Wednesday, 6 July 2022

The Duchess in Emilia Wickstead for Afternoon of Polo

For their first polo appearance of the year, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge attended the Out-Sourcing Inc. Royal Charity Polo Cup at Guards Polo Club in Windsor.

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We've seen reduced polo appearances by Prince William over the past several years. The events are an effective means of fundraising and in 2019 an exciting new alternative was brought to fruition - the King's Cup Regatta. Held in the seaport town of Cowes on the Isle of Wight, the Duke and Duchess went head to head for charities close to their hearts with family (and the Cambridge kiddies) watching. It was envisaged as an annual event (it remains listed as such on the Royal family's website). With the pandemic it would have been untenable to host it in 2020 or 2021, though I had hoped we might see it return this year. I do very much hope a 2023 regatta is in the works.

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Sadly, the children could not join their parents today as George and Charlotte complete term at Thomas's Battersea on Friday. It will not only mark the end of a school year for the Prince and Princess, but a final farewell to Thomas's. All three Cambridge children will start at a new school, said to be in the Berkshire area, to coincide with the family move to Windsor.

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William and Kate were accompanied by their spaniel Orla.

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People reports:

'The couple received Orla from Kate's younger brother James Middleton shortly before their first dog Lupo died in Nov. 2020. The newest member of the Cambridge clan also had a starring role alongside Princess Charlotte in her 7th birthday portraits earlier this year.

The pup's name is especially perfect for a royal dog — Orla is a Celtic name meaning "golden princess."

The couple were accompanied by equerry Rob Dixon and Kate's assistant private secretary Natalie Barrows.

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The match is played to raise funds for ten charities: SHOUT, the Foundling Museum, the Welsh Rugby Charitable Trust, London’s Air Ambulance, Mountain Rescue England and Wales, the Anna Freud Centre, Family Action, the Forward Trust, East Anglia Children’s Hospice (EACH), and the Passage.

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Hello! reports organisers of the event confirmed it raised over £1 million pounds.

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The Duchess watches on as play commenced.

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It was a win for William's team.

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Kate presents William with first prize.

And a kiss for her prince.

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Another great view.

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Hello! reports:

"Wow," William was overheard exclaiming as Kate presented him with an imitation Samurai warrior’s helmet – from the Japanese sponsors of the tournament.

Kate handed out the helmet trophies and other awards before posing with all the players for a group photograph.'

The trophy.

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The Duchess with the winning team. William's team members included Amr Zedan, Aiyawatt Srivaddhanaprabha and James Harper.

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The Duchess posed with the winner of 'Best Playing Pony'.

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A bottle of champagne.

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The Duchess was elegant in Emilia Wickstead (with thanks to Kate Middleton Style and Laura).

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The sold out Denvella Belted Crepe Midi dress is described as: "The London-based designer cuts her signature ladylike silhouette detailed with a geometric black line through the center following the dress’s shape. Complete the look with an equally graphic pump from Diane von Furstenberg, in stripes of Ivory, navy and black patent leather". The Duchess removed the belt from her dress.

Kate's earrings are the Sézane Gabrielle style in 'coffee' (with thanks to UFO No More).

With thanks to Chantelle Socks, Kate's new shoes are by Camilla Elphick - the Alicia style

I'm very much hoping we'll see Kate at Wimbledon this weekend.

Tuesday, 5 July 2022

Kate Makes Wimbledon 2022 Debut

The Duchess of Cambridge made her first Wimbledon appearance today, at the quarter-finals of the beloved tennis championships.

The Duchess adores tennis and became Patron of the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club in December 2016. Kate has attended several times per year whenever possible. The entire Middleton family have a similar enthusiastic interest in tennis, with Kate once revealing Roger Federer was her mother's secret crush. Kate is also a keen amateur player. The Cambridges have a tennis court at their country home, Anmer Hall, where they enjoy a spot of friendly competition. Kate previously revealed the children have also taken up racquets and are developing an interest.

With increasing reports the Cambridge family are moving from Kensington Palace to Adelaide Cottage on the Windsor estate (before eventually moving to Windsor Castle, per the Times), it's going to be a busy summer moving and changing schools for George and Charlotte, with Louis starting 'big school' too. It will mean the Cambridges are considerably closer to Kate's parents' home. They will keep their country home Anmer Hall on the Sandringham estate -- likely for school holidays in particular. It has served as both their weekend and non-term time base for years. Indeed, it has been speculated the reason we haven't seen Kate at Wimbledon until now is the move.

Speaking of the Middleton family, Kate's parents were in attendance in the Royal Box today. 

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Michael and Carole also attended last Wednesday, with Carole wearing the Boden Square Neck Linen Jumpsuit

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James Middleton and his elegant wife Alizée attended last Thursday.

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Let's take a brief look at the state of play for this year's tournament. 'Prince of Tennis' Roger Federer will not be taking to this grass this year due to knee surgery recovery. Following a return to action after injury, Rafa Nadal has been playing some of the best tennis of his career. 2022 has seen him win two Grand Slams -- the Australian Open and French Open. Will his success translate to the grass surface which he finds most challenging? In women's tennis, Tatjana Maria and Julie Niemeier, and Maria Bouzková and Ons Jabeur face off today.

You'll notice the absence of British names Andy Murray and Emma Radacanu. They both lost their second round matches last week, however Cameron Norrie made it to the quarters and played today.

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Novak Djokovic competed in the quarter-finals today against Jannik Sinner, whom he overcame from two sets down.

The Duke and Duchess looked excited to see the courtside action first-hand.

Kate spotted her parents in the Royal Box.

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William and Kate greeted David Walliams. 

