Wednesday, 11 January 2017

Kate Meets Families for First Engagement of 2017: "Parenting is Tough"

The Duchess of Cambridge carried out her first engagement of 2017 this morning in support of her patronage, Anna Freud Centre for Children and Families.


The Duchess was welcomed by Chief Executive, Peter Fonagy.


Kate visited the centre's Early Years Parenting Unit to learn more about their work with families who have children under five years old. Kensington Palace said the visit marks the "Duchess' continued desire to draw attention to child mental health issues and the importance early intervention, and working with the whole family, can make to those in vulnerable situations". Of course, not only is Anna Freud Centre one of Kate's patronages, it's also one of the eight partner charities of Heads Together, led by William, Kate and Harry.


The Early Years Parenting Unit opened in April 2011 (the month of the royal wedding) and offers an assessment and treatment programme for groups of parents with personality disorders, and their children under five years, who are at risk of being taken into care. The treatment seeks to address the parents’ personality disorders, the children's developmental needs, and the parent-child relationship. The ultimate aim is to keep families together.


How does the unit work? How are services provided? After an initial assessment period, families attend the day unit for two full days a week for up to eighteen months. Using a Mentalization Based Treatment (MBT) approach, parents are helped to begin the process of reflecting on their and their children’s mental states. Parent-child work helps parents to become more aware of and responsive to their children’s needs which leads to more emotionally attuned parenting, more secure attachment relationships, and an associated decrease in child protection concerns. The service is completely integrated with Children’s Social Care and Adult Mental Health, with frequent liaison and regular reviews of progress.


Kate met families who have availed of the treatment programme and discussed what brought them to the unit and their experiences since then. The Duchess joined families participating in a 'Theraplay' discussion - an exercise promoting the relationship between parents and their children.


It was very much a visit centred on meeting families and discussing their journeys and the results of participation in the highly specialised programmes. Another service Kate learned more about was Parent Infant Psychotherapy (PIP), which aims to support new parents and place the relationship between parents and their babies in a position of utmost importance.


More from the Mail Online:

'Parenting is tough,' she said. 'And with the history and all the things and the experiences you've all witnessed, to do that on top of your own anxieties, and the lack of support you also received as mothers...I find it extraordinary how you've managed actually. So really well done.'
Kate was asked if she was braced to spend the morning with a group of children under five at a centre that helps parents with personality disorders bond more closely with their offspring. I did just leave a room of six under threes,' she said, smiling.

The Duchess appeared to very much enjoy meeting the adorable little ones.


Chief executive of the organisation, Peter Fonagy, spoke ahead of Kate's arrival:

"We are very proud of our history of developing and evaluating ways of helping families with infants and small children and are delighted that Her Royal Highness shares our passion for offering support to parents, as early as possible in the child’s life. We are very happy that Her Royal Highness is meeting parents from two of our flagship early intervention services. Her visit is an inspiration to the staff and reinforces the commitment of the families to work to increase their babies’ chances of a resilient future. But more important, by bringing attention to the real difference that early years programmes can make, the Duchess is stimulating interest in similar services throughout the country and right across the world."

The royal visit marked the launch of the centre’s spotlight on childhood adversity and trauma. Throughout January, the Anna Freud Learning Network will be sharing new insights into the science of early adversity and highlighting the latest approaches to supporting children and families. The network posted an interesting video on YouTube, including statistics which reveal things such as  "children in care are four times more likely than their peers to have a mental health difficulty" and "adversity during the first six years is associated with childhood internalising symptoms, such as depression and anxiety". It offers a window into the enormously complex area of children's mental health.


Next, William and Kate teamed up for their first joint engagement of the year - visiting a Child Bereavement UK centre in Stratford - to mark its one year anniversary.


Prince William has been patron of the charity since 2009 and the Palace noted "the Duke will continue to see the vital work undertaken by the charity, which makes such a positive difference to bereaved families across the country".


Child Bereavement UK supports families and educates professionals when a baby or child of any age dies or is dying, or when a child is facing bereavement. Every year they train more than 8000 professionals, helping them to better understand and meet the needs of grieving families. The organisation's mission is to ensure the accessibility of high quality child bereavement support and information to all families and professionals by increasing their reach and plugging the gaps that exist in bereavement support and training across the country and embedding standards in the sector.


The Duke and Duchess met local professionals, and volunteers who work at the service, before meeting families and children who have been supported by the charity. William and Kate attended one of the charity’s Family Support Group sessions where children, their parents, and carers can meet other families to explore themes of memories, feelings, support networks and resilience. These sessions can help to decrease their sense of being alone and feeling ‘different’ when someone important in their lives has died.


The couple found out how the memory jar exercise can help families dealing with bereavement.


Rebecca English described "moving scenes" as the royals asked youngsters about making jars for loved ones they've lost.


One particularly touching moment came when William was talking to a little girl whose father died from pancreatic cancer. William chatted with her and said: "I lost my mummy when I was very young too." We've seen a much more open William over the last year or so - drawing on his own very painful experiences to share and comfort others at organisations such as Child Bereavement. No doubt he was drawn to the organisation because he lost his mother at such a young age.


More from Richard Palmer's story:

One mother, Lorna Ireland, 36, told how he had spoken of his fragile emotional state to her son, Shinobi Irons, 12, as they filled their individual jars with bands of coloured salt, representing memories of the boy’s late grandmother and godmother. “He told my son that when his mum died he was 15 at the time and he was very angry and found it very difficult to talk about it,” Lorna said. “It was very personal and it was very special."
Prince William, 34, also comforted a little girl grieving for her father, telling her: "I lost my mummy when I was very young too." He asked Aoife, nine: "Do you know what happened to me? You know I lost my mummy when I was very young too. I was 15 and my brother was 12. So we lost our mummy when we were young as well. "Do you speak about your daddy? It's very important to talk about it, very, very important."

A video of Kate meeting children during 'theraplay'.


To mark the one year anniversary William and Kate cut the cake!


Moving on to Kate's ensemble for the day...


Kate was elegant in a £1,650 blue belted coat dress by Eponine London today. From the 2016 Autumn/Winter collection it's a classic silhouette from a brand that specialises in bespoke womenswear inspired by the silhouettes of the fifties and sixties.


The double wool garment features a collar with notch cut outs, three-quarter length sleeves and a full skirt.

Eponine London

Readers will recall Kate wore an ensemble by the Kensington-based firm for an engagement in London last March. The red and white skirt suit was a gorgeous choice featuring a boat neck and three-quarter sleeves and the skirt was A-line. It's a beautiful outfit and I love the silhouette, the lines, and the gingham pattern. I had very much hoped Kate would choose other pieces from the label and today is another winning look.


The label was founded by designer Jet Shenkman. Eponine was born from her passion for clothes with a unique, relaxed silhouette. Jet’s years of styling experience have equipped her with an expert eye for precision and an innate understanding of the female form. Every garment is designed and made in London for women who seek out individuality and who desire to be both chic and contemporary. Below, three retro styles from the current collection. @KatieMidleton noted Jet used to work as a bereavement counsellor.

@KatieMidelton

Kate teamed the piece with her navy suede Rupert Sanderson Malory pumps.

Rupert Sanderson

Below we see Kate carried her Stuart Weitzman Muse Clutch and wore her favourite Cartier Ballon Bleu watch.


Kate completed the look with her sapphire and diamond earrings.


There's a very nice video with footage from Kate's Anna Freud visit available on YouTube.


A very nice start to 2017! We'll be continuing with our polls next. If you haven't already voted for Kate's best coat and gown of 2016 you can do so here!

344 comments:

  1. I love the colour. It's that rich blue hue I adore.

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  2. Rebecca - Sweden11 January 2017 at 12:31

    Nice start to a promising year :) Not much to say about the engagements today. Solid, great, bread and butter engagements! Very worthy causes! And Kate is always splendid with kids :)

    She is looking great. And I'm sooo happy to see her wear Eponine again! Such a great brand, and I hope it becomes a staple in her wardrobe!

    I like the swoop of the skirt! The belt might look better a bit lower down though.

    Both look and engagements were very standard so isn't much to say but these are the day to day, doing the grind engagements that comes with royal life and that means so much to the people being visited and the spread of the charities! So well done!

    And was Kate at her first engagement for 2 hours or so? Because the first tweets of her arriving and the first tweets of her leaving were about 2 hours apart!

    Looking forward to the next engagement!

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    1. If she was there 2 hours, that's a really nice change from the usual.

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    2. I echo your sentiments, Rebecca.

      Love the classic look and love this particuar cause. Very meaningful. :)

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    3. I'm happy she wore Eponine again too! The belt is a bit high on her, but the colour is lovely. Great first engagement for the year.

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    4. Rebecca, respectfully, I don't think these are the garden variety royal engagements. I have rarely seen the level of personal contact and involvement as we see in many Cambridge charity engagements. These are not routine patronage hail and farewell visits. It is my understanding that the two espouse the plan to have fewer patronages and charities going forward with deeper. more meaningful involvement. There are occasional glimpses of this ethic with other senior royals, but I don't think most others are beyond the walking around , nodding, and looking stage.

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    5. I do agree, Annie. I recall how controversial some of Diana's interests were back in her day.........

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    6. Annie, I don't think I agree. They say they're going to every year, and I become cautiously optimistic every year. I'm cautiously optimistic this year as well, and I hope they follow through. But to say that we see that level of personal contact and involvement in their visits . . . well I haven't seen it. Today was a nice start and I hope it continues.

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    7. Caroline in Montana12 January 2017 at 15:33

      Annie, I agree with you. It is nice to see the level of personal contact they have when visiting charities like these. They are a very charismatic couple and have such a profound effect. They are doing a great job.

