Tuesday, 25 June 2013

Kate Antique Shopping in Hungerford + A Heartfelt Message

Hello Duchess Kate readers,

Photos emerged yesterday of Kate shopping in Hungerford for antiques on Saturday. (I've been away, so apologies for the late post, thankfully it wasn't the birth of Baby Cambridge. Phew!). Unfortunately photos are not available with any of the agencies I use because they were exclusively taken by IKON Pictures. The photos can be viewed at Popsugar. Scoot over and take a look and let us know what you think. :)

I know many of you were disappointed not to see the Duchess at the Northumberland wedding of Thomas Van Straubenzee and Lady Melissa Percy which William and Harry attended while Kate was browsing in the Berkshire town.

With just three weeks until Baby Cambridge's due date Kate is spending time with her family in Berkshire. Kate was photographed leaving Youlls Antiques, No doubt Kate is searching for pieces for the couple's apartment at Kensington Palace and their reported country home Anmer Hall.

Youlls Antiques

A look at an antique clock currently for sale at Youlls.


Antique shopping has been something the Duchess has enjoyed for years. She and Carole have been spotted visiting the Hungerford Emporium and the Hungerford Arcade numerous times since 2005.

Hungerford Arcade

From Hungerford Arcade's website:

'Browsing is an encouraged pastime in this centre, and customers are not bothered with 'can I help you?' interruptions unless needed, at which time a member of staff will make every effort to meet the customer's requirements.
 Some dealers are in the centre each day, but others can be contacted by the permanent staff is customers have any specific queries. At the top of the building, in a particularly attractive setting, there is a family run cafe offering a wide range of snacks and drinks throughout the day.'

Kate looked lovely in a trench coat. Initially it was thought to be the Burberry trench she wore in 2011 but on closer inspection it appears to be an entirely different garment, quite possible another piece by the British brand - Long Cotton Gabardine Trench Coat features a number of similarities.

The Duchess carried her Tod's D-Styling Bag.


The Duchess wore black nkit trousers a black top and her black French Sole (also known as London Sole) Henrietta Ballet Flats (the flats are currently reduced from 125 to 75 at Asos) to complete the look.

London Sole

As you can see Kate looks radiant, her hair and make up look amazing and I particularly like this photo where Kate has her hand on her bump.


The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have sent a heartfelt message to those affected by the terrible floods in Alberta, where the couple visited in 2011 on their first joint royal tour.

Canadian Heritage Flickr

The message from William and Kate reads:

'Catherine and I have been saddened to learn of the deaths and destruction caused by the unprecedented flooding throughout the Province of Alberta.
 Please pass on our best wishes to the Lieutenant-Governor and Premier of Alberta and to the brave emergency services and all those volunteering to help their neighbours during this in-going period of intense efforts. Please be assured of our continued thoughts and prayers for all those caught up in the flooding.'

On that note, I hope none of our Canadian readers or their families have been affected by the dreadful flooding. Sending best wishes to you all!

In other news, there is quite a bit of take about Kate becoming Wimbledon ambassador from next year, I hope it's confirmed soon, it would be a perfect fir for her.


  1. Honestly speaking I really don't like the fact she went shopping on Saturday.
    I know she could not attend her friends wedding and it is understandable and justified. However, IMO she should have refrained from shopping that day.
    Wishing you all a lovely day !

    1. I agree, I understand why she did not attend wedding but I would feel ' she's too tired/ it too far to travel but not too tired to shop'. I wound feel a little miffed if that was my friend. Polly Oxford

    2. I think that is a bit unfair. It is one thing slinging on some comfy clothes and flats for an hour or so wandering around the shops but quite another to get all glammed up for a wedding celebration lasting hours with everyone's eyes on you and a long journey to and from the wedding. Don't blame Kate at all for choosing to chill out with the baby only a coupe of weeks away and I am sure her friends understood perfectly. I know in my last month of pregnancy with the baby dropping low, I was exhausted and everythng was a huge effort. If so body wanted me to go to a big occasion, I'd have cried! Annie, UK

    3. I can see your point, but there were comments in last weeks hello from the brides mother that she hoped the focus would remain on the bride and groom and not any of the guests.... Kate attracts more attention than Will and Harry at the moment with the pending arrival of baby cambridge, often we see Will and Kate leaving weddings out of the back of the church so not to detract from the bride, it didn't look like that was as possible compared to other weddings and coupled with the late stage of the pregancy she may have decided to stay away.

