Tuesday, 11 October 2016

Kate Marks Royal Milestone with First Overseas Solo Trip to the Netherlands

The Duchess of Cambridge marked a royal milestone today as she travelled to the Netherlands for her first solo overseas tour - undertaking several engagements in The Hague and Rotterdam.


Royal reporter Victoria Murphy travelled on the same flight as Kate and was surprised to see her boarding last minute.

Victoria Murphy Twitter

Kate's day began with a courtesy call to King Willem-Alexander at Villa Eikenhorst. Whilst many were hoping to see the Duchess and Queen Máxima together, it wasn't logistically possible as Máxima is visiting her home country, Argentina, in her role as the UN Secretary-General’s Special Advocate for Inclusive Finance for Development.


The Duchess and the King posed for official photos before having lunch together.


Villa Eikenhorst is the residence of King Willem-Alexander, Queen Máxima and their children: Princess Catharine-Amalia, Princess Alexia and Princess Ariane. Villa Eikenhorst is situated on the forested De Horsten estate in Wassenaar. Despite being a private residence, the King and Queen sometimes host foreign guests there.


There has been much anticipation among royal watchers regarding Kate's first solo overseas trip. The Duchess was scheduled to spend two days in Malta in 2014, but had to cancel as she was suffering from acute morning sickness with Princess Charlotte. A day in the Netherlands combining a mixture of engagements - including meeting the King,  Kate's interests in art and mental health - with a visit to The Hague and Rotterdam offers an interesting and varied itinerary.


The Telegraph speculated there may have been a specific reason the Netherlands was chosen. The article describes the Duchess and members of the Royal family as a 'potent force' in exercising 'soft diplomacy' with EU countries as Brexit unfolds. More from Gordon Rayner's story:

'The Netherlands is one of Britain’s biggest trading partners, with £68 billion of goods crossing the North Sea every year, but has not received a visit from a senior member of the Royal family for three years. It is likely to be the first in a regular roster of royal visits to European countries by members of the Royal family as the Government deploys them to help “beef up” bilateral relations with individual EU member states.
The Netherlands is Britain’s third-biggest export market, after the US and Germany, accounting for seven per cent of all exported goods, or £27.7 billion. The UK imports £41 billion of goods from the Netherlands every year, making it the third-biggest importer after Germany and China.
Former ambassador Oliver Miles, who served in the diplomatic service for 36 years, said: "It’s obvious that the Duchess is going to play this part in the future and this is a good way to start because relations with the Netherlands are good, partly because of the friendship between the two royal families."'

The Express reports the Queen's most senior aide accompanied Kate today.

'The Queen's most senior aide, her private secretary Sir Christopher Geidt, an accomplished operator on the diplomatic stage, was accompanying Kate. His presence added to feverish speculation that Brexit was on the agenda but royal sources insisted he was there as a trustee of the Royal Collection and to provide advice on her first solo overseas visit.'

The Duchess visited the Mauritshuis art museum in The Hague for the exhibition, 'At Home in Holland: Vermeer and his Contemporaries from the British Royal Collection'.


Local school children were very excited to meet the Duchess.


A beautiful day at The Hague.


Richard Palmer shared this lovely photo before Kate arrived.


The Duchess toured the museum's permanent collection before visiting the exhibition.


 It was undoubtedly a very interesting visit for Kate who studied art history at St Andrews.


The exhibition contains works by masters such as Gerard ter Borch, Gerrit Dou, Pieter de Hooch, Gabriël Metsu and Jan Steen, which are regarded as some of the most important Dutch genre paintings in the British Royal Collection. The highlight of the exhibition is ‘The Music Lesson’ by Johannes Vermeer.


More from the exhibition's official press release: "The exhibition introduces the public to the ‘genre painting’, its many forms and the provocative symbolism it often conceals. These works are stunning in their variety, from simple farmhands gathered in an inn to elegant figures in rich interiors. Some of the everyday scenes carry a deeper, often moralistic meaning, which may be explicit or at times concealed. But in all of them, the artists portrayed the characters and their environments as skilfully as possible, which makes them even more attractive."


Gordon Rayner noted Kate took a keen interest in 'Girl with a Pearl Earring' by Johannes Vermeer. "The secret of a successful royal visit lies in the planning, and the Duchess of Cambridge showed a superb eye for detail on her first solo foreign trip. Knowing she would be shown Johannes Vermeer’s celebrated Girl With A Pearl Earring at an art gallery in the Netherlands, the Duchess borrowed the Queen’s own treasured pearl earrings for the day to provide the perfect photo opportunity."


Surveying the Dutch masterpiece 'The Bull' by Paulus Potter.


Kate participated in an art class with local children.


Next, Kate visited the British Ambassador’s Residence in The Hague, where she convened a roundtable discussion on the themes of addiction, intervention, family and mental health. The discussion brought together professionals from the renowned Trimbos Institute in the Netherlands, with two UK charities of which the Duchess is Patron: Anna Freud Centre for Children and Families and Action on Addiction.


Kensington Palace said: "Addiction and family mental health are two important issues which the Duchess has been working on for some time, and Her Royal Highness was keen to shine a spotlight on the important work being carried out in this area."


More from People:

“She has initiated a brilliant idea of bringing institutions together that have similar interests,” says Peter Fonagy, the chief executive of the Anna Freud Centre, who joined Kate in Holland. “She’s aiming to help us learn from each other and bring back what there is from each side. The bridge-building could signal a widening of her initiative, he says: “Because of her charisma, because of her interest, she is able to bring together people who would not normally be talking to one another and that brings enormous value.”

Finally, Kate travelled to the neighbouring city of Rotterdam to see Bouwkeet, the social Makerspace of Bospolder-Tussendijken.


This is a new community-focused initiative in the centre of an economically-deprived district which provides a creative design and technology workspace. Local residents can use the facilities and 'pay' by sharing their skills with others, providing education and being positive role models within the community. The centre works with local schools to bring young people in the area into workshops where they learn to design, create and build their own projects.


The Duchess heard from local women  who are making chairs in the woodwork room.


Textiles, ceramics, bike mechanics and IT programming are just some of the skills local craftsman share with  local kids.


Before concluding, Kate did a walkabout where she chatted with locals and received flowers.


Kate's elegant pale blue skirt suit is by Catherine Walker. The belted jacket features large buttons and peplum detail, whilst the skirt falls to just above the knee. I had anticipated we would see Kate opting for a professional, sophisticated look and the suit very much achieved that. It's a timeless ensemble reminiscent of the suits worn by Jackie Kennedy during her time as First Lady.


The Telegraph's Bethan Holt shared her thoughts:

'It has been labelled a day of 'soft diplomacy' so who better to channel than former First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy- who was so popular on overseas visits with her husband that he once quipped 'I am the man who accompanied Jacqueline Kennedy to Paris' at the end of one visit to France-  for the trip's look?
With its nipped-in, peplum waist and statement buttons, the Catherine Walker and co suit reflects the simple yet feminine look which Kennedy pioneered with the help of designer Oleg Cassini during her three years in the White House, ushering in a fresh, pared-back take on dressing for the world stage which quickly became much emulated. More than sixty years on, it's clear the look is as relevant as ever.'

A closer look at the jacket.


Several readers were reminded of blue suits worn by the late Princess Diana during the 1990s.


Kate opted for the same shoes and clutch as yesterday - selecting her Praline Gianvito Rossi Pumps.

My Theresa

The Duchess carried her L.K. Bennett Nina Clutch.

L.K. Bennett

The Duchess wore her hair in a chic updo and completed the look with new pearl earrings. It turns out they are in fact the Queen's pearl and diamond earrings and have been loaned to Kate.


Kate first wore the earrings in Vancouver during the Canada tour. At the time jewellery expert Anna correctly wrote: "I believe they are on loan from HM the Queen. The Countess of Wessex worn these only one time to a royal wedding in 2012 (while wearing other jewels on loan from the Queen). HM wore these back in 1977 during her silver jubilee."


Earlier today the Palace announced the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh will host a reception at Buckingham Palace for Team GB and Paralympics GB medallists from the 2016 Rio Olympic and Paralympic Games on Tuesday, 18th October 2016. They will be accompanied by the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, Prince Harry, the Duke of York, Princess Eugenie and the Princess Royal. Before then, we'll see William and Kate on Friday for a day of engagements in Manchester.

314 comments:

  1. does anyone else think her outfit today looks very similar to what Angelina Jolie wore when she received her honorary damehood?

