Sunday, 3 April 2016

One Week Until the Royal Tour: Preparations, a Rehearsal Trip, 15 Outfits & Kate to Host a Norfolk Gala for EACH

Good evening, everyone,

We're back with an assortment of updates. Can you believe it's just one week until the royal tour kicks off? The Palace noted William and Kate are looking forward to "making new memories" in India and Bhutan. Indeed, many of us are very much looking forward to the engagements, the locations and seeing what Kate will wear. Kate was spotted in London a couple of days ago and is no doubt making last-minute preparations for engagements and adding final touches to her tour wardrobe.


There's another angle to this tour, however: the importance of how it is received and thus reported on in the wake of the increasingly negative media the Cambridges have been receiving. Royal reporter Victoria Murphy elaborated on the topic in her piece, William and Kate now have to work hard for attention - this tour is the perfect start:

'For seven full days Prince William and Kate will be in the spotlight as they sample the delights of India and Bhutan on their latest major royal tour. The visit is, of course, at the request of the British Government to build important diplomatic relations, but it has also come at a crucial time for the couple and their relationship with the public. In contrast to their previous tours, where they have been waved off in a puff of fascination and adoration, this one is beginning in rather less triumphant fashion.With five years of official appearances under her belt, the novelty of Kate as a new member of the “firm” has worn off.
 Her day-to-day appearances are not commanding the attention they once did and glowing coverage has given way to questions about her working timetable and use of taxpayer-funded helicopters. William, who was once lauded for his role outside royal life as a Search and Rescue pilot, is now fending off suggestions he is hiding from his destiny in the air ambulance.
As little as a year ago it would have been unthinkable that criticism of William and Kate would gain widespread traction - but it has.'

Victoria continues on to note with previous tours the couple were newly-weds, baby chatter was abundant, and most recently, Prince George accompanied them on their 2014 tour of Australia and New Zealand. Rather than being a crisis she writes: "It is the natural order of things as the honeymoon was never going to last forever."

'In a modern democracy the survival of the Monarchy is largely dependent on the popularity of its individuals. For the first few years of their married life William and Kate effortlessly flew the flag for the institution, leaving republicans despairing they will never have their day.
 Now we are in a new phase, one where they will have to work hard to get the right kind of attention.Far from being a crisis, this is the natural order of things as the honeymoon was never going to last forever. They can still bask in adoration and make the world take notice, but to do so won't be effortless. This trip to India and Bhutan is definitely one to watch.'

The Telegraph's Gordon Rayner also wrote a fantastic pre-tour piece entitled How Duchess of Cambridge is packing for her tour of India: Hiking boots and local designer dresses.

'The Telegraph has learned that the Duchess will take 12-15 outfits for the six days of official visits but that alongside daytime dresses and evening gowns, there'll be a surprising addition: a pair of hiking boots.  Whilst the Royal couple are in Bhutan they'll go on a six-hour trek to Tiger's Nest monastery said to require peak physical fitness and hiking gear, likely to be the £106 Hillmaster boots the Duchess last wore when she visited Borneo's jungle.'

The article is full of interesting little details including news a small team made a rehearsal trip to India and Bhutan, on which Kate's private secretary Rebecca Deacon made notes "on factors to consider about the locations the Duchess will visit, so she will have an idea of what will and won't work". The team took photos of all locations so images can be used as a guide to determine what colours and level of formality will work best with the backdrop.


A royal source told the Telegraph: "She is in charge of it herself and takes an interest in paying tribute to the host country with nods to their culture and local style on at least a few of the engagements. The important factor on this tour is the heat, so that's an issue that plays a big part in the choice of outfits." I would imagine we may see the Lotus and Himalayan Blue Poppy incorporated into garments, hats or accessories, as they are the national flowers of India and Bhutan.


Speaking of poppies, we saw Kate wearing the L.K. Bennett Lasa Poppy Print Dress during the last tour. Will it make another appearance this time?


The article continues: "But whilst the Duchess is likely to have spent months talking with designers about commissioning pieces which nod to the host nations, she will also have shopped for pieces online. It's very much a process that she leads, though she does have some help from her staff when it comes to sourcing outfits."


Monique Jessen wrote a piece for People covering what's inside Kate's suitcase for the tour:

'Perhaps Kate's most thrilling look will be in the tiny Himalayan kingdom of Bhutan, where the couple are set to meet King Jigme and his wife Queen Jetsun, who have been nicknamed the Will and Kate of the Himalayas. A country that fiercely guards its traditions, Bhutanese citizens were until recently required by law to wear national dress in public places at all times. Although less strict now, many of the largely Buddhist community still choose to wear the traditional outfit of the kira for women and gho for men, which dates back to the 16th century.'

Monique suggests it is very likely Kate will wear a kira: "Made from a rectangular piece of cloth, the kira is almost the same size as a bed sheet. Designed to show off the richness of Bhutanese textiles, the usually elaborately patterned fabric is expertly wrapped and folded into an ankle-length dress, with a precise straight skirt." Below, we see Queen Jetsun wearing a kira.


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We've looked at several designers in the run up to the tour. Tonight we're looking at two more very stylish possibilities, beginning with Indian-American fashion designer Naeem Khan. Born in Mumbai, the designer's hugely successful label was launched in 2003. Based in New York, his clients include First Lady Michelle Obama, Queen Noor of Jordan and Beyoncé.


Known for delicate hand-beading, rich embroideries and gorgeous vibrant colours there's an abundance of choice for Kate in the designer's current collection. When considering options for the glittering gala with the stars of Bollywood, I immediately noticed the Metallic Beaded Cascading Ruffle Gown and the Embroidered V-Neck Gown, the Strapless Embellished Degrade Ball Gown and the Cap-Sleeve Mermaid Gown.

Naeem Khan

The Spring/Summer 2016 Collection offers sweeping gowns in beautiful hues and timeless silhouettes. Combining the glamour of fifties and sixties muses Sophia Loren and Grace Kelly with the his life of Rivera, the collection is a treasure trove of stunning ornate dresses.

Naeem Khan

This would be a great colour on Kate.

Naeem Khan

How incredible would the Silk Satin Cowl Neck Gown look with an updo and Kate's emeralds?

Naeem Khan

We know the Duchess favours lace dresses; there are several delicate garments in soft, feminine colours featuring lace detail rather similar to styles we've seen from Erdem.

Naeem Khan

Three more stunning evening looks.

Naeen Khan

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Next, we're taking a brief look at Chimmi House of Design. Chimmi's tastes are influenced by the intricate textiles of her native country Bhutan. Like many Bhutanese girls, Chimmi grew up around weavers, though it was not until she was older that she fully understood the unique value of this craft. Her appreciation and understanding of the work that goes into producing these textiles has developed over many years, and continues to inspire her today. 

Chimmi House of Design

Chimmi House of Design is an artistic collaboration of weavers, tailors, and artisans, guided by Chimmi. Collections feature wearable couture that is deeply rooted in, and inspired by, Bhutan's rich weaving history. The designs fuse traditional textiles with timeless silhouettes. Straight, clean lines and bold colors are softened by the feel and movement of luxurious, hand-woven fabrics.

Chimmi House of Design

Founded in 2014, the brand aims to "promote and preserve Bhutan’s culture and traditions through high fashion; uplifting local artisans and reviving the local textile industry. CHD is a socially conscious brand that encourages creativity and independence through our integrated and sustainable business model; providing reliable, salaried employment to our dedicated team of weavers and tailors".

Chimmi House of Design

A look at the Spring/Summer Collection.

Chimmi House of Design

Collections are limited to just several pieces. Perhaps the Duchess will wear a bespoke piece in Bhutan by the talented young designer.

Chimmi House of Design

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We also have a few quick updates on restocked items the Duchess has worn. Kate's engagement dress, the Issa Phylis, is available in several colours and prints on The Outnet discounted by 52%. Below we see the wrap-effect stretch silk-blend dress in Pink, Red and Green.

The Outnet

Kate's Hobbs Wessex Dress is back in stock in blue and white. At present, the checked fit-and-flare dress is discounted from £129 to £79.

Hobbs London

Kate's popular Reiss Vinnie Shirt is back in stock in a number of sizes on the Reiss Website. It's also available in limited sizing at Harrods and Bloomingdales.

REISS

And Kate's collarless GOAT Washington Coat has been restocked at Matches.


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Finally, the Mail on Sunday reports Kate will host a £10,000 a head charity gala in aid of East Anglia's Children's Hospices on 22 June at Houghton Hall, home of the Marquess and Marchioness of Cholmondeley. Readers will recall the couple attended the state banquet in October with Rose receiving lovely comments for her gorgeous Temperley London gown.


More from the article:

'Tickets start at £6,000 per head and those who pay £10,000 are invited to stay at Houghton with the Marquess and Marchioness of Cholmondeley after the party on June 22, ten days after the Queen’s 90th birthday celebrations.
The ball will include a champagne reception, a lecture by writer Anthony Horowitz, live jazz, a magician, and food by top chefs including Tom Kerridge. The event is another sign that Kate will host more charitable events after Her Majesty turns 90 and will be good practice for Kate the working Royal, with an impressive list of grandees attending the proceedings in Houghton’s marble-clad Stone Hall.'

This sounds like an incredibly exciting event and a fantastic opportunity to raise a significant sum for EACH. I imagine the evening affair will see the Duchess in a gown and perhaps we'll hear her saying a few words too, with a brief speech. Hosting a gala such as this would be fantastic experience for the Duchess too, as these fundraising galas will be an increasing part of her role as time progresses. There's no official Palace confirmation, but if true, we can expect to hear more over the coming weeks.

