Saturday, 13 May 2017

Party at the Palace: William, Kate and Harry Host a Very Special Tea Party!

It was a very special day at Buckingham Palace as the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry hosted a tea party in the Palace grounds to honour the children of those who have died serving in the armed forces.


A wave from the Duchess upon arrival.


Very appropriately guards played tunes from Disney's Frozen in front of the Palace. I love these thoughtful touches for the children. I doubt many of us know a young child who doesn't simply adore Frozen, and I'm sure George and Charlotte are fans too.


Roya Nikkhah shared this photo.


The Queen gave permission for three additional garden parties this year, including today's tea party. Later this month Prince Harry will host his first solo garden party for current and former members of the military at the annual Not Forgotten Association; the Duke of York will host another.The party was attended by a number of charities which help support families, and specifically children dealing with bereavement, including Prince William's patronage Child Bereavement UK, and Scotty's Little Soldiers, Winston's Wish and SSAFA, the Armed Forces charity.


Kate chats with guests.


Ahead of the party, Kensington Palace said: "The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry have arranged the event as a way to acknowledge and honour the fact that a number of young children have had to come to terms with the loss of someone very close to them at a young age, having lost a parent in Armed service to the country. Their Royal Highnesses hope the event will provide an opportunity for these children to broaden their support networks amongst other families with similar experiences."

Invites were sent to children aged up to 18 years of age who have lost a parent in service for their country, with each young person accompanied by a parent or guardian.


Train tickets were sent with the invites.


Last month, royal reporter Roya Nikkhah shared a look at a hand-written letter Prince Harry sent to invitees (I'm sure the recipients were rather surprised to see it with their tickets). In the sweet note Harry wrote: "I know it's Buckingham Palace but please don't worry about dressing up, there's no need. I won't tell if you don't! Loads of fun stuff organised so wear what u want, I dare you! Fingers crossed for sunshine!" It is little gestures and personal touches like that which are not only so appreciated but incredibly memorable.


The royals mingled in the crowd. Below, the Duchess chatting to a young boy.


Prince William was surrounded by guests.


The Duchess got right into the spirit of fun and games. She was particularly eager to try her hand at firing water balloons.


Kate's expression :)


There was clearly a lot of thought and consideration given to making this a family-centred day with a host of entertainment and enjoyable activities for the children. William, Kate and Harry appeared to thoroughly enjoy it :)


A great photo of William and Kate.


The event featured performances from Jess Glynne and Nina Conti, as well as children’s entertainers and magician Lance Corporal Richard Jones. There was an abundance of stalls where guests took part in face painting, arts and crafts, science experiments, circus skills and cupcake decorating.


Kate with a little girl in the cupcake tent.


Members of the Royal Foundation’s Full Effect and Coach Core programmes led workshops in beatboxing, breakdancing and a number of other sports.


Harry played “plate-spinning” with three-year-old "Spiderman" George Hinchcliffe. George's father, Captain Richard Hinchfliffe, who served with the Royal Armoured Medical Corps, died in an accident as a civilian in 2015 shortly after leaving the RAMC.


Speaking from the stage, Prince Harry said “I can assure you that Buckingham Palace gardens have not seen this much fun, ever.”


More from The Telegraph's story:

“We’re here to celebrate you. We're here to remind you that we as a family, and as a nation will never, ever forget the sacrifices that all of you here have made," he said. “We wanted to give you an opportunity to know that you are part of, sadly, a very large group of fantastic people. The three of us, and all of our family, wanted to thank you so, so much for everything you've done.
Among the children who bonded with Prince Harry was Jack Rigby, six, the son of Fusilier Lee Rigby who was murdered in 2013 by Islamic extremists outside the Royal Artillery Barracks in Woolwich, south London. Jack's mother, Rebecca Rigby, 34, said: “It means so much that the royals put this event on and are showing us their support. It's so important for Jack and all the other children here to know they are not forgotten – that they've not gone through all of this to be forgotten, that they've got their support. “It's also so important for Jack to be able to speak to other children and know that other children have gone through the same thing as he has.”

There have been several moving stories in the press in recent days about those attending. The Evening Telegraph shared a story about a family travelling from Germany for the party:

Pete Cluff had served in the British Army with the Royal Engineers for almost 22 years when he died of heart failure while on a team-building exercise aged 41.
Now, wife Kirsty, 37, and daughters Heather, eight, and Meredith, five, have been invited to sit down for a cuppa with the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry at a special Buckingham Palace tea party to honour the children of those who have died serving in the Armed Forces. Kirsty, who had to travel from Germany in order to attend The Party at the Palace, told the Tele the girls were “over the moon” about the upcoming event.
She said: “I didn’t want them to miss out on the opportunity so we packed up the car and came across. It is really good for them to be around other children that have gone through what they have so they know they’re not the only ones. The girls haven’t stopped speaking about it — they are so excited.The invitation was a hand-written one. It said that people could wear what they wanted but the girls are going to go out and get matching frocks.”

Below, the late Pete Cluff with his beautiful daughters Heather and Meredith.


Child Bereavement UK shared these fun photo.


The audience enjoys a performance from Jess Glynne.


The party concluded with a special display from the RAF Falcons.


The party was organised by one of the world's leading international event organisers, Fait Accompli. The London-based company is Buckingham Palace's first port of call for official functions. Founder Camilla Monckton was close friend of Princess Diana's and organised an array of events for her at Kensington Palace. Pippa Middleton and James Matthews have hired the firm for their impending nuptials with wedding planners reportedly joining Pippa and Michael Middleton for preparations last week.

Fait Accompli

Moving on to what Kate wore today.


The Duchess wore the pretty See by ChloƩ dress she debuted for the unforgettable children's party at Government House in Canada with George and Charlotte last September. Today's event had something of a similar feel, with the piece a suitable choice once again for the relaxed feel of the engagement.


The $460 dress is from the bran's Fall 2016 collection which was described as "careful, youthful and poetic". The pointelle-knit, cotton-blend dress is underpinned with a tonal slip and has a flattering fit-and-flare silhouette, finished with a ruffled collar and cuffs. The piece remains available at Saks Fifth Avenue.

Saks Fifth Avenue
A closer look at the fabric.

Saks Fifth Avenue

As she did in Canada, Kate wore the $180 Acne Studios Leather Waist Belt. It is described: "Finished with a simple burnished gold buckle, Acne Studios' belt is crafted from the smoothest cream leather with a tan underside."

Net-A-Porter

Kate also teamed the dress with her trusty Monsoon Fleur Wedges again.


The £45 espadrille wedges have been updated and are now available in taupe and navy, retailing for £45. They are described: "The classic court shoe gets a warm-weather spin with our Fleur espadrille wedges. In a sumptuous suede effect with an almond toe." At present, they are available in most sizes at Monsoon.

Monsoon

Kate completed the look with her favourite Annoushka pearls and Kiki McDonough hoops.


You can watch a video here.


We leave you with this photo from the talented Andrew Parsons who took the vast majority of the images featured on the blog today. The look on this little girl's face, clutching her teddy, shows the excitement and wonderment she felt meeting "a real life princess".  I very much hope it becomes an annual event - it's certainly worth it to put these smiles on children's faces.


Hope you're all enjoying a lovely weekend. It's exactly one week until Pippa's wedding!

261 comments:

  1. Rebecca - Sweden13 May 2017 at 16:12

    This is such a wonderful occation. And it's all done so well. Even down to the train tickets! (I loved that touch. Imagine showing that at the train!)

    This is such a clever way both to provide a special day to these people but they way they have set it up as a way to build networks for these families. Absolutley splendid! It's a great mix of the modern and traditional part of the royal work!

    I guess this look is her "Official kids garden party" dress now? Haha. She's pretty and looks both relaxed and as a princess. So the choice works, even though it's not my favourite look ever. It's heavy enough to work in the london weather without beeing cold, but it's flowy enought to look airy and avoid wearing a coat. So I very much understand the choice.

    Looking forward to seeing more from this amazing event!

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    1. I am thankful she wore a repeat, especially since Harry encouraged the children not to dress up.

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    2. Yes, Rebecca, I think this dress will now be typecast as the "children's party dress" :)

      Amazing party! You are spot on about about everything being considered and done well. I hope these youngest victims of war and unrest make lasting friendships and life long bonds today.

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    3. I think this is a very princessy dress. At least many little girls will think that.

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    4. I agree SG. The letter from Harry described a fun tea party, so recycling a fun dress works perfectly.

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  2. I love Harry's letter. That will be a keepsake for sure. So much thought went into this and I was really moved by the story of Peter Cluff and his beautiful daughters. Just a sensational event.
    Kate looked lovely, but when I saw the wedges, I braced for incoming. Ha!

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    1. +1

      Today it is better to talk about what a lovely garden party it was, because on fashion front Kate is going downhill.

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    2. They actually do make sense on grass, but so do a nice pair of flats.

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    3. I love that last picture of Kate. What a great expression on a wonderful lady.

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    4. Agreed: a lovely party with numerous thoughtful touches. Hosted by people who know the pain too well, but also know how to help the healing process. Splendid all around.

      However, IMO on the fashion front Catherine is staying the course with tried and true pieces in the styles she favors. No big surprises or up-to-the-minute fashionista/celeb dazzling from her. In fact, I find her way of styling herself very similar to HM's: Conservative. Visible in a crowd. Commanding the camera.Totally (future) queenly.

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    5. I just saw the great picture of Kate with the little boy, and the little girl clutching her teddy. I love it. It speaks volumes of the excitement the kids had at being with Princess Kate! Thanks Charlotte for a wonderful post.