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    1. I thought the exact same thing!

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    2. Yes but I actually like Jolie's ensemble better, including the grey shoes. Does anyone remember the gray patterned shoes Kate wore on the first trip to Canada when she planted a tree? Those would have been lovely with this suit.

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    3. Rebecca - Sweden11 October 2016 at 20:20

      Hah, not similar. BUt I see why you feel that way. They have a similar "feel" and similar hairdo :) Both looks are great, so :)

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    4. I thought the exact same thing!!!

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    5. Yes! They could pass off as twins, similar hairstyle & everything.

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  2. Lovely colour on Kate. At first glance this suit reminds me of her red Luisa Spagnoli & teal L.K. Bennett peplum suits. Shame about the creases on the skirt though.

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    1. I agree so much with your comment about the creasing and the back seam of the skirt pulls. If I were managing her wardrobe these would be some of my top concerns.

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    2. I agree with you about the creases in the skirt. I wonder if she wore this on the flight. And maybe because of all the sitting i dont know. Her stylist should have kept that in mind. I love her hair.

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    3. She must have an assistant with her. The assistant should bring a portable clothing steamer. The same thing happened with that gorgeous blue dress at arrival in Canada.

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    4. Annette New Zealand11 October 2016 at 19:36

      It looks as if the skirt may have been taken in to fit her as she is so slim.

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  3. Didn 't she curtsy to the king?

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    1. Yes. She did curtsy to the king.

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    2. She did. It has been reported in the papers but most of the pictures are focusing on the handshake and smiles.

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    3. That's part of royal protocol regardless of the country and/or family. The king outranks her and she is a guest in his country.

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    4. Rebecca - Sweden11 October 2016 at 20:21

      Appearantly a car was in the way when she curtsied so they didn't get any good pictures of it :P

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    5. She also curtseyed to the Chief of the first nations in Canada... But you only saw a photo of a handshake.

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  4. Annette New Zealand11 October 2016 at 13:15

    This is more like it. She looks great with a nice suit and her hair up in a more sophisticated and business like style. She has met the Dutch royal family before so it will be very easy to have lunch with the king before going on to the other events. Will be interested to see how the rest of the day goes.

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  5. Sarah Maryland USA11 October 2016 at 13:18

    I really like this outfit a lot. And i like that she had her hair up. It makes sense that she has it up since it is going to be a long day and an updo has less of a chance of getting messy than if she wore her hair down!

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  6. oh a business attire for the duchess the looks for poise she looks like queen in training hate to say these but the I read some online says

    http://www.express.co.uk/news/royal/719623/Queen-criticised-lobbying-politicians-Prince-Charles-head-Commonwealth

    oh I love to visit more gallery

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    1. I love visiting art galleries/ museums too. This exhibition looks amazing.

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  7. A much better look than yesterday, although it looks more suitable for spring than fall.

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    1. I suppose because of the colour. While I love blue, it is not on my autumn list. Like yesterday it is spring there indeed.😁

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    2. Rebecca - Sweden11 October 2016 at 20:47

      I think the colour is rather "icy" so I think it works nicely :)

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  8. Girl with a Pearl Earring is one of my favorite paintings. I had a print hanging in my dorm room. Fantastic exhibition.

    Nice to see her outside of Britain on her own. It will be an interesting day. Very nice suit. Very Diana, actually. Too bad it wrinkles up :-( I like her hair up but find the execution of this updo unattractive from the back. Just looks as if she has a loaf of brioche affixed to the nape of her neck. Does it look like she has taken up tanning again?

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    1. I hope not, but in some pictures she looks orangey again😣

      I loved the paintings too!!

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    2. I' m wondering if it is just the lighting in some of the photographs but, yeah, her face looks really bronzed.

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    3. I think it is not just the lighting....

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  9. Very nice, attractive look on Catherine! Great color. Looks professional and connotes a day at the office. Reminds me of the red Luisa Spagnoli. Don't care much for the up do.

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  10. Those are the same pearl earrings she wore in Canada, correct?

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  11. Very smart suit. Beautiful colour but wearing the same shoes and that bag AGAIN! It shows a complete lack of imagination. Please, please can we see a different bag as i'm sure this bag will have its own blog spot soon. Yawnnnnnn.

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    1. oh i sooo agree i think if i see that bag one more time i will scream!!! and please different shoes like a light grey maybe

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  12. This beautiful suit by Catherine Walker is simply stunning on Kate her hair shoes and other accessories are right on target and allow this suit to garner the attention it deserves. This is a huge hit!

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  13. Hello there here is your local reporter! I am writing this from one of the cafes from richard palmers photo. Charlotte I am impressed by your speedy updates since this was literally 15 minutes ago.

    I am a bit disappointed and happy with this wonderful experience at the same time. She didnt go meet us, the public. I have been waiting since noon, after visiting the exibition, so thats two hours and she spent maybe 1 minute outside the car, most of it meeting the waiting board and the schoolchildren but that was all quit hidden from our sight. So all we got was one smile. A beautiful smile though, she looked very beautiful, polished and chic. I thought her smile was quite shy. She also turned around once more before entering for a mini wave and second smile to the public. I cannot believe how thin framed she is. Much more petite then i thought, a quite androgyn posture.

    One image stroke me the most. That was the five steps she took between exiting the car (and the smile) and entering the court where the board were waiting to welcome her. 5 steps, so maybe 2 seconds. She looked so lonely and uncomfortable. I didnt feel she is at ease with this part of her role at all. At least not in the Netherlands that is. I now understand better that she prefers joint engagements. For me, her body language screamed: i dont want to be here! Sorry i am here!

    We were an easy crowd. Not to massive, no screaming, standing ready with flowers and all. I dont know whose decision it was to not go meet us. It obviously wasnt planned to come over. How regularly does she do this/ royals in general, at visits?


    20 more minutes at the fireplace before i head back to hopefully see a second glimpse!

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    1. Thanks for sharing that!!

      In the early pictures, I have also seen a woman being tense and shy. I understand this is her first oversea trip, everything is new but she has 5 years behind her.
      Her body language was also awkward, her comfortable clutch is always in front of her. If you go back and check photos, there are hardly any different. It seems like the more she is the members of the royal family the less confident she is.

      I wish she just took my fave commenter's advice who said once, she needs to calm down, have a tea and relax. It is not so difficult, and maybe she would come down a bit better.

      On her fashion: I loved the colour very much. It was one really decent suit. I wish I would never see these beige shoes again, same with the clutch.
      I have also loved the black dress of the director of the musem, stylish pumps too.

      I say big thank you for this post, I would love to visit this exhibition, full of lovely paintings!!

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    2. Wow:-) That's so interesting. I love that you gave your impression not just what happened.

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    3. I'd imagine it's a security consideration. I know it's disappointing, and I miss the frequent walkabouts of old myself, but I can't begin to imagine the security concerns today, especially with the high profile, senior royals - and other public figures. It makes it tough all around, we can't have them live in a bubble, but they can't walk around freely either - especially in unfamiliar settings. The world we live in sadly.

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    4. Keep scrolling for fabuloudaan's update on when Kate came back out. Amazing! :)

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    5. If you'd have waited when she exited, she did a walkabout. Many royal fans on Twitter got to shake her hand and had a little chat!

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    6. I'm really happy you were there and at least able to see her. I love these personal experience posts and it really gives great context to the engagement. This is her first overseas visit alone so she is understandably nervous and not quite sure. The first times are always the hardest. I suspect as she does more she will be more comfortable meeting the public on her own.

      It seemed like a packed day so maybe the itinerary didn't allow for a lot of time outside of the engagements. I agree it is a pity and seems like another missed opportunity. Great feedback though to consider for the next overseas visit.

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    7. Annette New Zealand11 October 2016 at 19:18

      I used to be involved in organizing royal tours and a walkabout has to be programmed in. Everything is carefully timed beforehand and she will have been given the timetable and expected to keep to it. Events are packed in and if you run half an hour late at one place, you will be half an hour late for the next event which is discourteous to the charity you are visiting. I can certainly appreciate that if you keep people waiting and then you rush past, it upsets them. Princess Margaret was notorious for doing this. As well as sometimes arriving late and leaving early if she was bored, (and she showed it), she increasingly cancelled at the last minute. Consequently in later years she was not invited to the larger Commonwealth countries. She never visited New Zealand for this reason. (We invited Princess Alexandra instead.) Also remember the walkabout is an add on to these visits which only developed in recent years. Prior to that the Queen never did it in public, only at garden parties or receptions. It is a nightmare for the security people of course. Guests at events are carefully checked out, but you cannot control this outside, so there is a much increased risk of someone taking a shot at them.