Houghton Hall

You can read more about Houghton Hall and take a look at photos on the official website.

Houghton Hall

We hope you're all having a lovely weekend. We'll see you on Wednesday for the pre-tour reception at Kensington Palace! :)

194 comments:

  1. Ohhhh to see Kate in a ball gown! That would be heaven on earth! Either the pink one or the Yellow one would be divine! All of the first four gowns were gorgeous and I would love to see Kate in any of them. The green gown is beautiful, too and with the emeralds--ohh la la! I am most curious to see what she wears in Bhutan. None of the dresses above strike me as a Kate choice, so bespoke will probably be the way to go as Charlotte suggested. Thank you for this post. It made my Saturday night perfect!

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  2. Great update! Tks!
    Erininnyc

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  3. Naeem Khan's collection is exquisite. The FoC would look amazing in any of his pieces. The emerald Silk Satin Cowl Neck Gown is the piece de resistance . Kate's emeralds are just askng to be paired with this dress! I'm starting to get excited about the fashion possibilities of the tour.

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    1. Lol!! So much for typing without my glasses. What should that stand for? Fox of Cambridge? Fresh duchess pf Cambridge?

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    2. I agree Erika, it's a breathtaking collection - probably with breathtaking prices too :) I always think Kate looks striking in pink so was drawn to that pink gown, but certainly any of them would be amazing. A treasure trove indeed!

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    3. Erika

      Some more options: Fan/Frau/Faberge/Future of Cambridge:-))

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    4. Excellent options as well Anett :) and apparently, I can not avoid typos with glasses either :)

      Glad I made you smile Paola :)

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    5. Figurehead of Cambridge? Anyhow, it made me smile. I think Khan's collection is breathtaking. I hope she picks at least one of these gorgeous designs and has it made to suit her. Would love to see her in a kira in Bhutan, I think she would look wonderful. Poor Charlotte, you have a lot of work ahead, remembering the Down Under super-blogging you did for us then.

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  4. Since Rose's husband has known the Queen his whole life and because they live next door to the Queen's Sandringham Estate, (including of course Amber Hall), and have young twins boys, I thought that Rose and Kate might become friends and apparently they have. Rose's husband's family has owned Houghton Hall since the very first prime minister (his ancestor) built it many, many years ago. How nice that all that grandeur is being used to generate monies for charity. It will be fun to see what both Kate and Rose wear for the gala. Maybe some tiaras?

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  5. wow charlotte are you fast the gowns are really beatiful the pink full skirt gown is to die for i can just see her wearing it the lanverder gown is also very pretty i'm not crazy about the lace dresses at all i don't think thet would be very flattering on her i can't believe it is only a week away and as always charlotte i'm sure you will have the best pictures and info can't wait thanks charlotte

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  6. I like the cascading ruffle gown and the emerald gown. I didn't like the Bhutan designer's stuff though. sorry.

    Thanks for the excellent blog.

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  7. The excitement is building... although I do wonder when the rehearsal trip was made as it would have to had been a few weeks ago given the fact that if the Duchess is commissioning bespoke pieces, it would have been done weeks in advance.

    Also, Charlotte I noticed u mentioned Queen Noor of Jordan as one of Naeem Khan's clients... i'm sure Queen Rania is the queen of Jordan, another fabulous royal worth following :)

    I truly hope that Kate takes full advantage of visiting such a gorgeous country and is a bit more adventurous with her wardrobe. I hope to see her wearing rich, vibrant, jewel-toned outfits. More importantly, it would be the ultimate sartorial nod to her host country if she were to wear a sari or a punjabi. Diana always won people over in that way and it was always a considerate gesture.

    Avee from SA

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    1. Tedi in California3 April 2016 at 19:10

      Queen Noor is King Hussein's widow. She was queen consort until his death in 1999.

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    2. Tedi- I believe Queen Noor was also an American college co-ed when they met.
      She was a magnificent Queen consort. Still a vibrant woman, if I remember
      correctly.

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    3. Avee-Queen Noor of Jordan and the Queen of Jordan (King Abdullah's consort) are
      two different women, both born in the West- Noor American, sometimes living in Berkshire country home, and the Queen, British-born.
      It was correct to call her Queen Noor of Jordan. She is the dowager queen.
      Thank-you, Wiki.

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    4. Queen Noor's autobiography is a god read. She said that she is of Swedish and Muslim descent. The latter made more sense to her and became her choice as an adult. Her account of life as King Hussein's wife is both serious and good fun.

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    5. Tedi in California4 April 2016 at 02:07

      You are correct Anon 19:40. She was born Lisa Najeeb Halaby, in Washington DC. Her mother was of Swedish descent, and her father of Syrian descent. Both of Noor's parents were born in the USA.

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    6. Annette New Zealand4 April 2016 at 05:17

      I thought the present Queen of Jordan - Rania was a Palestinian. The wife of President Assad of Syria is British born though so maybe I've got it a bit mixed up?

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    7. Tedi in California4 April 2016 at 23:31

      You are correct Annette, Queen Rania was born in Kuwait to Palestinian parents.

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    8. Thank-you Tedi 23:31-and Annette -she attended The New English School in Kuwait. Maybe
      that's where I got it.Who knows. I will triple-check my facts from now on.
      anon 21:36

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    9. I very much enjoyed Noor's autobiography, since I remember when she married the King, and she is close to me in age. She has a home near Washington DC still, I believe, and her children went to the Maret School here. Lovely cosmopolitan woman.

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  8. Charlotte, you're wonderful timing and incredible attention to detail are so very appreciated! I'm excited for this tour and can't wait to see if some of the designers you've mentioned are included. Thank you for your hard work and impeccable timing!!

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  9. Thank you Charlotte for an interesting post as always. My preference is for Naeem Khan and I think, as you posted, the green satin cowl neck could look amazing. I also liked the off shoulder white of Chimmi House of Design, but not particularly for Catherine. Not good news for the wedge haters, Stella McCartney latest collection has an almost sneaker type wedge with a double sole white rubber and wood - have a look - link http://www.fwrd.com/product-stella-mccartney-elyse-wedges-in-canyon-straw came up on my twitter stream yesterday.

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    1. Caroline in Montana4 April 2016 at 17:22

      W-O-W! I did go check those out and i must say those are a collection of the ugliest shoes ive ever seen!! the only thing worse than the shoes are their price. I really hope the DoC stays far-far away from the entire collection.

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    2. I agree with you, Caroline In Montana and it wasn't't just the wedges that were awful. I don't think our Kate would consider any of those shoes. The only one I worried about Kate considering was the tapestry sneaker with the lion on it bc of William's focus.

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  10. It's a pity the British public (or maybe it's really just the media) don't appreciate what they have with the royal family. They are a big asset to their country and really represent the best of the nation. William and Kate might have wealth, but they also have a huge responsibility to their country and I see them doing a really good job balancing their young family and their commitments. Britain is lucky to have them.

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    1. I am thinking it's mostly just media. It must have been a slow few weeks so they had to come up with something different to write about.

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    2. This American agrees with you, RMN. :)

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    3. Tedi in California4 April 2016 at 02:09

      I second that RF.

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    4. Caroline in Montana4 April 2016 at 17:25

      I must agree. I would rather have a royal family than the presidents we have been having. hope to come across the pond someday soon.

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  11. So exciting! I always enjoy all the background you give! Looking forward to a fun few weeks of royal watching:-)

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  12. I am not a big fan of lace but that grey/purple Naeen Khan dress (under the green satin in the middle) is just perfection to me!

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  13. I am so excited about this tour. I take exception to the statement in the article by Victoria Murphy that Kate's day to day appearances are not commanding as much attention and that her newness in the "Firm" has worn off. It may have in the UK but it has not here in the USA. I am just as excited as ever to see Kate and William. I think the people writing these articles need to take a deep breath. Sure I would like to see Kate & William more, but it is strictly for selfish reasons. I just love to see what she is wearing and I think they are great representatives for the Monarchy. However, raising their children are priority and giving them as normal a childhood is most important. One day when W & K are King and Queen and have well-adjusted happy children, the people complaining will be happy that W & K took the time out of the public eye to raise them well.

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  14. I'd like to challenge Murphy's "As little as a year ago it would have been unthinkable that criticism of William and Kate would gain widespread traction - but it has."

    As for "unthinkable criticism" purportedly "as little as a year ago," that's utter nonsense. The constant criticism started from the beginning with the "wisteria sisters" and "waity Katy" and "work shy" and all the rest of that kvetching which still sticks and gets recycled ad nauseum. Especially during any periods of photo-op drought.

    Let's not be naive. Anything--good or bad--that is printed or tweeted or liked often enough will gain widespread traction. Mud always sticks. Glitter does, too. Whether any of it is factual or not doesn't matter. Perception is everything. Mainstream and social media perpetuate all manner of misinformation and constantly flirt with falsehoods along with any truth in the freedom of expression we "enjoy."

    This stuff is printed because images of William, Kate or their children on a cover (whether their sine wave of popularity is up or down) sells newspapers, magazines and advertising. Unfortunately, all too often our biases and prejudices (whatever their slant) form our judgements. All too often those judgements are made in the absence of all the facts. Let's not forget that.


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    1. Julia from Leominster3 April 2016 at 22:34

      I suspect the press knows of what they speak - they have the numbers and while Sarah can speak with more expertise, I believe selling power is monitored closely.

      I thought the Murphy article very well balanced and am pleased Charlotte published excerpts from it. I suspect there would be even less on William and Kate yet if there were other young British royals, but except for Harry, there are no other active ones. So there is simply less on the monarchy all together.

