Monday, 31 August 2015

A Royal Family Order for the Duchess?

Good evening, dear readers,

To round off the weekend we're discussing a topic familiar to many of our readers and perhaps something new for others - Royal Family Orders. A Mail on Sunday article reports Her Majesty is planning to give the Duchess of Cambridge the Royal Family Order of Elizabeth II - the highest honour that can be bestowed upon a female member of the Royal family.


More from the article:

'The Queen plans to celebrate her milestone next month – when she becomes the longest-reigning Monarch – by honouring the Duchess of Cambridge. Kate will receive the Royal Family Order of Queen Elizabeth II.
 The 33-year-old Duchess is the only senior member not to wear a family honour. A source said: ‘It is an honour reserved for first division female Royals.’ Sophie Wessex has one, as does the Duchess of Cornwall and Princess Anne. Kate is expected to wear hers to a State dinner when the Chinese president Xi Jinping visits the UK in October.'

This is an interesting story indeed, because traditionally there is no formal Palace announcement regarding this honour. The media and public tend to only become aware a royal has been given one when they are photographed wearing it. It is possible a Mail Online journalist has obtained an exclusive on this, however, I'm more inclined to think there's an expectation Kate will be wearing the honour (and a tiara) at the state banquet in October.


It's important to note a number of our knowledgeable readers mentioned the possibility of the Duchess debuting the order at the banquet once rumours began to circulate the Cambridges would be in attendance.

Let's take at look the history of the order, along with recipients and occasions when it is worn. A Royal Family Order is an order awarded by the Sovereign of the United Kingdom to female members of the Royal family as they typically do not wear the commemorative medals as men do. The order is a personal memento rather than a state decoration. The badge of the order consists of a portrait of the Sovereign set in diamonds, which is suspended from a ribbon. The ribbon of each Royal Family Order changes with each monarch.

Royal Family Orders originated in Britain during George IV's reign. His order was rather ornate in appearance, and the frame that surrounded his portrait was of diamond oak leaves and acorns. The badge was suspended from a white silk bow. Below we see an image of the order which originally belonged to George IV's sister Charlotte, Queen of W├╝rttemberg, circa 1820 - 1830. Charlotte willed it to Princess Victoria, later Queen Victoria, who left it to the Crown.

The Royal Collection

After George IV, each succeeding sovereign with the exception of William IV and Edward VIII, has issued their own Royal Family Order. A slight variation came with the reign of Queen Victoria. When Victoria came to the throne the order was not issued until after her marriage. In 1862 she created the Royal Order of Victoria and Albert. It consisted of a cameo portrait of Victoria and Albert; no other Royal Family Order has depicted both the sovereign and their consort since. Theoretically speaking Charles could choose to depict Camilla in his, or William could choose to depict Kate.

Royal Collection

More than one Royal Family Order can be worn. In this case, they are worn layered with the most recent on top. For example, the Queen wears the Family Orders of her father King George VI which features a rose pink sash, and her grandfather King George V, a pale blue sash.


The Royal Family Orders are worn pinned to the left shoulder at formal evening occasions when other orders and decorations are worn. If a sash is worn also over the left shoulder, the order is often pinned to the sash. Below we Her Majesty wearing them for a state banquet for the President of Singapore at Buckingham Palace.


A stunning image of the Queen decked out in full regalia and Royal Family Orders actually graces the cover of Hello! Canada at present.

Hello! Canada

For Her Majesty's Royal Family Order she chose a Dorothy Wilding portrait from 1952.

NPG

Does the Queen's dazzling necklace look familiar? You may recall she loaned it to the Duchess for The Portrait Gala in February 2014. The Nizam of Hyderabad Necklace was given to Her Majesty in 1947 by the Nizam, then ruler of a state in India.


The Queen is depicted wearing the George IV State Diadem, ribbon and star of the Order of the Garter. It is set in a diamond frame topped by a Tudor crown and set on a chartreuse yellow silk ribbon bow. Her cypher adorns the reverse side.

Her Majesty's Jewel Vault

Below we see the late Queen Mother wearing the Royal Family Orders of her daughter Elizabeth II and husband King George VI. The Queen's choice of a yellow ribbon is a striking one; it very much stands out in photographs and portraits.

Wikipedia

According to Wikipedia, the Queen has awarded the Order to the following recipients:

Deceased:

  • Queen Mary, wife of King George V and grandmother of Queen Elizabeth II
  • Queen Elizabeth, wife of King George VI and mother of Queen Elizabeth II
  • Princess Margaret, Countess of Snowdon, sister of Queen Elizabeth II
  • Diana, Princess of Wales, daughter-in-law of Queen Elizabeth II
  • Princess Mary, Princess Royal and Countess of Harewood, aunt of Queen Elizabeth II
  • Princess Alice, Duchess of Gloucester, aunt of Queen Elizabeth II
  • Princess Marina, Duchess of Kent, aunt of Queen Elizabeth II
  • Princess Alice, Countess of Athlone, first cousin twice removed and grandaunt of Queen Elizabeth II

Current:

  • Princess Anne, Princess Royal, daughter of Queen Elizabeth II
  • Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, daughter-in-law of Queen Elizabeth II
  • Sophie, Countess of Wessex, daughter-in-law of Queen Elizabeth II
  • Princess Alexandra, The Honourable Lady Ogilvy, cousin of Queen Elizabeth II
  • Birgitte, Duchess of Gloucester, cousin-in-law of Queen Elizabeth II
  • Katharine, Duchess of Kent, cousin-in-law of Queen Elizabeth II

When and how does the Queen decide to award the honour? As it is given at HM's pleasure we will never specifically know the criteria. It would seem it is awarded to senior members of the Royal family who undertake royal engagements. The late Diana, Princess of Wales received hers quite early on - reportedly within a year of her marriage. She wore it several times during the royal tour of Australia in 1983.

AP /UK in Australia

The Earl and Countess of Wessex regularly represent the Queen at royal weddings across Europe, meaning we see Sophie wearing hers with some frequency. The Countess received the Order in 2004, roughly five years after her wedding.


The Duchess of Cornwall was first seen wearing hers in 2007 two years after her wedding to Charles and has sported it on many state occasions since. Below we see her wearing it at the State Opening of Parliament in May.


Interestingly, the Queen never awarded the honour to Sarah, Duchess of York. None of her granddaughters have been given it either. Princesses Beatrice and Eugenie carry out engagements occasionally, however, neither are working royals and Zara Tindall doesn't have a title or carry out engagements on behalf of Her Majesty.

Is it possible Kate has had the order for some time now? The only function William and Kate have attended since the royal wedding where the order would have been worn was the Annual Diplomatic Reception in December 2013, but the Duchess didn't have it then. It may have been given to her any time since, but it's also possible she doesn't have it yet.


I'm inclined to think there's a very good chance we'll see it at the state banquet. It's yet to be confirmed, but it certainly looks most likely William and Kate will be in attendance. If so, it will be the most regal event, sartorially speaking, Kate has attended. Gown, tiara, jewels, Royal Family Order... It should be one to remember!

369 comments:

  1. Rebecca - Sweden31 August 2015 at 01:01

    Thank you for the nice and detailed post :) I really hope William and Kate will be at the state visit. I predicted they may as soon as I heard about it. And it would be some nice icing on the cake if she has the order as well :) Will be some very interesting royal watching this fall! Imagine if she goes to the diplomatic reception as well?! Two tiara events!

    *Ok... calm down, Rebecca! You're getting in front of yourself!....*

    ReplyDelete
  2. Rebecca - Sweden31 August 2015 at 01:05

    Another thing... those bows are not very pretty :P I mean.. they're a little overpowering. Especially if you have more than one! I much prefer the Swedish one:
    http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-ba-IRjXqacE/TlsJVORokqI/AAAAAAAADVU/OBD3PjSZL2s/s1600/SwedishRoyalFamilyOrderCloseUps.jpg

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I agree, that's a much nicer fold for the ribbon. Do the king's sisters ever wear their grandfather's order?

      Delete
    2. Rebecca - Sweden31 August 2015 at 20:03

      I actually don't know.. They're mostly in the background..

      Delete
    3. They are very pretty Rebecca. Thanks for sharing

      Delete
  3. I just don't think Kate has done anything to deserve it yet the others do numerous engagements every year and Kate barely does any and until she does I find it insulting to the other women who have it

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Rebecca - Sweden31 August 2015 at 01:31

      If it had been the victorian order I'd agree with you. But this is the family order that Diana got after 1 year and Camilla 2. It's more of a family thing, now you're really part of the family and such.