    4. I understand why she chose to stay away and let me write it once again IMO the fact she decided not to attend the wedding is undestandable and justified, however, she could have visited the shop another day :)
      Fortunately these photos leaked a few days later .. otherwise like it or not she would have detracted from the newlyweds.

    5. Pauline Oak Hills25 June 2013 at 16:03

      OMG what is she supposedto do, sit at home and not get her nursery ready when she is due in just a few weeks. Just becuase she could not attend the wedding becasue of the distance does not mean she had to sit at home in hiding. That is what you are referrering she should do.

      Nothing has been said about her being too tired to attend the wedding. And we do not know if her dr.s told her not to travel. Or if William and her both decided it would not be a good idea.I am sure Willian would have preferred to have her by his side. And we do not know what her body was telling her. If you have never had a baby you do not know anything.

      And let's face it anywhere she goes the attention is focused on her. So being so pregnant and beautiful all the focus would have been on her and not the bride. The Duchess does not like to upstage anyone. So she did what was best for her, her baby & William.

    6. I disagree. The issue wasn't that the Duchess was "too tired" to attend the wedding but rather that she did not want to be too far away from her doctors and chosen hospital in the event she went into early labor. (An early labor might involve complications, after all, as it did when the Wessexes' first child was born.) I think the bride and groom understood that. That being the case, it wasn't necessary for her to hide out behind drawn curtains on the wedding day.

      I wonder why anyone thought she was wearing the Burberry trench previously worn before her wedding? The flounce is so obviously missing.

    7. IMO, it may also have been a case of "retail therapy" for Kate, as I'm sure she was very disappointed to miss the wedding of her friends. Doing a little casual antiquing probably helped keep her mind off the fact that she couldn't be with William, too.


    8. Vittoria your response appeals to me more than Pauline's who is simply rude towards me. Pauline, you do not have to attack me. I expressd my opinion so don't be nasty as it's unfair. You don't know me,you overinterpret what I've said, you don't know if I have children and what is the most important, you do not know WHAT WILLIAM THINKS/WANTS ETC..

      It is really sad that people who do not always praise Kate to the skies are attacked. I really like Kate (I've been reading this blog since its beginning) but it does not mean I must like everything what she does.

      We all have different opinions and we can express them here (thank you Charlotte for that) and thank you Vittoria once again for being polite :)

  2. The title of article at popsugar is bothersome... " Kate skips a wedding.." Its basically the same pic shown 15xs. She does look beautiful.

  3. Jean from Lancs.25 June 2013 at 10:17

    Thanks again for a great post.
    Not disappointed at all that Catherine did not travel to Northumberland---seem to remember posting a few weeks ago, that the date seemed a bit close to the due date to travel so far, doing a spot of browsing in a shop is quite a different matter.
    When I first saw the photos yesterday, I thought it was a coat we had seen before, but then realized it did not have the "frill" on the bottom.
    I think she looks beautiful, as always and thankfully she has left off the heels.
    I think most mums-to-be put their hand over the baby---I found it calmed them down when they got over-active.
    Hope she does take on Ambassador to Wimbledon.
    Pray that all our Canadian friends are safe.

  4. I like that burberry mac she wore early in the engagement, I wish she would recycle that one! classic with a twist!

    I always read the comments but don't often comment myself, I thought I would this time!

    She looks really well in these pictures, I hope she enjoys the last weeks of her pregnancy!