      The India tour and the Queen's birthday will change that in the short run - we'll see what happens long term. There have been other slow moments, such as the time after Diana's death and before William and Harry became old enough to generate news and usually something does happen. The happiest of those happenings is likely to come when Harry marries. Frankly, that event is when I expected the inevitable decline in William's and Kate's press to come - it's arrived earlier than I think natural.

      Worth remembering is the effect the Irish Guards incident had on a lot of royalists - not just me. While there has always been ups and down, and always will be, that has been a major shudder, particularly for those who saw the link of the royals and the forces as almost sacred. I won't pursue it further.

      As for the children, I hope they are raised with a strong sense of duty, commitment, willingness to work hard in the public eye, and honour for tradition while having an eye for innovation. Because that is what they will need, not just to be nice children but to be a prince and princess in a changing world after the queen is gone.

      Children learn so much from example that I believe every duty that William and Kate undetake will help as much as every fun outing or jolly weekend in Norfolk. Because there is nothing greater you can give your children than a strong and secure future, not just a perfect today.

      As for the clothes, they are lovely, the lavender ruffle gown, the embroidered gown and even the yellow one, could almost be worn as is, and even more could be adapted beautifully. As it has been two years since a tour, expectations will be high, and there are so many fabulous choices and selections to choose from. But regardless of what Kate wears, the tour should be wonderfully exciting.

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    2. Yes, the criticism (and nastiness, let's not confuse the two) have been there from the start and will continue for as long as the monarchy exists. However, the key difference is that constructive criticism is now coming from people who truly have (and have had and forever will have) their HRH's back, and it includes journalists, bloggers, other figures. That's a sharp distinction and that's when their HRH's need to stop and listen. It's like anybody else. When the people who have your back are all politely but transparently pointing out "look, there's a problem here" one should stop and listen. I think many of us can relate to this dynamic in our own lives. When the people who understand us and root for us no matter what ALL happen to share the same opinion and concern about SOMETHING that does not look too good in our life, what do we do (or should you do)? Listen carefully. Not easy, but important. Same with our HRH's. Yeah, there's the usual haters and nonsense, but again, there are the cheerleaders/monarchists/admirers who are also saying "hey guys, listen up....for everyone's sake, you gotta tweak things and change direction." Silvia

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    3. Anon 00:51
      I politely disagree with your assessment of the complaints, who is making, how critical, how accurate:). It is very hard to compare this era of media to any other. One really has to sift through the all the words.

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    4. Here is just one of the comments on Victoria Murphys article.
      "What I'd like to see from the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge is a lovely shot in front of the Taj Mahal of them standing together, arm in arm. Something to stop the comparisons with Diana who publicized the Taj Mahal well enough but also gave plenty of ammunition to the press, especially the gossip rags. What I would like to see from the press, including the Mirror reports is an emphasis on why they are where they are, why Kate would dress the way she does on a trip (eg in a country's national colours), and why it is important that they represent UK in India.

      There was a time before Internet when the various politicians in Westminster got more coverage in the UK press than even Diana. When we read the news we weren't inundated by comments from republican propagandists pricing everything from groceries the royal family might buy, to the skiing weekend they spent as a family. Now it seems the reverse is true. I'd also like to see some of Prince William's critics here have a better understanding how the United Kingdom Government is run, Prince William's and Kate Middleton's place in it, and how their funding when not on official trips is nothing to do with the taxpayer."

      Was also very happy to see a lot of support for William and Kate and the number of green arrows for the positive and the number of red arrows for negative comments. Hope maybe Victoria Murphy reads the responses to her article and changes her tact on criticism for this couple.

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    5. I really don't understand the response to St Patrick's day. William is the royal colonel. Here's the court circular entry for time Kate attended alone http://www.royal.gov.uk/LatestNewsandDiary/CourtCircular/Todaysevents.aspx She was representing William. Clearly, it is his annual engagement and Kate will attend sometimes and not others.

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    6. Can someone just explain, for this American, what exactly people are upset about? I just don't understand?

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    7. There you go being logical, 20:25. :))) Exactly!

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    8. Julia from Leominster5 April 2016 at 02:15

      I'm not a military historian but I will try. Tradition is vital to the royal family. without tradition, the link that runs from William the Conqueror to the present queen, however tenuous - and it is quite tenuous, the royals would be just celebrities. The link between the royal family and the forces has been extremely strong, particularly in the last century - almost sacred. There were two World Wars in that century which cemented the link.
      Royal tradition is passed from one royal lady to another. Queen Alexandra, began the tradition of presenting the shamrocks - A Christian symbol of the cross, to the newly formed Irish Guards during the Boar War. That tradition was passed to her granddaughter Princess Mary, who was a nurse during the First World War. Mary performed the honour consistently, if not every year. It is impossible to tell now without massive research why she did not do so every year - but during some of those years, the country was at war and the guards abroad. For several Years the famed Field Marshall, the lst Earl Alexander of Tunis, did the honour. Here is a link to him. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harold_Alexander,_1st_Earl_Alexander_of_Tunis. And a link to the statue of him https://www.google.com/#q=statue+of+earl+alexander+of+tunis&tbm=isch&imgrc=9Fp3uX_Zu89G9M%3A. He is worth reading about.
      After the war, a royal man has performed the engagement only three times in over sixty years - the king at a major anniversary for the guards in 1960, the Duke of Luxembourg in 1989, when the regiment was abroad and the queen mum too elderly to travel to them and Edward after the queen's mum death in 2002. The Queen Mum took over from Princess Mary after the latter died in 1965 - missing the guards for a final visit with her brother, the abdicated Duke of Windsor.
      If there had been some breaks previously, during the life time of most of us, the Queen Mother became completely linked with the engagements. There were no breaks with her. Even when she was 100, she gave the Shamrocks, the guards came to her at Clarence House and paraded on the Mall. When the Queen Mother died, they carried her coffin. All of us who were royal followers during those years, even casual ones, were aware of that tradition and connection.
      After the queen mother died, Princess Anne took it over for a time. It was widely expected that the future wife of William would eventually take the honour. During those years, the guards were abroad fighting in the Middle East some of the time.
      When Kate received the honour and the brooch the guards had given the Queen Mum, it was just that not just a duty, not just an engagement but a huge honour for Kate to take it on. It is the single greatest honour in most people's eyes that she has yet been given. She was invited to stand in the footsteps of the queen mother. To not take that honour very seriously, is a slight not just to the guards but to the queen mother's memory. It had become her engagement. To decline that honour is as if when offered the queen mum's bracelet, Kate has said she would rather have something new, or if offered the family order, she said yellow didn't suit her. To further cement the relationship, William wore the uniform of the Irish Guards for his wedding.

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    9. Julia from Leominster5 April 2016 at 02:17

      Part 2. The Queen Mum had a conflict herself with St. Patrick's Day, the races at Cheltenham - the queen mum bred race horses and she loved the races but she never missed the guards. It was not expected once assuming the honour that Kate would miss it unless she had an extremely good reason for doing so. And she didn't.
      People still are extremely protective and sensitive about slights to the forces, which personally, I think is a very good thing. They are the protectors of the nation and many have given their lives. Their wives and families make many sacrifices. It does not seem too much to ask of a royal lady of giving them the pleasure of seeing them yearly. People read Kate's actions as a slight because it is fixed as a duty the queen mum held - the duty of a royal lady. Men are the exception.
      Did the guards care? I doubt there is a uniform opinion but there is certainly been statements from those connected with the military that suggests it was badly handled. Was it meant as a slight? Almost certainly not, but William's and Kate's motives in having her miss it seemed far from dutiful or honourable - it appeared they were making a statement of power - that the public is not to expect any engagement to be carried out routinely. I know I wasn't the only one to wonder what Kate might decide to miss next. Remembrance? The Opening of Parliament? Her sense of duty and history was called into question. Yes, there is always a substitute. Parliament can open without the queen. But people expect certain thing and a royal lady presenting the shamrocks - the Christian symbol at this very uncertain time to guards who may not even be around next year for Kate to present shamrocks to, they could be at war in the Middle East or elsewhere. That is why people are so upset.
      It could have been handled differently - made to seem as if William was doing it for a particular reason such as the fact all the guards were present - but that wasn't the point William and Kate were making - the comments from Kensington Palace were light and failed to convey the honour and the duty behind the engagement. They made it seem as if it was some lark for Kate she would do when she felt like it.
      In disagreement with someone below. It is a vastly more important engagement than any garden party that is attended by multiple royals. It is the only engagement Kate has that is her duty alone, when she is taking over from the queen mum. And personally, I'm wondering if she is worthy of standing in the queen mum's shoes. I hope no further regular duties are given to her until she is ready to commit herself to them. And many others I suspect would agree.

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    10. Rebecca - Sweden5 April 2016 at 11:15

      I'm not upset over that Anon 20.25. I am mad over how they didnt point that out in their explanation. I think it was handled super crappily.

      Delete
    11. As pointed out before, the wording in the court circular for 2012 is particularly interesting as it indicates that Kate represents William at the Shamrock ceremony. What is different from the 100 odd years is that the Irish Guards have never had a Royal Colonel before. The wording in the court circular seems to suggest that this tradition of the women is looked on differently by the Royals than the general public. In agreement with Rebecca that the KP office should have presented the absence differently as I do think there was another reason that will never be explained, but IMO, the palace sees the presentation of the shamrocks as the tradition and not women handing it out. Maybe it is also time to move on from this debate as it seems to go around and around in circles. Looking forward to the tour.

      Delete
    12. They certainly did Rebecca. AND, Kate should have shown up.

      Delete
    13. Ah, Julia, that was brilliant. I couldn't agree more with everything you said.