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  3. Loved this dress the first time, still agree it is a beautiful choice for today. Simple, not overdressed for such a humble occasion. Bless the children who lost parents.

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  4. I don't know if this was mentioned the first time she wore the dress, but the addition of the belt really brings it all together -- it looks so much better on her than on the model! The color matches so perfectly it looks like it's part of the original design.

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    1. Loved the concept. Making the children/families feel special. Letting them know they are not forgotten.
      Giving them an opportunity to meet others who have had the same losses. And then, there is Harry's letter. Drop the pen. :)

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  5. Loved Kate's expression. She's the real deal. :)

    Loved that the little girls decided to matching "frocks"/dresses. And, another "British word". :)

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  6. Julia from Leominster13 May 2017 at 17:19

    Such a special event - I hope it becomes an annual one.

    Not sure how I feel about the dress - better than a lot of things, but the Cluff girls going out to get new party dresses speaks to something so many little girls have - the urge to be a princess - and to see a real princess in something memorable. I'm not sure this cream is truly as little girl memorable as it might be - (they wouldn't know it was a repeat of course.)

    Maybe something pretty and flowery would have shown off more - it's one area where asking some little girls what they think would be the best answer - but it should be a dress to dazzle the eyes - like Belle would wear. (Hair down is perfect here.) I suppose I'm remembering seeing the queen and other royal ladies in garden party frocks in photos when I was young - and feeling it was something almost magical. Also, I don't mind repeats but if little girls are going out to buy new dresses - and plenty of mums probably were too - it might be the time to debut something new.

    But such a fun and charming party - the invite, the ticket, the personalised note and the events are all so wonderful. And such a moving thing to do for children who have lost so much.

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    1. Rebecca - Sweden13 May 2017 at 17:36

      People will always go out of the way to buy new clothes to see the royals. I don't think that could be a reason to buy new :P

      I get what you mean, but it really seemed to be a relaxed tone in the clothing department. This way she was princessy (with the flowy skirt etc) and relaxed (with the knit fabric). It's not like she was in her brenton stripes.

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    2. I do agree with you Julia. Not a criticism at all about what Kate is wearing but this is one event at which Kate could have gone "over the top princess". All the little girls would have been thrilled.

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    3. Agree, Julia. It looks like it was a lovely day for it too. Heaven knows you can't depend on that! I think a nice frothy confection would have been lovely actually.

      But a wonderful thing to do for the kids and it looks like there were some really fun activities. bluhare would have allowed her inner tot to come out and joined right in. Especially with the water balloons.

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    4. While I like this dress, I really don't think it's a great fit for a children's party. The colour gives it a kind of "don't touch, must not get dirty" vibe. And since Harry wrote in his letter to the families about this being a casual event, I think a nice pair of trousers, flats and a colorful blouse would have been the way to go.

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    5. I totally agree with you. Something pink!!

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    6. Agree Julia, it should be an annual event - though that creates those dreaded expectations ;) It is the perfect use of the royals and the palace. These children are more than deserving of the attention of course, but also what a great opportunity to see there are others like you, and a chance to build new support systems I'd imagine too. So I think it's a fantastic idea and event.

      Personally I just don't understand the dress choice, I hate to mention it because the day is about so much more. But wouldn't most people *avoid* wearing something they wore to such a similar previous event? (back to back weddings for instance) Especially two such significant events, a tour party that provided a rare photo op of the children, and this new type of party at BP. Both these events will get a lot of play, now and in the future.
      Go for a repeat if you like, but she must have *hundreds* of other choices.

      Rosman suggested Kate was bored in the last post. I don't think that's the case, though I understand what Rosman's getting at, since I do think Kate is stuck in a very big fashion rut.

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    7. Oh gosh Julia. I don't agree about the buying new clothes things at all. First time I have disagreed with you LOL. I think Kate wears way too many new clothes. I was very happy to see a recycle. And I love this dress, so a good recycle for me.

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    8. Orange County Grandma13 May 2017 at 21:42

      Hi Claudia. As I mentioned in my post, I think we have to forget about what Kate is wearing. This event was for the children who lost so much. That being a parent. I feel she was playing it safe. Their focus is on the kids.

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    9. Yes an annual event, but perhaps with different children every year? I think it should be a one in a life time for the children because they will treasure the memory of an exceptional moment, not just the annual party at the palace. And there so many other children. Perhaps next time those who have a sick sibling, to tie in with another charity? I believe the queen wishes to invite as many different people as possible to the garden parties. It could be the beginning of a long tradition of children (garden) parties...

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    10. Rebecca - Sweden13 May 2017 at 22:58

      That is my thought as well Natacha. Maybe kids of police one year etc. Maybe it can be a bi-annual event? (Once every two years) since I assume it costs a bit more than the regular garden parties? Either way, I really hope these kind of events become a staple, because the way it was done was absolutley splendid and it would be a great compliment to the annual garden parties.

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    11. Alternating like that is an excellent idea. For it to be an annual event excellent also.

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    12. I an so happy they could give the children this support, a chance to meet others to bond with, and a fun day. It just makes me so sad to think that all this hurt for those children is because of violence and war and is, in a way, avoidable. This is really the best they could do for them in these circumstances and i applaud them for it. They seem so at ease and naturel. WKH are truly on a roll this year in their joint efforts!

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    13. Julia from Leominster15 May 2017 at 11:12

      I think it would be a brilliant idea to have an annual children's garden party honouring different groups - just as the adult ones do. It could include children who work for their community and many other things. Possibly just random children who send in letters too - as part of a school project - or is that too Tito and Me?

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    14. Nope. Not Tito and Me at all, in my opinion.

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  7. I am so impressed with Harry! He has turned out to be such a wonderful man, full of compassion and joy - he gets right in there and helps people, shares his good humor and support freely - I just love him! That letter is so touching! Glad all three were there, what a great event. As for fashion - the boys looked amazing, Kate's wearing that dress that I abhor....but I will say it looks better this time around for some reason - especially from a distance, and I can imagine it's very comfortable, but...ugh that old lady lace just kills me, especially with a high, RUFFLED neck, and long RUFFLED sleeves! So hot, so scratchy and it looks like you'd snag a hangnail in it immediately. Plus the hair down gets all mixed up with the lace, it's just too much going on. But, you know it's getting a bit weird to keep talking about her clothes - for the first few years it was SO MUCH FUN because she was always a home-run. Nowadays it seems like it's just not that important to her, and maybe it shouldn't still be so important to me. You know who is the rising style star that I'm so excited to watch - Meghan!!!! :)

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    1. Diane: I agree with you, what a star Harry is! Incredible. He has a real gift regarding genuine empathy and compassion.

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  8. Firstly, thank you so much Charlotte for the blog and for the comment section. Actually, I have learned a lot about fashion. Really, your blog has changed my point of view about clothers and colors haha
    I do like kate and I find her choices so clever and appropriate. Maybe she's not a fashionista (who Im to say that? šŸ˜‚) but certainly she is so smart enough to be able to develop her fashion skills.
    (Sorry for my english, It's not native language)
    Amy

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    1. Amy, your English is perfect :) This was such a fun event,, I hope the young Royals host more parties of this nature where the Royals are more normal and less stiff. The last picture of Kate is classic,, that expression priceless :)
      Thank You Charlotte!XOXO

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    2. Yes, thank you again, Charlotte. Kate is a special lady. :)

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    3. Your English is perfect, Amy. :)

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    4. Pam from Boston15 May 2017 at 19:28

      Amy, I agree that maybe Kate is not a fashionista at heart, and have said as much before on this blog, although others disagreed with me. I think, perhaps, in the beginning there must have been a lot of pressure on her to dress the part of the princess, so she made more of an effort, but in more recent years, since getting busier with the royal duties and the young children, she doesn't have the time or energy or desire to put a whole lot of effort into her clothing choices. I think so many of us want her to be like Princess Diana, and she just doesn't put as much importance on fashion as Diana did.

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  9. What a great event. Loved this dress the first time, but both times she has paired it with an espadrille wedge that is too casual for the dress. I think she could do a wedge, just go for a leather one and not a canvas style fabric.

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  10. I hoped that she would were that dress! :)

    Don't like those shoes but for a garden party they are ok.

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  11. Orange County Grandma13 May 2017 at 17:48

    Reading the comments, you all have to remeber this engagement is not about what Kate is wearing be it new or a repeat the focus has to be in the children that have lost a lot, a parent. It is their day.

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  12. Tammy from California13 May 2017 at 18:09

    LOVE that invite and note from Harry! Loved the train ticket part too.

    I want all of you UK friends to know, I really admire how you treat your military members. I wish we did the same here in the US. Anyone willing to lay down their life for another: well that's the definition of a hero, and they should be treated as such.

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    1. Courtney from NC14 May 2017 at 03:09

      There is an event every December in the US called Snowball Express and it is a long weekend where the children and widows/widowers come together for free and do all sorts of fun things. They get to meet other families going through Tuesday same nightmare they are facing. I still think we could do much more but it is something.

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    2. Tammy from California14 May 2017 at 14:54

      Courtney, thanks for sharing! I will be looking it up! You are right, it IS something!

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    3. I'm glad someone mentioned Snowball Express, which takes place here in Dallas each year. American Airlines is a sponsor, and they bring around 2,000 children and surviving spouses from Gold Star families to Dallas for the 4 day long event, held each year in December.
      The USO, created during World War II, is still very active in serving members of the U.S. military throughout the world.
      There are many other charities that could be named, but it would take up a lot of space lol.
      Presidents and First Ladies have always hosted activities centered on honoring members of the armed services and their families. Jill Biden and Michelle Obama were very active in this respect. This has been a tradition no matter which political party occupies the White House.
      I wouldn't want to leave the impression that Americans don't care about or support the Armed Forces and their loved ones. That's just not the case IMO.