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    8. I'm having a hard time thinking of a charity visit when Kate didn't sit down- in this instance, kneel down- and talk one on one with the children, parents, and staff. In contrast, it does seem as though William has gradually increased his level of personal contact. It's not all about the loss of his mother-although I think that experience has formed a sort of bridge for him to reach others-both the commonality and the allowing of vulnerability. I think we also need to consider who his emotional models were before Kate- his Father, for one, and Grandmother the Queen, who was herself schooled in the lady of the manor manner of relating to the public, by her mother and likely Queen Mary. It takes time and trust to break down the sorts of barriers the royal family had placed between them and the crowd, walk abouts not withstanding. There is a very practical reason for maintaining that distance: security factors, but also the sheer volume of cares and concerns involved in the charities could soon weigh down most people with any compassion. Sorry for the windy reply, bluhare. annie

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  3. Kate looks lovely today. I am coveting this coatdress big time. One question and I am not being critical, merely curious. Why does Kate insist on wearing her belts so high? I had the same thought with the green Sportmax coat but assumed it had been designed that way. The picture of this coat shown above clearly shows 5 buttons above the belt and the belt sitting at the natural waist. Kate's coat has only 4 buttons above the belt. I am assuming it was made especially for her this way but the belt seems way to high. I would much prefer to see it lower. What gives?

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    1. Theresa. New York11 January 2017 at 14:45

      @Beth: I have the same question. I, too, counted the buttons and wondered about it. To me, pretty all of Kate's clothes are highwaisted and do not sit at the natural waistline. Glad you asked the question because I thought it was just me.

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    2. I am thinking that is her natural wasit line/ where her "hour glass" would be. I wear mine higher because of my natural waist. I don't think it would be as flattering. Could it also have to do with sitting down? Maybe lower isn't comfortable when sitting?

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    3. I think she is pregnant and the belt that high can be used when she gets biger. If you look at her chest you will notice it is sligtely bigger (i am not trying to be critical just observing) and she there is not a full frontal picture in wich she isn´t holding the clutch in fron of her stomach. On the other hand it can only be a new bra (God knows i have a couple that can make me look 2 sices bigger).
      What do you think?

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    4. Marion from Germany11 January 2017 at 15:36

      Wow, Beth, you are truly eagle-eyed! I was asking myself the same question what it is that I find so queer regarding Kate's overall appearance. At first I wondered if it is just poor tailoring, but I could not really believe it when taking the price of that coat into account.
      It must indeed have been altered for Kate as she had one button removed and instead put the belt up higher. So it was a conscious decision on Kate's side.
      I would rather see the common height of the belt than the altered version.

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    5. It might just be me but when I wear belts and have to go from sitting to standing quite often - like Kate herself has done today, it is always more comfortable an inch or two higher than the natural waistline

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    6. Proportionately, Catherine has a long torso. Very often her coats and dresses sit above her natural waist. This stylist trick shortens her torso and lengthens her legs. It works perfectly given her lean figure and shapely legs. Ladies who use this trick typically have a "sweet" spot that feels most comfortable.

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    7. She's always balancing her long torso. Empire waist everything! I'm also wondering if she's not hiding the hint of a bump under there...

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    8. I thought the same thing and wondered if she might be pregnant? I've heard murmurs that she wants 3 children...

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    9. Good eye! I am not a fan of this coat, it's just too much going on! The belt, the seams, the collar, the big, dark buttons, and the loud colour: it's a bit overwhelming. Love her hair and makeup though. And she's supporting such a good cause!

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    10. Well...we noticed the same thing Beth regarding the buttons... and we know the Duchess likes her waist cinched... so...I'm saying this, I'm not saying anything... Let's see ;-)

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    11. You are right about the belt. While I like the color and cut, the placement of the belt so high up is kind of getting old (so sorry Kate!). It was ok, even if over-used during the first few years of her marriage (her dresses also were cinched high) but I think it runs almost too young for her now.

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    12. I too just have a feeling she is pregnant- time will tell !!

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    13. Julia from Leominster11 January 2017 at 19:04

      It's always possible she's pregnant but the early days of her other pregnancies didn't affect her waistline. (As in that McQueen tartan coat dress.)

      Kate tends to wear her clothes belted high. From what I've heard and observed, she actually has a very long torso with comparatively shorter legs (look at her in trousers with a tucked-in shirt and flats to see this.) Belting her clothes high and wearing quite high heels gives the impression of leg length successfully.

      It works the other way too for people like Matilda of Belgium, Diana, and of Julia herself, who are short-waisted with long legs. Wearing a short jacket or something belted high gives the wrong proportion. That's why Diana often wore long jackets successful.

      A couple of years ago, Kate wore a long grey-blue blazer with jeans. It was a very nice garment (Reiss I believe) but the proportions on her were completely off. I've also noticed that on the few occasions Kate wore peplums.

      One interesting look on Diana was the Edelstein gold and cream dress - a lovely creation later sold. (For historical reasons, I never found that sale wise.) The gown has a short bolero jacket but the dress itself has a long dropped waist with the bodice embroidered in the same gold design - which balanced the look out.

      As D.M. "kindly" noted Kate usually carries her bags in front. For clutch bags I prefer to see them tucked under the arm - as Diana did (and Julia does, having learnt that trick from her.) This leaves the right arm free to shake hands and is less of a "protective" gesture. So I doubt that means anything. However, the absence of any tour announcements and the fact they did their Canadian tour last year when the big anniversary is this years makes me wonder...but we're into speculation again.

      The nice thing is that the Eponine designer did bereavement work. So appropriate.

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    14. Ahh I so hope she is expecting and that's why the mysterious case of the buttons exists. But that is also just wishful thinking on my part.

      If the Duke and Duchess truly only want two children, how long will be all be in agony wondering if there's ever going to be another royal baby?!

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    15. Anonymous 17:26 - as a fellow woman with short legs in comparison to my very long torso, I have noticed the same thing about the Duchess! She's very clever at dressing to lengthen her legs (not that she really needs to - when you are tall and skinny, your legs always look long!). If you ever see a photo of her in a bikini, you can really notice her long torso.

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    16. My 17:00 ish comment ended up way down field, but the update has a picture of Kate's arrival at her next engagement. She is walking next to a woman who appears to have her dress belted above her natural waistline as well. She doesn't appear especially long-waisted.

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    17. I have to smile, when I saw the first photo of her getting out of the car at the first event I thought, well hello to those two! But I thought I will definitely cross the line if I comment on that - So funny to see others noticed the same thing :)

      Not to sound like a dinosaur, but when we sat around looking at magazines, discussing our fashion likes and dislikes, commenting on this or that, groaning at someone's opinion, we could say those things! It looks much different typed out in black and white!

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    18. I also have a long torso like Kate. Heavy tops tend to bunch up to my natural waistline and make my top half bulky and my arms difficult to move while shortening the length. It was a very smart move on her part knowing she was going to be actively sitting during photo ops!

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    19. Julia, you've said it perfectly about the high belt on this and other times Kate has worn obviously - and awkwardly - high-waisted pieces. There was a pink wool crepe dress she wore a few years back at a garden party that was just a disaster, I think she also wore that dress but in a different color somewhere else.
      I remember that Reiss coat, it was worn with jeans and wedge Sorel booties. And it DID look awkward, like she forgot to have it shortened.
      As you said, she tries to give the illusion of longer legs by doing this but it just doesn't work.
      I doubt she's pregnant, if she is, she'd be very far along or close to delivering by May and I can't imagine she wants to mess up her sister's wedding.

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  4. A gorgeous addition to Kate's already gorgeous coat collection. Love the colour and the style.

    Avee

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    1. I agree. Pretty coat with nice details in a knockout color.

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  5. Lovely blue and a very nice cause. Kate looks energised and happy to be back to work. Great to see the clutch held differently.

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  6. my thoughts exactly re: the belt

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    1. That may be true but her legs are already long and it is very unflattering to have one's breasts look as though they are right at one's waist.

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    2. Julia from Leominster11 January 2017 at 19:06

      Actually, as I noted above - Kate's legs aren't long in comparison with her torso - so belting high with the addition of high heels gives the impression of leg length. Look at her in trousers and flats to see the difference.

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  8. lol I just noticed the belt thing. I hadn't really thought much about it but now I can't stop staring. I wonder why also.

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  9. My first impression, unfortunately, is one of disappointment. There is always that anticipation that builds up when Kate will be making an appearance. Then when that first photo appears, in those first seconds, the reaction is either "wow", "meh", or "what was she thinking??". Another solid color coat dress that is similar to dozens of other coat dresses we have seen, is a definite "meh". . And, as BethNY pointed out, it doesn't even fit right, it's too high waisted. Take a look at how the designer styled this outfit. The tights and booties gave it a more chic, modern look. Kate had no styling at all, which resulted in yet another missed opportunity.

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  10. Is she pregnant? It looks like she is.. probably that's why the belt is so high

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  11. Maybe she is pregnant again and doesn't want the belt sitting across the tummy?

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  12. A good look, Kate looks fantastic in blue. Also, Kate is so good with the little ones, a great way to start the year!

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  13. What a fantastic organization! I applaud the parents who are committed to getting help and support for themselves and their children.

    I like this coat, especially the notched collar. It's the unique feature on the coat, and I would have liked a different hair style to show it off. Please no more butterfly clips. They are juvenile and certainly not an accessory fit for a duchess. I noticed the belt placement, too. I shall not speculate.

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    1. I agree about the butterfly clips. I can hear my mom now saying the exact same thing to me when I tried them out when they were so popular and I was late teens/early 20s.

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    2. Agree Kim, it's what you use to hold your hair back while putting on make-up as I've said before! Luckily I'm perfect so I can make all these critical observations ;)

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    3. I agree about the speculation, Kim. If I were someone in the public eye I would hate it. Have a big lunch? Pregnant. Look a bit green around the gills? Pregnant. Have awful gas? Twins!

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    4. Pregnancy speculation!! I left the important word out. :)

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    5. oh, there you go again Bluhare..., how funny, lol. :)

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    6. Swallowed your pride? Triplets!