      If Kate was representing William prior to this year, why didn't William do it before? Everyone knows when St. Patricks Day is; not too difficult to mark it on the calendar.

      Delete
    14. IMOHO, it was a mistake for KP to explain Kate's absence in the first place. William was to attend as the Colonel of the regiment. End of story. By explaining, they made it appear as if an excuse was necessary.

      Gotta love the social media approach to sharing every detail...necessary or NOT.

      Delete
    15. Leo, you seem to grow more upset every time you discuss this. I wish you could sit down with William and Kate and describe to them your interpretation of the shamrock tradition, and listen to theirs. It is clear from William's service and Kate's own words that they do not take military duties lightly. Kate just accepted a role with the cadets that Prince Philip had for years. She has always attended Trooping and Remembrance, even when she was just recovering from HG. I also wish you could have a word with the Queen about St. Patrick's Day. We know she insisted that William wear his dress Irish Guards uniform to his wedding, and that she was fervent in her wish to exchange visits with Ireland. I even wonder whether she feels that the first royal colonel of the Guard should be visibly its colonel, rather than Kate's escort once a year. I have no idea - but these are the questions that occur to me. This seems to be such a lingering issue, and I would guess Kate, and William as well, have sought further guidance about it.

      Delete
    16. Julia from Leominster6 April 2016 at 06:48

      Correction, the queen mum was dying when Edward gave the shamrocks, she died March 30. I recalled the date wrong. Don't think I'm more upset but not less either but we will be moving on. The choice of uniform for the wedding was said to be William's.

      I would hope it would remain primarily a duty for royal ladies - while not a gender issue, the giving of the shamrocks by a royal lady sets that engagement apart from other military events with royal colonels - just another review. But perhaps that's all we will get in the future. As for William and Kate, the statement gave their reasoning clearly enough for me - Kate decided to stay home.

      Delete
    17. I'm with Julia and many others on this. For me I am not "upset." I just changed my view. The shamrock debacle was a perspective shifter for me. Attention the Cambridges have always had - they are the new fresh faces of a historic institution. Goodwill came with goodwishes and a desire from many of us, I suspect, to see the "page turn" from the darker days of the 90s. Respect, however, is earned. Royals typically do not TALK to reporters. "Never complain, never explain." Their actions speak for them. The actions leading up to and combined with the press releases in March around the St. Patrick's day event, for me, caused a perspective shift. I continue to send my best wishes and will be very happy to see them succeed. I continue to think they are great parents - and good partners to each other. But in terms of their roles? I think they have a great deal of growing to do. Its not a question of "getting over it."

      Delete
    18. I agree Ariagurl.

      Delete
    19. Joining the chorus publicly Julia - I am still baffled - and disgusted - by HRH skipping The Irish Guards this year. And KP made it vastly worse.

      Delete
  15. I have been reading your blog when you first started and never commented. Just want to take a moment that you are doing a great job! I love coming to your site for updates - from a reader from Vancouver, BC, Canada.

    ReplyDelete
  16. So glad that Becca and others on their team got to do a pre-tour tour. Have they done that for every tour? Hopefully, Kate will wear something made with textiles from Bhutan. They are famous for their intricately woven, brightly colored textiles. I didn't like the Chimmi designs at all so maybe Kate collaborated in designing a bespoke outfit using their fabrics so she can have something she likes.

    I hope William at least puts his arm around Kate for the Taj Mahal photo.

    Is Victoria Murphy Victoria Arbiter's married name or not? Hopefully, W/K's team read the article.



    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anon 16:30 A "Pre-tour tour" have always been done. There is a lot of planning that goes into every tour, down to the smallest details. What's happening minute to minute, Where the royal will stand to be photographed, where the press stands, what time will the sun set or rise, etc.

      The two Victoria's are two different journalist. The Lovely Victoria Murphy works for the Daily Mirror.

      The Lovely Victoria Arbiter work mainly as a Royal Commentator for a number of new shows. And She just came out with a book on Queen Elizabeth II for Pocket Giants.

      Delete
    2. Gert-are you saying that where William and Kate will stand for photographers is
      decided by the advance team, not the Cambridges?. For example, they have been greatly criticised for not pausing for photographers upon entering and
      leaving a venue-the choice of where to stand is not theirs?

      Delete
    3. Thanks Gert. That makes sense. Definitely good to know that.

      Thanks for clearing up the Victoria thing also. :)

      Delete
    4. Not pausing for photographers, at some times could be decided by advance team, but it could also be a personal decision.But not pausing could be because of security issues, time constraints, official photographers inside, etc.

      The Advance team is going to decide what is going to be a good and interesting backdrop, What is the lighting going to be like, how many photographers they can fit in the space, How many people are going to be in the photograph with the royal, (you want the names of those people for the media so they can be properly labeled)etc.

      Think NZ/AUS Tour, when the Cambridges visited Ayers Rock. We got these stunning photos of them standing in front of the rock right at sunset. That was all planned. They took the pics at just the right time to get great light. Their clothes went perfect with the surroundings. They were standing in just the right spot, with the photographers in the right spot, to get the rock centered behind them.

      And even after all that planning, the advance team hadn't accounted for the photographers shadows. The photographers ended up having to crouch down, so their shadows wouldn't ruin the photographs. You can still see them around the ankles.

      Delete
    5. Very helpful, thank-you Gert. Those were memorable photos. One wonders how much
      planning went into the iconic Taj photos of Diana and by whom.Talk about backdrop.
      Weren't those considerations also behind the airplane hanger Wales photos? I
      seem to remember W&C were blamed for that, too.Photographers left out or some such complaint.
      anon 18:37

      Delete
    6. When photographer's complain that they don't have access to the Cambridges in general... and that they don't pause when entering and leaving venues as the press screams at them... we need to take the "criticism" with a grain of salt. The press wants to make money, which is where their "crticism" comes from.

      Delete
  17. That Silk Satin Cowl Neck Gown made my jaw drop! I also love the green lace and black sheer fabric dress just under that one.

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  18. Hello!

    Thank you for your lovely comments! The run up to the tour has been such fun :)

    I was just on Twitter and noticed the incredibly reliable Gert's Royals shared this "Duchess Kate's Patronage @TeamSportsAid hosting 40th Anniversary Dinner at Kensington Palace on June 9th."

    I'm thinking this is definitely one for Kate. June is shaping up to be a busy month with annual events such as Trooping, Order of the Garter, The Queen's Garden Party, a service at St Paul's for HM's birhday, the EACH gala at Houghton Hall and the two day trip to France.

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    Replies
    1. Here is the link to the 40th Anniversary Dinner on Sport Aid's Website http://sportsaid-prod.azurewebsites.net/events/40th-anniversary-dinner-at-kensington-palace/

      Delete
    2. She is great! Terrific attention to detail.

      I think this is all a good sign and I hope it holds. They don't need to jump to Charles or Anne levels, but I think it's time for a little more focus on royal work, which would go a long way in my opinion. And frankly Kate benefits from that as well, getting more comfortable and experienced every time.

      Delete
    3. I am bit afraid of the annual events, after St. Patrick's Day but looks really promising.

      Delete
    4. What I am afraid of is our expectation. Google court circular and look at the wording of the announcement of St Patrick's Day in 2012 2014 2015. It is enlightening to say the least.

      Delete
    5. Agreed, Claudia. I hope it holds too.

      Delete
    6. Caroline in Montana4 April 2016 at 17:36

      "A bit afraid of the annual events" really? she does something for 3 years and its an annual event? I would consider trouping, order of the garter, the garden party etc. to be "annual events" that are very-very important. I also thought that the irish guard looked happier than they have in previous years being given their shamrocks by the future king.

      Delete
    7. Yes, annual event. The event has been annual for over 100 years. The Irish Guards think it so important, every year they send shamrocks to soldiers overseas to tuck in their helmets.

      Delete
    8. Caroline, as far as happiness is concerned, are you perhaps referring to this selfie? :)

      http://forces.tv/98687297

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    9. I believe Caroline's point is that it's not an "annual " event for Kate after
      three years. The ceremony went on, conducted by a royal. The Honorary
      Colonel.
      The same person hasn't been doing it for 100 years. Until the QM took a shine
      to it, it was accomplished by a number of non-royals.
      I can't comprehend what is so hard to understand about that.
      Some of the royal writers and their friends said there would be consequences for the KP twitter pictures and
      stories.Their handling of this non-issue was part of it.

      Delete
    10. Julia from Leominster5 April 2016 at 02:41

      Three year!!!! We're taking a hundred year tradition of royal ladies giving the Shamrocks with only rare exceptions - see my comments above. We are talking an unbroken tradition for thirty-five years of the Queen Mother's life. Kate took the place of the queen mother when she took on that engagement - it is the only solo tradition of that sort she has been given - and hopefully will be the only one for some time to come until she is prepared to take her duties seriously. All the other engagements mentioned above are ones where other royals are present and even primary. Garden parties are nothing compared to this. This is a ceremony of a Christian presentation to guards who could go to war at any moment. It is the single most important thing Kate has been permitted to do alone, an honour, not just a duty or an engagement, and just as she put her stiletto in the grate, she stumbled.
      Who can say if the guards were happier. From all reports, there was certainly offense taken but they are disciplined military people unlike Kate, and won't let it show. Most are probably too young to remember the Queen Mum at 100 giving the shamrocks, and her but the senior officers aren't.
      Here's a link of the queen mum at 100 with the wolfhound - a case of the mountain coming to Mohammad, hardly surprising given her age. https://www.google.com/#q=queen+mum+irish+guards+2001&tbm=isch&imgrc=B-UPCg6km4qcwM%3A A few months later, they carried her coffin.

