough for the NEXT Queen Consort (ugh), then is it fair to expect Kate to act like a seasoned CEO?

      Delete
    2. Hi Elizabeth, as she'll be representing the Queen on this trip I don't think stateswoman is an overstatement, and she is married to a future head of state.

      I'm a woman and I love clothes and I like Kate's style. But I wish there was more to talk about when we talk about her other than what she's wearing and how nice her hair looks.

      Delete
    3. I don't think it has ever been announced that William and Catherine are withdrawing from royal duties. William will have four day work shifts followed by three days off. As they did when they lived on Anglesey, he and Kate will no doubt execute certain royal duties during those three day periods. And his work is surely arranged around any tours they are assigned. When they attended Anzac Day in Australia, it was said that next year they will go to Turkey for the centennial of Gallipoli. I don't remember whether that was an official announcement, but it reflects the fact that the Queen is asking the younger members of the family to do most of the work abroad, and to gain experience in various parts of the world and various cultures. Timing the next tour may mean working around a pregnancy, however.

      You may be right about modest attire in Malta, Elizabeth. But I can't help remembering that the lowest cut gown Kate has ever worn was for a formal banquet in Malaysia! The Muslim women around her wore dressy long skirts covered by overdresses with high necklines and long sleeves. By now, Kate is probably more cognizant of dressing for the culture she is visiting. With experience, she's no doubt learning to be flexible and consistent in dressing for weather and place. So often, she hits it out of the ballpark.

      Delete
    4. Hi Anon 03:49,
      I too think they will continue work in the same pattern they did soon after marriage.
      Kate has staff hired to do some research so as to advise her on how to dress according to the visited culture; when Kate wore the very low-cut gown to the formal banquet in Malaysia, it likely would have been out of choice, not by recommendation.

      Delete
  43. Did anyone else see this? I must admit it's cute, and I don't believe it was intended to be disrespectful in any way. :)

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-2734520/The-Duchess-Cambridge-ve-never-seen-transformed-SIMPSON-Designer-transforms-style-queen-cult-cartoon-character.html

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I did and I think it's a great compliment. You know you've arrived as a celebrity when you're made into a Simpsons character!
      I expect it tickled Will, Kate, Harry and the younger royals, who don't seem to take things like this as seriously as the older set.
      I seem to remember Camilla getting a great kick out of a cartoon character that was drawn of her, she was visiting an art school or something of the sort in the last couple of months. She was a really good sport about it too.

      Delete
  44. Kate transformed into Simpson character ( source Daily Mail)
    Wedding dress's missing ..but nice tribute to her style in a funny way :)

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-2734520/The-Duchess-Cambridge-ve-never-seen-transformed-SIMPSON-Designer-transforms-style-queen-cult-cartoon-character.html

    ReplyDelete
  45. Rebecca - Sweden27 August 2014 at 16:16

    Everyone, look at the upcoming events box.... :)

    ReplyDelete

Comments are most welcome! Constructive discussion is always encouraged but off topic or hateful remarks will not be published. If you wish to share your name and where you're from without using the sign in options, simply select the "Name/URL" option on the drop down menu and insert your name, and if you wish the country/state you're from. You can leave the URL blank.

If there are a large number of comments, it is necessary to click the 'Load More' button at the end of the comments section to see the latest additions.