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    8. Anett,

      With all due respect, I applaud William and Kate for not living in a bubble. It takes courage for them to just walk outside their home even though they have security. It takes courage for them to even live in their homes as evidenced by bulletproof windows, bomb proof toilets, glass shattering protective drapes and who knows what else.

      It is a little more than a casual tea time and relax. I know there are many risks in the world in general, but we have no idea what it is like to live everyday as a high profile target. On top of that to have the cameras of the world on your every move, and have the national and international responsibilities that they have, in addition to preparing for the throne themselves and raising and grooming the future heir to the throne.

      I don't think Kate has a look of dread or fear when approaching an event. Getting a HPT (high profile target) in and out of a vehicle is a vulnerable situation as evidenced by the fast paced, intensely organized security waltz that occurs with every arrival and departure, shifting perimeter security with wrist communicators and closer PPO's to ensure rapid and safe delivery to the "front door" of events. Kate isn't on a leisurely stroll from her vehicle to the the reception committee. She has to be swift without appearing to be swift. She may be taking in the awaiting reception group and assessing that situation as she hurried from the vehicle to the "front door" but I do not think it is the look of fear or dread on her face. It is a look of focus and quick assessment. I have seen that look of focus even when she is with William.

      Kate has become friends with the Queen of England, Prince Phillip, Prince Charles, many Presidents and their wives, including President Obama and Michelle. So I do not think for one minute that she was acting like a shrinking violet in her visit with the King of the Netherlands whom she has met before and who happens to be good friends with Elizabeth and Phillip. I don't think she was intimidated by people of high position for very long after being around and accepted by William's family. She wasn't timid at her own wedding, why would a day visit to the Netherlands bother her now.

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    9. Thank you so much for posting this! It was so insightful and I loved hearing your firsthand account.

      When she was in New York, she only waved briefly as well and it was just crushing for the people who had been waiting hours for her and William in the freezing cold. I don't understand why they don't spend more time greeting fans, since the continued existence of the monarchy is contingent upon their popularity, and it is so off-putting to dismiss people in that way. I understand that they have a schedule to keep, but the fans who care enough to come out and wait to see them should always come first, IMO.

      I could tell from photos alone that she seemed uncomfortable, so you confirmed that with your statement about her walking.


      Thank you again, this is one of my favorite comments ever on this site (and there are lots of good ones here!).

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    10. Anon 19:45 I agree with your post.I do not see her as being shy or in awe or anything else. I see a confident woman functioning in a complicated world:) I thought she did a wonderful job with her day of official visits in the Netherlands. She looked wonderful, kept up her energy from beginning to end. ali

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    11. Rebecca - Sweden12 October 2016 at 09:22

      Anon 06.23. My guess? Security. Unscreened crowds like that is a security nightmare. In New York it was only on very few occations where the barricades for the public was even near enough to the royals.

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  14. Beautiful suit, really like the peplum. A well polished, professional look.

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  15. What a perfect outfit for the day! Kate looks beautiful and professional. She also looks so comfortable; she has grown so much over the last 5 years!! Love her hair and the new earrings.

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  16. Oh wow, what a beautiful and classy look today from Kate. I love this! That shade of blue looks great on her - it's not so insipid that it washes her out or just ends up looking white in the photos. And the pearl earrings - what else?

    There is a Jackie-O vibe, but there's also a real feeling of 1990s Diana in this for me - the pale blue suit, the Catherine Walker label - really brought back fond memories for me.

    Another gorgeous timeless classic to stash in the same part of the wardrobe (for multiple repeat wears!) as the red Preen, the blue Jenny Packham and the green D&G! Just needs a bespoke hat and I can see this being worn at Trooping the Colour/Order of the Garter or the Commonwealth Service or on other overseas tours or even at Ascot or a garden party. Complete triumph!

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    1. Rebecca - Sweden11 October 2016 at 20:52

      It really is a good and timeless staple we probably will see her bring out in the future! :)

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  17. She looks incredibly beautiful and chic! Very appropriate! But (tongue in cheek here)--in honor of Max, I would've thought a more wild pair of shoes would be in order. Haha--she looks beautiful!

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  18. Off to a great start! The kids with their little easels--too cute!

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  19. Kate looks very professional and sophisticated today. I love the colour of this outfit but it just doesn't work for me. There's just too much going on at the top part of this suit for me with the collar, the buttons, the belt AND the peplum.

    I wish that she would wear the skirt suit she wore for trooping the colour in 2014. Kate wore it with a lovely pearl brooch, it would be lovely to see that outfit in its entirety.

    But well done to Kate for such a great milestone! Hope to see her doing many more visits on her own.

    Love Tersha

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    1. I don't like this outfit either..
      I prefer the dress of the museum director's, mustard shoes and the interior part of the sleeves mustard too,....fashion!!!

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    2. Yes, I love the museum director's outfit too, very chic! Compared with her, Kate looks a tad stuffy in the suit. But for diplomatic reasons it was a good choice.

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  20. Reminds me of her L.K. Bennett suit. Both are very professional looking and this was a perfect choice for today. Love her hair and makeup, plus her nude accessories go very well with the suit. A win-win all around for me!!

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  21. King Willem-Alexander's eldest Daughter is called Princess Catharina-Amalia, not Princess Amalia.

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  22. Wowww little update: she came meet the public at her exit! And she was so much more relaxed as when she arrived and very friendly as well! And.... i shook her hand! I deliberately went standing next to a man with a beautiful posey of flowers in the colors of the dutch flag and she came over to chat with him and to recieve the flowers. She was very polite and friendly and asked if we werent to cold and all. Now i can go home happily :)

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    1. Pleased you got to see her and I believe that someone else also got to meet her and were impressed. Just shows that we should wait a while before posting initial thoughts. Comparing your first post to your second are like chalk and cheese.

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    2. Wow! Thank you for sharing your experience :)

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    3. Wow!!! Thanks for the update! That's incredible! :)

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    4. Thanks for sharing this too!😀

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    5. Fantastic update. Please disregard my reply to your previous post and keeping us up to date. It must have been very exciting and I'm glad to see that she did take the time to greet the people that came out to see her.

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    6. Tammy from California11 October 2016 at 17:25

      How wonderful!!!!!!!! LUCKY YOU!

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    7. Thank you for your observations and updates! It's always great to read the observations from people who were there at the event vs. those looking at photos! Glad you got to see her in person and close-up!

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    8. Rebecca - Sweden11 October 2016 at 20:53

      How exciting :D

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    9. Hey everyone,

      I just got home and read your reactions to my comments, so much fun! Writing down my experiences for the blog readers helped me process it all and reading your sweet reactions are the icing on today’s huge cake!

      In hinsight, it was much more logic to do the walkabout at the exit because at the arrival off course the officials were waiting for her as well, and the schoolchildren.

      I am still very happy I started writing down my thoughts immediately after I saw her arrival, even though it may have been confusing and some readers may find you have to wait longer before you speak.

      If I wouldn’t have written it down right away, I would have gotten confused later and not been able to give you my first pure impression because the exit was so different. And it also helped me process my emotions and thoughts, which were so mixed. I was really a bit shocked! She looked just so fragile, it broke my heart. Luckily I know now she needs to come loose a bit. She did appear to be her natural self at the walkabout, I didn’t feel I was looking at a show. She appeared genuinely interested and nice, and more relaxed as well.

      By the way, although she is five years in now, I do understand her initial hesitation (if that is what I saw...) in such a situation. It must be daunting sometimes to launch yourself in a new situation with all eyes on you and the cameras to register your every move. I wish for her to be able to cope better in the future and I admire her even more from now on! And you as well Charlotte! You kept updating as the day progressed and you give so much relevant information.

      This happy fan is now going to bed with a big big smile on her face! A milestone for Catherine and a milestone for me. I hope you all get the chance to see her soon, if you havent have already.

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    10. Oh How Exciting! I'm So Happy For You! :) See, Your Patience & "Kate Knowledge" Paid Off (standing up front by the man with the flag colored flowers:) What a Memory! :)

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    11. That's great! What fun! So glad you could meet her and shake her hand. Does she have a strong grip? ;) Had to ask.