      There is a history of the guards but I don't have it available, but there is a charming if somewhat badly written (with Queen Alexandra's name spelled wrong) story of the Irish Wolfhounds called "Wolfhounds on Parade) by Martin Garrity. I wouldn't commend it as a history but it has delightful portraits of the wolfhounds and photos of the queen mum with various of the dogs - Cormac is the first I remember. (There were times there was no mascot - from 1929-1951 and during the time the regiment was in Egypt in the late fifties - also a time there were breaks in the shamrocks being given by a royal lady. The Queen mother did take her duty abroad though = several times in Germany.

      Delete
    11. Bluhare, you were absolutely right (17.36).

      Delete
    12. Royalfan said in a recent comment that the drama over St. Patrick's Day continues even after the shamrocks are wilted! And rightfully so in my opinion... maybe not the drama but certainly the concerns it raised.

      For anyone asking why people were so upset Julia gives excellent and extensive answers, and I would also urge everyone to read the Ingrid Seward column "A Duchess in Danger".

      I was one quite taken aback by Kate's absence, it was a "shudder" as Julia put it. As Seward pointed out there is a "covenant" between the royals and military, just as there is between any Head of State and the military. Imagine the US reaction to Michelle Obama saying "I think I'll just stay home instead of laying the wreath this year"

      William himself made a point of emphasizing it in Our Queen at 90... quote "I think the Royal family and the Monarchy in particular has always had a close bond with the armed forces. It's a key part of the Royal family and the monarchy to bring that to light."

      If KP had said, "unfortunately the Duchess has a pre-tour meeting that day" or "as Royal Colonel the Duke is keen to present this year" but to just say she wants to stay home and they don't want the public to have any expectations was atrocious. And most of all insulting to soldiers who have to leave their families all the time. I think even royalfan would privately agree with that ;)

      But I think we can all say both sides will never agree on this! I will never understand why some people were so laissez-faire about it, and others will never understand why some of us were so taken aback.

      Also, for those pointing out the wording of the Court Circular, I personally don't think that means much, since technically every time any royal is on an official engagement they always represent the Queen first and foremost. They are working on behalf of the Monarch and Head of State.

      Delete
    13. I also wanted to add, with all the drama in the comment section recently :) I found comments on another site interesting. There's a blog What Kate Wore (am I way behind here?) where they discuss just fashion it seems. And several people have said in recent posts that although they're long time fans, they are probably not going to be following Kate as much. They said they were a little disappointed in her and not as excited by the fashion.

      Obviously some of this is normal, end of the honeymoon period and all that, but just wanted to chime in that there's a little discontent/restlessness out there, not just happening here! It was interesting to see it in another blog/comment forum.

      Delete
    14. Are we going to base a tradition on a ROYAL handing out shamrocks, or the GENDER of the royal? This is getting silly. William was there as the Colonel of the regiment. Is Kate's appearance more important, or her absence more unforgivable, because of her gender? Where are the feminists on this one? The tradition was NOT neglected.

      Traditions are important, I recognize that, but there's also a need to adapt. We cannot continue to compare William's wife with his great-grandmother. The public may have been impressed with her dressing in her Sunday best to visit bomb victims, but if W&K did that today they would be called out for being insensitive and out of touch.

      Delete
    15. Claudia, for the record, I do enjoy your "even royalfan" remarks. LOL.

      General statement here...

      I continue to find it interesting that the press is concentrating sooo much on W&K as we approach the Queen's 90th birthday and the related festivities. Logic would suggest that the press would be all over C&C right now, yet they remain well below the radar.

      Even if you don't share my suspicions, lol, surely that is rather odd, especially as the Queen celebrates such a milestone!

      Delete
    16. Claudia WKW is purely a fashion blog and Susan the administrator does not allow any comments related to work etc. It is natural that some will grow tired of fashion especially considering the diversity of ages and the necessity for Kate to dress more modestly. WKW readers are long time followers and die hard fans and repli-kating does not stop for those followers.

      Delete
    17. Claudia, I understand that some were "taken aback" and I get that. I really do. But we've gone way beyond "taken aback". This is an issue that everyone just has to get over. I'm not saying that you need to forgive Kate if you really feel that this is unforgivable, but the time has come to stop beating it to death. It really is. Everyone has had their say. There really isn't any need to keep going on about it. There's nothing constructive in that I can see. Sorry, but it really is time to let it go. There is a tour about to start. A whole new set of issues to set us off.

      Delete
    18. Being one who was upset by her absence, I can say it had nothing to do with gender expectations. I vaguely remember the QM handing out the shamrocks, although I do recall the Guards acting as the pall bearers at her funeral. What upset me was that I had an expectation that the SPD parade was the DoC's event. I assumed that she was given it to carry on the work of the QM. Considering she showed up each year after her marriage, sometimes with William, and more pointedly, heavily pregnant with PC, I don't think my assumptions were misplaced. Of course because William is the Colonel in Chief, it is completely appropriate that he handled the event alone. However, it had appeared that the DoC had taken over this tradition and most everyone was shocked when it was announced that she would be staying home this year, and may or may not show up in the future, depending. People had already associated her with the event and very little care was taken to account for her absence. The wording of both statements were insensitive and callous in my opinion giving the impression that she really could not be bothered this year and that she had better things to do. Even worse was the statement that she doesn't want the expectation to be that she will show up annually for Guards. To me, she was saying, "I don't care about tradition or duty. I will only show up if it suits me". The whole premise behind the BRF is to show up year after year to certain annual events. That's the pomp and circumstance that PW talked about in the documentary, stating that the British do it very well. The whole thing was incredibly disappointing to me and I came away with the impression that the DoC is just not that into her royal engagements.

      Delete
    19. Erika, I do agree regarding the statements from KP; quite an unnecessary mess for sure. But I believe it's unfair to be as critical as some folks have been based on the *assumption* that Kate would always attend on SPD. She didn't pull out of it, therefore, KP should have zipped it.

      Delete
    20. I echo Erika's last statements. I think that it is perfectly fine for William to go in place of Kate. It was the attitude behind the statements that I found to be shocking. Saying that we don't want expectations to be set (why are you a royal then?) and then following up by saying that Kate enjoys handing out shamrocks but wants to spend time with her children this year was absolutely ridiculous. The engagement is not for Kate's enjoyment. It is to honor the armed forces. How could they not see this? The fact that their press office went ahead and issued that statement just goes to reveal the self-absorption of Kate and William and the entrenchment they live in. And how they are surrounded by equally William-and-Kate-absorbed yes people. They really believe that the world should cater to them.
      If they had phrased the whole issue as William wants to hand shamrocks to his regiment I think that most people here would have gone along with it. I certainly would not have thought twice about it.
      Anyway I am done talking about this. Just wanted to point out that gender has nothing to do with it. It is the attitude that was revealed through the whole kerfuffle that got everyone hopping mad.

      Delete
    21. I'm having a deja vu, royalfan :) I think we had this exact same discussion a few posts back. Considering the huge foot they inserted in their hypothetical mouth, they should have said nothing. Yet, I wanted an explanation. For me, silence would have been an admission of something untoward brewing under the surface.

      I think the royals need to consider assumption. People have certain expectations which I think KP painfully discovered following this incident. Precedence does count for something as is evident from the fall out after this engagement and when, for whatever reason, changes occur, thought needs to be put into how it should be presented to the public. For me, this whole thing was less a break in tradition than an unflattering glimpse into what kind of person the DoC might possibly be. It was a question of character in my eyes.

      Delete
    22. Catherine did NOT take the QM's position. The royal with that honor is Anne and later, William.
      Kate joined him. Read KP. Read what the CC had to say.
      The woman who handed out shamrocks the longest period of time before the QM
      claimed the job was not even royal, although an aristocrat and relative of
      the Colonel at the time. Early on, Queen Alexandra and the Princess Royal
      did it for a time. The complete history with documentation from local
      newspapers and other sources is available, if one truly wants the truth, instead
      of error-filled talking points.

      Delete
    23. I am all for gender equality but I also value traditional events, and don't think there's anything wrong with a woman or a man taking on a specific event and becoming the face of that event.

      I don't think the St. Patrick's Day fiasco was a gender issue, it's the fact that the *person* who the public believed had taken on that role was suddenly a no-show with no good explanation. And for what it's worth, the Duke and Duchess of Kent split the trophy duties at Wimbledon that way for years.

      Marny I do agree, all that can be said has probably been said! Which is why I ended with maybe it's time to say we all agree to disagree :)
      But I do think this event and the handling of it will have a lingering effect.

      Royalfan I remember a few of the correspondents saying (at the beginning of the year I think) that the tour and the birthday were expected to be the two big royal stories of the year, maybe that was based on editors gauging what they thought the public would be most interested in. Remember, it's really basic to them, what gets the most ratings/sales/clicks gets the most resources.

      Anon thanks for the What Kate Wore information, makes sense why things can get restless there.

      Open question to anyone - I know of the Berks blog and the WKW... are there others that deal maybe with the BRF as a whole with discussions of the entire family, or even other families?

      Delete
    24. Also meant to add that when the Duchess of Kent skipped Wimbledon it was a huge international story, and while it's high profile, I'd say it's nowhere near as important as a military event. And it's an example that the press and public do have certain expectations of the royals, others have been on the receiving end of this as well, not just Kate.

      Delete
    25. Actually, Marny, we don't "just have to get over" it. Perhaps you think we should, and that's fine. But some of us think there are duties involved with being a Royal Duchess -- which Kate is. And she and her husband are not pulling their royal weight.