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  13. What a lovely idea for a party. Bravo! The dress is perfect for this setting. Glad the three are more casual and not in traditional Garden Party dress. Glad the weather was good.

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  14. Oh what a great party. The invitations, train ticket, letter and the event itself was wonderfully creative. Looks like a wonderful day for everyone.

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  15. Michelle in Salt Lake City13 May 2017 at 18:34

    Aw... Harry. I love his note to the kids. If I were younger, I won't say how much younger, I'd be tempted to fly across the pond and take my shot!

    I love seeing shots of people casually dressed at BP! The Queen host some beautiful, formal parties, which are wonderful to see, but I like the informality of the younger Royals. I want to go to a party with them.

    I was pleased to see Kate in a repeat. She knows how to keep the attention on the event and not on her fashion when it truly counts, I think.

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  16. Just a side note that awful Uncle Gary is at it again. He allowed his tailor to post a photo of him on social media, apparently dressed for Pippa's wedding. Hmmmm... you don't think he allowed the tailor the publicity in return for a deal on the suit, do you?!
    ;)

    This was the post, it included a pic of GG in the shop:
    "Gary Goldsmith all set for the big wedding next weekend wearing his ready to wear suit and bespoke waistcoat."

    How gauche.

    Gary then followed up himself with tweets saying it's "another smoking ensemble, making me look like a million dollars" then called attention in another tweet to the personal shoppers at Selfridges who were helping his daughter find an "important" dress.

    See, every family has someone who causes headaches...

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    1. Rebecca - Sweden13 May 2017 at 20:50

      Gotta say though, if that is the worst kind of headaches that family provide it's a very good deal :P

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    2. Ugh. That man is simply odious. I bet William and Kate laugh about him a lot. We have an uncle like that. Fodder for many family discussions.

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    3. Uncle Gary might be my favorite Middleton.

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    4. lol, WHY does that NOT surprise me bluhare?? :)

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    5. We all know he's done much worse than that in the past Rebecca. He has to be a MAJOR headache for Carole and family at this point.

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    6. Haha. Well, I know he's not a Middleton, but he is Kate's uncle. And he's probably an arrogant jerk. But he appears to be a somewhat honest arrogant jerk, and I like that about him.

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    7. PS I forgot to mention I find him entertaining as all get out.

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    8. Haha...Uncle Gary strikes again!

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    9. The same with me Bluhare LOL!

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    10. Let's see...Gary scandals versus Windsor scandals...The Windsor scandals nearly brought down a monarchy. All Gary does is make himself look silly and maybe a little endearing. He's a thorn in the side for the Middletons at times. I doubt any of them share anything significant with him.

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    11. First, you are absolutely right Anon 17:21. I always do a little eye roll when there's talk about the suitability of a potential royal spouse, not like the Windsors have set a very high standard there! That bar was lowered a long time ago...

      Gary is more than silly in my mind though, and bluhare I don't think he's terribly honest either. He takes a tiny bit of family information and spins it into various stories for certain reporters, because it's obvious he enjoys the attention and clubbiness being in their set. I wouldn't trust him as far as I could throw him. He's given numerous interviews (while trying to sell his property) about Kate's mothering skills and her children, though never addressed if he had even met George.

      I was curious if he would even be invited to Pippa's wedding, they probably decided *not* having him would create a stronger story and distraction. So of course he needed to make sure everyone knew he would be there. I'm sure he'll be an "inside source" providing information about the wedding, especially if it comes from certain reporters ;)

      I think they're in a pickle with him though. I agree with the frequent suggestion that he was the possible go between for the Middletons and Tanna during the break-up, so Carole needs to adopt a "keep friends close and enemies closer" strategy ;)

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    12. Good points, Anon @ 17:21. Good points.

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    13. I didn't mean honest in the "doesn't lie" category. I meant honest in he knows who he is. And he never hesitates to take the mickey out of his sister, who apparently doesn't have room for some relatives, but does have room for Roger Federer who I read is on the invitation list, and I want' even looking for wedding stuff. Believe it or not, I'm trying to avoid it as they want a private family wedding.

      And now I'm off to find the biggest eyeroll emoji I can find.

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    14. - Claudia-I mostly agree with you. I don't know anything about the break-up, however.
      I wonder if Gary could possibly be attempting to manipulate an invitation?
      I'm starting to feel a little unease with this discussion. It may be unfair.
      Marie-anon 17:21

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    15. I agree, Claudia: tasteless.

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    16. Julia from Leominster15 May 2017 at 11:15

      He truly is vulgar but I suppose they are fond of him - and it's said he's also an investor in Party Pieces.

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    17. Gary has a daughter (Carole's niece and her children's cousin) and that probably adds another interesting variable.

      The Middletons have to factor that in and with the daughter comes Gary. Package deal perhaps.

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    18. A rather sizable investor actually.

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    19. Since we talk about the wedding:
      https://thinkyquirks.wordpress.com/2017/05/15/the-middleton-marriage-media-meltdown/

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    20. Thanks for that link, Anett. I found that & other posts on Thinky Quirks, pretty interesting...

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    21. This part is spot on:


      As I have mentioned in previous blogs, other families who ‘married in’ to the royal family managed to remain pretty low key. I am verging on certain that none of them ever needed PR guidance to ramp up interest or indeed, wanted it.
      For me, the only interest I have in the wedding is that we may possibly see George and Charlotte, those secret royal children whom we know exist but hardly see.

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  17. I am so glad to see the young Royals do Something for the children who have lost a loved one at a young age. They can see how William and Harry have over come the death of their mother at a young age. I like that Kate wore a repeat and dressed down because of Harrys letter telling to come as you are .That was a nice touch. Kate as always looks beautiful .She would look great in a feed sack. She is just a beautiful woman , and what a smile.

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  18. I would definitely frame that letter and the train ticket stub as an invited there, if I were them. Those are that special. Then anytime they feel sad, missing their loved one it could comfort them.

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  19. I love the dress that Kate wore , and am glad she wore a repeat due to the letter that Prince Harry wrote , saying come as you are .It is good for the people to see the young Royals meet with them at their levels. I think it is great for them to have this tea party for the children that have lost a loved one at a young age. Prince William and Prince Harry can share that they lost their Mother at a young age , and give them some support . Princess Kate ( Duchess ) of Cambridge is always beautiful , and all smiles she makes people feel at ease and always gets down eye level with the children. I am glad they gave this tea party for them.

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    1. Rebecca - Sweden13 May 2017 at 20:53

      I agree that her dress being a very noticable repeat was very much on purpose. The train tickets and the "don't dress up too much" comments all pointed to them really wanting to make sure that none of the families didn't feel like they could come because of money. I know that has been a topic in papers here some years ago, how "Poor kids" have to skip out on other kids birthday parties because they go bowling or they can't afford new clothes etc. Them pointing out that they can come dressed in normal clothes and providing free transport etc are very good indications and choices to show that they are aware of these hinderances that can deter someone from coming to such an event. So I think it was a very concious choice on Kate's part.

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    2. Zora from Prague14 May 2017 at 12:54

      I completely agree, Joann and Rebecca. And I'm sure the kids will remember the occasion for itself and for feeling welcome and well taken care of and clothes play just a minor part in it. Kate's genuine interest and warm smile create her charm more than any kind of attire. I love what Harry told them in his speech - that their families' sacrifices won't be forgotten. How very heart-warming. Thank you for a great post, Charlotte!

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  20. The Queen in 1998 drove the King of Saudi Arabia for a tour of Balmoral. He was surprised. They said he'd never been driven anywhere by a woman, let alone a Queen. Women in Saudi Arabia were not allowed to drive. The Queen drove her bodyguard to a couple of events on grounds recently also.

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    1. Julia from Leominster14 May 2017 at 00:44

      I saw that! Good on the queen!

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    2. Memorable indeed. So well done, Queen Elizabeth II.

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  21. The security guys and the man with the full notebook don't look at all happy on the steps, but the princes and Kate appear totally enthusiastic both there and during the tea party events. I loved Kate's dress in Victoria, and I still do, though it was at its best with Princess Charlotte as chief accessory. I think Kate chose well. She looks perfect with the children and parents, who are mostly wearing casual attire. This was a great event for those children

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  22. Duchess fan from Downunder13 May 2017 at 20:51

    I thought we might see this dress again. Great event and a great atmosphere created by the casual nature of the trio. Very well done today.

    I kind of wish Kate might have mixed up the shoes, perhaps a nice block heeled sandal would've lightened up the outfit and would be fine for walking on the grass. Maybe one day we will see a transition. We have seen a block heel on a couple of occasions now, but a block heeled ankle strap sandal would've fit this outfit perfectly.

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    1. I like your suggestion for shoes. Also, a bit of colour for the shoes (pastel, navy) would have complemented the cream of the dress more.

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  23. I loved this dress the first time and love it today. Also I wonder whether there is something particular about it that makes it easy for the Duchess to kneel down without flashing everyone. I imagine that was something very much on her mind when she picked it for both tea parties.

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  24. That is one fugly dress. Fussy, matronly and frumpy. Hated it on first wearing in Canada and hate it now.

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    1. Zora from Prague14 May 2017 at 12:56

      Hope you like the occasion at least, Unknown.

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  25. These shoes are perfect for walking on grass.

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  26. I do not mind outfit repeats. But I just do not care for this repeat outfit. High ruffle neck and ruffle long sleeves ugh. Kate did not look her best as she usually does..