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    12. Thank you for the updates! Absolutely loving your take on all this! And I see exactly what you mean about how writing down your first impressions helped to clarify how you felt later on. Well done! :)

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  23. As ever, thank you Charlotte for your quick posting and for the background on the Netherlands and the art. Kate looked elegant but a tad overawed by the King. I sometimes wonder if she still feels like that middle class girl (albeit wealthy) living a dream. An onerous one though--what on earth do you say to the King of the Netherlands over lunch? They probably discussed Kate's recent trip to Canada (a country dear to the heart of Netherlanders because of its role in WWII) and their children? Brexit? That would be a tough one even if she were a seasoned diplomat which she isn't (yet). And oh how funny about looking at The Girl with the Pearl Earring! She was wearing an almost identical pair!

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    1. The king and Queen actually visited Canada recently.....There is a large Dutch community/ diaspora in Canada also. I suppose they would have compered anecdotes and each others young families.

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  24. Reminds me of the Red two piece coat-skirt she wore at St. Andrews Univ. The shoes and clutch does not complement the beautiful outfit and I'm a bit tired of seeing this clutch all the time :) She looks great nonetheless!

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  25. Nicole from France11 October 2016 at 15:01

    beautifull suit, very suitable for the day ! everything perfect, length of the skirt, the details of the sleeves, the peplum detail , really lovely ! but oh god, again those nude accessories ..... dull dull dull .... burgundy red shoes and clutch would have been wonderfull complements to make the light blue shade of the suit "sing" a little ..... like coloured details in Vermeer paintings ..... and a little gold bracelet .....

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    1. You have great fashion sense, Nicole. Burgandy accessories and a dash of gold! Lovely.

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    2. Nicole from France12 October 2016 at 08:32

      Thank you, Erica, I do appreciate the Duchess , although not always what she wears, but never mind, she would possibly not appeciate what I wear ! LOL to me, since about 2 ears ago, she just seems to put her clothes on and rushes out of the house without taking time to choose the accessories to complement the clothes .... I am tired of that pinkish clutch she hangs to just as if it was a safety rope.... she is a young handsome woman, a bit of fun wild not do any harm !

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  26. Very professional look for the Duchess.
    Simon Perry wrote an article today and here is a quote from his piece:“She has initiated a brilliant idea of bringing institutions together that have similar interests,” says Peter Fonagy, the chief executive of the Anna Freud Centre, who joined Kate in Holland. “She’s aiming to help us learn from each other and bring back what there is from each side.”
    The bridge-building could signal a widening of her initiative, he says: “Because of her charisma, because of her interest, she is able to bring together people who would not normally be talking to one another and that brings enormous value.”
    This I think is a prime example of what W,K, H are trying to do through their foundation.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. 15:05,

      I agree and have said the same thing here today. What William, Kate and Harry are doing with the charity initiatives is ground-breaking on more than one level.

      Delete
    2. I was struck by this article and quote as well Anon 15:05. Think it is an excellent summary of what William, Kate and Harry are trying to achieve. Bravo to the Duchess, on her initiatives and to her first solo trip! I love the comment about her charisma, which shows in the pictures. She always seems quick to smile and laugh, especially around children. Loved the additional pictures of her working with others around a table. She is definitely growing into her role as an ambassador.

      As for the fashion, a beautiful professional and polished look. Love the earrings and that they were on loan from the Queen...nice touch and nod. As for the material, it looks to be a wool crepe and think the wrinkling is due perhaps to her sitting on a plane??? Since it appears she flew commercial, she would not have had time to change?? IDK, but she looks lovely and timeless as always. There was a comment from another article that stated the look was "soft diplomacy"....like that phrase...think it suits Kate. Again, Bravo...well done. cc

      Delete
  27. I like that she is beginning to change her hair, I love it worn this way.
    wonder how she feels, doing a trip like this representing her country, when she wasn't born into this life.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah. I wonder that and even more with her parents. I mean, they were all raised reading about the Royal Family in history and seeing them from afar. None of them ever dreamt to be part of that very family. How weird to go from studying them, to meeting, dining, and driving with them???

      Delete
    2. I also thought about her parents! It must be surreal for them to see coverage of things like this. They should be very proud :)

      Delete
    3. Kate and Denise,

      I also often think about that. Just like today, what is it like to see your little baby girl all grown up and on the front page of almost every newspaper, and, being lauded as the potential great instrument of diplomatic peace for the whole country and economy of England, lol.

      I doubt that the amazing Middletons ever really get used to it. Even William and Harry, and Peter and Autumn and Zara and Mike have commented on how their lives within such a powerful, world impacting fishbowl can seem surreal at times. They weren't complaining, just commenting.

      No wonder, Michael often just hops on his riding lawnmower and mows away, on the "farm", in the fresh air and sunshine, helping him decompress and keep things real. :)

      Delete
  28. Wow, everything about that suit looks lovely on her! The neckline is beautiful on her especially with her hair pulled back. And she has the perfect body for the fitted waist peplum style suit.

    A very special occasion for her first solo visit. Yay Kate!

    ReplyDelete
  29. The dress is okay, only it's too bad the skirt is wrinkling so badly. It makes the look messy. I'm not a fan of peplum, I just don't understand why anyone would want to add extra bulk and width to their waist, although if anyone can pull it off, Kate can.

    Also, I understand that she needs to look professional for certain engagements, but I do think that the hair styles she is wearing lately are so aging. They are making her look far, far older than she is. I think it's the poofing and combing back of the hair starting at the top/crown of her head that is causing that. It reminds me of a 1960's middle aged school marm hairstyle.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, I"m having the same reaction to this hairstyle.

      Delete
  30. A beautiful choice from Catherine Walker! I will say that I agree with an earlier comment about repeating the shoes and purse from yesterday. I think this look would benefit from navy pumps and bag to anchor everything. It's so lovely to see her embark on this bit of history with her first solo overseas trip. Thanks as always for the quick post and reporting, Charlotte!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The navy accessories were my first thought when I saw the photos too, would have given the outfit more "pop". Otherwise I can forgive getting wrinkles, and the rest of her was great!

      Delete
  31. Fabulousdaan,

    Quite simply, what a beautiful human being Kate is in every way. What a Godsend. God continue to bless her and keep her strong.

    So happy for you that you got to speak with her. :)

    ReplyDelete
  32. I really like this suit! Although she does a lot of the same, all her skirt suits have peplum detail, while it's very pretty, just would be nice for a change.
    Not crazy about her hair, her shoes are nice but she gets stuck on a shoe and wears it constantly! Before the sledges, now the lk Bennett ferns, which she is switching back and forth with the Rossi pimps now lol.
    The fabric of this suit is awful though, while it looks nice, it was a poor choice and seems to wrinkle terribly. You can tell in some pictures she'd been sitting for a while, Then when she stood up and walked around the skirt was wrinkled really bad.

    ReplyDelete
  33. Valerie,

    I had the immediate and same thought about Kate lingering at that portrait and the connection of the pearl earrings, lol. Funny how we girls think alike sometimes.

    Bethan Holt is right. The look is "as relevant as ever".
    One of my favorite looks on Kate.

    She is a stunning (and very capable) diplomat, wife, mother, philanthropist, future Queen, etc. etc. William chose wisely.

    Regarding diplomacy, Kate has more experience in diplomacy than one might, on the surface, think. She has learned to fit into the royal family and their circle of friends and their protocols. She has been doing this actually in one way or another since she started being with William years and years ago. I would say that Kate, with the added enhancement of current briefings by David Manning (who has been advising/training and often accompanying William and Kate for years), is a VERY "seasoned" diplomat. Bar none. And, additionally, I believe she will be one of the best Queens in British history.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Valerie,

      James Whatling, Royal photographer, made that pearl earring connection also. He got a great photo illustrating just that point and the photo was used as the lead headline photo in the Telegraph and the Sun, and perhaps others. Gordon Raynor, goes on to put that point in his headline in the Telegraoh today. I guess it wasn't just a "girl thing" observation after all. :)

      Now those pearl earrings loaned to Kate by the Queen today have a special little "Kate" provenance story to add to their illustrious history. An association with the famous "Girl with the Pearl Earrings" via Kate. lol

      Delete
    2. Anonymous 17:02, I really enjoyed reading your take on Kate's diplomatic skills. You are spot on about what she has had to learn about diplomacy in being part of the Royal Family. Thank you for bringing that up in the conversation :)

      Delete
    3. Here! Here! I Totally Agree! Queen Catherine, The Embodiment of Grace! :)

      Delete
  34. Every time Kate wears a piece of the Queen's Jewelry that the Queen has herself worn, I get so excited. lol
    Like those earrings again today.