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  14. Soumya from India11 January 2017 at 13:57

    This coat looks very good on her a bit different though from her usual coats

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  15. Kate’s yearly attendance of this center is a reminder of causes and needs for children. Anna Freud herself had issues with her own childhood, still ended up a good credit to her father. One wish I have for Kate is if she has some print column of her own either out of “KP HRH office”, or any other practical media form. Now and then, she sends video or script messages regarding her causes especially related to children. If there is a consistent format throughout the year which will also include her past speeches, visits, messages, outlook and occasionally express why she chose such engagements, follow up will be easier to keep in peoples conscious.

    This is a beautiful blue although it looks light or deep depending on color photography/ or the monitor. The symmetry of the cut from the side has its own unique cut. The flare from the waist down looks generous without looking bulky. It looks conservative and yet contemporary. As beautiful as the coat is, Kate seems to have a test for “coat dresses” and some midi dresses which waist are cut above the waist figure line. I am not sure that is a suitable cut for her upper back and the fact that she is tall from the waist up also.

    It is very interesting to know the designer used to be a bereavement counselor. Between healing and retail therapy, life can bounce back.



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    1. Julia from Leominster11 January 2017 at 19:10

      One thing I've noticed is how formal and stiff the statements put out by Kensington Palace are with respect to the charities. Normally, I'm in favour of formality but here I sometimes find the statements distancing and wish they would write them in the first person with a little less stilted language. A column would be a lovely idea but isn't too likely.

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    2. I understand what you mean Julia.

      If there is to be some shift in the monarchy, this could be one of them. By now Kate is becoming more and more associated with children. It might also be about time to plant a seed for some organization to be co-founded, or started by her. By now, there are a collection of her engagements on causes. Not in the distant future, will be accepting more patron ship from the eldest monarchs. Kate needs her own legacy which people can be inspired with, a go to reference and a follow up of her work. These cyclic engagements are your typical traditional BRF visits. She seems to have such passion and care for children; it might be time to take it some step further. A print column is one step forward. Eleanor Roosevelt was not expected to have her own column, but she thought outside the box. Queen Elizabeth’s inspiring and calming radio address during War II was not necessarily expected, but it meant much for that generation of children. Kate had obviously been busy with an important priority establishing her own young family. If they come back to London, I hope she will be a little more proactive than the usual engagements. Their tours are interesting, but having young children, they may not do much of that.

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    3. Child Bereavement UK is William's patronage. She was accompanying him, as he sometimes goes with her. A Phillip and Elizabeth standard. Otherwise, In'nl, I appreciate your focus on the Cambridge's focus on the organizations. I was getting weary of involved discussions of her buttons and waistline height.

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    4. Julia another indication that the KP communications office needs to be overhauled completely in my opinion.

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    5. 'Parenting is tough,' she said. 'And with the history and all the things and the experiences you've all witnessed, to do that on top of your own anxieties, and the lack of support you also received as mothers...I find it extraordinary how you've managed actually. So really well done.'

      Parenting it tough, even for someone like me who has a lot of support. And to be able to do that in spite of all the experiences and things you've seen is nothing short of amazing to me. Recognizing that you needed help showed a real strength of character, and I find it extraordinary and humbling to see how far you've come.

      I like my rework better. It acknowledges their issues, the strength it takes to overcome them, and humanizes her a bit better, I think.

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    6. That it does, Bluhare.

      As time goes on my hope is that she will get better and better at it. It was a lot for her take in, as it would have been for anyone. So I think she did good. It was more than she has done before. She is really starting to open up. (Brave girl, given all the media scrutiny she receives. :))
      Given that, I think your re-write was beautiful. Bluhare, I sincerely believe you would be an asset to them as an advisor. Truly, I am not joking. You have everything it would take (even British heritage) and they would be laughing all the way to boot. :) Their PR department needs help. I think we all agree on that. You are just what the spin doctor ordered. Sans the spin. :)

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    7. Caroline in Montana12 January 2017 at 15:56

      Annie, you cracked me up! I too was getting a bit weary of involved discussions of her buttons and waistline height:) but now onto seemingly rating a recipe that you don't follow, totally change and then critique! LOL

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    8. I don't know if that DM quote was from a taped recording or overheard by a reporter or related by a participant from memory to a reporter-Understanding that eye-witness accounts by even disinterested parties is not considered a steller source of evidence in a court of law. But..if that was her complete statement or remarks and not out of context, then, heck yes, bluhare..yours is better written. It would be interesting how spontaneous verbal remarks would compare to written ones, with time to consider a response......I know what you're thinking, bluhare ( I think) She probably should have had some pre-pared remarks, knowing the general situation. I kinda agree, but I just don't think that's how she prefers to approach such situations. Talking to myself here.

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  16. The outfit is very pretty. I like her hair in this youthful style,she looks so refreshed and glowing. I myself like the higher waist lines. Reminds me of my younger days when we wore the "empire" waist styles. Most of Kate's dresses have this waist line, probably to offset her height and just personal preference. She is just so stylish!

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  17. Robbie from Hampton VA USA11 January 2017 at 14:38

    Does she intentionally have some items made with a higher waistline to accommodate a future 'baby bump'? That would be so exciting, if so!

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  18. Thank you Charlotte for your speedy post on the engagement this morning. What an interesting and like it said highly specialized program. So interesting to e that this is in place because at least always tend to think of how having a new baby is such a happy time in a mother's life but can really understand how challenging it can be for some and how much someone in this challenging circumstance can use the additional support. A great spotlight engagement on services that are so desparately needed.

    On the fashion front, really like this coat dress and glad she decided to wear something new to this engagement. She is really beautiful in this color. This designer is really nice and love that the garments fit her so well. I really appreciate the fact that the designer was a past counselor. Great way to kick off 2017!

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    1. Thank you, Julie, for your insightful comments about the organization as well as your fashion thoughts. I agree. Beautiful color on her. At times her eyes have looked deep blue in this color. Also, the sapphire earrings are among my favorites. The tailoring on this dress is very well done, I think. annie

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    2. Thanks Annie

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  19. She can do no wrong11 January 2017 at 15:03

    Perhaps to allow more flexibility during pregnancy?

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  20. Is it just me, or does Kate's chest look fuller? (early sign of pregnancy). BethNY mentioned the fact that the belt is so high, as it was on the Sportmax coat. Perhaps another sign of pregnancy (high belts typical of maternity wear, to accommodate the belly). I am really hoping for this, so I suppose I am looking for signs in every photograph lately!

    Anyway, I don't really care for this. I think it is that I don't like coat dresses in general. I guess it's just that they seem heavier and bulkier than a dress. However, I get why Kate probably favors them, especially in winter. It's probably easier for her to attend engagements without having to deal with wearing, and then having to take off and put somewhere, an actual over coat. Yet it's cold and a regular dress without a coat would not be warm enough.

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  21. Great cause without a doubt. LOVE the coat and the color is beautiful. I like the black tights on the model...really makes the blue pop.

    PS ... Ok I will say it... IMO HRH could use a haircut. When I look at photos of her with the shorter layers around her face, she looks younger.

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    1. We agree royalfan :) If she has to resort to putting those clips in her hair something is amiss! I mean, honestly.

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    2. Yes, we do. :) I admit to not being a fan of this hairstyle. And I truly believe that a more layered and shoulder length style would be very flattering.

      And now I realize that the model is wearing blue tights. They looked black on my phone. Oh well. :)) But IMO this coat would be perfect with black accessories.

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  22. As always Charlotte, thank you for your informative, detailed post. I always enjoy learning more about Kate's patronages.
    This coatdress is fabulous - love the color, the notched collar, the shoulder detail, and the skirt. The belt also looks good worn higher; it gives the illusion of a shorter waist and longer legs.

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  23. Victoria from North Carolina11 January 2017 at 15:35

    I just love reading this blog. The blogs are refreshing and not once do you ever criticize Kate. I read Daily Mail articles to see what the royals are doing. But I have to say that in regards to Kate I say that the Daily Mail has some vendetta if that is the word against Kate and William. The article that was written today totally knocked Kate down. The article made a sly remark saying that since Kate has a nanny that motherhood mustn't be hard for her. I think after reading the article that I may no longer seek the Daily Mail for my royal information. Now back to today's outfit. I love the coat dresses that Kate often wears. Kate has such a classic style.

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    1. Julia from Leominster11 January 2017 at 19:16

      The press in general has republican leanings (to put it mildly) and on top of that, William and Kate have not made themselves popular with the British press especially.

      But the press is mindful of its readership and what sells and is quite Machiavellian so one often finds these seemingly favourable articles with a little slight put in if you read closely - same with the Guardian articles recently.

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    2. Thanks Julia for the explanation even though I was not the one who asked. Everything now makes sense to me. Besides I only now go to the DM to look at pics.

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    3. I think the Daily Mail's articles aren't very good in general, not just where the Royals are concerned. They're far from objective and often catty and some of the subjects that they write on are incredibly inappropriate, I think. Not to mention the (usually unmoderated) comments that people leave there - despicable!

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    4. Not defending the Mail, but a reminder that MailOnline is different and often articles seen there are not published in the Daily Mail newspaper.

      As always, I would urge everyone to get to know good royal correspondents and follow them. Good reporters are at "bad" newspapers, just as bad reporters are at very good and reputable papers! Like every other occupation!

      Rebecca English at the Daily Mail is very good and almost always solid, and from what I can tell seems to have very good connections at Clarence House... once you read the regular, strong correspondents you get an idea where their contacts are. Which is always helpful when trying to determine the truth of the matter.

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    5. True, Claudia. That's the first thing I seek out after the headline. The by-line.

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    6. Twitter, for example, as a source?

      Delete
    7. The DM is good for photos. The comments are a different story, and not a very good reflection of our society. Sadly.

      Delete
    8. I agree Michael G. I mainly use DM for pictures. I follow Rebecca English on Twitter and find her to be balanced there but have found her articles in DM Online to follow the format Julia mentioned, better written but still taking swipes at W/K that you don't see on Twitter. I'm not sure if it's because you only have 140 characters or if an editor is adding to what she submits ahead of publication.