      Did you see the article a couple of days ago, written by a historian who thinks the way things are going the monarchy could be over soon? Monarchists tend to be older, and value tradition. Unless William and Kate can cultivate their base -- their generation -- there won't be anything left to prepare George for. Sometimes I think I'm being too alarmist thinking that way, but then I think about how anachronistic kings and queens are, and unless William and Kate can find a way to make it relevant -- which you don't do staying home because you don't want to create expectations or working outside the royal sphere -- I am afraid that's exactly what will happen. And then there will be no Kate to write about as she'll be just another (en)titled private citizen.

      Delete
    26. I agree Marny--let's get over it! IMO, this is a column about the events that Kate DOES go to, not the ones she doesn't. I agree that KP might have just said nothing but no matter what they did, people were going to comment in the current climate of "let's judge W & K by whatever measuring rod we want to have." Honestly as someone who has a Bachelor's degree in British History, I find the effort to find some kind of important historical significance to this act laughable. Charlotte, thanks for this website and the gorgeous photos. Can't wait for tomorrow's event, do hope there are photos of that!

      Delete
    27. It has nothing to do with gender. If William had chosen not to attend I would be equally disappointed in him too. Kate has made it clear that it's all about her. Whether it's William who is calling the shots or not, we cannot say. But either way, the engagement was one she had done every year for the last few years, and it involved the military. There's no point going over the issues again, but needless to say people are not going to forget about it anytime soon. Even next year when it rolls around again, it will be mentioned. In fact, I think that until Kate proves she has a sense of duty, it will be and should be mentioned. Maybe she'll have to attend the parade ten years in a row before people are convinced.

      William and Kate have had nothing to prove to anyone these last few years. They were lucky to be presented positively with the media even when there was controversies over the last five years. But I think they have wasted that opportunity, and now they will have to work even harder to get back into the publics good books. The tour, I am sure, will be covered positively. But people have not forgotten St Patrick's day. William and Kate need to think about the consequences of their actions a bit more, I think.

      And, royalfan, the media is harping on William and Kate in the lead up to the 90th because they've been married for 5 years and have not seemed to have embraced royal life. I don't like Charles, and the issues with Diana are still there. But at least he's trying. He's put a lot of effort in to change his image, and he does many engagements every year. What is there for them to pick on?

      Delete
    28. Bluhare, saw the article written by the historian and then there was a counter argument article as well. Therefore each individual has to make a choice in accordance with their own beliefs. Whether the monarchy can survive in an increasingly egalitarian society remains to be seen, but its collapse won't depend on Charles or William, but rather in the way society views hierarchy and equality. And of course this is not society as a whole in this instance, but the British public.

      Delete
    29. Of course it will involve more than Charles and William, but if you have a vote to exercise in a referendum, are you going to vote to continue something that William and Kate don't want you to have expectations of? I wouldn't, and I don't think most others would either. Given that they get money for actually meeting those expectations it is a valid economic query.

      Delete
    30. Very valid, and far reaching, Bluhare. Attitude is everything. If the proper attitude is lacking then many other things will be lacking obviously.
      The days of cavalier attitudes in royals are over.
      Just ask Andrew, Sophie and Edward.

      btw, does anyone know if Edward serves in the military. (He has a lot of medals.)

      Delete
    31. Erika, deja vu indeed. :) But in this case, I think half the problem would have been eliminated if KP didn't explain/expand. There was just as much anger, if not more, over the reasons given than the fact that Kate didn't attend.

      Anon, I'm not suggesting there is something to pick on, but it IS preferable to have W&K taking the hits at this time instead of articles focusing on the future with King Charles and QUEEN CAMILLA.

      May the Queen enjoy many more happy birthdays!

      Delete
    32. As a young man, Prince Edward resigned from the Royal Marines without completing his training. Therefore, there has been occasional criticism of his honorary military roles.

      Delete
    33. Thanks. how did he get all those medals then?
      And at the royal wedding it shows a photo of him with a belt around him like they wear those blue ribbons and the long silver ornate buckle was around on his back. That looked like a medal of some sort also. Was Anne ever in the military?

      Delete
  19. The Queen is the lens through which the Cambridges focus their royal work. So far, HM
    seems most comfortable assigning royal duties to her children, Anne and Charles, and other relatives she feels close to (apparently, Sophie) and accustomed to seeing in that role over the years.

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    Replies
    1. Julia from Leominster5 April 2016 at 02:47

      Not to be more tart than I already have been but she probably wants to give them to people she knows will carry them out regularly. The last month has shown why there could be a reluctance to give more to the Cambridges. But I actually think the queen takes her cue from what family members want rather than the other way round. I suspect she would love to see William and Kate more active - her mentoring of taking Kate along on what Kate has deemed her most important "away" engagement shows that. The queen taking a young royal princess along with her is somewhat unusual - I don't recall her doing so with Diana. But there hasn't been any engagement of this sort since the underground engagement when Kate was pregnant with George.

      Delete
    2. There has been at least one other engagement with the Queen and Kate. Didn't they attend a performance of some kind? Not sure when....

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    3. They attended a reception at BP with Hollywood stars and actors. I think it had to do with BAFTA but not 100% sure. She wore the same red dress as the Diamond Jubilee cruise by A. McQueen. Not sure if it was before or after George.

      Delete
    4. Yes, Kate has accompanied the Queen (and Charles) on engagements, but I think that has William's fingerprint on it more than anything else. It has been pretty clear from day one (going back to courtship days) that he wants his wife's experience to be different from that of his mother. I'm also not aware of other future in-laws being invited to Windsor Castle for lunch with the Queen as Mike and Carole were prior to the royal wedding. Certainly not in the way it was made known.

      New traditions woven into the tapestry...AMEN.

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    5. The Queen does not assign engagemnts. This is worked out between the members of the royal family, their secretaries, and the organizations of which they are patrons. There is coordination with the royal calendar of events. The Queen makes honorary military appointmnts, and perhaps she is consulted if someone wants to take on a controversial issue.

      Delete
    6. anon 22:01-did you watch the birthday doc.? Did you note the hands-on attention to detail she gives to flowers and china? If she cares that much about relatively insignificant details, why wouldn't she be involved in deciding
      who attends State functions, remembrances,family and military events among other engagements? Assistants may be involved in details and arrangements, but don't
      think HM doesn't have her ear to the ground and finger on the pulse of
      royal life.
      "...perhaps she is consulted?" Oh, my goodness.
      And judging from the spin some of the media have been giving to some recent
      activities, I'd say there are very few activities that don't become controversial and I imagine HM is well-aware of this, too.
      Don't sell QEII short. She won't abdicate her position as queen and she
      doesn't abdicate or relinquish her responsibilities to underlings to decide
      who does what significant engagements.
      My statements are based on what I have seen her do. I don't pretend to have inside knowledge about behind the scenes staff activity.

      Delete
    7. If the Queen has the skinny on the community there by the Highland games as Andrew said, and if she knew about her employees windows, and if she had a "discussion", as William said about, what uniform he would wear to his wedding, then I think she knows what's what with the family. How much she directs them is another question. Maybe she does that more though since the Charles and Diana, Andrew and Fergie, Andrew solo, and Sophie and Edward days.

      Delete
    8. I went back to WKW to see if I missed something in the comments. I assume you refer to the comment section with the doc. preview. There were actually
      three comments that even obliquely made statements such as you referred to.
      One commenter was disappointed in Kate fashion lately and that she could not
      find replikates she could wear anymore. Another had the same name as a
      commenter on this blog and commented almost verbatim from remarks posted here. A third was obviously taken out of context- the actual remarks were that
      any disappointed fans were likely part of the group who bought into the media
      frenzy surrounding the Cambridges when they were first married. The remainder of
      the remark was extremely favorable to Kate.
      Please don't try to excuse the gossip some spread on this site by using WKW as
      an example to illustrate current wide-spread sentiment- that "the honeymoon is over,"
      or that there is wide-spread loss of interest in them. They don't need this tour; the monarchy needs it and know the Cambridges can deliver the goods.

      Delete
    9. Back in the day, 00:59, there was a video of Charles and Diana seated around a table with their staff, planning their calendars. The Queen was not present. Had she been, perhaps Charles would not have tortured Diana by tickling her. I know you are quite correct in saying that the Queen is exquisitely well informed. She is even said to love governmental gossip. She is also a busy head of state and follows an active schedule of engagements herself. Yes, she no doubt indicates who should accompany her to important events and is involved in deciding foreign travel, for example. But she does not sit down with each of the 14 other oficially active members of the royal family to plan their calendars. Some things have to be delegated in every firm!

      Delete
  20. Tedi in California3 April 2016 at 18:52

    I love Naeem Khan's collection. All the gowns are beautiful, but the Emerald Silk Satin Cowl Neck is spectacular.
    Houghton Hall is a perfect venue. June will be a great month for Kate and William. Actually spring is shaping up nicely for them. I am putting my faith in this upcoming tour. It certainly has great potential for them, and I am sure they will rise to the occasion. It will be fun sharing this with all of you, and our wonderful captain, Charlotte.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I dint even know Naeem Khan existed until this post!!His designs are simply stunning,,
      Charlotte I cannot wait for your excellent coverage of this Royal Tour!!!XOXO

      Delete
  21. I agree Claudia. Maybe they have heartened to public opinion, HalleluYah, and are salvaging their popularity just in time. They would have been foolish not to.

    And you are right, practice, practice, practice, as someone earlier said, can only help. Kate needs to gain confidence and William interest in all things Royal. It isn't a hobby.