      Delete
    2. Rebecca - Sweden31 August 2015 at 01:33

      Also, if she get's it now, she is within the same time frame as Sophie since both are wives to high up royals that are not the heir. Camilla and Diana who got them "the fastest" were both married to the heir.

      Delete
    3. I don't think it's insulting to the other women who have it. She's going to an event where it would probably look worse for her not to have one, actually. What I find interesting is that it has to be announced. Of course, the article is in the Mail on Sunday, that notorious purveyor of lies, so perhaps it's not true.

      Delete
    4. "and Kate barely does any and until she does I find it insulting to the other women who have it" ...well, the other women also haven't been having babies over the past two years, either. I find all the senior royal women to be very hard working. I think it's a great time for the Duchess of Cambridge to be awarded the order.

      Delete
    5. I think producing the next generation for the Monarchy is personal service to the Monarch/family. And I agree with bluhare - it would look odd if she didn't have it - there would be much comment.

      Delete
    6. I also read this "announcement" in the DM and since they are know to make up stories, I have to wonder if it is trure. I hope this is one time it is true.

      Delete
    7. Rebecca - Sweden31 August 2015 at 23:54

      Exactly Bunny! And if she wears one they will surely take credit for "breaking the story". Although it's been speculated far and wide by people, the exact same thing :P

      Delete
    8. She married William. She is now family. She gets a Royal Family Order. Simple.

      Fergie didn't get one most likely because the Queen realized their marriage was not going to
      make it. Fergie wouldn't be "family" for long.

      Delete
    9. Moxie, whether Kate produced two heirs or not she would stil receive the RFO. She is the future kings wife.

      Delete
    10. Give her a break! She's married to the future king and she will be Queen one day!! I hope she has one and I think she deserves it!!

      Delete
    11. If one is going to call everyone in line to the throne an heir, then Sarah also deserved the order-she
      produced two heirs.
      Apparently, that is not a prerequisite in the Queens choice of recipients. 99

      Delete
    12. Moxie,
      I was so surprised to hear you say that you think that producing heirs is "a service to the family".
      (you weren't being sarcastic, right?) I happen to agree that producing heirs is a service to any family.

      Delete
    13. Julia from Leominster1 September 2015 at 07:38

      I don't think the family order requires quite the level of duty that some other orders might - such as the garter. My feeling is there is a strong possibility that Kate will debut the order at the Chinese banquet. The queen is approaching ninety - while she is in good health hopefully (really hopefully, I am in no mood for a Queen Camilla!!!) - should something happen, Kate would not have the queen's order. This seems like the perfect time - especially since there are rarely dressy engagements on William's and Kate's royal tours.

      When things like this start to appear in the press is often is a sign there has been a hint from the Palace.

      One thing that interests me is the material used for the order. I understand in the past it was ivory. There is obviously no requirement that it be - Victoria used cameos. But I was wondering whether Diana's order - which is probably ivory - would be recycled for Kate - or whether because of William's strong feelings, some other material will be used. Enamel comes to mind.

      It will be interesting because in the forseeable future, the only other lady likely to receive a royal order will be whoever Harry marries. While the queen is devoted to Zara, I doubt she will receive one - the same for Beatrice and Eugenie since they attend relatively few formal events - but I could be wrong.

      Delete
    14. My guess is that the Queen has given her family order to her granddaughters, so that they will have them to wear at the next Coronation, which I too hope is a long time from now! She may have followed her father's practice of giving her order to young children.

      Delete
    15. Come on, Julia. Don't make me quit agreeing with you! We will have Camilla at most as queen consort. She'll never be queen regnant.

      Delete
    16. I have thought about that too Julia. I don't know if they usually "reuse" the orders so Kate would get Dianas or if they are made new for everyone. If they are made new, enamel would seem logical. I don't think William is of the stance to remove all ivory, though. I mean... what's done is done and it's no use destroying old art because it's made of ivory. As long as they don't use it in the future. But, we'll just have to see :)

      Delete
    17. Julia from Leominster1 September 2015 at 20:46

      I would love to think that is the case. The queen is clearly a devoted grandmother to Zara, Beatrice and Eugenie and it would seem apt to give them her order.

      Delete
    18. There is no sarcasm in my comment - in royal families the duty of the wife of the heir is to produce the next generation to ensure continuation of the bloodline. (This is also true in most families.) I know folks here think she should be out more being nice to the public on behalf of the Queen - but the Queen doesn't really need her help in that regard. Charles might in the future, but the Queen is doing quite nicely with the public without Kate's help and always has. I agree with the commenter that the Queen's age is also a factor - and that Kate probably has been awarded one - the question is whether Charlotte has been given one since she is was born during her reign and there are no guarantees in how long Elizabeth will be around.

      Delete
    19. Ooooh, good question Moxie! I have no idea if Charlotte has one. On one hand it seems very sensible, on the other... quite early! We'll just have to wait 18+ years and see, i guess :P

      Delete
    20. Oh, I hope Charlotte has the order now! I hadn't thought of that. But what about the Phillips and Tindall great granddaughters? Would they be eligible even though they do not have royal titles? And granddaughter Lady Louise? If the Queen is following her father's lead, Louise at least should have the order.

      Delete
    21. Thanks Moxie, :)

      And that would be such a lovely gesture from the Queen. Charlotte's place in line to the throne is not going to change. She will always be a senior Royal. She is family, which is the purpose for the order of course. What a lovely keepsake of her great grandmother and from her great grandmother. I think the Order that Elizabeth designed is exquisite.

      Delete
    22. Julia from Leominster2 September 2015 at 19:05

      Bluhare, we must disagree occasionally, or life would be dull. As long as we are both comitted to the monarchy, life will be well.

      Camilla may be our sticking point but I'm trying to be more tolerant of her, really trying - sort of hard. If only she didn't have such a smug "I worked hard for it and I got him and the jewels, girls" smile - but never mind....
      I may be a dog owner but I love felines too. and once in a while, have to have some subject to get a little catty about.

      Kate better darn well get that order because I've picked out a gown to go with it.

      Delete
  4. This was very interesting, thanks! But I am stuck on pin holes in formal gowns right now :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Rebecca - Sweden31 August 2015 at 01:25

      Haha, nice point! :P I didn't think of that!

      Delete
  5. Great post!!! I love the history of it all!

    ReplyDelete
  6. I think that portrait of the Queen Mother is the prettiest I've ever seen.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Rebecca - Sweden31 August 2015 at 01:41

      Very true! It's stunning! Look at the detaail of the fabric of the dress :O It's like looking at a photo! Magnificent!

      Delete
    2. Tammy from California31 August 2015 at 05:02

      I thought the same thing Denise.

      Delete
  7. Love this post, Charlotte. All the gorgeous gowns of these ladies wearing the Order! I wrote an enthusiastic review of each one, but as it's lost it will be sufficient to say I like them all.

    And I hope Kate will never again hide a stunning necklace with her hair. Oh--I hope she will not hide the Order with her hair either! But with a tiara, she almost has to wear the hair up or half up, so there should be no worries.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I had the same thought Marci. I would love to see that stunning necklace with no competition on her pretty neck.
      alexandra, florida

      Delete
    2. If Kate learns ONE thing about the Royal bling, it is to LET it be seen. What an insult it was to that necklace to hide it with messy long hair. Very amateur, very Juvenile. (No offense Kate, Hopefully you'll learn.)

      And I hope she finds someone to do proper updos. Everyone I have seen her with looks like someone just wadded up her hair, got it to the nape of her neck, started putting bobbi pins in left and right and just hoped for the best. She is going to a lot of events suitable for updos. I HOPE she gets someone who can help her look her very best. The Scandinavian royals do a good job of it perhaps she can gets some hints by watching them.

      Delete
    3. Anon 01.02, as far as I know she has had her hair in updo's many more times this year, including the christening. I think it just takes some time for her to get used to. In the past her hair being free has been her "looking nice" look and if she had it up it was usually in a pony to get it out of the way. It's not something you can change in an instant.. Plus, long curly hair is the "formal hair" we usually see on celebrity and such nowdays so it's no wonder she was more inclined to have her hair out. I think she is slowly getting more comfortable in her updo's which is great.

      And what you call that low bun.. The last Nobel prize dinner I think all the 3 young scandinavian women had a low bun. I've seen it on Mary and Marie of Denmark. It is the most "in" kind of updo nowdays and messy buns have been the go-to thing for almost 10 years now. I myself love them and would love to be able to create the perfect messy, low bun! I would be very surprised if Kate all of a sudden would wear high 60's updos. Though pretty, they would loook a bit costumey on a young woman. Just my thoughts :)

      Delete
    4. Rebecca
      I agree with your comments. The high elaborate updos are just rarely seen on anyone anymore. She would look good in a french roll/bun. Those tend to allow the hair to be softer around the face, might be tricky with a tiara however. Ali

      Delete
    5. Very true. I'm not saying she couldn't pull it of. Just showing it's a generational element to it :)

      Delete
    6. It's true that low buns are pretty and elegant and currently fashionable. I do think certain tiaras need hair behind them to look their best, however, and that means a high updo.