      I also follow Chris Jackson as I like his pics of the Cambridges and his online persona. I check in with other reporters from time to time on twitter. Not living in UK, I don't have access or currently read actual newspapers/magazines any longer. Each one has their own personalities so I tend to float between Richard P, Camilla T, Victoria A, our beloved Charlotte of course, and other blog writers. I feel it helps to broaden perspectives and allows me to form my own opinions.

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  24. Lovely coat dress, I love the color, but agree that the belt would look better lower. Wonderful first event of 2017, and Kate is always terrific with children.

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    1. The second part of the day was very meaningful to me. I too lost a parent, my father, just before my fifth birthday. This colors the rest of your life, as William is very aware of. I saw tremendous empathy and sadness in him. He was wonderful with the children, and showed such tenderness with them. The work that WK&H are doing in the field of mental health is incalculable. William's advice to not repress feelings, but to rather talk is vital. I hope more people heed that creed.
      Sometimes I think we forget that he carries pain within himself daily. This colors all of his actions, and at times I feel the criticism leveled at him, does not take this into account. I know, I know, he will most likely be King one day, but first, he is a human soul with feelings and emotions. He cannot escape that, nor should he. Just my opinion.

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  25. I know I'm likely in the minority here, but apart from the glorious colour, I do not care for this coat and don't think the look is doing Kate any favours.

    Personally I think shorter, 3/4 sleeves on a coat or coat dress look odd, and the waist on this is hitting her far too high, it almost looks too small on top. And I've said my piece plenty of times on this "hairdo" she insists on.

    After looking at some of the "year in review" posts, what makes some of her looks lukewarm - for me - is the *same* colour from head to toe. I hate to be accused of comparing her to Diana, but how about if she's going for all red for example - a hat the same colour but with a contrasting band? How about contrasting shoes or bag? That maybe would have slightly helped this coat today.

    Apologies for the negativity! I do think it's good to see them both back to work, I would also add I hope they show more variety with their engagements at home this year. Tours work because there's such a variety of interactive "lively" engagements. While these are all incredibly worthy causes and deserving of time and attention, I do think they need to switch it up more at home as well with some more dynamic engagements that will show W&K off more.

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    1. I think you and Penny should talk:)

      I agree with you about the contrast in colour and moreover her hair. Oh my, it is just wrong on so many levels.

      Lovely colour on her.

      Early engagement, even a quote, and she stayed longer than usual. Well done!

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    2. I agree Anett!

      And I should have noted that I thought William's words about Diana were terrific, I know it must be very difficult for him but I really hope to see much more of it. They are so guarded and controlled as a couple, these personal tidbits are very helpful to push a more human side, help promote the cause they're interested in, and just help connect one on one to people at events. Well done William.

      I'd still like to see their office (wishful thinking here for sure) negotiate an in depth, family interview, in return for promoting their important causes. With a nice interview on why they chose the causes they did and the personal connection they feel. That would be a huge PR boost for them and their charities. Win-Win :)

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    3. Unfortunately, deciding how long to remain at an engagement is not something Kate gets to choose. Schedules must be coordinated, along with a massive number of other details. I have seen photos in the past of assistants literally "herding' Kate from area to area and person to person. I recall one instance that she stayed longer than the allotted time and apparently frustrated a few planners who had her over-all schedule to consider. Today seemed rather complicated and involved solo engagements for each as well as a joint engagement.

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    4. Claudia, if W&K do an in depth family interview, a couple of stiff drinks will be in order at CH. Tall glasses.

      I love the idea, but cannot see it happening! :))

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    5. Annie,

      I have seen videos of the "herding" also. It is amazing to me that William and Kate can maintain enough during all that to even put two thoughts together, let alone keep the grace and love flowing like they do. Yet again, kudos to them both.

      Delete
    6. Claudia- I love your suggestion for an indepth family interview. That would be fantastic.

      The next step from editing the H. Post for a day

      Delete
  26. Kate looked lovely and relaxed. Gorgeous coat, my only hesitation is the construction of the shoulder area and I agree with those that said she has the belt way too high. She does wear her belts a bit high but this time it looks like an empire designed style in the photos no a just a belt with the bottom of the belt sitting at the natural waist line, which is what she usually does. Hope this makes sense about the belt:):) A wonderful engagement. Ali

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  27. A lovely engagement for Kate today. So nice to see her shine when she's with children. Much too much made of her comment (in the DM) that parenting is difficult, implying that because she has a nanny it shouldn't be hard for her. As someone who did have a nanny when my children were young (not necessarily because I could afford it, but because of my particular circumstances), I can say that having one doesn't alleviate a parent from the usual trials and tribulations and to suggest otherwise is an affront to women in my opinion. In any event, this was a wonderful engagement and the first of many I'm sure.

    I loved Kate's outfit today. She knows what looks good on her and this color is amazing. As to the positioning of the belt, I would offer that perhaps this positioning is simply Kate's own preference. All women have perception issues with their body and Kate may feel more comfortable positioning belts a little higher. Perhaps it makes it easier to bend down and engage with children. Whatever the reason, I think I prefer to give Kate a pass on it and believe that she does such things for a reason.

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    1. Caroline in Montana12 January 2017 at 16:14

      Marnie, I agree with all you said. Just because you have a nanny doesn't automatically mean parenting is easy! The DM does seem to enjoy stirring the pot. I also agree on the belt, she seems to prefer to wear them like this. Personally I would not find it comfortable at all, but then I have a very different body type than Catherine's! LOL

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  28. Absolutely love this color and style! Kate looks amazing. I would love this coat dress!

    I thought wearing the belt above the natural waist was done all the time. Gives a leaner look. Lengthens legs. The model's hands are on her waist, but the belt is above.

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  29. Comparing the side by side pictures of the model and Kate wearing the desecrate, the higher waist definitely makes a more youthful design. The mid waist looks very old fashioned. Good though to read the different opinions.

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  30. Thank you for your always informative posts. I follow you only!! She looks beautiful as usual. Great people, Great work

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  31. Love the coat, both the color and the fit. And because of the name, I have been singing Les Mis all day in my mind, which is always a good thing. I also thought the belt looked a tad high but not enough to bother me. But the hair! Enough with the butterfly clips! It was fine when we were 19 and it was the 90's but now, not so much. A sleek ponytail would have been great. Or truly half up/down. Just stop with the clips.

    The engagement was good. It's fun to hear that Kate can talk Mom to Mom with these ladies, though I am sure some of their concerns are quite different. Kate doesn't worry about some of the more practical matters, but these ladies don't have to worry about kidnappings because their kids are future kings of the country.

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    1. I appreciate your comment, Katie. I share your Le Mis rejoicing,....regarding parenting comments in DM-from what has been said here, it sounds like a typical click-grabbing, buzz-inciting tabloid angle. Yes, the fear of kidnapping; but also, eventually, and perhaps now the effect on Kate. Few of those mothers face personal remarks their children will possibly grow to adulthood reading. One hopes this will become a kinder, more compassionate world by then.

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  32. Too busy ogling the James Bondish RPO to count buttons. ;+) Is that Ms. Deacon wearing nude pumps? Good information on this effort, Charlotte. I think your quote from Mr. Fonagy clearly outlines what it is exactly that royal visits accomplish, without bandage-rolling.

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    1. I have now counted buttons. Yes, Kate has raised the waist area. Did you notice the official woman next to Kate in the arrival photo at Child Bereavement UK apparently also has a raised waistline above her natural waist?

      Delete
  33. Julia from Leominster11 January 2017 at 17:37

    To me these are two of the most important charities Kate - and in the second case - William are involved in.

    We read so many tragic stories of young children abused or neglected by parents who whether because of mental health issues or situational ones, can't cope. The Anna Freud Centre is doing excellent work with these parents. (And you, Charlotte, have done an excellent job of explaining their work.)

    It's so heart-breaking to read about young women who have faced issues like trafficking and are still trying to do right by their children. There was an extremely important quote by one of the parents today - she stated how important it is that Kate is bringing attention to this work. That is one of the most important aspects to me. Young parents who may be floundering and not know what to do may read about visits like this and realise there is help. Often, that is the biggest issue. People get lost in the overwhelming troubles of their situation and don't know where or what to do to get help.

    As it happens over the last month, I've been talking to several friends who have lost loved ones - and dealing with issues of bereavement as I have myself. Coping and acceptance and just dealing with the happiness most people have at festive seasons and the sense that you are sad whilst everyone else is celebrating is hard enough for adults. I can imagine how horrid it is for children who will feel not just grief and loss but the sense they are different from other children yet may find it hard to express that. Grief strikes people in so many different ways.
    I've always thought Child Bereavement besides being one of the most important charities is also one of the most touching ones for William and Kate since it was founded by Diana and Julia Samuels was one of her close friend, and William and Harry ended up facing that sort of grief. There have been recent articles on how important it is especially for children to preserve memories - that memories of lost ones can be shut out by schools and surviving parents and families and it's only later as adults that sense of having no memories comes. Harry made mention of that and it was massively misunderstood that Diana didn't spend time with him rather than the probable fact that he wasn't encouraged to talk about her and preserve personal memories.

    I loved Kate's coat dress - it is a beautiful colour on her and the style works well both indoors and out. Eponine seems to be a successful designer for her and their cuts suit her shape. Still think it's time for a haircut but the clips kept the wind out of her face and that's what counts.

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    1. Julia from Leominster11 January 2017 at 19:23

      Worded that badly, Diana was the founding patron.

      I also forgot to emphasise the importance of trying to keep families together and children out of care and recognising the damage that happens to children who are put into care. Care is important in some cases but, in my opinion, should be avoided if there is any family situation where the child can safely remain. Too often, care is used as an easy or "safe" solution where a better solution could be found to keep families together - and yet ironically, children in critical danger are so often missed. It is an area where there are no easy answers, so charities like Anna Freud are extremely important.