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The Duchess noticed Tristram Hunt, director of her patronage the Victoria & Albert Museum in the Royal Box, too.

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Kate blew a kiss to her parents.

An overview of the Royal Box.

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Sinner dominated the first leg of the match taking the first two sets with relative ease.

True to form, Djokovic came roaring back to take the match.

There were plenty of moments like this...

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It's a joy to see world-class tennis taking place.

Since the pandemic, this has very much felt like a summer of truly returning to normality.

2022 is a very special year, marking the centenary of centre court.

'Where champions are born, and historic tales told.'

More from Wimbledon:

'2022 is a very special year for Wimbledon, marking 100 years since our move to Church Road, and the centenary of Centre Court, an unparalleled cathedral of sport.

This year’s Championships pays homage and celebrates Centre Court: an engineering marvel of a structure built in just nine months; its iconic status in tennis and wider in sport, and the drama and iconic moments that have unfolded over the last 100 years.

It is the centre of our Championships and a witness to change and evolution. It is a stage that inspires dreams and the next century starts now. We are looking forward to writing the next chapter of The Championships’ and Centre Court’s story.'

Jane Dismore shared this fascinating image from the opening of the 'new Wimbledon' in 1922. The Queen's grandfather King George V and Queen Mary were in attendance. Joe Little from Majesty Magazine also shared a report from the Times on the opening of Wimbledon a century ago.

British player Randolph Lycett pictured at the 1922 tournament.

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French tennis player Suzanne Lenglen who won 21 major titles, including six Wimbledon singles championships.

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Suzanne's style offers a glimpse into the tennis fashion of the early 1920s.

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To celebrate the centenary, the museum is hosting 'Centre Court: 100 Years of Change'. The exhibition explores the role that Centre Court has played as a witness to a period of considerable social and cultural progress, and the platform that the court and the Championships have provided for that change.

One of her several fun activities marking the occasion: Andy Murray takes on the Centre Court challenge.

On Sunday, a centenary celebration was held on Centre Court with the return of multiple champions including Roger Federer and Rod Laver -- considered two of the greatest players of all time, and two-time Wimbledon champion Stefan Edberg.

Andy Murray and Leyton Hewitt with Rod.

Bjorn Borg and Venus Williams take a selfie.

Angela Mortimer, Rafa Nadal and Stan Smith share a moment.

Venus takes a selfie with Marion Bartoli, Billie Jean King and Angelique Kerber. 

From left to right; Angela Mortimer, Rafa Nadal, Stan Smith, Petra Kvitova, Ann Jones, Andy Murray, Jan Kodes, Margaret Court, Pat Cash, John Newcombe, Conchita Martinez, Chris Evert, Martina Hingis, Bjorn Borg, Leyton Hewitt, Rod Laver, Venus Williams, Mation Bartoli, Billie Jean King, Angelique Kerber, Novak Djokovic, Simona Halep, John McEnroe, Stefan Edberg and Roger Federer.

You can vote for your favourite Centre Court debut. From Billie Jean King to Coco Gauff, there's a list of unforgettable nominees. Click here to vote.

From there, Kate headed to Court No 1, joined by Tim Henman, to check in on Cameron Norrie's quarter-final. 

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The Duchess was in a familiar Alessandra Rich dress.

Kate wore the piece for a Jubilee Big Lunch event last month. Below, the Azure pleated embellished polka-dot silk crepe de chine midi dress.

Kate accessorised with her In2Design baroque pearls.

The Duchess carried her white Mulberry Amberley bag.

Kate sported her Finlay London Henrietta sunglasses in tortoise.

And completed the look with a gorgeous new pair of two-tone Alessandra Rich pumps. Middleton Maven noted Kate also owns the style in tan and black. Described as: "These pumps from Alessandra Rich are made from smooth suede with various straps for a secure fit. They have piercing pointed toes cut from polished patent leather." They are in stock at My Theresa.


We have become accustomed to Kate's delightful portraits of her children over the years. A keen photographer and patron of the Royal Photographic Society, the Duchess was asked to capture portraits by the Duchess of Cornwall for her guest-editing role at Country Life magazine.

More from Country Life:
'The Duchess of Cambridge took our cover images at the request of our Guest Editor, The Duchess of Cornwall, and we could not be happier with the results — in fact, the set of images she took was so good that we struggled to choose only three, from which The Duchess of Cornwall made her final selection,’ says Country Life’s Managing and Features Editor, Paula Lester, who has worked closely with a small team from Clarence House for the past six months to pull together the souvenir 244-page issue, which marks The Duchess of Cornwall’s 75th birthday and celebrates her passion for the countryside.

‘The Duchess of Cambridge took her commission very seriously and was incredibly professional about the task at hand,’ says Paula.

‘She phoned me to discuss our requirements for the cover and subsequently composed a range of beautifully shot images.’

 The image below was taken by Camilla's country dresser Shona Williams.

People reports:

'According to The Telegraph, when it came time to discuss the cover image, Country Life editor Mark Hedges asked Camilla if she had any thoughts.

"She immediately replied, 'Oh I'd quite like Catherine to do it,'" Hedges said.

"I spent the next three or four minutes desperately racking my brains trying to think of a professional photographer called Catherine.

"Then suddenly I grasped what she meant—one of the most amazing things that could happen," he continued.

"I found it one of the easier things to nod my head at."

In the behind-the-scenes photo, the Duchess is casually dressed in the Chloe Blazer she wore at the Natural History Museum last year (as photographed below).

The Veja Esplar sneakers she wore that day. They are available in several colours at Nordstrom

I expect we should certainly see Kate for the Wimbledon finals this weekend.

Kate's Favourites