      Delete
    7. That's kind of true Anon 02.01. But she does like to "poof" up her hair on the top sometimes so maybe a low bun with poofed top can have :)

      Delete
    8. Rebecca,

      I see your points. I guess I, like others here, long to see some Audrey Hepburn days again. :)

      Zara has had some gorgeous updos in the past. Perhaps Kate could use her hairdresser.

      I agree that as the more Kate wears a tiara or substantial necklaces her updo style will become more and more refined.

      Let's hope she wakes up one morning and goes,
      "Gee, I really like Royal bling. I think I will wear it all. And I will wear my hair up really pretty to show it all off." :)

      Delete
    9. Julia from Leominster2 September 2015 at 19:09

      I agree on the updo - the best I saw was the one in the pale mauve dress but I think that hair stylist is long gone. https://www.google.com/search?q=kate+pale+mauve+roksanda+dress&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ved=0CAcQ_AUoAWoVChMI-oKWvfjYxwIVSpSICh1WfwyC&biw=1025&bih=456#imgdii=oLUJAyPXjfgGmM%3A%3BoLUJAyPXjfgGmM%3A%3BuouHfTfdjnOFWM%3A&imgrc=oLUJAyPXjfgGmM%3A

      Her updos have looked better this year but not as polished as they might - I think she should go back to whoever did the one above. Have a feeling that's the one she sacked.

      Delete
  8. It's certainly quite an honor but doesn't it take something away from the dress or gown that is so beautiful? I just might be too much into clothes ...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous 03:00, I agree with you. I think these ribbons and sashes detract from a dress or gown. As they stand it for medals awarded to men, I don't think they do a good job. A uniform has a "blank" space above the pocket which cries out for adornment. But for women, in spite of the meaning, these honours mess up the dress. Especially since the British ribbons are so much larger and clumsier looking than the Swedish ones.There's all this visual "junk" going on with the design and colour of the dress and the tiara and the bracelets and earrings and necklace, and the sash and the order, and, and, and. Enough already.

      Mind you, I'm of the less is more school. Always deleting to a very Zen look. That isn't for everyone either.

      Charlotte, do you know which tiara, earrings, necklace and bracelet Diana is wearing in the photo you've chosen for this post? I might be re-thinking my choices for the Chinese State Dinner. I had something else in mind, but it will look like carp with an order on it.

      Delete
    2. I agree with you. I think it looks messy on the dress. It will be interesting to see how Kate handles it with her "less is more" philosophy.

      Delete
    3. That made me laugh Anon, as well as Beth's comment about pins in gowns! It does seem not everyone would welcome having to wear them :)

      Whoopi Goldberg was criticized once for refusing to wear charity ribbons to the Oscars (when these things were all the rage) and she said "don't ask a woman who has just bought an expensive gown to stick pins into it!" But for royal women it's different I suppose.

      Very interesting post, lovely detail and perspective. Personally, I'm still not convinced that any of it will happen, the lack of confirmation on this (I know it's still early) or any other upcoming engagements is starting to seem odd.

      Delete
    4. Rebecca - Sweden31 August 2015 at 15:55

      Well... yes, it kind of does. But there is so much meaning behind it and a very visual point of "royalty" that I think it's worth it. I think that's one of the reasons the Queen has an abundance of white dresses, it makes a great canvas for the orders and she doesn't have to think about matching it all.

      Delete
    5. I've always thought the same--the orders and sashes are pretty, I suppose, but they often clash with the gown, especially one that's more contemporary in style. I suppose that's just part of royal dress and style.

      Delete
    6. The sapphire jewels in Diana's picture were her wedding gift from the King of Saudi Arabia.

      Delete
    7. The tiara Diana is wearing is the Spencer tiara. It is what she wore to her wedding. It was her family's, not the Crown's.

      Delete
    8. Julia from Leominster2 September 2015 at 19:13

      To me, the orders and sashes separate the royals from the celebrities and rich women in their gowns. Here are a couple of links to Princess Marina, the Duchess of Kent, who to my mind wore them best (or maybe Cecil Beaton photographed them best - I'm a huge fan of his photos and his wit.)

      https://www.google.com/search?q=PRINCESS+MARINA+CECIL+BEATON+PHOTOGRAPH&tbm=isch&imgil=gI90OfOzjRuLHM%253A%253BGUbpuH1VPw6zpM%253Bhttps%25253A%25252F%25252Fwww.pinterest.com%25252Fpin%25252F501307002242282605%25252F&source=iu&pf=m&fir=gI90OfOzjRuLHM%253A%252CGUbpuH1VPw6zpM%252C_&biw=1025&bih=456&usg=__hlX6c5t7ra4PVfiM99TQxSDC9Ug%3D&ved=0CEIQyjdqFQoTCNiwwZqP1ccCFUgriAodbQgGFw&ei=rTnlVZimAcjWoATtkJi4AQ#imgrc=_2Ss3HdL-XLcgM%3A&usg=__hlX6c5t7ra4PVfiM99TQxSDC9Ug%3D

      dqFQoTCNiwwZqP1ccCFUgriAodbQgGFw&ei=rTnlVZimAcjWoATtkJi4AQ#imgrc=gI90OfOzjRuLHM%3A&usg=__hlX6c5t7ra4PVfiM99TQxSDC9Ug%3D

      Delete
  9. Fascinating post, Charlotte! Thank you! I had no idea of any of that. The ladies all look so lovely! Queen Elizabeth's necklace that she has on in the cream colored gown at the state banquet is so gorgeous on her. But, for that matter, all of hers are on her! Diana is so pretty in pink and the bracelet is lovely. Never noticed that before. I'm assuming sapphires and diamonds? Love Sophie's elegant look!. What an honor to wear the order!!

    alexandra, florida

    ReplyDelete
  10. I really.don't like the design of the order...it just sticks out like a sore thumb!
    Also totally random.question but I've been wondering it for years...how does Kate wall in those dresses with such high heels and not worry about tripping over the front of the dress? Her whole wedding say I was wondering the same thing is there a trick to it? And I was even more amazed to see her walk confidently across the wet tarmack in NZ while carrying George with high heels
    I can walk in high heels but even I'm flats I have a hard time walking on slick pavement
    Sorry I know its random but Kate has skill in that area and I want to know her secret!

    Sarah usa

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Rebecca - Sweden31 August 2015 at 17:03

      It's a special kind of walk you have to do. Firstly, you have to be comfortable and used to walking in high heels, which we know she is since she can run, jump and much more in them. Secondly you use a technique called "kick and walk" where for every step you take you gently kick the dress in front of you to get some space to put your foot down.

      Delete
    2. Rebecca, you are too cute. :)

      A high heels tutorial. :)

      Delete
    3. I love the design of her Order. It is a classic.

      Delete
    4. Julia from Leominster1 September 2015 at 07:45

      Having gone through having one fitted a while back - formal gowns are usually fitted with the shoes expected to be worn with it. A good seamstress will require you to bring them in - at least a shoe of the height you expect to wear. Which helps avoid tripping on the hem.

      In my working days, I could run, jump and dance happily in heels. Today, my feet complain madly when I wear them - practice and youth seem to make the difference!

      Delete
    5. Haha, Anon 00.45, they asked! :P

      Delete
    6. Julia, judging from your descriptions of your pups and Mr. Leo, your days of labor are not yet over.
      Perhaps wellies have replaced the heels, though. 99

      Delete
    7. Julia from Leominster2 September 2015 at 19:17

      Yes 99, to the labour and to the wellies and the old biddy shoes - Mr Leo wouldn't mind in theory if I kept on with the heels but the last time I wore stilettos, I spent the whole evening looking for a chair and whinging about how badly my feet hurt, so I think he's given up..

      Delete
  11. I hope the awarding of this order will put to rest all these nasty rumors regarding discord between the Queen and Duchess Kate. You are so much more balanced in your news then other reporters, who want a story even when there is none. Can hardly wait to see the dress and tiara chosen for the State occasion.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Really Anna,

      So glad Charlotte included that photo of Kate and the Queen having a moment of mutual smiles. The other coverage I found only showed tension.

      Delete
    2. anon 00:53-good point! and I agree that the photo's inclusion was important. That photo is worth a thousand words. The smiles seem happy and genuine.
      It is hard to overestimate the subtle influence a photo can have on opinion and emotional response. 99
      Good job, Admin!