    Nice to know that Kate and Rose know each other. Not to be morbid but since Rose's husband is 25 years older than her, it is nice that Rose has some solid support in William and Kate, who are about her age. They might even be godparents to one or more of Rose's children.

    ReplyDelete
  22. Zora from Prague3 April 2016 at 20:32

    Thank you, Charlotte, for the beautiful post. I thought you would be resting a bit, gathering energy for a really busy time during the royal tour, but you were working on this post instead. I like the simple dresses by Chimmi. And I think it would be lovely to see the Duchess wearing the lotus flower in her hair! Zora

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Westumgehung a Lotus Flieger in her hair Might Turn Out as difficult. They are quite heavy.

      Delete
  23. great post Charlotte... can't wait to see the fashion hits of kate.
    p.s is it kate in ice blue gown with crown?? of which occian this picture is i mean when was it taken?? please inform and are more pictures available of that day please inform..(in the temperly gown section)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello!

      No, that's Rose Rocksavage, The Marchioness of Cholmondeley, at the State Banquet last year. She appears to be a major fan of Temperley. If I'm not mistaken, I seem to recall seeing photos of her in Tatler a decade ago wearing their designs.

      Delete
    2. oh thank you soooooo much for such a kind answer nd guidance. hv a good day
      faiza

      Delete
  24. For the sake of factual reporting, Charlotte, you should have started your post with "Good morning". :) I wonder when you actually sleep, to be honest.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. My insomnia will be come in very handy with the tour schedule :)

      Delete
    2. Aaarggh...I'm so sorry you deal with insomnia. I do, too. Sigh. Here's to a good night's sleep. :) Silvia

      Delete
    3. I've found getting 45 minutes exercise daily helps the most. Hope you sleep well too Silvia :)

      Delete
    4. So does turning off laptops, televisions about 90 minutes prior to bedtime. lots of research on that. and no caffeine, colas, etc. after 6 p.m.

      Delete
    5. Yes! Exercise as Charlotte writes and disconnecting from media after 6 p.m. Coffee I ban after 2 pm (that has helped, obviously). Caveat: I like to fall asleep to nature sounds or to the sound of people talking (but I never listen to the radio because the news is so inevitably horrifying it keeps me up––instead I pick a podcast or youtube presentation on anything from astronomy to literature! Also, there is an awesome, soothing-put-you-to-sleep 8 hour youtube video of Heathrow air controllers speaking! :) And I know a lot of Brits love their shipping forecast as lullaby. Anyhow, thanks for the chat, Charlotte and Anonymous!

      Delete
    6. The "light" from electronics is disruptive. Ali

      Delete
    7. Julia from Leominster5 April 2016 at 02:52

      Another insomniac here - even the snoring of Leo and the spaniels doesn't always send me off. In my work days, I dreaded waking knackered after having my brain spin at four but today in retirement, I live with it - write nonsense here and catch up with reading royal blogs elsewhere. Often my best time without distraction and the jewel vault can often make me nod off pleasantly dreaming of royal trinkets.

      Delete
  25. Wow! Many of these gowns are stunning and would require little or no adjustment for Kate. I also like the short, gray dress...classy and elegant.

    I'm so looking forward to this tour. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I agree! Many of them would suit her perfectly and that gray dress looks like something that she would have worn in the early days of her marriage. She's changed her style a bit since then, so I don't think she will but I think it'd be just perfect!

      Delete
  26. I really can't believe the tour is upon us! Yikes! Your post really jostled me into realizing it's here! In my mind it's still seemed so far into the future....even though I'm well aware we've turned the corner into April.

    Very excited for the new tour and a new (hopefully) refreshed and re-energized era for our dynamic duo. :)

    And thanks as always to wonderful blogger Charlotte who spoils us all with jam-packed-faster-than-the-speed-of-sound posts.

    May we all sit with coffee, tea, soda, wine, or even a margarita and enjoy the fun, informative posts ahead!!! :)
    Silvia

    ReplyDelete
  27. Marci from Utah4 April 2016 at 02:12

    Hi Charlotte! Great work here as usual. I love the assortment of gowns--the green being the most stunning. I am happy to learn about the pre-tour tour and its role. Julia from Leominster, your thoughts are so well considered and helpful that I look for your comments every time now. Thank you. Thanks to Charlotte the most for continuing this great blog.

    ReplyDelete
  28. Finally I have had time to watch The Queen at Ninety. What a nice family gift to her. I agree that Harry and the princesses did a great job. (Didn't anyone notice Eugenie's laryngitis?). Prince Charles appeared to be some sort of master of ceremonies, dressed up in uniform and sash, but I thought he sounded rather embarrassed. Andrew, Sophie, and Camilla reprsented their generation in a much more direct and interesting way. Princess Anne did not speak, but she got that knife out of the cake!

    I think I disagree with everyone else about William and Catherine. What impressed me was the very warm way they spoke about the Queen, and their loving facial expressions. I had a real sense that they know her task and her role will pass to them, and that she is quietly preparing them, as well as welcoming Kate and their babies into her family.

    Since I remember the Queen's entire reign, and those early trips to exotic lands, the only part of the film that was new to me was the Malta pictures. She and Philip were beautiful and happy then! As for her earlier life, I have known Princess Elizabeth via books and pihotos. But I had not seen that last picture of baby Elizabeth in her bonnet. She looks just like cranky Prince George!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I very much agree with you, Anonymous 4 April 2016 at 02:14.

      Delete
    2. Thank you, Francis! Your agreement means a great deal to me. I admire your approach to these debates, and I hope you approve of more than my comparison of the baby pictures. :-)

      Delete
  29. Sarah Maryland USA4 April 2016 at 02:25

    I'm really looking forward to the tour! During the Australian tour I may or may not have spent time at work updating my Kate Middleton Pinterest board as she made her many appearances
    Since I'm in grad school now it should be easier to keep up with the tour!
    If Kate does repeata gown I would be happy to see that Jenny packham from June 2011 or McQueen from July 2011 in LA

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I wouldn't complain about those repeats either, Sarah.

      Delete
    2. Sarah Maryland USA4 April 2016 at 23:48

      I actually think the light purple McQueen would be perfect...its very light and breezy looking and since its going to be really hot in India it might be more comfortable

      Delete
    3. Yes, I tbink so too. Fingers crossed!

      Delete
  30. Very excited for the tour! Does Kate have any engagements for the month of May?

    ReplyDelete
  31. Alejandra Ramírez4 April 2016 at 05:07

    Love the post and love the gown choices!
    Thank you so much for your dedication! :D

    ReplyDelete
  32. Is it too much to hope that the Duchess will debut her first Naeem Khan look in this gorgeous pre-fall '15 gown (which I selected as part of my Choose a Look for Kate) lol?

    http://www.vogue.com/fashion-shows/pre-fall-2015/naeem-khan/slideshow/collection#15

    Very excited for this royal tour!

    ReplyDelete
  33. Naeem Khan is a highly possibility. Some of my other designer predictions:

    Abu Jani Sandeep Khosla a.k.a Abu Sandeep
    Prabal Gurung
    Ritu Kumar
    Saloni Lodha
    Sabyasachi
    Tarun Tahiliani
    Jenny Packham
    Alexander McQueen

    I hope I get some of my guesses correct. Soooo very excited about this tour!!

    ReplyDelete
  34. Lots of reactions to this post...but one tops them all: Raise your hand if you want to have Rebecca Deacon's job??

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hee hee. I actually would never want that job😊 Ali

      Delete
    2. I would LOVE, LOVE, LOVE that Job. Really being a part of living history, what an honor. :)
      Sign me up.

      Delete
    3. Rebecca - Sweden5 April 2016 at 19:39

      Haha, same here Ali :P But thats what so great. Different people for different jobs :)

      Delete
  35. hmm charlotte great researching in those custom designer I would love too see she wear the lace gown im not fan that emerald dress but it naeem khan will a perfect choice for the duchess others are not good choice hmm great work charlotte

    ReplyDelete
  36. Charlotte, add me to the long list of those who enjoy your well researched and entertaining posts.

    I hope to see trunkfuls of gorgeous clothes and very few repeats on this trip. In my opinion, the next few months are crucial for William and Kate. They need to rally the public sentiment firmly back on their side. William needs to dial up the charm level to 100. Kate needs to appear confident and independent. No protectively clutching her clutch!

    This should be a fabulous ten days for virtual travelers and royal watchers.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I don't think that holding the clutch that way (or clasping hands in front) is out of nervousness. It seems like most of the royals do that. My guess is that it's because of being photographed so much. Hands tend to look very awkward in photographs. Holding the clutch or clasping hands together avoids accidental "gestures" and makes for better photos. Just my guess anyway.

      Delete
    2. I agree Jodie. If anyone wants to check, there are photos out there of other royal ladies, even Michelle Obama, in exactly the same pose.

      Delete
    3. Hi Jodie, yes most royals do hold their hands like that from time to time but Kate's hands never leave that clutching position. Even while shaking hands, her left hand is firmly holding her clutch right at her nether region, while walking, standing and sometimes even sitting her hands almost never stray from that position.

      Delete
  37. Silvia, "coffee, tea, soda, wine, or margarita" and "enjoy the fun, Informative posts". I like your thinking on that. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I will go for a nice Pinot Noir and broiled grape halves with a nice cheese and crackers, sitting on my front porch watching San Diegans going to and fro. Really looking forward to it. (do you think wearing my royal wedding (fake, but beautiful) tiara would be too much? :)

      Delete
    2. Yes! Pinot Noir with cheese and crackers would be my choice too! But I'm curious about the broiled grapes halves...hmmm...I need to do some homework... :)

      Delete
    3. cut the grapes in half, spray a little coconut oil on them, maybe a little drizzle of a light balsamic vinegar, put them on a cookie sheet lined with some parchment paper and broil lightly. A light sprinkle of feta cheese when they come out of the oven is good also and a light cracker.