      Delete
    2. Julia,
      Your first sentence is so true. Sometimes the legal system may not make it easy, it can get complex.

      Delete
  34. Marla from New Hampshire
    Kate looks lovely as always. The work she is doing and the attention she brings to these family issues is just so hugely important that it can't be overly stressed. Great job, Kate.

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  35. Love the coat, although it really bothers me when she wears shoes/bags that are almost but not quite an exact match! I think the shoes and bag should either match or contrast the blue. She's done the same thing with red-themed outfits too. It drives my perfectionist brain crazy :)

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    1. Penny

      I had a good laugh at your comment:) thanks!!

      To be honest, Kate has exhausted this matchy-matchy thing. I wish as you have suggested, she contrasted more in her shoe wear. Who could afford that if not the Duchess of Cambridge. And it sometimes not even about money.

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    2. I feel your pain. Those colors dont match. On the other hand, i am always relieved is she is not wearing her nude heels.

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    3. Penny, I think it could most likely be the way the colors photograph. In fashion shoots and other ad campaigns test shots are done in studio and outdoor lighting to make sure the colors remain trur on camera. That would be a little tedious for Kate to do that. Although a good stylist might not mind taking the time to do it. That's what I would do if I were her stylist.

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    4. I completely agree with you Penny. Her shoes and clutch ruin the outfit for me!
      I might be wrong (it is hard to see colors on pictures sometimes) but there seem to be some black in her buttons and I would think that black shoes (maybe even patent or normal leather instead of suede, just to spice the outfit up a little) would look better.

      Personally I love the color of the coat but as mentioned by someone else... a little lighter blue might be better for her skintone.
      Over all, nice but not wow.

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    5. I'm always a little puzzled by the dislike of "matchy-matchy" shoes/bags or shoes/bags in slightly "miss-matched" colours. Why? To my mind, only (the dreaded) satin bridesmaid's shoes were exactly matched to dresses. And let's hope that doesn't see a fashion resurrection.

      I understand this look as tone-on-tone dressing. Like the duchess, I'm a fan. I'm not enamoured of "pops" of colour. Not anywhere. For example, I prefer the range similar to those paint-sample chips that go from cream to ganache or oyster shell to slate in clothing as well as decor. In my house bold pillows don't even make it to the couch. I toss a belt or kick off shoes every time if they don't tone into the coat or dress. Instead, I prefer to vary textures (which suede and wool pull off quite nicely). And yes, blue wool and blue suede will photograph somewhat differently.

      But taste-wise I quite like the single colour tone palette without everything having to match exactly. This coat was fine. But not anything I would lust after. To each her own.

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    6. Philly I also am not a fan of matchy matchy. Same color families are fine but I do also like some contrast. Not sure what I would have done with this outfit to lift the look up a bit. Maybe in person the slightly different blues and the watch and earrings helped lift it up a bit and that gets lost in the photos.

      Delete
  36. Eve from Germany11 January 2017 at 18:16

    I truly envy you guys over there in Britain for having this Anna Freud Centre. It´s truly inspiring to say the least. I wish something like that had been available back in the day when I was young. I unfortunately speak from personal experience when I say that mental health problems, dysfunctional coping strategies and problems with bonding with your child can cause TOTAL havoc in your child´s life. In my case, my parents even refused therapy when I became highly anorexic for fear of being stigmatised amongst other fears they had. A life full of anxieties and the belief that you are so "ugly" and "unbearable" you just have to do "outstanding" things all the time to "make up" and make everyone "forget" that you are so "horrible" is just one of the many devastating effects untreated problems in your upbringing can have. I can truly say, I wish that on NO-ONE. If Kate´s visit has made just one parent admit that they struggle and seak help, it´s been totally worth it!

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    1. Anna Freud herself struggled with her own appearance especially in comparison with her prettier older sister. She was lucky to have a Psychoanalyst father. Her interest branched out to children out of her own experience most likely.

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    2. Unfortunately, Eve, what you described is not that uncommon. I have seen that in families just within my social circles. Hugs to you. :)

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    3. Julia from Leominster11 January 2017 at 20:04

      I hope you got the help you needed in the end, Eve and came to an understanding of your parents conduct and that it was their's and society's problems, not yours. What a horrible way to have to grow up being made to feel you have to compensate. There is one online here for you from Julia (and your comments are always so thoughtful.)

      If there is one excellent area where William and Kate are working it is to end stigmas relating to issues of mental health. In the past so many things were hidden away for fear of shame and judgement by others. My nana had Alzheimers as did several of my friends nanas and we all knew it but our mums were never have dreamed of discussing it except very quietly amongst themselves. It took films like Iris and people like Rita Hayworth's daughter and the Reagan family to make it something people could address openly. And keeping things hidden puts so much pressure on everyone.

      The same with eating disorders. Diana was extremely brave to address it openly and the same with her working with Relate but Charles and Camilla supporters routinely - and still do - rubbished her for being mentally unstable and used that as an excuse for their own conduct. It was awful and I can imagine how much it affected William and Harry with little they could say openly about it. So I'm pleased to see him working to end stigmas and hope there would be honesty if there were any personal problems.

      Often when things were hidden, the care became appalling as happened with those poor women in the Queen Mum's family who were born with disabilities and were completely neglected for their entire lives.
      Today so many things are being addressed in a positive way. There was just an article in Tatler dealing with public schools and learning disabilities - with a hope these issues are being better addressed, spoken of and understood. If at times it feels as if there is a label for each of us and none of us is "normal" it only goes to show that normal doesn't truly exist. We are all unique in our own way.

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    4. Julia from Leominster11 January 2017 at 20:48

      Been trying to work at the same time and don't seem to be able to string a sentence together! I meant a hug for you Eva, from Julia and a heartfelt if slightly incoherent one.

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    5. Eve from Germany,

      The fact that you shared the story courageously is some good awareness and overcoming the past/my guess. Most likely many people find you appealing. The problem is perception of ourselves, perfectionism and meeting expectation of each generation’s, “norm”. Other core issues beyond that is a matter of individual reasons. Support makes a difference even in normal circumstances let alone issues which require close attention.
      Past generations have missed out on what Science and related fields continue to make a positive impact on society. The stigma of mental illness is a society problem. Sometimes parents are confused too, and there is that matter of standing in the community. The world can judgmental without knowing the inside story only the problem owners know. It can be from a state of mind to biochemical/biophysical, environmental or the most complex. It is concerning different categories all fall under mental illness

      Look what Anna Freud did. She geared it towards her other strength and made up for it. In the end, beauty is to the beholder. Her beauty became her work and it goes on to bring attention to the problem of children. People who turn the negative into a winning positive are even more fascinating, and can be inspiring. They come from some core of experience of their own. Think about it.

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    6. Don't forget Prince John, Julia. An example in the "Windsor" family. The Kennedy family in the US took excellent care of their Rosemary. I believe Eunice Kennedy Shriver made the cause a focus of her life.

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    7. I have been a reader for awhile and have never commented before but did want to respond to Annie's post. Yes, the Special Olympics were developed by Eunice and that was/is a wonderful thing. Other Kennedys also made important contributions to the mental health field. But so far as Rosemary receiving "excellent care" from the family, after subjecting her to other unsuccessful experimental treatments Joe and Rose Kennedy had her lobotomized at about age 22. (The AMA had warned of the serious risks prefrontal lobotomies posed by that time so the dangers were known.) Some reports say the parents were worried about what they perceived as "promiscuous behavior" on her part (she was quite attractive and reportedly liked to flirt) and the parents worried if she got pregnant that stigma could affect their other children's chances of success. Other reports say the lobotomy was intended to control mood swings. Rosemary lost the use of one arm, became lame, and stopped speaking due to the operation. She was then institutionalized for the rest of her life even though she was capable of traveling around London alone and debuted at BP only a few years before when Joe was the US ambassador there. Joe never saw her again although he was able to travel for many years until he had a stroke. Rose did not visit her for over 20 years. 

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    8. Julia from Leominster12 January 2017 at 08:04

      Very true about Prince John. As for the Kennedys, it was so sad about Rosemary but lobotomies were considered an acceptable form of treatment at the time. Don't know that much about it but I believe that Eunice did do a lot for mental health.

      But the suicide of Robert Kennedy Jr.'s second wife was tragic and seemed as if more could have been done to help her. And I think there was some issue on Jackie Kennedy's side too - those cousins there was a play about - "Grey Gardens". (I never saw it.) No family is immune from troubles.

      Delete
    9. Eve from Germany12 January 2017 at 10:20

      Thanks for all your kind words, folks, it was TRULY touching!! I am so moved!!!

      Although I still struggle because almost every day I discover new "beliefs" and how I "managed" to accept them as the "truth about me" - although they couldn´t be further away from it!! - I am incredibly proud and thank our Lord for one thing: I managed to destroy this vicious circle.
      When I first realized that I was making mistakes that were affecting my daughter, I did not care what I had to do in order to make sure my daughter learnt to love herself. I did not stop until I had made sure that she had her sense of self-worth and self-respect intact and she knew that I love her unconditionally, no matter what.
      I know how hard it is to face your "demons from the past", but your child deserves this. It´s simply called "love", right?
      My family still until this day believes that my anorexia had absolutely NOTHING to do with them and was simply a "passing fancy" of an overly intelligent teenager, another sign of me obviously being "strange" and "not right". I have spent years in therapy (I ultimately even became a therapist myself), hoping one day I could make them understand.
      Today I have accepted that some people can´t find that love inside which I found for my daughter. On the other hand, I don´t play "happy family" anymore just to avoid more "oh, it´s all your fault".