    I suspect that she will reside in Buckleberry for a while, its prob easier for Will to get to when he isn't on shift at RAF Valley and she will have the comfort of her family around her. Her parents property is private and the local community will also give her the privacy she needs at this point. Additionally she is still within easy reach of London for any medical appointments and it won't take long to get to london if she goes into labour, there is always a helicopter if needs be!

    I suspect once baby cambridge arrives and we get our first glimpse on the steps of the Lindo wing, we will only get the official photos and Baby cambridge will stay out of the limelight as much as possible in the very early years. I would be interested to see what other people think?

    I think both Will and Kate will be very protective of the baby and sightings will be few and far between, I suspect we will see the odd candid photo of the baby in its buggy walking round kensington gardens on twitter and the official shots at "milestone" events like the christening, birthdays and Christmas maybe to keep the press/public happy.

    I also wouldn't be suprised if they try to negoiate a deal with the UK press to avoid posting candid shots, a bit like the embargo agreed with the press for Prince William when he went to St Andrews, the palace gave out some official photocalls in exchange for privacy being offered at other moments. i believe that this also happened when the princes used to go on holiday, an official photocall opportunity was provided at the start in exchange for the media giving priivacy for the remainder of the holiday.

    Although how well this will work with the cambridges popularity will remain to be seen.....

    1. As mch as I am dying to see the baby and follow the progress of the Cambridge family, I do hope they are left in peace. Given the media frenzy there has been over Kate's pregnancy with every tiny detail thrashed over n the press, even when the baby was conceived (completely inappropriate IMO), I dread to think what will happen when the baby is born. I hope that the Cambridges come to an agreement with the press so this lovely family can enjoy baby's first few years without too much intrusion.

    2. I agree that I think our 'access' to Baby Cambridge will be limited, at best! I wish our Royals would take more of a European Royal approach - for example there have been new official photos released of the Dutch and Norwegian Royals this week and then there's may favourite little one - Estelle who is regularly seen and has had a fair few shoots already under her belt.

      As another comment said the more you see someone the interest isn't at fever pitch. I think William might feel he can 'control' this situation and limit access.

      I think it will be very interesting to see how they play this one...

  5. Hi!
    I've seen the pictures in Hungerford, and oh my God, she looks so fresh for a person in such advanced stage of pregnancy. I really loved to see her, trench & flat ballet shoes are the perfect combination.

    On another note, so sad about what is happening in Canada, sending my best wishes.

    A nice week to you all! :)
    Hugs from a very hot Portugal this week.

  6. Sarah from Calif.25 June 2013 at 14:23

    Kate looks beautiful. She's the nesting mum. The flats look adoreable on her.
    my thoughts and prayers for our Canadian friends.

  7. Pauline Oak Hills25 June 2013 at 16:12

    Good morning Ms. Charlotte- Thank you again for this great post. Our Duchess looked just beautiful while she was out shopping on Saturday. I loved the photo of her with her hand on her tummy. I bet Baby Cambridge was moving about.
    I bet her & William can not wait until they welcome their bundle of joy.

    And these people who think the Duchess was wrong for going shopping on Saturday becasue there was a wedding going on should understand that she was done shopping by the time the wedding went on. And they really need to give this poor woman a break.

    1. @Anonymous- If you don't like someone's comments then don't read them, pass them over. I don't agree with you that her comments are provocative. And the phase you are talking about is just a phrase, nothing more. If I don't like one of Pauline's comments I just pass it over, I don't let it get to me. But you are.

      I think Charlotte is just being fair. If she does not like a comment she will not post it. And remember it is Charlotte's page.

  8. I like the outfit, looks young and fresh and down to earth. I don`t blame her for not going to the wedding, I just hope it was her free will to make this decission! I fear that people (by that I mean the palace) pressure her to stay out of the fokus. But it is not her falt that media loves her, I just think they adding to it by keeping her out of the fokus. The more you see of someone the sooner you get tired, so If she would do an engagement about once a week, people probably would get tired of her after a while... But with so view sightings everyone is excited to see her for once...