    Not only the making of history and creating more provenance for the piece but also, to me, it is a example of the Queen's love and appreciation of Kate.
    Like wearing those two diamond bracelets at the Chinese State dinner. That was the most poignant to me as Kate wore the bracelet that Prince Phillip had personally designed for the Queen AND he had used diamonds for that from his beloved mother's Jewelry pieces. A HUGE honor that the Queen let her wear that.

    Even when she wears the diamond maple leaf brooch or the fern one, etc., for state visits those have been worn by the Queen and Queen mum. How exciting.

    Kate must feel very honored whenever she gets to wear pieces that are from the Queen. Very special.
    Very sweet. What "new" piece will she wear next? :)

    ReplyDelete
  35. Tammy from California11 October 2016 at 17:24

    Yes, definitely echoing Jackie O. today!

    ReplyDelete
  36. Yes thanks for the update as always Charlotte! You do such a great job with these very prompt posts. Catherine looks overall lively today. I love her hair. Very polished. I love the lines of her suit. I am not a fan of the pale color, especially for October. There are so many fall colors that would look stunning in her. Again I applaude her interest in mental health issues.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sarah Maryland USA11 October 2016 at 22:11

      Now that I think about, I do agree with you and wish the color was in maybe a red or dark blue or darker green.

      Delete
    2. I agree with your comment and adore your "name!" I ❤️ Harrods as well :)

      Delete
  37. How sweet of King Willem-Alexander to match his tie to the color of his guest's suit! I suppose this required only a quick call between his secretary and Kate's, but it is a welcoming touch. For the last two days, Kate has worn pale, cool colors that are not quite right for her warm and vivid coloring. However, I do like the blue suit. It is beautifully designed and tailored and very appropriate, except for the fabric that creases badly. Kate's hair style is also perfect for the visit to the Netherlands. The pearl earrings have been identified and pictured on the Royal Jewels of the World Message Board:

    http://members2.boardhost.com/royal-jewels/msg/1474936099.html

    Like the itinerary for Malta, art is a strong part of this visit, probably the reason for it in the Netherlands. (William stoically studied the grim Malta paintings!) Much more cheerful in this case, and the Royal Collection owns some of the best of the exhibit.

    Fabulousdaan noted that Kate appeared nervous when she arrived at the exhibit. I have always thought that, even in still photos, she seems to approach an appearance with a bit of trepidation until she reaches the welcoming committee, when her face lights up and she enters into the spirit of the occasion. Perhaps the responsibility weighs on her a bit, or she is sizing up the situation, until she enters it fully. Thank you, Fabulous, for your lovely descriptions!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. 17:27,

      If you'll notice, a lot of photo ops recently have been color coded and "matching". And if not the exactly matching colors, as in Canada, then a harmonious color palette. This is PR photo op 101. I am surprised that it took their PR team this long to incorporate that into their plans. The POTUS AND FLOTUS have been doing that for years.

      Delete
    2. I get the sense of trepidation too.
      I think she's still not entirely confident in her role as a working royal or, perhaps, her standing and role in the royal family. That's sad because that's part of what plagued Diana, that low self-esteem and being made to feel she was less than or not part of the royal family.
      I find it interesting that multiple reports have said that Kate prefers to hire non-English staff for Anmer Hall, since she feels they don't judge her as much as English-born staff and/or veteran staff from other royal homes and palaces.
      It's a great reason why Kate and William need to be taking on more royal duties, so they can become comfortable, individually and together, at these events, with the subject matter, talking to people on different pertinent topics and from all walks of life.

      Delete
    3. Correction, I believe the Royal Collection owns all of these paintings. I should have said that it possesses much of the best of that era of Dutch art.

      Delete
    4. I truly admire that you picked up this difference in attitude from pictures alone, I never did. I had to see for myself apparently. I think as you describe it is quite plausible and coherent with what we saw today in the hague.

      Delete
    5. Not only the King's tie went with Kate's suit, his suit coordinated with that also. Just like her bouquets have matching or coordinating recently.

      I don't think Kate looked timid or shy or hesitant one iota. Not one. I have watched the videos and that stuff just isn't there. period

      Delete
    6. Elizabeth, with all due respect,

      They ARE taking on more responsibilities and events.

      And, again, with all due respect, all the other "speculations" of yours do not bear witness we me at all. Where are those "multiple reports" that you referred to? Were they hearsay, or specifically corroborated?

      William and Kate are and have been, FOR YEARS, "talking to people on pertinent topics and from all walks of life."

      Delete
  38. I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this suite. As Anonymous11 October 2016 at 13:03 said above, this absolutely reminds me of her other business suits,of which the teal LK Bennett I am completely in love with.

    This is such a great silhouette on her and I'm glad she keeps repeating it. It is very flattering. I liked the color, loved the earrings and am neutral on shoes and clutch. I think she could have done her Harper suede pumps with this as well and looked just as put together.

    Thanks Charlotte for the update. The mix of engagements really highlighted a lot of her interests so it must have been a very enjoyable day.

    ReplyDelete
  39. Very much a polished, power suit for the Duchess. She looks lovely, but I would love to see a colorful brooch to brighten it up a bit. I am sure HM could loan her one with Dutch overtones or provenance. She looks very much a senior royal now!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Rebecca - Sweden12 October 2016 at 06:41

      Considering people (not here as much) have said both the suit and hair is aging, a brooch would probably be the last nail in the coffin :P

      Delete
    2. Rebecca,

      You are certainly keeping me laughing this morning. Thanks. :)

      Delete
  40. I love the suit - it reminds me of is her red and black Luisa Spagnoli, which has been in her closet since way back when and is always a favorite repeat.

    ReplyDelete
  41. Kate looks amazing! Who cares if some think she wears a "uniform". She looks lovely! Her hair really suits here! Totally polished look.

    ReplyDelete
  42. It looks to me like she got a spray tan! I noticed she looked a little extra tan yesterday and today it really shows against the pale pink suit.

    I think the outfit is lovely and very appropriate. That must be quite intimidating to do by yourself, even with advisors and a team around you!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. What...her coloring looks the same to me. But if to you a bit darker who knows if she has hit a tanning bed, gone with a darker foundation or it is just the lighting:) But frankly who cares, she does not look orange:) just looks fabulous.

      Delete
    2. It's the lighting, it has to be but compared to her engagement from the day before it's very noticeable! I think since the room is orange it just reflects off of that.

      Delete
    3. 18:12,

      It was the crappy photo, not a fake tan. I questioned why they even published that yucko photo the minute I saw it. There is nothing good about that photo. Very amateurish. The editor on that must have been away from his desk.

      Delete
  43. Ahhhhh! The Beautiful Future Queen Catherine! :) xo Magnificent, Beautiful, Elegant, Poised & yet Approachable! What a True Gem in The British Royal Crown & Keen Asset for Soft Diplomacy for The UK! :) Disclosure: I haven't yet read all the Wealth of Information in Charlottte's Impressive Post, but Could Not Wait To Comment after Breezing Through The Amazing Pics! :) xo She Looks Exquisite in Her Suit! Just Took My Breath Away when Combined with Her Hair & HM's Pearl Earrings! :) I Just Ached for Her about The Wrinkles! :( Felt So Bad as I've Always Marveled That The Designers Have Seemed To Always Use What I Like To Refer To As Miricle Fabrics, As She Can Crouch & Just About Do Anything & Never A Wrinkle! :) I'm Sure it Wasn't Linen, But it Reminded me of such, due to the places the material did wrinkle & they didn't seem to readily fall out as the day went on? Nothing on Kate's part & She Was Breathtaking! Just surprised a more forgiving fabric wasn't chosen, as I don't ever remember Kate's Dresses & Suits being vulnerable to the usual strain of Sitting while Traveling & Bending & Crouching? Aside from that, The Suit Was Perfection! Georgeous Color, Spectacular Fit, Just Stuningly Beautiful! She Was Every Inch The Princess of The UK, That She Is! :) xo xo xo
    (Now off to Really Read Charlotte's Post & To Savor Every Detail) xo

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ha ha ha, Becca,

      LOVE your loving thoughts toward, and your exuberance about, Kate. It mirrors my own. And I thought I was the only one so fervently supportive of the gift that is Kate.

      Delete
  44. Another "out of the park" appearance and outfit for Kate. What a gracious headline maker.