      Delete
  12. Tammy from California31 August 2015 at 05:00

    I just find Her Majesty to be so beautiful in her youth. The portrait she based her order on is beautiful. Is there any information on that necklace? How many carats are in just one of those diamonds?
    I also think the portrait of the Queen Mother was really beautiful. I think it's sweet she wore her daughter and husband and that Elizabeth wears her father and grandfather.
    Here was an interesting article in the Daily Mail which had stories from people who have known the Queen and it is really a sweet article for anyone interested- it made me like her even more than I already do.

    ReplyDelete
  13. The Queen Mother would also have had the King George V order. Did she ever wear all three? I'm sure I remember seeing a picture of Princess Margaret wearing the three family orders - George V, George VI and Elizabeth II. All of the ladies in the first list except Diana would have had those three orders. The Queen is the only one now alive who has her father's and grandfather's orders, but of course she does not wear her own. Of the second list, I believe only Princess Anne and Princess Alexandra would have two family orders. There are pictures of each of them wearing the George VI (given them as children) and Elizabeth II orders.

    ReplyDelete
  14. Some royal ladies from the first list would have had four orders, including that of King Edward VII.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Rebecca - Sweden31 August 2015 at 17:04

      Yeah, Queen Mary would have had a whole bunch of them! :)

      Delete
    2. Queen Mary and Princess Alice of Athlone would also have had the Victoria and Albert order, making five.

      Delete
    3. Rebecca - Sweden31 August 2015 at 20:26

      Haha, that's a whole lot of bows to fit on one dress :P Would be crowded with all that and imagine putting on a Queen Mary amount of jewellry, a big tiara, a heavy dress with petticoat and corsett. It would have wweighed a TON! :O

      Delete
    4. I can find pictures of Queen Mary when she was queen consort wearing the orders of all three kings. There is also a picture of her daughter Princess Royal Mary wearing those three. Queen Mary is pictured when she was Duchess of York wearing the Victoria and Albert order along with a thistle one. She never had a chance to wear her Elizabeth II order, since she died so soon after her granddaughter became queen,

      Delete
    5. Maybe that is why Queen Mary always looked so serious.

      Delete
  15. I don't know that I believe the Queen is going to celebrate her becoming the longest reigning monarch, by honoring a granddaughter in law. I think someone is taking creative license with two separate milestones. Turning the Queen's accomplishment into a story all about Kate. Of course, there is nothing else to report on.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Rebecca - Sweden31 August 2015 at 17:05

      I agree that that seems very far fetched. And since we won't get confirmation of this order we'll just have to wait and see :) Part of the fun!

      Delete
    2. LOL, Moxie. Sounds better than "Kate's going to a state dinner where she'll be the only royal woman without one, unless we give her one now", doesn't it? :)

      Delete
    3. Rebecca - Sweden31 August 2015 at 21:42

      Well, as I said. If she shows up in it, for all we know she could have gotten it 18 months ago or the day before.

      Delete
    4. The article seems ridiculous, like so many Daily Mail contrivances!

      Delete
    5. My mistake - Princess Mary was wearing the orders of King George V, King George VI, and Queen Elizabeth II. She had on a fourth order with an animal on it. She probably did also have the King Edward VII order.

      Delete
    6. I thought that was silly when I read it. I thought someone had had maybe one too many glasses of wine with dinner before fulfilling their writing assignment. Didn't make any sense at all.

      Delete
    7. My second mistake, getting the 00:13 comment into the wrong thread! Third error - according to Wikipedia, which I hope got it right, Mary Princess Royal did not have the Victoria and Albert or Edward VII family orders. I wonder whether she therefore encouraged her father George V and her brother George VI to grant theirs to young princesses (Elizabeth, Margaret, Alexandra) so that they would be sure to have them as adults.

      Delete
  16. Sarah from Calif..31 August 2015 at 05:58

    Very interesting and informative, thank you Charlotte.

    ReplyDelete
  17. Isn't it a little odd that she hasn't received it before now? She's been married to the a future King for four years now and gave birth to an heir a couple of years ago. I feel like it's gotten to a point where the Queen has to give it to her to avoid more gossip.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Rebecca - Sweden31 August 2015 at 17:07

      I don't agree at all. I think it's about the same timeframe as Sophie who as well was married to a high ranking, non-heir royal. We have to remember that Diana and Camilla were both married to the heir. Sarah Ferguson didn't even get it, they divorced after only 6 years so around 5 years when she would have probably been awarded it they probably already knew about the marriage troubles. And for all we know Kate could have had hers for 18 months, since she has not been to an event requiring orders :)

      Delete
    2. Except William is an heir, Rebecca.

      Delete
    3. We'll have to agree to disagree, Rebecca. I don't get the comparison to Sophie and Sarah Ferguson at all. They will never be Queen. The Duchess (most likely) will. So it seems odd to me that she hasn't received it before now.

      Delete
    4. Rebecca - Sweden31 August 2015 at 20:29

      Very true, but he's not THE heir. At the time when sophie got it she would have been (as to my counting) the 3rd lady of the country after well... Prince Phillip? And Diana/Camilla. At one time even the 2nd of the country. Very similar to Kate who is at this time the 3rd lady of the country.

      Delete
    5. I'm having visions of Prince Phillip in his skirt-kilt- as " first lady" of England. ha! 99

      Delete
    6. Rebecca - Sweden31 August 2015 at 21:49

      Yeah.. I know... It was hard to categorize it. Because it didn't feel right to call the Queen the first lady either :P Don't know how well Phillip would react to being called "The first lady" though :P

      Delete
    7. First Laddie? Goes with the kilt. 99

      Delete
    8. She hasn't been at an event where she could wear it - if it has been bestowed. We thought we might find out in Malta if she had been honored at the State Dinner but then she cancelled. I would be rather surprised if she does not have one for providing two heirs.

      Delete
    9. Rebecca - Sweden31 August 2015 at 23:13

      Haha, that's amazing!

      Delete
    10. What I understand from reading this post, and what makes sense as Queen Elizabeth is celebrating such an important anniversary soon, the Queen is in uncharted territory here. With an heir on his 2nd marriage, multiple daughters-in-law, and having awarded the Order to various female members of her family, I'm sure there is no "standard" amount of time in which to award the Order to a granddaughter-in-law, married to a future heir and mother of another. I for one never have reason to doubt the Queen's respect for Kate or her willingness to include her in the Royal family. These are simply new times- Kate will receive her Order when the Queen wishes and I think Kate will be very honored to wear it.

      Delete
    11. First Laddie, LOL

      Delete
    12. I am confused every time a state dinner is mentioned which is not attended by the Queen. Is there such a thing? Diana was certainly clad in gala in the above picture. Kate has not dressed that way for dinners, only for a diplomatic reception given by the Queen at Buckingham Palace. Someone please tell me what a state dinner is!

      Queen Victoria awarded the Victoria and Albert order to her granddaughter-in-law Queen Mary, then Duchess of York, and no doubt to others as well.

      I suspect Kate already has the Queen's personal order. She has not had an occasion to wear it, and I don't think she would have worn it in Malta, either.

      Delete
    13. Ruth from Brooklyn1 September 2015 at 08:11

      Has she been to a function in the last year to wear said order?? There was speculation that we might have seen it during the Malta trip, but we know how that turned out. Duchess of Cambridge has been a great help mate to William and that matters most.

      Delete
    14. William may not be THE heir, Rebecca, but he is a direct heir. The other women you referenced were not.

      Ruth, no she hasn't.

      Personally I think that if Kate had been awarded it, it would have leaked out by now to counter some of the negative commentary that she doesn't work enough. Of course, just watch. Now that it's been reported she's getting it in September (by that notorious lie purveyor) it will be reported elsewhere she's had it for a while. Just so we don't think Kate isn't valued. File this under: Games people play.

      Delete
    15. Julia from Leominster2 September 2015 at 19:33

      Everyone correct me if I'm wrong but I believe a state dinner is just what it says it is - a dinner to honour a head of state whether it be a royal (hate that term but always end up using it) prime minister, president, dictator (there have been a few although they probably didn't call themselves that) or whatever.

      Love Philip as one of the royal ladies - wouldn't that make his blue blood boil! Bad enough to be a few steps behind the queen. (Of course, Mr Leo is always a few steps behind me - with me yelling, "hurry up, for heaven's sake", except when I'm wearing those dratted heels.)