    The British are the best at honoring their armed services. Always good to see the trio together.

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  27. What a fun event. Everyone loves a good water balloon launch. The train tickets were a fantastic touch. That helped ensure that money wasn't an issue for these families. Today will be such a fun memory for these kids. Besides the actual fun, they can say they got to go to a garden party at Buckingham.

    While I personally dislike this dress(it's the ruffled neckline) I think a repeat is perfect. I totally understand the other comments about kids wanting to see a 'princess' in a pretty, fancy dress, but this is a pretty dress with a fun skirt that twirls(man, if she spun and showed that off, it would have been great) and it's lacy and white and to some girls, that would be princessy enough.

    The bigger question would be if the Cambridges join one of the Queen's party and if she will wear a great new dress for that.

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  28. Cara, Australia13 May 2017 at 23:10

    Oh dear, I am in tears! The stories of those children losing a parent is so sad. I'm sure the families who attended today will get a lift from the events.

    Thank you for your post Charlotte. The photos and your commentary showed us a day of fun, joy and togetherness.

    Cara

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  29. Love that they held this event and included the important details of the personally written invite and train tickets. It looks as if the royal trio worked hard to ensure as many as possible were given personal time with one of them and that the activities ensured all ages had a good time. Bravo. Kate's dress was a lovely touch, looking pretty yet functional for the occasion.

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  30. I have to keep wondering at the wisdom of wearing a white lace designer dress to children's parties, but it looks like a wonderful day.

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    1. In the video, as they were leaving, that dress looked so beautiful and has such nice movement. I think William had a moment :) when he saw Kate then with her hair and the dress gently blowing in the wind. (yay, Kate) :)

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  31. Katie, I agree. The dress is lacy and girlie. A skirt spin would have been perfect, but a water balloon launch comes in a close second. With Harry's dare to not dress up, I think Kate's choice was considerate of that.
    Oh course otherwise I would loved a full on ballgown with tons of tuille, bling, fancy updo and (a must) tiara.
    It is a palace after all. :)

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  32. Wait. It seems that it wasn't any ordinary balloon launch. Kate was participating, and, aiming for William. yay. (He noticed.) lol

    And, the paratroopers with their regalia and red smoke and dramatic entrance. Very special.

    And then, Harry's short, sweet speech. Drop the mic.

    Thank you for including the video, Charlotte. x

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    1. LOL, I saw William flinching in the video! Cheeky Kate ;) The RAF display was awesome.

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    2. lol, Kiwi Gal. She did make him flinch. :)

      Like the snowball she threw when they took George and Charlotte to the snow. :)

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    3. Yes, she got him with the snowball! I love Kate's sense of playfulness & teasing, I think her & Harry sometimes gang up on William :P

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  33. The photo of the little girl with the teddy bear and her brother says it all. :)

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  34. Charlotte, thank you as always for your lovely post about a super event. That final photo you posted--where Kate is posing with the little boy and girl speaks volumes about what those children will remember. I think Kate could have been wearing a paper bag and the children would have recognized a princess. In fact, one of my favorite books that I used to read to my daughter was "The Paper Bag Princess" by Robert Munsch and years later she read it to her daughters. A little aside tonight as I was thinking that Kate could carry a paper bag off with that wonderful smile of hers IMO.

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    1. I agree, Jo. Some children actually were asked what they thought of the princess. They spoke of how nice and how pretty she was. No one said her dress wasn't fancy, bright-colored, or princessy enough. No one mentioned her clothes at all. As my Mom used to say, "Pretty is as pretty does." All the fashionable clothing in the world wouldn't make up for a princess who scowled and could not relate to people. If I had to choose, I'd pick the princess who laughs with those she visits, especially children, over one in a fancy dress.
      This party was out of doors, for a range of ages, boys and girls and meant to have a circus or faire atmosphere. It was not a little girls' tea party and Kate dressed appropriately.

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    2. 02:27-again, my comment. I don't know what I'm doing wrong. Marie

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  35. Julia from Leominster14 May 2017 at 00:41

    I respectfully disagree that it's not about Kate's clothes. It's not for us, and not for her, but I will almost promise you it is for every woman, girl and little girl and the latter especially would love to see Kate dressed beautifully like all fairy princesses should be. I believe the idea that a princess should dress down to make those around her 'comfortable', is wrong. It's not expected. Yes, if you're visiting a flood or a disaster like that - that's one thing - but a party, no. I personally believe in the queen mum's statement that she wore her best for the West End, not her pinny and headscarf (Clementine wore the latter) is just as relevant today. Otherwise, Disney wouldn't be making all these hugely popular movies about princesses in their finery.

    Yes, it's about the children - it's about giving them pleasure. And for most of the girls, remembering what Kate wore, will be the top pleasure, much bigger than cupcakes, and water balloons - right up there with being at the palace. Her dress was pretty and appropriate - but I think something more colourful - more fun for the young - would have been even better.

    For what it's worth when I saw Diana at Braemar, I was in jeans and a rain coat. She was in a lovely tartan suit. I never once thought I would have preferred her in jeans - or that, sitting out in the damp, I was under dressed or she was over dressed, the image of her just became fixed in my mind. (Strangely, I don't recall what the queen wore, but I remembered the queen mum in blue and I was right.) She was so radiant in her adorable hat.

    Not every child present will think about this today - but thirty years from now they will be telling their children about how they went to a party at the palace after granddad was lost, and they can't quite remember what they did, and maybe just a little what they ate - but they remember seeing Kate and - what was she wearing? - sort of a cream-coloured dress.

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    1. Hopefully too, they will remember how sweet and kind she was. That she seemed young, and beautiful, and that she laughed with them.

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    2. Maybe. But maybe not. I know a lot more little girls who would be more interested in Kate launching a water balloon than what her dress looked like. Disney princesses aren't just known for their dresses but for their personality and character. But, I do agree that a colorful might might have worked too.

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    3. I'm going to agree with you on this point Julia. This was a party. At a PALACE. "Harry's" invitation/dare to dress down was a thoughtful and diplomatic approach to address the issue of the COST of a family having to buy new outfits. If you don't have the funds, or want to be a rebel - then do not spend any money, but come and have fun.

      Now, the whole POINT of being invited to a PALACE is to see some royalty looking royal. And she could have found some fun sparkly new outfit or something with some tulle from a British Designer to promote British fashion and not spent a lot of money OR reworn one of the State gowns that have already been on show - blue Alexander McQueen from the diplomatic reception comes to mind or the red gown from the State Dinner. Or even the red gown from Canada. Which the tax payers already paid for... but she re-wore a pretty boring, frowzy outfit.

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    4. You saw Diana at Braemar Julia? That must have been wonderful! People I know who saw her said she was even prettier in person. I think I know the suit you are talking about, I remember photos of her. Was that the one that she wore the tam with?

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    5. As for Kate's outfit. I doubt that there was even one little girl that was disappointed with that. That dress moves like a dream, is lacy and has some sherries and a swirly skirt. Job done. :)

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    6. I can't disagree more! A gown at a daytime garden party? She's a real person, not a fake Disney princess for hire at children's parties. She would have gotten raked over the coals for breaking protocol and all matter of etiquette for dressing so far above the occasion. While I personally don't love the color of this dress, it's a perfectly fine outfit considering her husband, the future King, and her brother in law were wearing open collared shirts and khakis.

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    7. Rebecca - Sweden14 May 2017 at 16:16

      I don't agree. Sure, the 0-4 year olds probably wont remember much of the event and will only have photos to go on in the future. But the 5-18 year olds were there as well. I bet they will remember "she was beautiful" and they will look at the pictures and maybe not like the dress (or maybe do) in the future but mostly remember how beautiful they thought she looked there. But mostly they will remember that she took a picture with them or that they were hit a bit by her waterballoon or that Harry held their cupcake or that William wished them good luck with their finals or, or, or.

      And for what it's worth, wearing this dress does not feel like "dressing down" to me.

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    8. Rebecca - Sweden14 May 2017 at 16:29

      Also, I have seen as many comments on places that she should have worn pants and been more practical and that it was silly that she wore a dress. So... girl can never win. I personally think she hit exactly the right note AND frankly, am getting very annoyed at the focus on her clothes on this occation! It's not about the clothes. As long as she looks appropriate and rather pretty I cannot for the life of me understand why she is seen to have a "duty" to live up to peoples wish for her to dress like they want her. Ofc we can comment on that we like or don't like that she wears and we can comment about how we would have dressed for the occation. But I don't get why she should have to dress to live up to some "disney princess stereotype" or wear pants when a dress is perfectly appropriate. (Ok, yes I get it. Let's just say.. a hint is that we don't hear similar comments about the boys...)

      Sorry, but this is very annoying to me.

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    9. I disagree that she should have worn a gown, Florida Moxie. She would have looked completely out of place if she wore either gown she's worn to the diplomatic receptions or even the red Preen from Canada. The dress she wore to this tea party was appropriate, given the casual feel of the affair, and allowed her to participate in many activities.

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    10. A fairy tale princess being walked in by her fairy tale prince followed by the court jester? I don't think that would have been out of place at all. It's all in how it's done, and a fairy tale princess and prince costume (plus the jester) would have been great. I'd have loved it.

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    11. not sherries, sheerness, lol. (spellcheck how did you ever turn sheerness into sherries? you must be feeling overworked.) lol

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    12. In fairness Rebecca it's not much different than any of her other engagements where her fashion is discussed to death ;)

      Kate tends to have very serious engagements, dealing with addiction, mental illness, bereavement, childhood illness, all incredibly worthy and heart breaking issues. And one could argue it's equally annoying to dwell on her clothing in those instances. Women like discussing fashion and styling, nothing wrong with that as long as it's not done in a spiteful fashion.