      Delete
    10. Eve, your words moved me to tears (of joy). My desires and prayers for my son are also that intense and focused for my ability to be the best and to be able to do the best for him at all times. He had a very hard time after his father unexpectedly passed. A lot of in-law stuff going on with that and I had to, through faith, rise above it, keep love as the goal, for my son's sake. God brought him (and me) through it and it is getting better all the time and I thank God for it. And, I thank you for your transparency. It truly brought encouragement to me. God is so good. :) I pray that your parents (and my in-laws, who sound a lot like your parents, btw), will have a breakthrough also, and be freed and healed from whatever is holding them in any bondage. I pray that our entire families will be healed and made whole. Our children will be extra blessed by that too. If He did for us, He can do it for the rest of our family and I believe He will. (I am hoping your parents are both still alive.) (more hugs to you)

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    11. You are there, and have arrived well to prevent cyclic effects. Some people have the awareness but not the strength or the clarity which comes after soul search. The good news here is you won over it enough to influence your daughter positively. That is not always possible for many people.

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  37. Is it just me or does Kate's bust look a little larger. Kate usually wears the belts a little higher on her waist. Could Kate have hidden her pregnancy from the public. Charlotte could you give us your opinion.

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  38. Interesting comments about the reasoning behind the belt being high--I would like to agree with the but I wonder if it is simply tailored that way to make her legs appear longer. I do like the color and the design of the coat, it is simple but very nice. I like her hair being pulled back too so she can bend down and talk with the children.

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    1. That, "putting the belt higher", was a common thing done on "What Not To Wear", the show where they did fashion makeovers. They did that, they said, to make the legs look longer and the hips more narrow, the lower torso more streamlined.

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    2. I have never thought Kate's legs are short. Her torso is long. High waists are attractive on some of her coats. But the seaming on this coat dress, combined with the high belt, makes Kate actually look a bit dumpy, slim as she is. I like the flow of the skirt, and the color, but I wish they had left the bodice alone. All in all, though, I like this outfit far better than the red and white dress.

      This must have been a somewhat challenging day emotionally, but W&K did it well. I have great sympathy for those of you who have lost children. What a difficult and heartbreaking experience. I know mothers who have never really recovered from such a loss. I hope you have had good support and that you have found the means to live the rest of your lives with balance and peace.

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  39. I so appreciate W & K's involvement with youth and families at risk and especially W'S willingness to share grief with people going through it. I applaud these initiatives--they are so sorely needed! I lost my mother when I was 16, 48 years ago. There was no one to talk to about it, no articles written about grief and loss.
    I have been watching the old BBC production of In the Shadowlands tonight, the story of C.S. Lewis and his wife. Also a story about grief.
    I like the way that W & K's visits are always done in a low-key way. Intimate, they are there for the people who are there and not for the world. Although, because they are who they are, the message gets out and people sit up and are made aware of the organizations.

    I see W also went to Centerpoint again. Another organization that is so important.

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  40. I don't particularly like seeing criticism of Kate's choice of clothes because much of it is personal taste and ideas of what is and isn't appropriate for a member of the royal family. I've only hated one of Kate's other outfits efore today. Some haven't been to my taste but I really couldn't overcome my dislike of the bottle green D&G. Today is another in that category. The stitching over the shoulders makes them look huge and throws out the proportions of the coat. Awful.

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  41. Children's mental health is an issue close to my heart, professionally speaking, so I really enjoy this aspect and focus of TRH work. Thank you Charlotte for explaining the process the Anna Freud Centre go through - fascinating. As Maria from NH stated, the importance of organisations like these cannot be over stressed.

    I thought Catherine's outfit was respectable and suitable for todays engagements. I couldn't get a grasp of the shade of blue the dress coat is because it looks different in different light/flashes!! I know the outfit could have been styled differently to make it really pop (as the designer has done with her outfits on the website) but I really don't think that is Catherine's way. She plays it safe and stays within her comfort zone. As mentioned in the Vogue article of last year (where she was the Cover Girl), Catherine does not see herself as a clothes horse or fashion trend setter. It would be fun seeing her wear outfits as the designers have styled them but then she wouldn't be true to herself!

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  42. What worthy causes TRH are highlighting today and to me the fashion is secondary, although I do like this coatdress very much. As someone who has suffered the loss of a child 25 years ago this week, I know the importance on having services that can help families through very trying times. As for William, the pain may ease a bit but does not diminish and as many of you probably know on this blog, the pain and memories never really leave. I appreciate all the Royals for tackling these often difficult subjects.

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    1. JN I know my words don't mean much now, but you have my deepest sympathies and a massive hug if I could. XO

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    2. Thank you Claudia or is it Clavdia. Life goes on and my heart goes out to Jen below on her very recent loss.

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    3. JN, I just want to echo Claudia's sentiments, sending you good thoughts and prayers during this very difficult week. X

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    4. Thanks Charlotte, appreciate your thoughts and as always appreciate the wonderful work you do here. it provides a wonderful escape from everyday matters.

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    5. It's actually I, Clavdia if we're being technical, but please let me echo those sentiments as well.

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    6. JN, you have my prayers and sincerest condolences. I hope your pain is eased, if even ever so slightly, knowing there are many who are sending good wishes your way.

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    7. Thanks Bluhare. Keep making us smile😊

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  43. I really bothered by criticism of the duchess's choices in clothing. Let's face it. Fashion is a matter of personal choice. As for thinking that her belt is so high because she is pregnant, for some reason she always wear her belts high. If it were because she is pregnant, she would have been pregnant all the time.

    Poor women. It must be annoying to have people speculate about whether she is pregnant so often. Think about how you would like that;I know she is a public figure,but still. Having or not having children is a private matter. Having said that it sounds like I am going to ignore this comment with what I say next, but hey I am human.

    I have a feeling the Cambridges feel their family is complete for three reasons. First Kate gets very sick during the first trimester of her pregnancies and that can't be healthy. And who knows the long term effects. Secondly she has a husband who adores and and I doubt he can bear seeing her go through that again. And last these are very two hands on parents who feel raising their children is a very important. Their lives are only going to get busier and busier and perhaps they feel any more children would not allow them the opportunity to give their children the kind of parenting they want to give.

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    1. Julia from Leominster11 January 2017 at 21:47

      Fashion is part of being royal but I always try to evaluate it three ways - Does it work for the occasion, whatever that may be; is the garment well-fitting and flattering to the wearer with good accessories? And third, do I like it personally.

      For instance that Kors grey coat was hugely successful for ANZAC day, subdued yet interesting for a final day of a tour and I thought it a very handsome coat. It did well on the recent poll. But it felt wrong for me for an engagement at a children's playground. Of course, opinions always vary. I intensely disliked the choice of a bright pink coat for a visit to the 9-11 memorial - I was in Manhattan right after that happened with all the photos of lost people and..well, as much as I love pink, that didn't work for me, and seemed different from what Kate wore to other memorials. But royalfan who lost a relative in that tragedy, thought it was fine.

      As for technical issues, my second review, The blue suit worn in the Netherlands should have been perfect but the wool creased badly. A designer like Walker should have been attuned to that and it is also good to "test" a garment before a big event. I used to do that when I worked. I'd wear it for an average day to make sure on an important day I didn't end up looking like an unmade bed!

      Finally personal taste I think is fine to express on a blog like this as long as we know tastes can differ and do. Almost always someone will love what someone else hates. That green Walker for instance - it fits fine, it was an excellent choice for the Chelsea Flower Show but I just can't like it for some reason. The shade of green, the cut, don't work for me. But others do like it.

      As for pregnancies, unfortunately there will always be speculation. The one I felt most badly for was Diana who had to go through it when her marriage was falling apart and her husband unfaithful. I try to take a wait and see attitude - I've had so many friends who said their families were complete until suddenly... But there really is no way to announce whether or not a royal's family is complete.

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    2. Julia - I was a first responder on September 11 as well as other tradgedies and did a great deal of work with survivors. The DoC's magenta coat worn at the Memorial signified hope and recovery and as such was deeply appreciated.

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  44. Rhonda - Wisconsin11 January 2017 at 21:16

    I pretty much agree with everyone on the belt placement on this coat dress. It's not horrible, just off. Having said that, Kate looks beautiful. She could wear a paper sack and still be beautiful. Two points on Baby #3 - I think that with Pippa's wedding coming up, she'd have to be pregnant now or very soon to avoid the HG issue bumping up against the wedding. I really think she would want to be healthy and able to enjoy her sister's big day, don't you? One other thing - when she went to visit the field of poppies her hair hadn't been colored - you could see the roots. I thought that I read that she's particular about using hair dye while pregnant and I thought to myself "I wonder...." Next thing you know, they announced a new baby on the way in September. It could have been a coincidence, but who knows? We'll just have to wait and see I guess.

    Thanks for the great post Charlotte. Both of these events are wonderful and I'm so glad that William and Kate are focusing their energies here.

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  45. Charlotte, I've been a reader for years. Of all the blogs dedicated to the Duchess, yours is my favorite because of the fascinating historical context you provide. You obviously take time to research, and it makes you stand out among the rest. This is my first comment, and it feels strange to pop out of the woodwork after so many years. You don't know me, but I feel like I know you, and many longtime commenters! :)

    I feel moved to comment today because the the work TRH are doing to support Child Bereavement UK hits close to home. Our only child died in August, when he was just 24 days old, and since then I've struggled. Many therapists have little experience working with grieving mothers. There aren't many of us, which is a good thing. But because of that, therapists don't always know what normal grief looks like. It can be difficult for them to identify postpartum depression versus grief, and poorly trained therapists can inadvertently make the situation worse. So I am so glad the organization is training professionals to better help grieving families. This is like a wonderful way to make their resources go as far as possible. One well trained professional can help many families. I am so pleased TRH are supporting this worthy organization!!!

    On a more frivolous note, I'm happy the gray Erdem coat is so popular--it was an unusual choice for the Duchess, but it's one of my favorite looks on her! I thought I was in the minority, because I like seeing her wear texture and pattern, and more accessories. Her wardrobe in India was amazing.

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    1. Hello Jen,

      Thank you for your incredibly kind comment and welcome to the comments section. It's been lovely to 'meet' so many new readers since using a 'name' came into effect. I do hope you come back and comment regularly. There's a great group here as I'm sure you already know from reading.