      As for how the royal ladies queue up, I believe it is governed by the order of precedence - which Charlotte wrote about a while back and which always makes my head a bit spinny - Kate is in a different place when William is with her than when she's not or so on. I'm certain there's some nice equerry who organises it and I'm inclined to leave it to him - but remember Princess Anne as Princess Royal and a princess of the blood is up there somewhere. It's not quite the same thing as the line of succession, I believe.

      It's quite possible Princess Michael might attend - the queen seems to like having Michael around - and she doesn't have the queen's order either so Kate wouldn't be the only royal lady without - although I think somehow she will have it - the royals do sometimes seem to have a habit of slipping such tibits to the D.M., - don't ask me why. And with all the fuss and bother over the last week, it would look a bit odd now if Kate WASN'T given it.

      Delete
  18. Lovely post, thank you so much. I am new at this royal news and was wondering whether the sash had any meaning, thank you, I learn some very interesting things from these articles and the comments x

    First time commenter, Rebecca Aus

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Welcome Rebecca, :)

      Take a deep breath, roll up your sleeves and join in.

      Delete
  19. Thank you Charlotte for including the history of the family order. This is a great post and very informative. The state banquet should be a rememorable event for sure.

    ReplyDelete
  20. I have expected for so long that the duchess would wear this Order. She will then be entirely recognized as a member of Her Majesty's family and as such would no longer be referred to as Kate Middleton.

    Thank you dear Charlotte for this wonderful post.

    Monica, France

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Monica, I hope that would curtail that but I doubt it.

      Delete
  21. Question: Is it an unwritten law that the ladies wear white (or cream or pale pastel colours) for a stazlte banquet?
    So will Kate (have to) wear a white gown?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Rebecca - Sweden31 August 2015 at 17:09

      No, not at all. Diana have worn alot of colours, Camilla I've seen in a deep blue dress, Princess Michael in a black and white one. I think it's only the Queen that in later days have settled on a kind of uniform with her white dresses since they work well with all orders.

      Delete
    2. Julia from Leominster1 September 2015 at 07:53

      Keep in mind that certain colours are good luck for the Chinese - and some are not. White, I believe is a colour of mourning - although I doubt that will deter the queen. As I understand it green, yellow, red and gold are all very positive - I believe blue is too. So it will be interesting to see what Kate chooses - and hopefully we will have a chance to make our own choices.

      Delete
    3. Yes, it will be very interesting to see Julia! I think red is the wedding colour, but maybe it's worn in other occations as well? I know in alot of asian countries, Yellow is the colour of royalty. No doubt Kate would have thought about this since we know she love incorporating colours and symbolism in her clotheing. No doubt we'll probably see alot of ruby jewels on the ladies!

      Delete
  22. I thought I understood royal affairs, but I am quite ignorant- I thought the order was the sash that many royals wear. After reading this very informative post, I'm still quite confused. What is the sash then and why do royals wear it? Will Kate wear one at the State Dinner (if she attends)?

    ReplyDelete
  23. For those asking about sashes, here is a fascinating post from Order of Splendor http://orderofsplendor.blogspot.com/2011/09/royal-splendor-101-sashes-and-stuff.html

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Charlotte for the additional information. Very informative and quite complicated.

      Delete
  24. Thank you Charlotte for this most interesting article although I new of the order I was not aware of its history. Like others I don't know how the sash or why a sash is sometimes worn. Has it anything to do with the order?
    I would think the DM article about Kate being given it is purely speculative as are most of their articles. In an article in the Sunday Telegraph by Gordon Rayner discussing how many countries the Queen has visited during her reign ot date he also mentioned that William & Kate were expected to be at Balmoral on the 9th Sept. He is usually rather more accurate than the DM on such information.
    Referring to the 9th Sept. I very much doubt whether any announcement of any engagements for William or Kate would be made until after the 9th Sept. if there are any in the pipeline for that month as the 9th Sept. is an important date for the Queen even though she wants no special fuss made.
    Let us all hope we shall soon see Kate especially fulfilling public duties hopefully with William with her and that the rumour that they will be attending the State Banquet is correct

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Julia from Leominster1 September 2015 at 07:55

      The main sash that British royal ladies wear is the blue of the Royal Victorian Order. Diana never received this - it makes me very grumbly that Camilla has - for doing much less work!

      Delete
  25. Thinking of Diana, Princess of Wales, on this sad anniversary. She was lovely in that rose gown, but so thin. 99
    An attractive, informative post, Admin.

    ReplyDelete
  26. Anonymous 5:23 writes: I believe only Princess Anne and Princess Alexandra would have two family orders. There are pictures of each of them wearing the George VI (given them as children) and Elizabeth II orders.

    That puts to rest any suggestion that the award is based on merit of some kind or work done. Perhaps, it's possible that the order has been awarded to Catherine but we haven't seen it as there hasn't been a recent banquet attended by the duchess.

    Or perhaps because marriage to a royal has its extraordinary challenges, the Queen waits a little longer to award them to women who marry in. Just to make sure it lasts. I also wouldn't be surprised if Prince Philip who hates her objected to Sarah being awarded the order. I'm sure his opinion in these matters is important to the Queen even though the final say is hers (like not making Philip king consort).

    And if she did award it and the marriage failed, I'm sure she could rescind it. She did so with the HRH title for Diana. Though William told her not to worry as he would give it back when he became king. In fact, I wouldn't be surprised if he restores it posthumously when he ascends to the throne. It's probably within his power to do so.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Julia from Leominster1 September 2015 at 07:56

      I hope so. I always think of her on this day.

      Delete
  27. This is a long shot.. but do you ever think William and Kate will choose to not be King and Queen Consort? I am just curious because they do not really seem involved like the other royals. In my opinion, I think Sophie is much more interested in royal duties than Kate, who is second line to the throne with William? Please do not give me comments about how she "just had a baby and is taking time off", because that is obvious and I personally do not want to go in to that subject.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Rebecca - Sweden31 August 2015 at 21:47

      Neither Sophie or Edward were very interested in royal duties. She had a PR firm and he a media firm of some sort and tried as far as they could to keep that job and they did until they had a scandal and "had to" quit their jobs. After that they have done a great job in their royal roles and are now very appriciated.

      Delete
    2. No! William knows his destiny and although many think he will not be ready, he has been groomed for this all his life. He will be Monarch if the monarchy continues to survive. When Sophie was first married she attempted to navigate a path in her own business as did Edward. Only when those failed did they take up their Royal duties.

      Delete
    3. I won't attach my name to this reply as it will garner all sorts of hate but I think its a stong possibility. In the back of my mind, I've wondered if the two year air ambulance position is affording William the time to see if he wants.to pursue a completely private life. It would sadden but not surprise me if he steps down after the death of the queen. Both he and Kate appear to dislike royal
      duties more and more as time goes on, and seem to want to do the least amount of public appearances as possible. I hope I'm wrong but not at all sure that I am.

      Delete
    4. There is absolutely no way. People completely misinterpret William's stance toward his position. He understands what is in it for him. But he has many years to wait and is "just" the heir to the heir. I don't say that to be nasty but technically, he's on the same level as Princess Estelle of Sweden or Prince Christian of Denmark. He does some engagements and is allowed to have a relatively normal life because he will serve his country until the day that he dies. I think it is totally understandable to allow William and Kate to relax now since 1, there are plenty of older royals who are working, and 2, when William and Kate are 60, 70, 80, 90, and even 100, they will be working. I don't mean to do exactly what you told me not to :) but I feel people misinterpret William and Kate's stance towards their job.

      Delete
    5. Sophie and Edward tried to have their own lives and business and it failed because of his Royal status. I am afraid this might happen to William as well. Many of us have tried to say William is not next in line for the throne. There is no "job description" for him to follow. He has a very active Grandmother, Grandfather, Great Aunt Uncle PLUS his own Father, Step-mother, 2 Aunts, and 2 Uncles (plus some I am sure I may have forgotten) all wanting and needing to preform "Royal Duties". HOW many royals does it take to preform "Royal Duties". He is not going to butt in on their jobs, but will do what is expected of him when he becomes next in line. I don't think that in any recent history there have been this many "ROYALS"

      Delete
    6. I think there were just as many if not more highly visible working royals during the eighties. The QM and Princess Margaret wete still around. There was the Queen and the DoE, the Wales, the Yorks and Prince Edward. The Kents, the Gloucesters and Princess Alexandra were popular and dud a lot of public eengagement. Also, William and Kate's number of engagements dropped off significantly after the Southeast Asia tour. So there was work for them to do and I believe there would be more work available to them now if they wanted it. They are popular and have star power. People want to see them.