      And you're quite right, we never go on about the boys, but you know that's just life. (I don't think it's fair that my husband can be ready to go out the door in 20 mins and I'm preening with hair and make-up for 2 hours!) C'est la vie!

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    13. Rebecca - Sweden14 May 2017 at 20:37

      I agree Claudia, it was not such a big difference. That is why I think commenting on the clothes is fine, commenting what you like and don't like, how you would style it, what you would have choosen instead, that you loathe peter pan collars or whatever it is. Both men and women find that fun and interesting and so do I. I have no issue at all with fashion being talked about. It's a fun past time and often a light topic that can distract people from their days. That is no issue with me at all.

      I guess the comments that the kids will remember the clothes and not the event is what mostly rubbed me the wrong way. Both because I don't agree, but mostly because it made me sad that it's assumed that small kids will remember a princess dress in the future more than that big smile they got from her.

      I'm not syaing it would be wrong or bad if Kate had gone frillier with her look, nor am I saying it's wrong that some wished she would have. I just don't see why it should be used as a "critique". Especially since I know that would she have worn that, it would be more critique, maybe sometimes from the same people?

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    14. Zora from Prague14 May 2017 at 20:39

      I couldn't agree more, Rebecca and Jennifer.

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    15. I think it is also interesting to note that throughout the decades almost every publication you can think of has pointed out what the Queen and other Royals have had on for any given occasion.
      Magazines like The New Yorker, Forbes, The Wall Street Journal, Business Weekly, you name it. So, it seems to be sort of an unusual phenomenon, actually. Certainly not just peculiar to us. :)

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    16. Sorry, bluhare. William and Kate couldn't have done that. Charles was busy yesterday jesting elsewhere. :)
      (no offense, Charles).

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    17. Of course they could, surfer girl. They could have worn fairy tale costumes. Easy peasy.

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    18. Julia from Leominster15 May 2017 at 11:27

      Jo I was fortunate to see Diana twice - but only at a distance. The Braemar Games was one time - it wasn't when she wore a tam, more like a little brimmed hat. 1984 or 1985, I'd say - right when I met Leo. The tartan suit was lovely - quite long as was the style then and you're right - she was so much more lovely when you watched her in action - so expressive.

      I saw her a second time at Wembley quite by chance when a girlfriend and I went to see Torvill and Dean - she was again dressed up - in a pink Zandra Rhodes dress that I thought perfectly lovely - princess personified - but my friend found too girlie. My friend - bless her - was a bit of a republican I think, looking back - she's gone now, but no one really came out and said they were a republican then. But all that pink wasn't to her taste. I thought Diana looked breathtaking but didn't have much of a view of her expression. Really just a glimpse as she greeted the couple.

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    19. (wasn't commenting on costumes per se, just the availability of their jester.) :)

      Also, the choice of costumes could perhaps easily have become a political powder keg, or at least a media free for all, no matter what costumes they chose. Just a guess.

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    20. Yes, I was ignoring that part of your comment, surfer girl.

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  36. A fun and meaningful day! I respect her choice of a repeat, I just wish it had been a different one. I was underwhelmed by this dress in Canada and am still not in love with it now. I was wishing for more color.

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  37. I think this was such a wonderful event!!! Maybe next year it will be William, Kate, Harry & Meaghan :)

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    1. Yes! Hopefully :)

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    2. They would all be on charity Cloud Nine. :)

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  38. I love everything about this event! Not to sound cheesy, but the joy on everyone's faces is priceless :) Fait Accompli and Their Royal Highnesses did a fantastic job of organising the party. I'm sure James & Pippa's wedding will be a smashing success, too. Harry is really sweet :) Kate hit the right balance for this event with the repeat of the ChloƩ dress. It's frilly and 'princessy', while still being casual and approachable. It's a shame William didn't get a direct hit by the water balloon from Kate, now that would've been fun!

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    1. True, Kiwi Gal. Now we know why Kate had that expression. She was aiming for William. From her expression, she must have come pretty close. Cute of her to think to even aim for him. lol

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  39. Absolutely wonderful, special, important event. Beautiful day and happy children! Nothing better. :)

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  40. A tip of the hat to the team that came up with this idea and hired the company to put it on.
    Extremely well done on their part.

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    1. I agree. Apparently Pips has hired the same company to do her wedding. I wonder if they'll have water balloons at the reception?

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    2. it would be nice and a very Pippa-style happening, after the special effects for Kate's wedding party I think we could face also water balloons!

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    3. LOL I hope so! For George & Charlotte's sake :P

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  41. That "team" is W/K/H is my guess. Kudos W/K/H. ❤

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  42. And the Corgi's thing. How cute is that. A fun photo momento.

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  43. Courtney from NC14 May 2017 at 03:25

    I love this event for so many reasons. Just providing these children with the opportunity to meet and talk to others who know how they feel is a huge thing. Not to mention a couple of hours where fun activities give them a break from reality and how important that is for these children and spouses. In the United States there is an event called Snowball Express and it is held every December and is essentially a long weekend where the children and widowed are flown in to Dallas and spend 4 or 5 days amongst other families who've lost a parent in the war. It is all free of charge and the kids are able to meet with other kids who've been thrust into the same nightmare they are in. I have a friend and her son has gone several times and always enjoyed it and made lasting friends. He also gave up his spot so other children who'd never been could go. It is an amazing event and the party today reminded me of Snowball Express. I would definitely love to see this tea party become an annual thing or becomes the foundation for other events for this group of children.

    It also reminds me of a party Princess Madeleine of Sweden put on for sick children. She went the fancy route and wore a tiara and beautiful gown. I think that regardless of the formality or dress code provides children in special circumstances and outlet. I am not bothered by her dress today because the mission of this engagement transcends fashion. Beside that fact I figure she wore this dress whilst representing the Queen in Canada and that is a big deal. Her wearing this dress for this party indicates how seriously she takes this event. I haven't slept in 2 days and I'm not making my point clear enough I fear.

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    1. Some of us can't write that effectively on a full night's sleep, Courtney. I hope you sleep tonight.

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  44. William, where are your manners? When your wife launched that water balloon, didn't you know you were supposed to run to be directly under it?!

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  45. Oh i love the duchess princes william and harry they did fantastic job at the tea party hmm i love the lace dress she worn in canada seems the duchess raid her tour closet these they looking forward james and pippa wedding

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  46. Beautiful event! My only wish is that the duchess should've worn a maxi dress! It wouldve been so much more appropriate!

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  47. Middleton's style is there! a true Middleton style party, a very nice touch and a careful organization. So nice to see indeed. Kate's work with Party Pieces was not useless after all.

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    1. The aesthetics of her upbringing, given the excellent graphics and presentation on the Party Pieces website, and her parents conservatively fashionable attire and lifestyle seem to have influenced Kate in many areas of her life, i.e. the garden party, as you said Paola, her clothing choices, her home decor, her photographs, etc. No wonder she graduated with a degree in Art History. :)

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  48. What a wonderful event and Kate looks lovely. William and Harry look fab too. Does anyone know the make of their suede shoes? My husband rather likes them!

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    1. Louise, London, UK14 May 2017 at 14:29

      I remember reading once that Harry had bought some blue suede desert boots from Clark's. I think these are probably the same although the photos lose focus when I enlarge them to check. Clark's is the sort of shoe shop everyone went to for school shoes although they've improved some of their adult designs in recent years and had designer collaborations. https://www.clarks.co.uk/Mens-Originals/Desert-Boots/c/mo222

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    2. (Quick factoid. Clark's reportedly spends
      $100,000,000 a year on leather, per their sales rep on QVC.) :)

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  49. Slight tangent...the engagement today was great. Agree about being underwhelmed by the dress after Kate wore it to a similar engagement only recently...excited about Pippa's wedding coming up :)

    BUT I wanted to ask everyone's opinions of Meghan...considering we might see her at the wedding next week. I like her, personally. I think she's a good fit for Harry. But some of the comments on other websites are not so favourable. I think because she's an actress they see her as too "trashy" for the royal family. But she hasn't done anything remotely scandalous, she's built her career up from scratch, spoken out about controversial topics, and she's deeply involved in humanitarian work...and she seems to be handling being Harry's girlfriend quite well from what I can tell.

    Thoughts?

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    1. Vicky. Okay. Trashy does not usually have degrees in International Relations and Theatre from Northwestern University nor a high school resume' of student leadership and contributions to school theatre production in prep for her university major. (She came about that vocation honestly, growing up on the set of "Married with Children" where her father was lighting director. And, she was married to a talent manager/producer. Augmenting her stated career choice in a respectable way.) Nor do they usually have such an absence of drugs/alcohol and bed-hopping. She dated one man for seven years and was married to him for two. Dated sparsely afterward, only one man at a time, until Harry started vying for her attention. Queen Elizabeth herself has been an ardent thespian and has given official recognition to many in that industry over the years. Meghan's been a professional in her profession. Her profession is acting. She has behaved in an exemplary manner as a serious professional in any given industry would and utilized that platform to help fulfill her other degree, International Relations. So, no problem from the palace on the acting note anyway is my guess.

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    2. People who trash others paint themselves with the same brush. Surfer girl has made excellent arguments against that sort of mean-girl trash-talk about Meghan. In addition to Surfer-girl's points I would like to add that a career in theater (in any part of a production) is no longer a scandalous idea. We know that the women in it provide a valuable service to society by entertaining, moving and provoking us. In bygone days they were viewed as immoral, but that says more about the era and repressive society in which they lived than the women themselves.