    ReplyDelete
  45. Sarah from Calif.11 October 2016 at 18:32

    Lovely, lovely!

    ReplyDelete
  46. Yesss... Kate visited Holland, my home country. Shame I had to work today and couldn't go and see her. Great outfit by the way and she clearly enjoyed her visit. So a lovely day all in all. Thanks for Your post Charlotte!

    ReplyDelete
  47. The blue suit is a perfect choice for her first Solo Tour to the Netherlands.The accesories go well with the outfit and the earrings ad a touch of class.

    ReplyDelete
  48. Valerie. Just a few thoughts about Kate as a diplomat. :)

    Kate has hosted the leader of China and his wife. She has hosted an at home dinner for the President of the United States and the First Lady. She has had diplomatic responsibilities on how many world tours now? She expertly planned one of the biggest Royal weddings with all the right protocols etc. And I am sure their are other examples that are available.

    I would say that Kate is definitely a highly qualified and
    "seasoned" diplomat.

    ReplyDelete
  49. Nicole from France11 October 2016 at 18:50

    I just saw, on Katemiddletonstyle blog, the Stewart tuxedo jacket that probably originated kate's suit, she would have definitely been absolutely gorgeous and more original (without beeing too much !) wearing it ! http://katemiddletonstyle.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/Catherine-Walker-Stewart-jacket-and-dress1.jpg I can't see the point not choosing the original suit, and have it bespoked for her, skirt length and not so much "décolleté" of course !

    ReplyDelete
  50. This. This is how she should do it every time. What a huge difference from yesterday. This is the polished, professional, vibrant young 30something upper-class mother and wife and working royal - every inch. There's not a single thing about this look, top to toe, that could be improved.
    This is why styling is different from fashion. The belt, the hair, the earrings, all come together to make this look spot on perfect.
    And, again, I wish she'd stick to the pencil, more fitted skirt silhouette. They flatter her shape and actually give her a little shape and definition vs. being just overwhelmed by the voluminous A-line, less fitted dresses.
    My hope is that she gains some confidence from events like these to start to become her own person with her own interests, not just an offshoot and a mute, well-dressed decoration, to her husband.

    ReplyDelete
  51. It is fitting that Kate is wearing a suit resembling the style of Jackie Kennedy, given that on Thursday, William is attending a reception at Buckingham Palace for the Kennedy Memorial Trust (in celebration of their 50th Anniversary).
    Her suit is beautiful. I love the shade of blue.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sarah,

      (another "Kate thing", perhaps?)

      Delete
  52. Love the styling of Kate's jacket, especially the open collar and flare at the wrists, as well as the length of the skirt. The creases in the skirt front deterred from the overall effect for me a bit. But that's nitpicking. She looks classy and professional and perfect for the occasion! :)

    ReplyDelete
  53. I saw HRH today at the Mauritshuis! I can only say she's so beautiful in real life! I took some very nice photographs and it was so lovely! We had to wait for hours but it was all worth it.

    When entering the museum, she didn't pay attention to the public at all. Everyone was slightly dissapointed. When leaving, she made everyone happy by shaking a lot of hands and talking to the public. I even shaked hands with her! She asked me if I wasn't too cold (she must have felt my cold hands) and that she was so happy we all came to see her! She has such a lovely sweet voice and she's so gorgeous. I said: 'oh your royal Highness, you are so beautiful!' And she said: 'oh oh thank you so much' and she smiled at me.

    Her clothes were lovely in real life (it's baby blue), as was her updo and the earrings. I think a small pearl broche or so would have finished the whole thing.

    I can still not believe that I really saw her (dreams coming through), that she talked to me and that I really touched her. I can recommend it to everyone: it's worth the wait!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Rebecca - Sweden12 October 2016 at 06:44

      How exciting that you got to speak to her and shake her hand :D

      Delete
    2. I Can Only Imagine:) How Fantastic For You & Such A Memory! :) Thx For Sharing All The Details:)

      Delete
    3. Nicole from France12 October 2016 at 08:44

      so nice to read you , Bella , I can feel your hapiness ! happy for you you could take photos , I supose you will treasure them for long !

      Delete
    4. WOW, Bella

      how awesome is that? I am so happy that you got to experience Kate's charisma and warmth. Are you still excited about it? I sure would be, lol. What a beautiful memory for you.
      Did you get a picture?

      Thanks so much for sharing that with us. :)

      Delete
    5. Now we have two very happy fellow posters following this visit. Thanks for sharing. I really enjoy hearing first hand accounts.

      Delete
  54. I LOVE the photo of Kate holding the rose. What a sweet person and it shows.

    ReplyDelete
  55. I think, if anything, the King was a little overwhelmed (in a good way) with Kate, not the other way around.
    cute. I think he was actually blushing.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Rebecca - Sweden12 October 2016 at 06:44

      Nah, he always looks that way :P

      Delete
    2. lol, lol. Thanks, Rebecca. You are so funny. :)

      Delete
  56. This is a beautiful look, but I do wish she played more with volume (I'm looking at the bell sleeves on the Mauritshuis' curator's dress)! And I'd like to point out that Angelina Jolie channeled the duchess's style when she met with the Queen two years ago: http://tomandlorenzo.com/2014/10/angelina-jolie-receives-honorary-damehood-in-ralph-russo-couture/

    Check out that hair, and the lines and hue of that suit! Thanks for a fun post. Especially loved hearing the update from Anna on HM's earrings.

    ReplyDelete
  57. Rebecca - Sweden11 October 2016 at 20:19

    I've not read any of the other comments yet so might be repeating stuff already said!

    Such a big day!

    Great that King Wilhelm-Alexander is the one she has her first solo royal to royal meeting with. He seems warm and easy and they seem to have got along very nicely. Also nice since they met at rememberance last year. Must be comforting!

    The scheduel today was a great "first trip" with comfortable and familiar engagements, just in another country! Nice with some small walkabouts as well!

    A great idea to have roundtable talks with organizations doing similar things in the NL and UK. Always good to bounce ideas and plans with others that might have some good input or experience!

    And the last engagement was fun. She really "mucked in". Robots, holding bike tires, trying on too small hats! She was really on top form :)

    Nice to see that William was busy with (what I read was) his 5th investiture this year.

    Her look! SO proffessional! Great and fun cut of the suit jacket! I cannot see any likeness to Dianas suit other than them being suits in mildly similar colours, but if it makes some peopole feel better then.. alrighty-o! But I am in love with the cut and belt of the jacket! Hope to see it again soon.

    I am so happy to see these earrings on Kate again. I hope they are a longtime loan. They are a great pair of regal workhorse earrings! The girl with the pearl earrings indeed! Great that we finally have a proper ID. Good find by Anna as usual!

    All in all, a great job done and a regal classic look!

    ReplyDelete
  58. What a pretty shade of blue! Are there any quotes or speeches from this afternoon? It seems strange to only be talking about her attire.

    ReplyDelete
  59. This is certainly the most political thing she's done to date - that might be the reason why she seemed nervous. It's certainly a difficult task but I also think it's exciting to be on the forefront of politics in such a way!

    I love the Netherlands and enjoyed a very lovely holiday there this September. They do have such great art and I love how Kate (probably) wore those (very pretty) pearl earrings as an homage to the "Girl with the Pearl Earring"

    That's a very beautiful suit and I always do enjoy seeing her wear suits. They fit her so well.

    ReplyDelete
  60. She looks regal- for someone who was not raised for this life I think she does amazingly well. I can only imagine the constant worry about terrorism at the back of her mind, especially away from England, in spite of the very high level of security that must follow her. We have no idea how difficult that might be.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Emily,

      I am sure those thoughts cross her mind, especially since she now has children.

      Delete
  61. I actually dislike this look on Kate. The suit is beautifully tailored and smart, but I think it ages her a bit, especially when paired with that updo. I like her tan suede shoes, but would like to see more of a change up with her shoe choices.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm not a fan of this outfit, or the one Diane wore many moons ago either. I lovemailed up dues but they are kinda all looking the same. No showstopper.

      Delete
  62. Zora from Prague11 October 2016 at 21:19

    Thanks for the interesting post, Charlotte. I do hope Kate enjoyed her visit. Well done. A very elegant look. I think she was really glad to visit the gallery. I'm looking forward to the Manchester visit plus the reception for the medallists in Buckingham Palace. It'll be good to see W&K together with more members of the RF!