      Delete
    7. Will and Kate have represented the Queen in Canada and in the Pacific Commonwealth Nations; if I recall, they did not have state banquets in those places--formal dinners but not an occasion where Will represented the Queen as the Head of State? Their royal duties seem to include patronages and global good will (no pun intended) as senior royals. William's diplomatic China trip seems to have paved the way for this upcoming China state banquet, so maybe that's why he and Kate will attend with Kate's having been given the family order by then. William and Kate have powerful diplomatic presence, but I don't know what banquet(s) with heads of state William and Kate have attended in addition to Charles and Camilla since Charles is heir apparent. New territory I guess. Kate's tiara event was for a diplomatic reception and not a state banquet. I believe Kate deserves the family order as mother of the future king and as a result of this diplomatic effort on behalf of the Queen. I'm excited that it will be a tiara event for Kate! Katherine USA

      Delete
    8. Julia from Leominster1 September 2015 at 07:26

      Actually, I think there are fewer active royals than any time in the past. Part of this comes from the fact that the young cousins that normally would have taken on royal duties (the Kents, the Gloucesters of the previous generation for instance and their parents before that ) are now being drawn into private life. In a previous generation, Beatrice and Eugenie at the very least would have taken on royal duties. Possibly Peter and Zara, especially since Edward's children are too young.

      The only "young active" royals now are William and Kate and Harry. That's it.

      The older royals are doing less and less - this is hardly surprising. The Duke of Kent has suffered from health issues and cut back. His wife has retired from private life. Alexandra who will be eightly next years does far fewer engagements than she used to. It really is a very aged and rather restricted monarchy at the moment. The Gloucesters are in their seventies. Anne is sixty-five - although still doing a massive amount. Edward and Sophy are over fifty. Andrew is fifty-five and basically disgraced in the public's eyes. Frankly, the royal family looks like a Darby and Joan club and for young people has about that much appeal, except when William, Harry and Kate are involved.

      I remember no other time in my life - as a pensioner myself - when there weren't young active royals - Margret and her "Set" Alexandra, and Michael (once a glamourous action man) then the queen's children, first Charles - who would he marry? - and Anne then Diana and Andrew - the handsome pilot - and Sarah - lively and fun. There was always someone to add a youthful vibe.

      It's no wonder that Diana is constantly brought up in the news and there are countless silly articles about Kate in the absence of real news. Very few people want to read about Camilla. Most people don't care about her whether she is next in line or not. She is sixty-eight, looks about eighty and is hugely unpopular. Charles has become an old man since he married her.

      It's fine to talk about who stands where but the reason that other royal families are drawing more interest and excitment is not the rank where their prince and princesses stand but because they are young and relevant. These families all have older relations that appear at events but mostly stay in the background.

      I don't think this is healthy for a monarchy. No institution can afford to age out - it needs to be represented by all ages. I feel the royal family needs a much more youthful active presence. I expect William to take the throne but I do feel there is a gap now that has increasingly over the last couple of years since William and Kate pulled back and Harry has disappeared for big stretches on various projects, making the royal family seem about as exciting as a programme of Cliff Richard's or Laurence Welk.

      Delete
    9. Julia,

      That is why I feel such an urgency for a NEW marketing and PR team for WK and Harry.

      Delete
    10. William and Kate do have "star power" Anon @
      01:28. LOTS of potential. The window of opportunity is NOW, as someone mentioned today.

      If we realize this, WHY don't they?

      Delete
    11. Since there are not photos from diplomatic receptions, I don't know whether family orders are worn. Does anyone know?

      When I read the list of royals who used to be the young interest getters, I can see why the Queen is so cautious about the next generation! Those middle generation royals, except for Princess Anne and eventually Prince Edward, did not work out too well!

      Delete
    12. I agree. I think in the past, Princess Margaret's children would have had royal roles as well.

      Delete
    13. Julia - I agree with your last paragraph - While I have been very much inclined to try to give W&K space and time to get the foundation of a healthy marriage and family in place, something which Charles and Diana were denied (whether by choice or circumstance), I often fear that the only 'lesson" the Royal Family took from the Diana years was "never have another popular young in-law in our ranks" and every time things start to spice up we see W&K pull away almost reflexively. I can understand if the younger generation feel they are not being given any reason to care about the royal family, and if they don't care, at some point they'll ask, "why are they there?" Its not enough that its "always been" that way. The Queen commands affection and respect even here in the US and she'll reign until she dies no doubt. But the next generation? It may not be where William wants to put his energy (and yes there is that tricky Charles may not like it either thing) but sometimes it feels like rearranging the deck chairs on the titanic...at some point just celebrating that the Queen has been Queen for a long time and having another anniversary celebration has to give way to all the other important things this monarchy can do in a world of polarizing political discord - there are some things a head of state can ONLY do, - and the younger generation has a great opportunity to manifest that in their deeds. But it seems they focus mostly in words about how inspiring their grandmother and queen is. Hard not to conclude that there are missed opportunities .....Sorry, a little negative here...

      Delete
    14. Anon 17:18, other than the Yorks, who didn't work out well? The Wales' had a soap opera marriage but they were great workng royals. Had Charles realized it, they would have been the ultimate royal power couple of the century.

      Delete
    15. Kate might like this dress from 1965, or get one designed in replica.
      SE
      ttps://www.google.com/search?q=queen+elizabeth+II+wearing+the+gater+in+1965&biw=1280&bih=913&tbm=isch&tbo=u&source=univ&sa=X&ved=0CCoQ7AlqFQoTCJbCvsy41scCFYmsPgodJWMLTw#imgrc=fr2E4ofjZgYauM%3A

      Delete
    16. Anon 18:19, starting with Princess Margaret and going on to the Queen's children, there was a series of scandals and divorces among the royal family that affected everyone's attitude toward the monarchy. I'm sure you know this, and naturally that's what I meant. Anon 17:18

      Delete
    17. I and someone I share the PC with were discussing the latest blog. By accident her pasting went to this blog as she was saving part of her research. Sorry, in case it is out of subject. One thing led to another, and the discussion was the order of the garter Q. Elizabeth II wore to different countries, when was the first time she wore one in her life at all, and what leaders of host countries wore during state visits.

      In any case I agreed with my relative, and also concluded how amazingly state dinner dresses Q. Elizabeth II wore can be inspirational for Kate. If she gets super creative in translating the Millennium generation through fashions/state dinner gown, when she will be wearing her Orders of Q E II/R family, most likely for the Chinese banquet, it might be called THE KATE. Chinese banquet might see members of their families wear something bright red.

      Delete
    18. Ariagurl, :)

      Can you make a point, or can you make a point.

      Your "like trying to re-arrange deck chairs on the titanic" sums it up rather nicely. Unless, they seek desperate measures. I hope they wake up and save the monarchy. They truly cannot rest on their laurels or pomp and circumstance. Not in this day and age. These are generations unlike anything the world has seen before, due to technology and the ability to move more readily around the planet.

      Delete
    19. All so interesting but perhaps the younger generation "hopes" it just fades away so they can live their lives and not feel responsible for the Royal Family becoming meaningless. I may be mistaken but are not most Royal Families simply tourism...if I was a young Royal family member and had any money I would say to hell with it, those associated with the Royal family relying on jobs from the PR work are going to work to keep me doing it. Some of those in the Royal Line might love the pomp and circumstance and others not so much, but if I am wrong someone explain to me how they are just not PR for promoting tourism for the country and drawing attention like a celebrity might to causes.

      Delete
    20. anon 6:11- almost any Brit will tell you-the Queen and her family, flawed though they may be, still are embedded in
      the national identity and heart of England.99
      Tourism is just a fringe benefit.

      Delete
  28. SO Interesting!!! I've actually never noticed the Royal Family Order before, and I knew nothing about it. I may bookmark this article as the proper way to write the titles of every member of the Royal family:) It drives me bonkers when the US media says "Princess Kate" etc. I've loved your blog for years, but this might be one of my favorite posts you've ever done:)
    Can't wait to see Kate at the State Banquet!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I am with you on this one. I might have seen it but have never heard of it. Thank you Charlotte for educating us:)

      Delete
  29. Was Camilla wearing an Alice Keppel brooch/necklace? Wikipedia shows a portrait of Alice Keppel circa 1890. In William and Kate's wedding photo little Eliza Lopes, Camilla's granddaughter, looks a lot like Alice Keppel.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Camilla, if she did wear Alice Keppel's necklace, must have had even for just a moment. a sense of family justice, so to speak, that Alice, in a way, was sitting there, like that, for the opening of Parliment.
      (Like William, wanting Kate to wear his mother's ring so she could be "part of it all".)

      Delete
    2. NOT, that I am a fan of Alice Keppel, or Camilla particularly. I was just wondering if she might have had those thoughts.