      I am so truly sorry to hear about your loss. I cannot begin to imagine how difficult and painful it must be. My paternal grandmother lost her youngest when he was just a few months old and could never bring herself to speak of it - it was just too painful to bring up. Certain charities really strike a chord with the public and Child Bereavement is certainly one of them. Families who have received support from them have found the support structure very helpful whether it's via their national helpline or through face to face support. I was enormously surprised to hear from readers who said they wished similar organisations existed in their countries. There's been quite a few scandals in the charity sector recently, with public trust at an all time low and donations affected, which is why I feel it's more important than ever for fantastic organisations such as Child Bereavement to have the royal stamp of approval and to receive as much attention as possible. Anything the royals can do to help in terms of raising awareness and fundraising is so important.

      And the grey Erdem is a great choice :)

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    2. Dear Jen,
      You are so courageous sharing your story. I can't imagine your pain, but I send you strength and love.
      Tedi

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    3. Jen,
      Each type of bereavement has different experience for the person. A parent’s death feels different from a spouse’s. A sibling’s death is different, from a dear friend’s. Your child’s age is experienced differently. In your case, I hope in time you will find the healing. What you lost is an angel, innocent, let peace be, as such age is peace beyond our challenging world. For you, people who experience it might relate better, because it is a special bereavement. Some of us can imagine, but it is beyond that. Time, it also takes time for healing.

      Personally, I consider grief the hidden enemy. You are right, therapists need to specialize in this field, but it is still good to unburden the emotional choking of bereavement.

      It is as if some therapy of empathy must first be experienced by the very therapist to understand the exclusive feeling of different kinds of bereavement. If a good support group under a specialist guidance is found, that can be another setting. It may not necessarily work for every person though.

      May you have the proper healing, "accept" and let go. I mean it with all good intention. I have been in bereavement experience in teen years, then as an adult, losing an adult. The first time, it caught up with me in a treacherous way by the time I became a young adult. It was bereavement not properly dealt with, rather in a rush and the busy life of youth. The second time, I had learnt lessons from the past, was matured enough not to let it affect my life. The emotion can be overwhelming, but it must be tackled before it affects the survivor's life. That would not be what the rested would want for us either. These days, people understand the impact of bereavement and they prefer to celebrate the parted person's life however long or short that life had been.

      One quote I remember William said he learnt from his grandmother QE was, “grief is the prize we pay for love”.

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    4. That is incredibly sad, Jen. I hope you're able to work through your loss as it's difficult for me to even fathom the feelings when someone loses a child that young. Grief plus all those lost hopes and dreams. I hope you can find new hopes and dreams and take pleasure in the memories of your little boy.

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    5. Jen you are welcome, let me send a big hug to you. Your post is really meaningful, sad but meaningful in this moment. Thank you for sharing your grief with us.

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    6. Julia from Leominster12 January 2017 at 08:08

      Dear Jen,

      Grief is such an intense and personal experience that everyone feels in their own way, especially when it follows a birth of a child when one expects to be so happy. It's important to find the right person to help - I hope you have now. My prayers are with you and yours.

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    7. Jen, I am so very sorry about the loss of your son. Your experience in dealing with professionals to help with your grieving is, as you say, why what Kate and William are doing is so important and very brave. As parents, it's hard to to face the fact that children do die - we just don't want to think about that and it's easy just to turn away when we hear of it, and put it out of our minds, and pray that our own children are safe and healthy. Kate and William are immersing themselves in others' pain, which must quite difficult. But they are doing it to help others, which is a wonderful thing.

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    8. Jen, may I suggest contacting your doctor or a children's hospital in your city to inquire about bereavement support groups for parents who have lost an infant/child. (Also, an on-line search can direct you to organizations in your area.) Connecting with other parents who have experienced a terrible loss like yours can be very therapeutic and beneficial. I've seen the excellent work these organizations do first hand (I'm on the bereavement side), and I hope you will explore this option. You have my very deepest sympathy, Jen, and prayers are being sent your way.

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    9. To be clear on my comment, "That would not be what the rested would want for us either." They would not want us to have a prolonged pain in grief. The reality is much harder for survivors. Even if bereavement specialists are not available, to be in therapy can alleviate the mixture of feelings,sort and process the emotion.

      Best wishes, it may be delayed but you will reach some closure and healing at some point.

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  46. I love this dress/ coat, the colour is really lovely and really suits Kate. I like the navy accessories with the blue. Whatever the reason, Kate's bust looks bigger than usual -in a good way! I can't imagine she is pregnant as she has been so unwell with past pregnancies and she looks full of beans today, a picture of health. I'd say she will be pregnant soon, I think that the lack of plans for the year indicate this.

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    1. Tara- the tailoring and seam enhancement in the bodice may account for some of that -illusion.

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    2. Perhaps she is pregnant but just not experiencing the same illness. One can have Hyperemesis Gravidarum with one pregnancy but not with another.

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    3. Pam
      That is true.

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  47. In the image of Will and Kate arriving at the second engagement you can see a bit of the actual DRESS Kate is wearing underneath. It appears to be a slightly darker shade of blue with a pink trim near the bottom.

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    1. You've got sharp eyes. It looks quite pretty from the peek that we can see.

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    2. Pam I thought that was just the trim on the inside of the coat. I have a coat/dress on today that has trim covering the edges. I could be wrong, but that's my guess!

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    3. With a coat dress you don't wear a dress underneath - it's really a heavier-weight material dress. I noticed the pink satin and I think it's the edging on the hemline. It can stop the hem stitching being seen

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    4. Actually, photos on another blog make me think the pink trim is the lining of the coat dress, not a dress.

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    5. I thought this too, and couldn't figure out why no one was mentioning it, but upon further inspection, I think this may just be the inside trim/hem of the coatdress.

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    6. No, I don't think that is a dress underneath and the pink that you see is the hem tape for the coat.

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    7. I think what we're seeing is the inside of the coat, exposed by the small slit at the bottom front while she is walking. It doesn't seem there would be room for a dress underneath.

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    8. Could it be where weights were added? Nice touch finishing a seam like this. That's what I would expect at this price point

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    9. It seems to me that the navy with bright pink ribbon hem tape is NOT the lining. The reason I think this is when you look at the piece on Eponine London's website, the lining of the coat dress is a lighter blue, almost turquoise-like shade. It certainly could be bespoke, but it looks identical to the piece from the collection on their website. And I doubt the lining would change from the top of the coat to the bottom. I agree that it doesn't seem there would be room for a dress underneath, though. What do you think?

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  48. Blah...the matchy matchy, all one color coat dress is played out already...they all look the same, but different in a small way.

    I don't understand why there are so very little quotes from William, and especially Kate, at these events. The one quote from Catherine that they printed was "having kids is tough." Wow...astounding! I mean, I really think the issue with her credibility is her lack of voice. They go to these places, which is great, but why not give the media some great quotes to print. A million pictures of W&K looking intent is boring and doesn't get any sort of message across.

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    1. There is actually a wealth of really good quotes today, especially from William. In general, royal engagements don't generate a lot of quotes, especially when journalists only get them from people the royals talk to. Today was a very good start for the year for W and K, IMO.

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    2. The words and photos and their presence there spoke to me. Definitely got a message across to me. William was talking to a young girl in language she could understand. Probably pretty great words from her perspective. People can give speeches, sure, but one-on-one relating to people packs a bigger punch in my opinion. And, he could be photographed standing on his head or doing cartwheels, I guess. What kind of photos would one want at these events? Empathy is way more than just looking intent and empathy is what William was expressing in his words and countenance, in my opinion. I am not sure what else, specifically, you expect from them. That would be a hard visit in my opinion, speaking with bereaved children and mother's with emotional challenges and their children. It isn't something everyone would even show up for. William and Kate did. Kudos to them.

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    3. LAwoman, the quote was longer than merely saying parenting is tough. You should read the context. Also quite a few quotes coming from William on what must be a very difficult subject for him. Finally, it can't be easy for reporters to always hear what is been said with one on one conversations in busy rooms and in this case children around. Also in sensitive areas, much of what they say is private to the individual. I think the message today was loudly received by most.

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    4. p.s. The Queen has made visits to many facilities over the decades as are William and Kate now. William and Kate, with all due respect to Her Majesty, with their every visit, are more vocal and interactive generally speaking. The Queen's visits were appreciated and good and by comparison so are William and Kate's.

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    5. With all due respect to the Queen, whom I adore, William and Kate are visiting facilities as the Queen has for years. William and Kate have kicked it up a notch, being more interactive and vocal at the visits. By definition of the word Patron, they are doing exactly what they are supposed to be doing, and then some.

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    6. LAwoman-interesting comment. Hope to hear from you again.

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    7. The simple words from William are relatable to a child. There is something which feels alone and lonely, with a child losing a parent.

      Love sort of comforts the wounds, and if the genuine kind is found, it is almost medicinal in proper doses and without transferring the attachment to the new found love. For the children, that vacuum is not going to be easy to fill. Bereavement center, what a supportive idea.

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    8. sorry for the duplication there. my 1st. text flew away somewhere before I was finished with it. Obviously it landed here. (who knew, lol).

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  49. A word of thanks for all your interesting and kind comments today. It's lovely to see so many new names and productive, enjoyable conversation. The blog is off to a good 2017 :)

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    1. I agree. I'm back from my time out for biting and am playing well with others. :)

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  50. Thanks Charlotte. These engagements are so very important and I am so thankful that both the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are shedding such a bright spotlight on this issue of such great importance to children who so badly need it. Bravo Kate and William. I am so happy that by doing this William is also helping himself. By talking about the loss of his mom at a young age shows how far he has come.
    I love this outfit on our Duchess.

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  51. Hmm blue is her coloe i love the coat ans its was a lovelfy enagement She litterly. Know hoe to deals with kids. Too i think the she expecting. Will soon been pop to the media i think let wait and see

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    1. Trixie North Carolina12 January 2017 at 02:06

      I have been thinking the same thing Bluefire! I think she is expecting too! Time will tell!