      That said, I am a more than a little disturbed by comments which suggest that Meghan is attention-seeking and self-serving. I don't see that in her. I see her with a history of hard work and discretion to get where she is now. She has used her (minor until Harry) celebrity to do good in this world.

      However, perhaps I am more sensitive to comments of that sort because that criticism has been leveled at me all my life when my motives have been anything but as I joyfully and enthusiastically undertook a cause or a task. Alas, that doesn't stop people (particularly narcissistic ones who have all manner of unresolved jealousies and personal baggage) from sharply taking others downs to in that manner. I'm always wary when I read or hear remarks like that.

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    3. Unnecessary trees?? What does that mean?

      Since I also lived through the Diana and Fergie years, and was for quite awhile a fan of Diana, I can only comment that I think Kate is a far better bet for the future of the monarchy. She is stable as well as warm and caring, and these are different times. She is of course the best thing that has happened to William in his adulthood, with his chosen work as second. I think Britain will come to appreciate Kate's steadiness and wisdom and her ability. Since I have watched the monarchy since the Queen was crowned, and found it fascinating, I would hope it continues. It is so much a part of what Britain stands for. But of course, that will be up to the British people to decide. The presence of Kate and her children will certainly be a factor.

      Returning to the question of Kate's dress for the tea party, it occurs to me that the color is close to summer mourning, and that is appropriate for families who have had to grieve the loss of a parent. I wrote above about the Irishness of it, and I still think that is one of Kate's reasons for choosing this dress. But I also think the calm color was important. I don't think froth and bling would have been appropriate.

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  50. I'm going to throw another idea into the discussion about whether or not Catherine's choice of dress is fitting for a princess and a party at the palace. I know the Queen Mum did that, but perhaps that idea is nearly 100 years old already.

    I wonder whether the desire full the full-on Disney-princess styling isn't a generational thing. I don't think that showing up in an over-the-top party frock when people were encouraged not to "dress up" would have been appropriate. It wasn't a Madeline fantasy occasion for children struggling with illness or about to die. It was a time to have smashing good fun in a way that children most enjoy it.

    I also think that the Queen Mum's approach encourages Republicanism in those who think the RF is nothing but a bunch of toffs who have no idea of the real world. As one of the Georges stated, once upon a time a King had only to look resplendent on a horse.

    But thanks in part to Diana, the House of Windsor has realized it must keep up with the times and be more approachable. The balance is more delicate now. People today warm to royals when they seem real--that is able to segue between more intimate & casual events like this Party at the Palace and formalities. No one wants a party at the palace mood when they're getting a gong.

    People today expect different things from royalty. Let me share a charming example.

    One of my friends is the Head of a private school which boards girls from the ages of 3-18. She shared the story of wandering into the nursery where the 3-5 year-old girls were playing princess.
    My friend asked them to explain the difference between a princess and a queen. They astutely replied that a princess didn't have the number of responsibilities that a queen has. The Head then asked whether she was a princess or a queen. The girls were unanimous. "You're definitely a queen."

    So even children as young as that (happily swanning around in glamorous items from the costume box) already understand that a princess is a working woman with responsibilities. Plus she gets to dress up a lot--which is a lot of fun. Their expectations are quite different from those of the Queen Mum so long ago.

    I don't think that Catherine showing up in an over-the-top party frock when people were encouraged not to "dress up" would have been appropriate. On the video it was clear that very few people dressed up. One notable exception was a young girl in a gorgeous nude dress with sparkling trim and floral applique. A style which would have been smashing on Catherine.

    For the occasion, I thought Catherine's choices a hit. The shoes were practical on the lawns and comfortable. The dress moves beautifully, the lace makes it less than plain, it's likely warm, it catches the camera well and Catherine stands out in every photo. Mission accomplished.




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    1. Julia from Leominster14 May 2017 at 18:37

      I respectfully disagree - knowing a fair number of republicans. It comes from:
      1. A belief that royalty stands against equality of all people - this is a philosophical view that has risen in part with the rise of immigration -and fewer people committed to the history of the monarchy - Kate could wear the same dress every day of the year and it wouldn't matter to them. It's the hardest argument to fight.
      2. The expense of the monarchy - but far more than Kate's clothes - this has been about the work ethic of the young royals particularly, as well as Charles' out of touch lifestyle. William, Kate and Harry have done a lot more damage with their failure to take a strong and assertive and hard-working approach to royal duties - I've said this all along - if a royal is there to be a helicopter pilot, there's no reason for a royal family. This has left the family particularly vulnerable because Camilla is so unpopular and Charles and Camilla attract so little attention. It comes down to whether you're going to support the institution or the individual. To support the institution - the immediate heir may have to accept he forfeited interest in the past and won't regain it - to pander possibly to his ego - it risks harming the institution. As to expenses - the work at Kensington Palace is far more criticised than Kate's clothes - it becomes a difference between what the public can enjoy - and what they get no benefit from.
      3. The age issue. Other monarchies with aging heads - Norway and Denmark, have a very close family dynamic with a lot of appearances by younger royals. We've often on this blog fallen into the semantics that there is an heir in between - Charles - but semantics does not save a monarchy - young people just see an aging and out-of-touch institution that isn't speaking to them. That's where it's so important for William, Kate and Harry to broaden their interests - Head's Together is great - but it's one cause - where they need to be involved in many. I think there is a lack of closeness between Charles and his sons which I understand but the lack of a multi-generational family dynamic doesn't help - how often do we see the queen and her grandchildren versus the same in the European monarchies.
      No one believes stronger in a modern role for a princess than me - and I've cringed at Kate's apparent retro role - especially damaging comments about being taken care of. If the monarchy is to survive she is going to need to be much more than a pretty consort to William - instead she must represent the modern working woman. There we do differ slightly from the role of the Queen Mum. Quite honestly, if consorts were picked by C.V.'s Kate wouldn't be in the top fifty - there, I've said it, but they're picked by love and heart, which means adapting to a role they may not find completely comfortable. Meghan could prove to be an interesting dynamic here - which is why I'm a wary supporter - but am mindful of the dangerous speed of this romance - and certain elements of it such as her self-promotion. It is as if we have two extremes where someone in the middle would do well.
      But what the Queen Mum, and Diana, had was charisma - and that's where clothes come in. That's where a pink eye-catching dress (not a gown here) would appeal - because I see lots of little girls in their princess dresses - (often when mum is dressed down.) They may see the role of a princess in a modern way, and that's good - but they still want the glitz and the fashion - You can be modern and yet a girlie girl. (I would have worded the dress code differently - allowing costumes, dresses or casual - so no one felt they had to spend.) So Kate did fine, but the dress is bland.

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    2. The lace on this dress of Kate's has always reminded me, along with the cream color, of beautiful Irish sweaters. That was an appropriate image for Canada, and it was even more apt for this event, given Prince William's role with the Irish Guard. Kate, we know, thinks about symbolism when she gets dressed. I very much like this dress, which fits so perfectly and has a theme as well. To my eye, Kate was perfectly attired, and obviously having a wonderful time.

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    3. Julia, you make excellent points, many of which I agree with in principle. I don’t live in the UK but I used to, my daughter was born there, and I still have many friends there. I am also a Canadian, grew up in those years of being very proud of our Commonwealth role, proud when the Queen visited, etc., etc….

      No one I know—either British, Canadian, Australian (outside of this list of course)—are interested in the monarchy. They are way too involved in the real challenges that confront the UK and Northern Ireland now—immigration, Brexit, the changing face of the UK physically (crowded cities, housing), spiritually (multiple faiths, no faith), culturally. In speaking to them, they feel the monarchy is peripheral to those challenges. They like the princes (and Kate), dismiss Charles as a non-event, and see even the Queen as something from their parents’ generation. But they don’t follow what they are doing or not doing.

      My friends (and I use that term because I don’t want to appear as if I am speaking about the majority of British) don’t follow what the Royals are doing. When I mention that something is happening with the BRF they say “Is it?” These are people who are my generation—mid 60s. They are vaguely aware of Meghan but they just like Harry for being a good bloke. They’ve moved on from the Diana days.

      I guess I wonder who really IS the majority of the UK now. How many people read the various newspapers, really watch in-depth media opinions on television and the Internet? My guess is, not many. I believe there WILL be a movement after the Queen dies for a referendum on the monarchy. I don’t know whether people will get as excited about it as they did about Brexit. The main thing, though, (again solely my opinion) is that it won’t be about how much or how little W, K & H have done in royal duties or in social duties. It will be about exactly WHAT the monarchy is and money. Monarchists will have to come up with solid pounds and pence reasons why the monarchy should continue. Does the monarchy bring in loads of tourists pounds sterling? A post-Brexit Britain is going to have to look at all that very, very carefully.

      When I was in Spain, I felt that tourism was about history, not the current monarchy. It barely survived King Juan Carlos’ last few years because of the financial crisis beginning in 2008 and culminating in 2012. Juan Carlos judged it shrewdly, apologized for his mistakes and ultimately stepped aside for Felipe, who was very popular, as was Letizia. Will Charles be as shrewd when Britain goes through the tough financial times looming ahead under Brexit? I don’t think he has done anything financially shady (not so sure about Andy) but he will have to prove himself able to speak to a financially strong UK just as Felipe has. I can’t see Camilla being a Letizia, not even going there.