      Delete
  30. What Tiara is the Queen wearing on the "Hello" cover?
    What Tiara is Diana wearing? What necklace is Sophie wearing?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The Queen: Looks like the Vladimir tiara without pearls or emeralds.
      Diana: The Spencer tiara, her family tiara.
      Sophie: Personal necklace that looks like alot of other royal necklaces.

      Delete
    2. Reply to this and Anon at 00:23

      Camilla has 6 pearl chokers, provenance not known (sorry)

      The Queen is wearing the Diamond Diadem. Originally made for George IV (yes!) in 1830 but he thought it too feminine (he was right). Been worn by Queens and Queen consorts ever since.

      Diana is wearing the Spencer tiara (on loan from her brother as it belongs to him)

      Sophie is wearing a necklace known as the King Faisal of Saudi Arabia necklace which he gave to the Queen in 1967. It will have either been a one-off loan or a loan from the Crown for Sophie's life-time.

      Delete
    3. Thanks Rebecca, :)

      Delete
    4. Sophie was wearing a necklace, and tiara, loaned to her by the Queen.

      Delete
    5. CP,

      Thank you so much. Part of the beauty of a peice is often the provenance. Nice to know the history.

      Delete
    6. I believe the tiara on the Hello cover is the Vladimir circles tiara worn with the pearl drops. Enlarging the picture, I can just see a pearl at the front. I think only recently has the Queen worn this tiara, maybe just once, without either the pearls or the emerald drops.

      Thanks, CP, for answering the question about Sophie's necklace. I can never remember which Saudi king gave the Queen which necklace! She has loaned them to both Diana and Sophie, but she still wears them herself. Therefore I don't think it's a lifetime loan to Sophie.

      Seeing the Nizam of Hyderabad necklace on both the Queen and Kate, I think it will need to be lengthened if it is Kate's in the future. I wouldn't be surprised if there are extra diamond links in its case, since the Queen is very small (see picture of her and Kate together) and it may have been shortened for her. I have read that the Queen chose this necklace herself, at the request of the Nizam, who gave it to her along with a tiara which was later broken up. The necklace is a nice substantial piece which looks good on Kate (preferably without so much hair around it!).

      The tiara in the picture of Sophie is a bit of a mystery. The Queen was once pictured, a long time ago, wearing it in Canada. It reappeared on Sophie for a European wedding or two.

      Delete
  31. Anyone can wear a ball gown, only royals wear the Orders and the sashes. A gown should be so lucky.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Anon 00:28. I couldn't quite think how to word that. You said it beautifully!

      Delete
    2. You are welcome. :)

      Delete
  32. I think the portrait of the Queen is exquisite as is the Royal Family Order. Beautiful.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Agreed.Truly amazing portraits.

      Delete
  33. I don't think William and Kate will step down. Out of respect for the Queen (present or not) and out of respect for his father and grandfather.

    He has been groomed to be king all of his life. The Queen has tutored him on a regular basis since he was very young.

    Why they didn't take the phenomenonal energy of the royal wedding and build on that is frustrating to me. A good PR team could have done it easily. As it is, they dropped the ball, big time.

    For example, albeit it a bad one, the ONLY reason the kardashians (and how many of them) are seen everywhere and receiving huge amounts of monies is ONLY because of ONE thing, PR.

    Imagine what could have been done for the RF on the wake of the royal wedding.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I agree that the Cambridges have been a lost opportunity. They are young and charismatic, and bring so much attention to what they touch with their little fingers. The BRF needed to hit the ground running with them. Im not sure the public will be all that iinterested in them when they enter mddle
      age and their children are off to prep schools. Another younger royal (Lady Louise? ) will be stealing the spotlight and the hearts of the public. Now is the Cambridge window of opportunity.

      Lastly, I know the monarchy is being parred down and that the York girls seem to want private lives but I think they would be a valuable asset if put to work.

      Delete
    2. There is absolutely no comparison between the kardashians and William and Kate. Sorry, but my reaction is YUK!!!

      Delete
    3. William and Catherine's tour of Canada and California right after the wedding received quite a lot of publicity. They were seen shortly after that at Zara's wedding. Although they were still living in Wales, they attended quite a few events. Kate substituted for Prince Charles at a dinner, they attended BAFTA awards, etc. The tour of southeast Asia, Prince George's birth and christening, their move to London, the tour of New Zealand and Australia, attendance at the Indonesian state visit, Charlotte's birth and christening all brought lots of coverage. And of course there have been many official and charitable events along the way. The Cambridges have not been invisible!

      Delete
    4. Anon @ 01:24,

      I did say it was a bad example. That was the best way, I think, to Illustrate the power of PR.

      I was not comparing WK to those people.

      If you will notice, I purposely did not even capitalize their name.

      Delete
    5. Wasn't comparing them. I was talking about PR.

      Delete
  34. Not to start anything, truly. I was surprised and saddened that Michael Middleton apparently wasn't with Carole and the children. I hope hope hope he was minding the store. If they ever get divorced, God forbid, I don't know what I would do. They were just at Wimbledon on 7/6 so that's encouraging. He seems like such a gentleman.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello!

      Apparently Mike was on the holiday :) https://twitter.com/legossip/status/637943062409314305

      Delete
  35. What is that brooch with the Red Cross in it?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's the emblem of the Order of the Garter. The blue sash she is wearing is the sash of the order of the garter. If you look at this picture of Prince William you can see him wearing the same :) (Together with his emblem of the order of the thistle)

      http://media1.popsugar-assets.com/files/2012/06/25/1/192/1922398/c43416ab5ca84ed1_550x550-18/i/Kate-Middleton-Prince-William-Trooping-Colour-Video.jpg

      Delete
    2. Thanks Rebecca. :)

      Delete
  36. Very nicely done Charlotte. Again, yours is very much a hallmark for blogs. It is always a pretty and informative place to visit. Where you find the time has always been a curiosity to me. :) I do hope you are getting proper sleep. :)

    ReplyDelete
  37. Is September 9th the day the Queen becomes the longest reigning monarch?

    ReplyDelete
  38. I don't think that Princess Michael of Kent has been given the order either.

    ReplyDelete
  39. Hi Charlotte! I've always wondered and have truly been fascinated about the ribbons and cameos attached to them. Thank you for solving a 10 year mystery for me. I do hope Catherine is given a Royal Family Order. It would be a beautiful tribute to HM and the Royal family.

    ReplyDelete
  40. This is a lovely post, very interesting and beautifully illustrated, and it has occasioned quite an interesting conversation.

    ReplyDelete
  41. We don't know if she has received it, because the family Order is never announced, only shown off in a special occasion. Maybe she received it after the birth of her first son, nobody knows!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. No, she didn't because she didn't wear it for the diplomatic event but it could have been given to her at any point after that occasion.

      Delete
    2. But do we know whether family orders are worn at diplomatic receptions? I believe William was wearing black tie, which would indicate less formality.

      Delete
    3. He had white tie, I think. I think it's a full on white tie with orders occation.

      Delete
    4. Yes, you are right, Rebecca. I finally found an image that shows William, in spite of his blocking action with his arm! He was in white tie. And there are pictures of the Queen from past diplomatic receptions. As Her Majesty's Jewel Vault puts it, "Since the event is white tie, she also wears her royal family orders, and her Garter Star, Riband, and Lesser George." The event is full on formal! Therefore, Kate did not have the Queen's family order in 2013.

      Delete
    5. anon 03:31- good sleuthing. I would add: OR- She did not put the order on the dress until she was
      safely inside, avoiding the speculations of intrusive press and public. It is a private, personal gift from
      the Queen.
      OR-this would have been a perfect occasion for HM to present the order, in a private meeting before the
      reception. It could explain why they were invited to this particular Diplomatic reception.
      I also think the new princess's Christening would have been a perfect time-afterwarrds at the private
      family get-together.

      Delete
  42. I love it very informative charlotte looking forward I can see they will go to a state dinner I imagine she very beautiful in her tiara and her gown I read that the queen invited the duke and duchess in Scotland on September 9 is there specific date where duchess will be given the royal family order or its private Rebecca of Sweden its nice

    ReplyDelete
  43. In the Dorothy Wilding portrait, the Queen is looking to her left and her sash is over her left shoulder. When the portrait appears on the RFO, the Queen is looking to her right, but the sash is still over her left shoulder, so the portrait isn't simply reversed. Early example of photoshopping?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you SO much Charlotte for the news about Michael Middleton. :) :) :)

      That was such a relief to me.

      Delete
    2. I think these are two different portraits from the same sitting.

      Delete
  44. That is wonderful congrats to the duchess!