    ReplyDelete
  63. Oh, shoot!! Tonight is the Hedge Funds gala. She will miss it. I always enjoy that event.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Rebecca - Sweden12 October 2016 at 06:46

      It actually was last night :P

      Delete
  64. There have been a few observations here and on other blogs about Kate initially looking a little nervous today. Even after 5 years as a royal, it must be somewhat daunting to be the centre of attention on such a high profile visit as this. Kate has taken to her public life pretty much faultlessly from day one and if she has a minor wobble of confidence now and then, who can criticise her.

    ReplyDelete
  65. Bravo to Kate for a job well done on her first solo excursion. I watched several videos, and I thought from start to finish she appeared in command. It's funny how we all are arm chair experts, myself included, about what she was thinking, wearing etc. She was most likely up very early, travelled by plane, had lunch with the King, and then attended the museum and other stops on her itinerary. So if her skirt had a few creases in it, that is understandable. The most important aspect of today, was that she was there, as a representative of the Queen. I thought she carried it off with aplomb and grace. She also looked very lovely.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Totally agree with you Tedi,

      Kate did great.

      Delete
  66. Well done Kate! I can fully understand she must have been nervous, her first solo trip overseas, with all the scrutiny solely on her (no William by her side to share it with)... but it seems she did well. On to the fashion: after yesterday's miss (for me at least) this was a totally different sartorial game. My only quibble: I think the suit would have looked much better with a slim belt, I can picture it in my mind and I can assure you it looks Perfection! ;-) This belt is a bit erring on the more casual stile, clashing with the delicate feminine silhouette and colour of the suit, making it look unnecessarily "bulky". Even no belt at all would have been an improvement on the current belt, but a slim one would have been perfection. Yesterday her dress was screaming for a belt, today it was perhaps a bit too "on your face". It's a belt thing, it seems ;-) Just trying to give her constructive suggestions, if she would ever read this blog (which she should ;-)) . Charlotte, you are the best!

    ReplyDelete
  67. I love the idea of this outfit, but I do not like the execution-the color is great and so is the styling, but the fabric apparently wrinkles too easily for the a,pint of traveling she was to do today. Also, this is the first time I can remember being able to see the outline of her undergarments in any outfit, and you can clearly see the outline of her bra in the photograph of her from the back.

    D

    ReplyDelete
  68. I think Kate hit the mark today. Beautiful suit. Perfect for meeting a King. I'm sure when Kate arrived she was nervous. While she has 5 years experience, she does not have 5 years experience meeting royalty by herself. It appears it didn't take long for her to relax as she is smiling and laughing with the King in early pictures. I'm sure the Queen and William are very, very proud of her.

    The color may not have been an autumn color, but I think a bright color may not have been appropriate. She's always very aware of who she is meeting with so the subdued color may have been so that she didn't outshine the King.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. 22:20,

      The king's team and Kate's team coordinated on the color scheme, IMO. I think we'll see a lot more of that in the future.

      Delete
  69. I am a long time reader of this blog but this is my first time commenting! As a young professional woman (and mom) similar in age to Kate, I have to say I find much of her recent wardrobe and up-do hairstyles to be very old fashioned! These monochromatic suits and dress combinations remind me of the queen... I never see women my age dress this way!

    Thank you Charlotte for your wonderful blog! I am an avid reader!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You're not alone! I'm only a few years older than Kate and neither me nor any of my friends (professionals) would ever dress this matronly. There are plenty of ways Kate could be appropriate but still fashionable, but she seems to be sticking with this frumpy look.

      I'm still grateful to Charlotte for all of her hard work on this wonderful blog, but Kate has been so boring lately that it's not nearly as fun as it used to be to follow her and her style.

      Delete
  70. I thought she looked perfect again today. Was it just my opinion or did she and the king look uncomfortable in their joint photos?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Not just you...they were very awkward looking! Not sure why, but lots of people picked up on it.

      Delete
    2. In someeach of the photos of the King and her they both looked very orange. But the background was orange so ithat be bc of that. But it looks like Kate got a horrible fake tan.

      Delete
    3. Bristowmom, 06:48,

      What? I thought he looked quite enamored of Kate. kind of like a little schoolboy. Maybe he didn't feel comfortable feeling that way especially since his wife wasn't there. I thought the photos were sweet. Not awkward at all. I think he was actually blushing a little in one photo. cute.

      Delete
  71. The suit looks nice on her. However, it surely had a wrinkled skirt after her short flight - maybe she needed to change on board the plane to this skirt to avoid its wrinkling during the flight. Looks like some of the wrinkles fell out throughout the day - or she got a steam during her events at some point. I'm tired of all the beige spiked heels - she needs some other shoes and purses that are neutral like ray would have worked well with this outfit.

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  72. She looks absolutely gorgeous!! I think this entire look, top to toe, is perfection.

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  73. As I read this post I remembered a recent Daily Mail (sorry) article about the Queen's favourite earrings. The photos in the article aren't particularly close up so I'm not sure they are the same but they are identical styles. The diamond stud on Kate's pair seems bigger but it could just be the perspective. If they are this pair that seems a big deal. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-3636227/The-Queen-pearls-dazzling-jewellery-owns-pair-pearl-earrings-given-beloved-grandmother-Queen-s-favourite.html

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  74. Janet from Oregon11 October 2016 at 23:52

    I like this suit very much. She looks elegant and polished. I don't think she has to dress in "Fall" colors nor does she have to dress warmer or cooler depending on how we feel about it. She has to be comfortable for herself; we all have different temperature settings and ideas of appropriate colors. In this case, it's a lovely blue and she must have not needed to be warmer or she would've chosen something else. While I would have liked navy shoes and navy clutch with it, the neutral works ok, too. Who can blame someone for liking a pair of shoes and wearing them often?! I think her hair looks lovely. And thank you, Charlotte, for the information on the earrings. It makes them special, being from the Queen's jewelry box. (Can any of us imagine just what all is in the Queen's jewelry box(es!) given what she inherited and then what she has been given and purchased herself over sixty years on the throne? How could one ever choose WHICH earrings to wear?!) I am jealous of Kate's getting a private tour of all those wonderful paintings from the Dutch Masters. As for her wrinkled skirt (and I write this entirely in jest), it just proves she IS mortal after all; she was able to wear a white dress to a children's party and not get a spot on it, but even she falls victim to the damage an airline seatbelt can do to an outfit. She didn't get to change before deplaning if she took a commercial flight. And wrinkles happen. She looks lovely anyway.

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    Replies
    1. Janet, nope.

      I can't imagine all the Queen's Jewelry, but don't you know, I have certainly tried. lol

      Delete
  75. The suit is too tight.

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    Replies
    1. You are kidding right? It certainly is not too tight. Did you see the picture of Diana in a similar suit? It's both shorter and tighter than Catherine's.

      I am afraid you're grasping at straws on this one. Time to move on.

      Delete
  76. She looks very much the part today; lovely outfit, very quiet and dignified. I hope she steps out of her comfort zone more often; she handled it very nicely.

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  77. Beautiful. Very appropriate choice. Kate really looked the part today. I loved the suit - beautiful colour on her - just pity about the wrinkly fabric. I really didn't like the shoes and bag. Firstly, we see them too often and secondly, I don't think they went with the outfit. How about her grey shoes and a grey bag. That would have worked for me. And I think would have been very appropriate and stylish. Overall, I think she looked very beautiful today and got the look - the hair, earrings and suit (not the shoes and bag!) - spot-on!

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  78. I'm thrilled to see a suit and this look is perfection from head to toe. Congrats to Kate for a very successful visit. Imagine waking up with THIS little business trip on the calendar. :)

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    Replies
    1. lol, RF.

      Some papers were making it sound almost like Kate is the only hope the world has left for world peace. No pressure, Kate. lol.

      Delete
  79. Perfect in every way! Her outfit and hairdo spectacular and just right for this occasion. The perfect venue, too! Being an artist myself, I know how special this was to see the incomparable Dutch paintings. Wonderful!

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  80. Kate looked fantastic. Perfect in fact. I have only one question. Does anyone else wonder if she and King Willem-Alexander coordinate their outfits ahead of time?

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    Replies
    1. Yes. Her other PR ops have been that way recently, even to matching and/coordinating official reception line bouquets. Someone on their PR has finally done their homework in that area.

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  81. The Duchess has arrived! that was well done. One thing noticeable again and again is how people around her from strangers to hosts look in awe of her and show genuine smile. I truly like that part. I watch as much what her presence inspires as watching her. There are beautiful women all over the world. With her, beyond the love story of her charming prince, her own persona/beauty personality e.t.c., there is some kind of aura which makes people look sincere around her.