      Finally, yes Diana had charisma for her time. But her fairy princess photos with the floaty, pouffy gowns a la Disney were always at formal, official occasions. When she met the people at walkabouts or hospitals (and that was about the only time she did meet the people, I don’t recall her hosting the kinds of events that W, H & K have hosted) she was dressed just like Kate. And she was a princess in people’s minds, just as Kate is a princess. Is Kate relevant to a new UK? I think it will be less about her and more about William. But I have blathered on way too long so will end my opinions there :)

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    4. Very interesting text, Jo. Love your "insider", Irish,
      Commonwealth perspectives. The considerations you mentioned that will be weighed in the post-Brexit Britain are right on. Surely The Monarchy realizes all that, or not. :) I think if W/K/H continue reaching out like they have, in spite of the "grey suits", that that will make a difference.

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    5. Jo, I agree with all you have said. Thank you for taking the time to write a thoughtful post.

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    6. Very interesting points, Jo. This may sound odd, but I think the way that some British women view Kate is similar to the attitude of partner's hairdresser (female); 'I just have to see what she is wearing'! Food for thought...!

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    7. Julia from Leominster15 May 2017 at 16:54

      I'm with you Jo, I believed a referendum is a likely possibility, even though I so hope not. I'm hoping and believe there is a silent group who like having a monarchy even if letting it run in the background, but it's the loss of interest amongst the young that concerns me the most.
      I cherish little hope of Charles being shrewd, but I hope some of these recent announcements do mean there is a rise in concern - it should be fear - that will lead to a more centralised monarchy with a push for active members of all ages - because a decentralised institution is not going to help.
      I don't believe the tourism argument is going to stand - I've said that before. Personally, I think there would be a dip but then it would rise again, but many people don't even believe that - they think opening Buckingham Palace all the time will make up the difference. They believe people will come anyway.
      Numbers are never going to save the monarchy - purpose is what will have to do it. (With care as to numbers, avoiding things like unnecessary trees.) There was interest at the time of the royal wedding, at the queen's jubilee and it handled correctly (and not becoming a huge controversy about Camilla being crowned - I wish Charles would clarify that she will not be now and take that issue that will detract from the event out of the equation! Does he want his and her name splashed all over the end of the monarchy!) there will be a bump in interest.
      But William and Kate have not carried on with the interest they briefly generated and it's hard to regain that. I've been a Cassandra in the wilderness on this and still am - they have to get out there - it's the only thing to do. It used to be I would say Kate needed one engagement a week, now I'm saying three - but there is nothing on Charlotte's calendar until July for them - we know there will be the Balcony in June but they need a tonne more - when on earth are they to begin!!! - are they so surrounded by flatterers and yes people, they aren't seeing the danger to George's future? The week is now - if they get out there and start doing, the papers, even the news will have to cover it - now we have these huge gaps with no news except occasionally some dodgy article a royal reporter (they see the fear for their jobs why can't William, Harry and Kate?) comes up with. Parties like this are marvellous but there has to be so much more. Value for money comes from slogging hard work.
      If the monarchy survives in Spain and this is no certainty - it will be because that is what Felipe and Letizia have done - and if British monarchy falls, there could be a domino effect.
      As for Diana she did wear some beautiful clothes on her engagements. No, there was no party like this before - Madeleine in Sweden invented this idea - clever and warm-hearted girl. But the main thing was Diana was out there constantly - visiting hospitals, embracing all sorts of causes from big and small - creating a momentum - yes, her willingness to take on controversial issues became part of it - but even without that she was just a warm and loved presence.
      Can this mood be recreated in these changed and uncertain times - I don't know. But if William, Kate and Harry get stuck in - it would be a huge start. You never wait until that referendum is facing you - you start at once and realise numbers are going to need to surge up and stop putting things off.
      Will the queen help - I don't know - she's very old and it's never been her way. If I were her I would start with some heavy threats to C & C and particularly to the young royals - the first thing I would say is that the Sandringham estate will be sold if the monarchy ends - there will be no Amner, no Kensington Palace - she has given William, Kate and Harry far too much without asking for work in return. She may not understand the mood of the nation - she didn't when Diana died until it was almost too late - with no easy answers, I just hope it isn't too late this time.

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    8. Oh Julia, you are more and more causing me to think! I even went to the Court Calendar and looked at Royal appearances for the next month. Loads of Princess Royal appearances (goodness that woman works hard!), Wessex appearances, Kent, Gloucester, Queen, etc., but NOTHING for Kate. And I agree with you, a smart PR team would keep the momentum going. William has been out there several times (televised speech to the LBGT awards, greeting the President of Kenya, presenting honours) but without Kate. There was talk that she would go to Belgium with him for a WWI commemoration but so far it's only William going. So I will reframe my earlier words and say that both William AND Kate should be out there. You made your points very well.

      I still can't agree about Diana because personally I didn't like all the celebrity stuff around her. I was captivated by her at first, felt sorry for her and her naivete as the years rolled, but to me her warmth was more of a "love me, love me" kind of warmth that makes me uncomfortable. I prefer Kate's steadiness but, again, enough about that.

      I hearken back to what I said about my UK, Commonwealth friends and they really don't care one whit about how many times W, K & H are out and about. But as I think you are saying Julia, the times they are changing and the future is not so forgiving. When the Queen dies, the gloves will come off from those who have vested republican interests. And the monarchists are going to have to come back with very good reasons why to retain the monarchy. If the UK can remake itself after Brexit, then maybe it can completely remake itself and no longer have a European-style monarchy, nor any monarchy at all. Perhaps like Ireland they can fall back on their history, let the National Trust run the castles and stately homes. The aristocrats can retire to their wings and, like the Duke of Argyll muck in with running the family business as tourism. I think Charles will be completely gobsmacked at the reaction to a coronation--he may have an inkling about what people think of him but I think he cushions himself by believing that tradition will win out simply because it's tradition. Or that he can laugh with the hoi polloi over their cheeses and cows and horses and that means they will support him as King. I don't think that is a wise attitude to have.

      I haven't been able to watch Charles III. Missed it on BBC and it isn't streaming anywhere yet, is it?

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    9. I can only speak for myself but I am a Canadian and past 30 but me and my family follws the British Monarchy real closely.

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    10. Julia from Leominster15 May 2017 at 19:22

      Left out coronation - which is what I meant to say - penalty of writing when I'm tired.

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    11. Charles would never step aside but I'm not sure it matters that much anyway. If William & Kate were hard workers like Felipe & Letitia, then Charles stepping aside and them taking over could almost certainly save the monarchy.
      Does the Queen see the danger? I know she didn't judge the mood correctly when Diana died but she must have learned from that and considering that she has lived through so many changes pertaining Britain, the Commonwealth and the world, she must know that even an institution like the monarchy is not necessarily forever. However, the Queen is not the one to save it. As long as she lives, it will be there and what happens afterwards is the responsibility of those that come after her.
      I think C & C are hard workers but they don't have the popularity necessary if the monarchy is truly on the brink and, as has been said, Charles' exorbitantly expensive lifestyle doesn't fit the times.
      We will see what happens as W & K step up their duties this autumn. They must really get it right now, otherwise it might be too late. But I'm not entirely sure whether they care so much about George being king. William certainly isn't very enthusiastic about it himself, so why would he be where his son is concerned?

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  51. Sarah what about your blog?

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    1. Unfortunately, the blog crashed and had to be shut down...some major technical issues caused it. I lost all of the work.

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    2. Oh no! Especially about losing all your work! That must be heart breaking; you put a lot into that blog.

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    3. what a pity Sarah, it was an incredible amount of work. Didn't you save a copy of your texts? Anyway don't give up please.

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    4. Julia from Leominster15 May 2017 at 11:28

      Oh Sarah, I'm so sorry - I hope it can be put right.

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    5. I'm so sorry, Sarah. I know it was a labor of love for you and you put a lot of time into it.

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    6. Thank you Julia, Paola, bluhare, and Erika. I appreciate your kind words. The backup I had made of the blog was lost too, unfortunately. It's been a tough few days. In addition to losing the blog, I also found out that several jobs I had interviewed for decided to pursue other candidates. I lost my previous job 3 months ago today and after applying for hundreds of positions, I'm no closer to securing employment. Not only was I passionate about the blog and it's subject matter, but it gave something to do that brought some fulfillment and purpose. Losing all of that work and investment, combined with the stress of trying to find employment and managing very limited finances, has been overwhelming these last few days.

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    7. I feel for you Sarah. It was a great blog, very helpful.

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    8. I'm so sorry Sarah, your blog was very helpful and interesting to read also for people not directly involved in mental issues. I am sure you will overcome this bad moment. A big hug from Milan!

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    9. It's terrible, I can understand your feelings Sarah. Many years ago a burglar went into my house and stole my pc. In the pc there was the book I was writing and other important material. It was so bad, and my father was dead one month before, so I was really prostrated. It took a long time to re-write everything but I did it. So I hope you will do! Don't give up!

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    10. I hate it when the universe decides to dump a whole load on me all at once, and it sounds like it did that to you Sarah. I remember looking for a job and it was awful. I hated it. All the stuff you're supposed to say, do, and look like. Blerg!!!

      I hope you find something soon AND start another blog!

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    11. Sarah, you have had more bad news than anyone should! I do hope things will brighten soon on the employment front and that the blog will somehow be salvaged. My best wishes for you in dealing with it all! Question: Did the crash have anything to do with the ransomware epidemic?

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  52. Sandrine (France)14 May 2017 at 20:34

    What special day !!! It's really great to see this party organized for all these children... William, Kate and Harry are really beautiful people !!!

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  53. What a thoughtful creative idea having a garden party for these children who have lost a parent in the armed forces. Love the invitation as well.

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  54. Ryan from Texas15 May 2017 at 02:30

    If Catherine is going to be in any situation where she's expected to squat down to play games or be with children, she should not be in a dress. Period. End of story. It is ridiculous. And, as a few other commenters pointed out, makes her look as out of touch as I now believe her to be.