    ReplyDelete
  45. Fabulous write-up Charlotte! So informative and interesting! I think it would be a nice gesture and gift from the Queen if Kate would be given the Royal Family Order. She is future queen consort, has been a senior member of the RF for over 4 years, has undertaken engagements and foreign tours, and given birth to the heir. Kate is graceful, discreet, and has done well in her position. We all wish and hope for more engagements, but obviously the Queen is fine with Will and Kate focusing on their young family at this time. SO, hoping we'll see Kate in a gorgeous gown with the order placed on her left shoulder.

    The portraits of the Queen Mother and Queen are absolutely beautiful! The Dorothy Wilding portrait is one of my favorites. :)

    Thinking of William and Harry as I know this time of year must bring back sad memories.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Kate, Texas, I'd like to copy every word of your comment above as mine. Totally agree with all you've said. Thanks for that. And, Charlotte, thanks for the best blog out here! You're such a good writer, and the stories you give us are what we're looking for; I've now come to your blog first! Thank you thank you!

      As we think about what the Queen will allow for Kate and Will and how they need good PR, let's not forget that Willliam is still a very private person, and he wants his rise to full-time royal work to go slowly. I wonder if William has slowed the activity this summer. We know he contributed to the letter from KP about the paps.

      Such good stuff here. Great threads! Katherine USA

      Delete
    2. Lovely comments thank you Kate from Texas.

      Delete
  46. I saw parts of a touching tribute to the Queen from Prince Charles last night on PBS. He shared family pictures from photo albums and video footage from the past. You all have probably seen it but I enjoyed it.

    alexandra, florida

    ReplyDelete
  47. Also, for some reason I was surprised to hear that at one point the Queen was on a tour and away from her young children for about five months. I think I heard that right. Charles commented about how much they must have changed during that time. Interesting.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yup, royal tours were killer in the olden days. Apparently when the Queen and Prince Philip came home from one of their long tours (not sure if the same one you mentioned), Queen Mum and Prince Charles went to welcome them home and Charles didn’t recognize his mother ( and Anne would have been even younger). I’ve always believed that this is one of the reasons the Queen is so generous with time of for Kate.

      Delete
    2. Yes, after she became Queen, I think in 1953 when Charles was five and Anne was three, she left them with the Queen Mother and toured the Commonwealth for several months. The Queen Mother underwent the same ordeal when Princess Elizabeth was still a baby and stayed with Queen Mary and King George V, and Queen Mary in her turn had left her young children to tour. Finally that (to my mind barbaric) custom ended with Charles and Diana, but even then they did not see as much of William as William and Catherine did of George when their turn came. Jet travel has made it easier to break these Commonwealth tours into parts, and the travel the Cambridges have undertaken makes much more sense. I'm pretty sure Princess Anne did not know her parents when they returned from that extremely long absence, and I'm not sure Prince Charles really did, either.

      Delete
    3. Very true Anon 01.20. I think Diana and Charles were actually not in the country on Williams first birthday. Which... yes he won't remember, but most people prioritize. Although, Charles wasn't on Georges first either. I think it is great that William and Kate are allowed to focus on their family!

      Delete
    4. Thanks Sofy, anon and Rebecca. Yes, hard to believe they could be away that long! Queen Elizabeth seems to have had a remarkable sense of duty from the very beginning of her reign. William and Kate sure are fortunate that times have changed. Didn't Diana sort of buck the system by insisting on taking young William with her on a tour when he was little?

      Delete
    5. So do I, Rebecca, so do I!

      Delete
    6. Anon 1:20. I agree. Queen Elizabeth was still part of the generation of very wealthy people for whom the children really were primarily raised by others. It still happens today with very wealthy and/or very busy parents whom rely on live in Nanny care for their children. Some parents do a better job of spending time with the kids and keeping that important relationship current and alive and others do not.I believe Diana and Charles and more firmly William and Catherine have been trying to buck the teen of full time Nanny and just a brief kiss goodnight from the parents.So even with a Nanny one can be present, one can take the kids out to the park or sit at the breakfast table with them, or them the goodnight story and be a real presence. I think that is what WIlliam and Catherine are trying to do while balancing the rest of their lives. Especially William I suspect wants that stability for his kids. ali

      Delete
    7. Fair, balanced points, ali.

      Delete
  48. Hello All,
    Finally got to pop back in, to read & discuss all things Royal ( since as I've mentioned I have no Friends & Family who share this interest.:( I loooved the response by one of our own here, as she commiserated with me. She said the fastest way for her to clear the room was to start talking Kate & Tiarras! lol:) That said, I had a thought as I reflected on Diana yesterday & all that has happened & changed since her Death. I remember a scene from the movie "The Queen" w/ Helen Miren (sp?) It was Tony Blair towards the end of The Film & he had grown to understand The Queen a bit better & viewed Her differently than he had before The Tradgedy.... One of his colleagues made a snide remark about The Queen, & while previously He would have appreciated the perspective.... This time he jumped down the guys throat! It was quite striking to note the obvious shift in his respect & appreciation of her in The Totality of Her as a person, throughout Her Reign & All that It had Required of Her. In this scene "Tony Blair" shot back asking if this person had Ever thought about All that Queen Elizabeth had lived thru as a person & A Monarch, thru the Expanse of Her Life? He, continued, clearly having found new & improved Respect for Her. He pointed out that from The Moment of Her Uncle's Abdication, Her life was changed forever & She has grown & adapted magnificently ever since! He was making the point that, regarding The Changes that were being required of Her after Diana's Sudden Death, while She was struggling with the lack of protocol for such a New Experience! As Diana was no longer an HRH, She was not entitled to all The Pomp The Grieving Public Needed! He Yelled that She would Get There... But She needed to be allowed time to Shift Gears & as we all know, She ultimately Adapted & has Continued to Grow & Adapt to Changing Times, Ever Since! I Can't Imagine What The British Royal Family would Be Like Today... If Diana had not come along? Diana pushed The Envelope & Started The Ball Rolling & Changed Things Up in ways that we continue to see playing out to this day! I Believe The Whole Diana Experience Changed & Ultimately Softened The Queen, in ways we continue to see played out today. I believe we see it in the way She interacts with William & reacts to Him as a Loving Husband & Father! I believe She has Ultimately Learned that These are The Important Ingrediants that will allow All The Rest to Be a Success! As a Parent of Grown Children, I know there is No Greater Gift, Than for The Child you love, To Find That Special Someone Who Loves Them Unconditionally & Feels Blessed To Go Through Life Together, Supporting One Another & Having a Shared Vision of What They Want to Do & Be, During Their Life Together! This is why I feel the stories of The Queen liking & respecting Kate to be most credible! The Queen can rest assured that William has a True Life Partner who will Support Him as King & who will Nurture Prince George, as a Future King!:) The Queen has seen So Much that Doesn't work & can not be forced or fixed, that I Do Believe She Honors & Appreciates Kate & Her Devotion to 2 Very Special Men (big & small) in The Queen's Life! I hope Kate gets The Honor. I believe it's Well Deserved!:)
    Thoughts?
    Becca USA:)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Lovely way of putting it, Becca. I believe you are right in both your interpretations of history and your speculations. I agree that the best thing Catherine can do is to work toward ensuring that herself, her husband and children are happy and stable at home. Surely the Queen, whose home life before her marriage seems to have been happy and stable due to her parents' good marriage, wants a stable, happy childhood and youth for her descendants--a rare thing in today's world. I am another whose family thinks my interest in the royal family is anachronistic at best ;-)

      Delete
    2. Perhaps HM would not have needed to make an adjustment to protocol if Diana's HRH had not been taken
      from her.
      Also, it is hard for me to believe HM has completely accepted Catherine as a member of the royal family, in
      view of the order of precedence rules she approved that require Catherine to curtsy to the York girls when
      William is absent.
      I do agree that Catherine should receive the FO and that it is well-deserved. 99

      Delete
    3. Very, very well said Becca.

      Delete
  49. Hear! Hear! A great post!

    ReplyDelete
  50. I think Beatrice and Eugenie just aren't involved enough in royal duties to receive one just yet. Perhaps they will later on.

    ReplyDelete
  51. I love the portrait of the Queen in her youth. She was stunningly beautiful. She's still stunning for her age, but now because she has decades of devoted service behind her. The inside shines through. I adore the portrait of the Queen Mother as well, majestic and lovely.

    ReplyDelete
  52. Julia from Leominster2 September 2015 at 06:30

    Anon 15 and Anonymous 15:22, both from the last posting - Charlotte put this up before I had a chance to respond properly but I wanted to thank you both for your lovely and thoughtful comments, Julia

    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.