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    Replies
    1. What a Beautiful Insight & So Eloquently Expressed! :)

      Delete
    2. Anon 15,

      May the people who are on the "Kate has no charisma" bandwagon read your words.

      Delete
  82. Oh, I love this! So elegant and regal, and just right for the events and for the momentous occasion of her first solo mini-tour (may we see many more soon. I think the more she does things like this, the more comfortable she will become). I think the suit will be perfectly correct for events in the future, as well. (and I'm very envious she got to tour this stunning exhibit! I think I'd love to see the visual arts, especially among young up and coming artists, be another focus of their work in the future, since sadly they seem to have no interest in the performing arts at all)

    I do have a question, something I found very interesting. The quote that her "charisma" would be as great asset. Now, I am a HUGE Kate fan, or I would not be on blogs like this (LOL) but I would not consider her charismatic in the least. Beautiful, interesting, seemingly a great mom, wife, and daughter, and wanting to do her work well, yes, but not charismatic, which is something rare. Diana had it in spades; I think Harry does, too. But not Kate. What do you all think?

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    Replies
    1. Rebecca - Sweden12 October 2016 at 06:51

      From reports, Kate is very warm and inviting in person. She's not the kind that walks into a room and commandeers the attention. Rather, people say that when she talks with you she seem like you are the only focus. I think that is what they might mean. The one on one charisma, not the "shows great for the cameras" charisma. If that makes sense?

      Delete
    2. I adore Kate as well, but was SHOCKED by the charisma comment. Could the author have been saying it sarcastically, do you think?

      Delete
    3. Unless you have met her,how can you possibly comment on charisma.? Having met her one on one, I can vouch that she has plenty of it. All people who have met her through charities and so forth always comment on this. Kate does not play to the camera as Diana did and that is why you may feel she lacks it.

      Delete
    4. Rebecca,

      Yes, that makes sense. Perfect sense. Thank you. And Kate's charisma is the most important kind of charisma. Real. One on one. BESIDES that, she has general charisma also. She can light up a room as reported many times about her "electric", dazzling smile. Where people get off saying otherwise is just the typical naysayer stuff.

      Kate lights up a room wherever she goes and that has been reported many times over the years.

      People who don't like Kate don't like Kate. They will never say anything good about her and will always ignore or try to negate her personality, gifts and assets, her clothes, her teeth, her hair, her accessories, her expressions, her physical stances, her toenails, her fingernails, her makeup, the number of freckles on her skin, etc., etc, etc.

      Who could handle all that as good as Kate is handling all of that? Not many, IMO. Kate is one in a million and a true asset to England and the Royal family.

      Delete
  83. I agree with you on Kate's charisma or rather the lack of it. She must be a really nice gal, wife, mother but that's all about it. I suppose you must not compare her with Diana, she was the one and only. For me the biggest surprise is how William turned out. He takes after her Mom but his personality or charisma has nothing to do with Diana. Harry has it as you said in spades.

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    Replies
    1. Harry was not groomed to be king from the day he was born. If Harry was the firstborn, his demeanor and personality might be a lot different. The flamboyance Harry exhibits would have been nipped in the bud.

      Delete
  84. In the photo where Kate is looking at the Girl with the pearl earring, is that a bobby pin? Even Kate is human!

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  85. Stylewise, and this blog is still about style :-), I think she is a bit stuck; towering court heels, her hair verging on "bouffant", clutching her clutch for dear life, and heavy make-up. Personally, I tend to find her far more conservative than modern - both in looks and behaviour, and that might create a problem in the future.

    After all, Kate is now merely two years younger than Diana was at her death. This is not about pushing Diana or Harry in front of Kate, comparison is unfair to all of them, but Kate needs to use her platform to create some young energy. Women today are not about staying at home to provide care, and having your hair done. We are executives, nurses, leaders, doctors, engineers ... and some of us are mothers, with or without partners.

    Her role is not about being stylish (and sometimes I find her reduced to only a "look", which is unfair) - it is about creating a future in a new (Brexit climate), while giving a nod to history. No one said it was going to be easy :-), but no one said it was about stiff hairdos and shy smiles, either. Royal or not, privileges come whith responsibility.

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  86. I love this look. She looks polished and lovely. Although I agree that nude accessories weren't necessarily the best choice and the fabric does seem to wrinkle a lot, the suit is a major win for me. The detailing on the top, with the belt buckle and slight peplum make it more youthful and she was radiant today.

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  87. Also I loved her hair today! She looked chic and beautiful, and it was also good that she wasn't having to push it out of her face.

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  88. Zora from Prague12 October 2016 at 12:34

    It really depends on what we mean by "charisma". Whether a leader's quality by which s/he attracts people's devotion and enthusiasm, or, more generally, a personal gift or charm, such as mentioned by Rebecca - if the 2nd meaning, Kate has plenty of it, IMO. She has the ability to make a person's day by her smile, grace and attention. Very important in someone like her who has so many possibilities to reach out to people.

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  89. I think Catherine does have charisma in a one on one situation. She is not a person who calls attention to herself all of the time
    which I find off putting. I prefer sincere and steady which both William and Catherine are.

    I find it odd that so many people admire the Queen who is not exactly the most charismatic personality but criticize Catherine for not being more "me" centered.

    Stars burn bright and then die. The sun and moon are steady and always there. William and Catherine are in it for the long haul.

    One more thing, I find Harry to be a bit too cutesy and rehearsed in his public personna.
    Just my opinion.

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  90. Very proud of Kate yesterday. She really carries herself well and has proven she can be independent, empathetic and confident abroad. A few people who've met her were very happy at how friendly she was. The Queen will be pleased.

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  91. On the contrary, my parents saw both William and Kate in Australia and have said how wonderfully charismatic both are. They're very good at what they do. They just don't play for the cameras and maintain a dignified and formal approach worthy of their future positions. You are right that Diana was probably a one off, but most other royals are of a different kind but are equally effective. HM, Charles, Camilla, Sophie are all kind and charismatic in their own way too.

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  92. Anett,

    Everyone who has met Kate says she has a very present charm and grace, charisma.

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  93. Julia from Leominster12 October 2016 at 13:23

    First of all, wonderful and important engagements. A great tour success. Glad the walkabout happened - one thing I've seen in repeated comments here from people who wait to see her is that she tends to turn from the crowd quickly - maybe there should be a brief pause and something more than a feathery wave - whoever taught her to do that should be sacked - but I realise this is hard - the best royals develop a sense of engaging at a distance.

    I don't find Kate charismatic -(Diana was, but not everyone can be Diana) nor do I see Kate as a natural diplomat - this comes from listening to her speak, looking at State events - and so forth. My feeling is that she is naturally reserved - and nothing wrong with that, and is developing into her role - mostly by experience. But when she does relax, she has a wonderful way with her particularly with children. A contrast I've noticed was in an early walkabout an elderly woman reached out to Kate and Kate drew back - on the recent tour she was seen embracing an elderly native woman in a very comfortable way.

    The more she does, I think the more natural it will all become for her. What she does have is beauty and a very engaging smile. She doesn't have the confidence for too much spontaneity yet, she does seem to rely a lot on whoever she is with - but this will develop with doing more on her own. This was a big step forward.

    I like the suit very much - it is classic Catherine Walker. The large buttons remind me of Jackie but otherwise it doesn't - Jackie never wore close fitting styles like that - her jackets were always boxy. I do like Kate in suits and with her hair up - I'm at a loss why people think this is aging - most professional women dress this way and if we do want to make a Diana comparison - she was wearing suits like this when she was Kate's age. Look at comparable pictures of Diana in 1995 - she was cultivating a glamourous image - or the queen in 1960.

    I am puzzled though at how badly it creased which is not something I would expect from Catherine Walker unlike off the peg and how strange the suit fits in the back above the belt. I don't have an answer for that. Almost like she has something under it that was bunching. But the colour is heavenly.

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  94. Charisma is a gift. You Can have the self centered gift of attracting everybody's attention, like Diana, or have the gift of making other people the center of your attention. Kate has this One. It is less spectacular and more fruitful. It is a great charisma, and in Kate it is feed by intelligence. I think she is more acute than Diana. She is definitely more learned, so she Can make long term plans. I am writing on my iPhone and ... aaaaghhh!!! Stop I will write more when at home.

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