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  55. OMG why can't you all be happy that the royals put on this great party for these children. These pour children have lost a lot. But you all want to focus on what Kate decided to wear. Or what she should have worn.
    This was about the children period.
    Yes this blog focus on her clothes but this time that all should be put to rest. And focus on the children.
    I guess what Kate dress she had on is more important then the children yesterday.

    Julie O

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    1. What would you have people say, O Julie? There is plenty of discussion about the children here. Including how WKH can expand on what they did.

      I get it; you don't like criticism (of Kate). Not very realistic though.

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  56. Hello everyone. Thanks Princes William and Harry and Duchess Kate for the wonderful show of support and concern for the those who grieve and have made sacrifices with their lives for the UK.

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  57. Sidebar-on a completely unrelated to the garden party but related to Kate note....does anyone read cozy mysteries, specifically the new one 'Kale to the Queen' about the American chef who gets hired to work for the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge?

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  58. A good event for children who have experienced the most horrific tragedy. Turning to sartorial themes, a bit disappointed to see this outfit again, sorry. (haven't read any comments yet!)

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  59. I agree with some of the comments here that a new outfit for Kate might have been a bit more special for the occasion. I saw this and just thought 'Oh no, not again...'

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  60. Kate's clothes are obviously not the main focus of this event, but what she wears to public engagements IS important; careful selection of clothes is part of her role. I agree that a more colourful dress would be more appealing, in my mind, anyway. We don't know for sure WHY she chose to repeat this particular outfit at a similar event as before in quite close succession: we can only speculate. It possibly suggests that Kate wears what she wants to, rather than what people might think she should wear. I think it may have bigger implications: I feel concerned that Kate may occasionally be showing a slightly half-hearted/lazy approach to her royal role. I also feel that she needs to be a bit more adventurous in some of her clothing choices. Her style is becoming a bit predictable sometimes. She needs to show that she is having more fun with her clothes; it suggests a lively mind, openness and sociability.

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    1. Julia from Leominster15 May 2017 at 17:10

      Very well written Jill - this is exactly what I'm getting at - misunderstood I know by many -
      Clothes equal attention - attention draws interest - interest brings attention to the event - attention brings excitement - it's a big and important circle. Jo and I just wrote posts above about concerns - and some of the biggest threats are complacency and dullness - clothes draw attention to royal events and always have and always will -

      Letizia in Spain draws a lot of attention to her style - that's one place a monarchy reached the depths and shows hope of building back up. I believe there is a certain pride in her appearance. You are never going to please those who don't like the monarchy - the important thing is to ignite interest in those on the fence.

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    2. I finally got around to reading the Daily Mail article about the infamous staff meeting. Two interesting take-aways-Sir Christopher Geidt himself was not directly quoted by the reporter from an interview with him. His remarks at the meeting were relayed to the reporter via an unnamed source, who apparently attended the meeting or knew someone who attended.

      Also, the entire royal family was to step up support of the Queen, in view of the Duke's planned retirement. This was reported as coming from both Prince Charles and the Duke of Cambridge ("encouraged by") as well as the Queen. It was not a directive from HM alone solely for William and Catherine, as it has been portrayed. The reporter quotes the source as quoting Sir Christopher as adding that, although each of the households (BP, CH, KP) must step forward and coordinate they would each maintain their separate identities, contrary to speculation that another attempt to combine them would be made. Scheduling was mentioned for cooperative efforts and I wondered if a recent HT event happening during a C&C tour might be behind some of this unprecedented revealing of the inner workings of a top-level staff meeting. I would think the various personal secretaries and PR personnel would have been there.
      By the way, Kate has a new assistant secretary, borrowed from CH staff. A second housekeeper for Amner Hall has also been transferred after employment for years with Andrew's daughters.
      With Sir Christopher even attending children's' parties, apparently, I'd say the Queen and Charles will stay updated on Cambridge activities. I realize it is convenient to hire someone known to royals and previously vetted, but it caught my attention.
      I think sometimes we comment on others' interpretation of a news story instead of reading for ourselves exactly what was said. I'm just as guilty as anyone else of this and I plan to change my ways and my anonymous status. :) Pluus....Daily Mail!

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    3. Interesting, Jill. I have never made that connection between clothes and moral character. But thinking it over, I realise I know beautifully and fashion forward dressed women who are quite empty headed and absolutely boring. On the other hand,one of my best friends would horrify you, not by her predictable style but by the fact she has no style at all and doesn't care. Yet she is one of the most brilliant, lively, interesting, open, sociable person I know, and is a delight to talk to.
      As for royal duties and lukewarmness reflected in clothes choices, where would that leave our hardworking Anne? I must say, Kate's dress doesn't suggest anything of the kind to me.

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    4. Agree. Letizia's years in television have polished her ability to capture attention. Perhaps Meghan could similarly apply her experience to acting the royal role.
      Letizia captures our attention; however, it would be interesting to hear how our Spanish readers feel about her life and fashion. It is sometimes easier to judge from afar, but up close may reveal an entirely different view. I understand the Spanish press is much kinder to Kate than the UK media.- Marie

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    5. Natacha-Eleanor Roosevelt, for example? Yes. Poor Anne would come up so luke-warm as to be almost frigid, if judged by her clothing choices.

      Openness and sociability-let's take another look at the photos of Kate from the last two engagements, for which her fashion has been described as dull, unimaginative, repetitive, unprincessy, boring....
      Saying that stylish clothing indicates good character is about the same as saying a beautiful face indicates good character, in my opinion.

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    6. If you look at Diana's outfits when she was still the wife of the heir, you will see how terribly she dressed. It was, if I remember correctly, only after her divorce that she became the icon we have in mind. Every time I go through the net looking for Diana's outfits I see two different women: in one hand there is the young Diana wrapped in oversize dresses, and in the other hand the style icon. Kate never ever had such style fall, it would be unfair to not acknowledge her this merit.

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    7. Soon to be not anonymous,

      First of all, you might start with The Times, the original source. Roya Nikkah is a very credible royal reporter.

      However, you are correct; WKH were not singled out. However, it does not take a rocket scientist to see who has the most room in their schedules, and it isn't Charles or Anne.

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    8. I didn't realize she had personally interviewed Sir Christopher. My primary problem was with a second-hand, unnamed source. Even the DM comes up with an accurate story from time to time. Although-Rebecca English is also a reliable source, according to Charlotte. So...yes, Ms. Nikkah does have a good track record. Boy, I really goofed there. I am so used to the DM starting this stuff. Thanks, bluhare.
      One of my points was about the popular belief on blogs that WKH were (inaccurately) singled out, not extrapolating who the Queen most wants to do which chores.
      I'll have to check back to see if Rebecca gave the Times credit for the story. I got the impression that Rebecca was reporting her own source findings. That may have lead to my forgetting about the Times story. Who knows. As I said, I admit to taking the word of commenters on what a story is about. Not a good idea. :)
      Sorry, my name must have been left off. I did put it in the ID part. I'll leave it here, too. Abagail

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    9. Paola, I completely agree with you. I've gone back and looked at how Diana dressed and she had her share of misses. Her look became more refined with her experience and particularly following her divorce. I think Kate's "misses" have been more an issue of personal taste vs complete styling failure. When I pictured the tea, I have to say I expected a garden style dress, however, when I saw Kate, her smile, and her interaction throughout the engagement, I found the dress softly feminine yet functional and completely appropriate. While the clothes she wears are important and I look forward to seeing what she wears, I have to say I look forward to the event and to see pictures of the interaction equally. I am a fan of Kate's style of dressing and think she is more consistently classic, less trendy, yet stands out in pictures. Also, to equate Kate's more conservative, classic style to perhaps indicate that her personality is bland, unimaginative and lacks initiative is very unfair. cc

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  61. Do we want a modern princess to generally select conservative choices in clothes and do we want them to generally have a 'non-speaking' part? Will the image of a 'icon' be shattered if they have too much 'personality' and verve? Megan seems to have buckets of confidence and energy. Is it 'safer' to be like Kate; less controversial? Even though we may inwardly groan when we see the entire outfit repeated, even down to the wedges, at a similar-style event. I want more from our royal family like this. I am sorry, but I want Kate to make more effort, and to dress more 'appropriately' for her royal role. This includes not wearing skinny jeans to engagements etc.

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  62. The outfit is a bit bizarre, somewhat Victorian. My niece is just 5 but I think she is typical of all girls that age in that she does react to how people are dressed. So Kate should have worn a brighter shade. It's a party, after all! No one says she should have dressed like a Disney princess!

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  63. Emms, Buffy, Jill, Laura, and Amanda-I don't recall seeing your names before. I may have missed you, though.. Welcome to the comment section! This dress certainly inspired new commenters. Abagail (recent grad from anon)

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  64. Lovely engagement and I have to say the invitation is so well done and clever! A keepsake for sure. On another note, this sweet little old man that lives in my building came down today to tell me about something he watched on PBS last night. He knows I love anything to do with England, the British Isles, and the royals. When he first started to watch it he was curious because it's about "King Charles" and wasn't really that interested. Well he was completely enthralled and said it was a wonderful program....."even if it was about Charles." PBS states "King Charles III, adapted by Mike Bartlett from his Tony-nominated stage play, is part political thriller, part family drama and a timely examination of contemporary Britain." While the actress who plays Kate is pretty, she is not nearly as pretty as the real Kate IMHO! I had heard about the play but wasn't aware of this. Will have to see when it airs again...thought I would share. cc

    http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/masterpiece/specialfeatures/king-charles-iii-royals/

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