      Delete
    4. grape tomatoes are good that way and also figs.

      Delete
    5. Anon 1:11, thank you for expanding! I'm glad I checked the blog earlier today before I walked into Trader Joe's. ;)

      20:56, I do enjoy broiled tomatoes, especially in the summertime with hamburgers on the BBQ.

      Delete
    6. you are welcome RF. Bon appetit. :)

      Delete
  38. So many beautiful dresses in this post alone. My favorite is Naeem Khan’s Embroidered V-Neck Gown.
    I googled and it seems people speculating on Lady Rose being pregnant at the state dinner were correct. Marquess and Marchioness of Cholmondeley had a baby girl in March 2016.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Her name is Iris. Perhaps she and Princess Charlotte will be playmates.

      Delete
    2. I wonder if William and Kate are Rose's new baby girl's godparents?

      Delete
    3. 17:44 and 19:14,

      I know this may seem like really random speculation, but I really believe that there is a distinct possibility that Kate was either invited to Rose's baby shower for baby Iris, or perhaps even had one for her, either at Amner Hall, or even the Queen's house there, as the Queen has been friend's with David's (Rose's husband) family all her life and Rose's paternal grandmother was one of the Queen's bridesmaids in 1947. So the thoughts turn out to not be so random after all perhaps.

      I would not be surprised if William and Kate are listed among baby Iris's godparents, and I would be very surprised if Iris and Charlotte do not become playmates. What fun for everyone.

      Delete
    4. Sounds very plausible and I hope everything you said actually is true, especially the baby shower at the Queen's. Don't you know she would truly love that.

      Delete
    5. Yes, I think the Queen would loved that and even more so if her former bridesmaid, the baby's great grandmother was still alive and able to attend.

      Delete
  39. LOVE the emerald green gown. DoC would look stunning in this. Cannot wait to see all the exciting posts in the upcoming days. I have to ask where is Rebecca-Sweden? I miss her posts.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Rebecca - Sweden5 April 2016 at 17:47

      Haha, I am here and reading. Just haven't thought of anything to add yet :P

      Delete
  40. Hello everyone, with the Queen's birthday approaching I was wondering whether we would start our birthday card rather sooner than later.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. good question Francis.

      Delete
    2. I was thinking about this a few days ago remembering the wonderful idea of a birthday card from all of us here. Thanks for remembering :)

      Delete
    3. I am excited about the birthday card. Miss Charlotte, when can we do that? :)

      Delete
  41. This royal tour has already produced so many delights & it hasn't even begun! Really interesting comments & insights from Indian posters and such awesome fashion and textiles. India's rich tradition of textiles really comes through in these beautiful dresses. It isn't just the designs but also the gorgeous fabrics. I wish I could reach out and feel the fabrics and look closely at the wonderful surface detail.

    The tour is so action packed & intense that the Cambridges' feet will hardly touch the ground. All their tours to date have been great successes so here's hoping that among all the official duties they also have some private moments to enjoy the experience of India & Bhutan.

    ReplyDelete
  42. Sarah from Calif.5 April 2016 at 13:53

    So love the Metallic beaded cascading ruffle gown!

    ReplyDelete
  43. A message for Laura W - Hello Laura, if you're reading, you are the winner of the Merci Maman giveaway. Please email me so we can organise delivery :)

    ReplyDelete
  44. Tedi in California5 April 2016 at 18:00

    Isn't it going to be somewhat traumatic leaving those two precious little ones for a week? I wonder if they shouldn't have held off of touring until they were a bit older.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Rebecca - Sweden5 April 2016 at 19:46

      Are you talking about for the parents or for the kids? In both ways, it will be fine. Yes, the kids will miss mummy and daddy at times. And Kate and William will miss the kids. And that is ok. I'm guessing that George and Charlotte will be at the Middletons with nanny Maria so just a bunch of familiar people around. I was at my grandparents for a week when my parents travelled when I was around two. They had missed me sooooo much, and were a bit surprised when they asked me "Have you missed us?!" and my answer was "no". Ofc I had cried and missed them at times. But I had also had fun with grandma. It's probably alot harder for the adults than the kids though. But it just comes with having a job sometimes. People have to leave their kids for all kinds of job reasons, it's just how it is. And with modern technologi, I can almost bet on William and Kate being in contact with the kids every day with calls and skype. It was another thing when the Queen mother went on tours for (I think about) 2-3 months when the small princess Elizabeth was 6 months. The baby didn't recognize her when she came back. THAT would certainly hurt the bonding experience (maybe a reason why nannys for the kids to bond with were extra important), but in this case it wont be traumatizing for anyone involved.

      Delete
    2. They left George when he was younger than Charlotte when they went to the Maldives.

      Delete
    3. They left George when he was 8 months old when they went to the Maldives for 10 days.

      Delete
    4. etonline at the time used words such as "reportedly," "are said...,"
      This Story Was Never Confirmed.It was repeated from tabloid to tabloid and
      much ballyhooed in blogs, yet never a fact. Etonline went on to say it is unclear whether or not the couple had brought seven month old George with them.
      It would be pretty hard for "local sources" to miss George, if they truly saw W&C.
      The criticism is that W&C went off and left him with the nanny.So,even if they did take a
      vacation, nobody admits to knowing if George was with them.It was supposedly
      five or seven days.Add ten days to that list.(see anon 00:33)
      sounds like gossip to me.

      Delete
    5. http://www.vanityfair.com/news/2014/03/reason-why-william-kate-vacationed-without-george
      http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/kate-middleton-prince-william-holiday-3222166
      http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-2576512/Royals-jet-storm-protest-leave-George-home-Maldives-getaway.html

      I think they left George behind.

      Delete
    6. Really? Katie Nicholl? the DM? And not one is any more than speculation.
      They left George to get him "used to" being left? Or to give him and nanny time
      to bond? I've heard addicts entering rehab have a period of isolation from family to give them a chance to bond with the counselors. Maybe that's what prompted the idea.
      Doesn't anyone bother to varify inflammatory reports anymore?
      Tempest in a teapot.
      Stories to get clicks.

      Delete
    7. I just don't understand why you think it's such a big deal. Parents take holidays without their children all the time. Why shouldn't they? They have the luxury of 24/7.

      But out of curiosity, are stories flattering to Kate put out there just to get clicks? Because the way I see it you can't have your argument without acknowledging the flattering ones are only there to get clicks too.

      Delete
  45. Annette New Zealand6 April 2016 at 00:59

    Agree that a week or so doesn't make a lot of difference especially as they will be with their nanny and grandparents who they know very well. It is not the same as Princess Elizabeth leaving her children in UK when she moved to Malta for several months before she became Queen. The Nanny in those circumstances becomes the mother figure which I am sure the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge want to avoid.

    ReplyDelete
  46. Tedi in California6 April 2016 at 01:49

    That's true, I was just thinking they are older now, and it might be hard on the parents. It is probably good for the kids to get used to their Mom and Dad leaving for short periods of time, and coming back. My own father died at 34 years old, just before my 5th birthday. I never got over that, and consequently when my mother, who was a psychologist, travelled I absolutely panicked. Thankfully she always came home :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. awh, Tedi. so sorry for your loss.

      Delete
    2. Tedi in California6 April 2016 at 19:56

      Thank you Anon 18:32.

      Delete
    3. I'm very sorry, too, Tedi, and sincerely hope that your father had time to make wonderful memories with you before he had to leave. How good to hear that your mother always came home.

      Delete
    4. Tedi, you're a kind soul. I'm sorry that was your experience growing up. Your concern for George and Charlotte just became even more meaningful.

      Delete
    5. Tedi in California7 April 2016 at 03:21

      You are all so sweet. Thank you. I wish we could all meet up and have a proper visit. It would really be wonderful

      Delete
    6. I agree Tedi. For us to all get together would be so much fun.

      Delete
  47. LOL Rebecca you're so right! Hubby & I both travel a lot for work. We try to arrange it so one of us is at home but that's not always possible. We had to leave our kiddos with my parents for two weeks when they were very little - one was a baby. We used Skype to talk to them every day but still missed them sooo much. When we got back they were like 'Yay you're back' but also having a great time with grandma & gramps & all the other family who were spoiling them heaps. Now that they're older its all cool & they just want the presents! Also FaceTime, Skype, What's App, Viber etc mean you're in contact constantly. Our youngest is crazy about word games so we have lots of apps & we play Scrabble & other word games in real time as a family even though we might be on different sides of the planet. With all the apps available for babies & toddlers William & Kate could still play games with their children from India. We're so lucky to have all this technology to keep us in touch.

    ReplyDelete
  48. PLEASE no more shamrocks for the next little while. Enough is enough. There is life after life (Kate Atkinson)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Perhaps that's what Kate said. LOL

      Delete
    2. Just scroll past the "shamrocks". Let others get it out of their system by discussion if they want to. I scroll by topics here that I'm not particularly into.
      easy enough.

      Delete
    3. Julia, I heard the interview with William when he said he had had "quite a discussion" with the Queen about what uniform to wear to the wedding. He stated that he had had another one in mind. He said the Queen "won" out.

      Delete
  49. Kate's going to have to walk a pretty fine line during this tour, due to the economic circumstances in India as well as some fairly strict cultural/religious customs in India (and Bhutan, from the information about the kira). Not to mention the climate differences in different sections of India and then in Bhutan.
    It is going to be interesting to see how she handles all of it, wardrobe-wise.

    ReplyDelete

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