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  52. I praise William & Catherine for highlighting these worthy causes. William's comments brought tears to my eyes...I'm also touched by readers who have shared their own personal experiences of tragedy and hardship. My heart goes out to all of you.

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    1. I agree Kiwi Gal @ 23:32. An especially moving day on DKB. (Glad my kleenexes were close by.) My thoughts and prayers go out to the hurting here today also. Neat how love can move through cyberspace. :) very sweet. amazing.

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  53. This was just what I needed today! After a very LONG day at work, a Kate (& William!) engagement was a wonderful change of pace.

    My first thought when I saw today's outfit was "She's pregnant" followed closely by "If she's not, everyone is going to say she is!" I'm torn on today's look, the belt is much too high for my liking and the shoulders look a little wonky to me, it may be the stitching, I'm not sure. I'm also not fond of her hair pulled back this way. I do LOVE the color, blue suits her well. Her jewelry was just enough - perfection.

    Now on to the engagements themselves. I am a strong supporter of mental health initiatives, as I live with bipolar and social anxiety. It's so vital to diagnose it at the earliest onset and build the tools to cope and grow while dealing with challenges that others may not face. I wasn't diagnosed until my 20s and looking back, there were definitely markers and signs that something was under the surface. I commend the organizations as well as the Duke, Duchess & Prince Harry for bringing attention and focus to populations dealing with these issues. Mental health is still very much stigmatized and the more attention and information that is shared will only help end the stigma.

    Moving on to their joint engagement, William is in a very special place, he shares an experience with these children that many others in their lives probably don't. It's important for children to feel a connection to someone or something after a tragedy. For a lot of children, the adults in their lives don't share the experience and they have to navigate the emotions and feelings without much of a guidemap. Programs like these and people like Prince William are vital to these children understanding that they're not alone and life continues to move forward, you don't "get over it" but you do find a new normal. I think opening up and sharing his experiences with these children will impact them in ways he (and we) will never know.

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  54. I thought it very telling in the video when Kate patted the little baby's head affectionately. Then when being ushered over to be introduced to more people, Kate noticed that that would have bypassed a woman sitting there along the way. Kate, on her own, stopped and said hi to that woman. Then we she did arrive at the other side of the room where there were two women sitting on a sofa holding their babies, Kate knelt down to speak to them. Very sweet. Very thoughtful. Very Kate.

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  55. Nice color - but oh my - does she really need more coat dresses? It's a nice style for her and very practical in winter/fall esp for warmth on an outing without looking bulky in a coat over a dress. But I'm ready to see her style evolve.

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  56. As to the color, it seems to me that Catherine is more and more "Queenish", with solid color and those bright hues. She seems to quietly slip into her future role, day by day. As to the high waist, I must confess that the first thing I said to myself was: a new bump is hidden! But of course it was just a suggestion. Time will tell the truth.

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  57. Thank you charlotte for changing the title of your post from what Kate wore to something meaningful about her engagement. I think it is really helpful!

    Amazing research from you too!

    I loved her coat today, great colour on her. More importantly I appreciate her presence and patronage for these agencies. And she seemed to stay longer than just an hour (stayed an hour and 45 mins it seems, at the first engagement anyway). Looking forward to whatever comes next!

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  58. I love this photo of Carole and her children when they were younger :) It's on Middleton Maven's twitter account: https://twitter.com/MiddletonMaven/status/819249113250332692

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  59. My heart broke when I read your beautiful post this morning. I was so looking forward to seeing our lovely Duchess, but unprepared for the personal impact that this visit would have on me. My son's Dad is desperately ill with Prostate Cancer, that has spread to his bones. My darling 14 year old is having such a difficult time dealing with seeing his Dad so sick, and how I wish there was a wonderful centre like the Duke and Duchess visited that he could attend. As each week goes by, our hearts break a little more, and the overwhelming sadness of a 14 year old boy going through this is so sad. William's beautiful words touched me deeply, and I will show them to my son to help give him courage and support from afar. I love the memory jar idea, and I will do that together with him this week. I don't think any Royal
    Visit has ever touched me so personally. Thank you for sharing, and writing so beautifully about it Charlotte.
    It seems inadequate to be talking fashion today, but I loved what Catherine was wearing, and she shines when surrounded by children. She looked beautiful, elegant and perfect for the occasion. They are both in their element with these causes, and I can only imagine how proud Diana would be of both of her precious boys. I am loving the new comments section, what a great way to start 2017 with some lovely new faces giving comments for the first time (like me), and the positive way that people are being more courteous and kind to each other.

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  60. Courtney from NC12 January 2017 at 02:39

    I was on the Eponine site the other day and thought Kate might like the blue coat. There are also a few other things that I think she might like or that I want to see one her.


    There is a red and cream gingham coat that would be cute. (I am posting the links so if anyone wants to see it they can.) I am note sure I love the buttons but a bespoke version of this would be cute.

    https://static1.squarespace.com/static/54d349d5e4b08b02e250e0f2/584e6ecd8419c2a296dbaba9/584f00c1440243c9d75c8c55/1481572576280/na23.jpg?format=300w

    There is a two piece teal dress with a short top that goes over it that would work well and would be different than a coat dress.

    http://www.eponinelondon.com/aw-16#/1201-1/

    Another two piece dress.

    http://www.eponinelondon.com/aw-16#/1210/
    http://www.eponinelondon.com/aw-16#/1211/

    A fabulous red, caped coat that I would LOVE to see on Kate.
    http://www.eponinelondon.com/aw-16#/1219/

    I fitted blueish dress that might work for Kate.
    http://www.eponinelondon.com/aw-16#/1223/

    And then a really kicky, printed hanker chief hem print dress.
    https://static1.squarespace.com/static/54d349d5e4b08b02e250e0f2/57e93f62b8a79b84a500e6da/57e93f62b8a79b84a500e6dc/1459950951973/Photo+21-03-2016%2C+12+27+44.png?format=500w

    I like the blue coat and I don't mind the belt being high or the one less button. I think the seems add interest.

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    1. Caroline in Montana12 January 2017 at 17:14

      I really liked some of your choices! The first red and white coat dress seems like such a classic and I agree with you on the buttons, but im sure our girl would change those up! That red cape/coat would be wonderful on her, not sure what event one would wear that too? But she could totally pull off the kicky printed handercheif print dress! not a huge fan of the two piece outfits but could see in wearing those too, you have an eye for "kate fashion"!

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  61. What a great charity to start the year! I love how they are making mental health, especially for grieving children, such a spotlight. It's so vitally important and also misunderstood in many ways. I hope they continue to expand their reach in this area. (I nearly cried when William told the poor grieving girl that he also lost his mum so young). I wish we had a centre like that here. As for the clothes, the coat is pretty, great color, nice to see the earrings again as I'm a big sapphire fan! It gets the job done. I might have gone with black shoes and may e a brooch, and the girlish hair could use a rethink, but all around a great day!

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    1. Yes, I think a brooch would have looked lovely!!

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  62. Alejandra Ramirez12 January 2017 at 04:48

    Good job with the post!

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  63. Balbina - Austria12 January 2017 at 04:59

    Oh wow - so many names. That's jwonderful. I am grateful for everything that gives us individualisation of comments. This is just so much better. And the recent change is telling me that the newly names commenters must have been old friends anyway because the know of our wish to have individualised comments. Thanks everyone, that's just awesome and much appreciated.

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  64. I love the outfit on Kate that blue is stunning on her. Also that clip of William speaking about his mother HRH Princess Diana made me cry.

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  65. This is beyond ridiculous.
    On the model, this piece looks great and wonderful and how it should - with the belt at waist level - where belts should be.
    Kate, on the other hand, has had this garment altered to move the belt to almost under her bustline. The indicator is that she's also had an extra belt loop added at the front.
    I have to doubt the pregnancy reason because a dress like this, especially with that belt moved so high, would instantly reveal any bump. Given her past history, if she was in the first trimester she'd be dealing with some morning sickness still and she's clearly not second- or third-trimester pregnant. My guess is she's holding off until after Pippa's wedding - if she and William decide to have another baby at all. The risk of babies having birth defects and other issues increases after 35 and she certainly is aware of that.
    She's done this before when she wasn't pregnant, worn these weirdly high-waisted pieces. I've read that she is actually long-waisted so I think she does this to give the illusion of longer legs (you see some of the long-waisted bit when she's in pants or jeans, she's very long in the torso). But this belt placement is awful, it ruins the coat and the line.
    I'm also tired of the matchy-matchy theme. It's starting to appear like she's not even trying. Not saying she should be a clotheshorse but she's been looking like she just grabbed something out of the closet and threw it on going out the door.
    I loathe this look for her hair. As someone mentioned previously, it looks like she pinned her hair back to put on or take off makeup and forgot to unpin it.

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    1. Caroline in Montana12 January 2017 at 17:22

      I must respectfully disagree with your statement -

      "It's starting to appear like she's not even trying."

      from where im sitting she more than looks like she is trying, and not everyone is going to like the same thing, but just because one person doesn't like it hardly equates her looks/outfits to Awful, Hate and Loathing. not a huge fan of women cutting down other womens looks. good thing they are focusing so much on mental health, she will need all the tips she can get moving forward for the rest of her life.

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  66. Ali,

    In response to your question the other day, my guess is that they can. When renovating, they also re-routed some things with the landscape to provide more privacy and security for their residence. During that time it was shown in diagramed photos those changes that were being made. There was a public parking lot next to the church with a public access to that from the public road nearby. Some of the access roads were re-routed but not eliminated. You can google Amner Hall renovation. As to whether the public is allowed to attend services at the same time as the Royals I don't know. Perhaps regular members of the church only, but that would perhaps be a tedious and delicate distinction to make on the day of their attendance should other, non-member church goers desire to attend on those days also. Good question.

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  67. *"those days" being the days the Royals attend

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