  9. Welli think the duchess not attending her friends wedding may cause they will stole the limelight chelsy was there harry also there and prince william ex are there they chelsy stole the limelight from lady melissa precy and her new husband i think cressidra and harry are much item ..well im from canada my family are okay im from ontario but im on a vacay in spain i called right away canada to check okay I've seen the pics of the duchess shopping in Hungerford she looks relax and enjoying her last stage of herpregancy i really love her hair and trech coat flat shoes

    1. I do not think she didn't go to the wedding so as not to detract from the bride. She has been to other weddings before. And I would have imagined that her nursery is all ready now, mine was for weeks before and hospital bag too. Helen. Bath

  10. Duchess early delivery

    1. It's an interesting thought. I did not remember that they gave out a false due date when William was on the way. Isn't July 1 Diana's birthday? Someone here predicted that would be the day.
      I see no reason for Catherine to hide away after deciding not to attend this wedding. Most doctors forbid long journeys late in pregnancy. Quite a different matter to do a few errands if one feels up to it from day to day.
      Looking forward to photos of the happy young family very soon.

  11. Hello, my friends!
    Unfortunately, I disagree with you this time! Even though I love Catherine's outfit, I think she looks tired. Really tired, actually. I'm glad she didn't go to the wedding because then she could take sometime to rest. I'm sure these last few weeks must not be easy.
    I'm always curious about what she's bought!
    Charlotte, you don't need to apologize for anything! Your blog is a blessing to all of us, Catherine's fans.
    A great week to you all!
    Hugs from a very rainy São Paulo :)

    Ana B. from Brazil

    1. Hi this is my first time to post although I've been reading since before the wedding! Thank you SO much for this site! I love coming here daily for updates and I appreciate the time you take to keep up up-to-date on all things Royal/Kate! I Agree! She's always so radiant and smiling yet this time she looks exhausted. I remember those last few weeks of uncomfortable, sleepless nights. Rest and relax as much as you ca

    2. Thank you SO much for this website! I have come here since before the wedding and appreciate all that you've done to keep us up-to-date on all things Kate/Royal! I love Duchess Catherine and am so fond of her, although jealous since I was suppose to be his bride. Haha (we are two weeks apart) I have never commented but finally decided too.
      I Agree! She's always so radiant and smiling yet this time she looks exhausted. I remember those last few weeks of uncomfortable, sleepless nights. Rest and relax as much as you ca

    3. Kristin, San Francisco25 June 2013 at 20:13

      Hi Ana B from Brazil - I rather agree with you on the 'tired-ness' look; at least on my smart phone, perhaps there was a lot of bright sunshine in her face?
      I never thought she would attend the wedding as her due date is too close and the 300 mile travel trip can wear one out - that was understandable. Like Pauline from Oak Hills said, we'll never know all the details of who, what, when, where and why - let's look at the bright side - we saw Catherine on Saturday!!!

      Thank you kindly, Charlotte, for all of your dedication to this blog! I check every chance I get to hear the 'b' word first from YOU!

  12. I just love Kate's casual style! She looks so beautiful and glowing, especially for being in the last weeks of pregnancy. I can only remember feeling fat and ugly ;-) Can't wait for the birth!! Thanks for keeping us updated, Charlotte!

  13. Hello :)
    How do you think, will Kate be at Wimbledon this year?? She's pregnant, but she isn't ill...

  14. I agree with Annie's comment. It's one thing to prepare for and attend a wedding and quite another to dress casually and go the local shops where you can go right back home if you wish. Plus, right now her proximity to London is a key factor as well.

    I think she looked good, but a little tired, yes. Understandable at this point. :)

  15. Thanks for all the well wishes for us here in Alberta! I'm lucky - my home (in Calgary) was fine. My office has been closed since Friday though. I am going later today to help clean up some houses that were devastated - there are many homes that have had significant damage. It is quite sad but at the same time, so amazing to see so many people helping out each other.

  16. Canadian Friend25 June 2013 at 21:45

    Hi, Charlotte,

    Thanks for all your fantastic posts as we await the big day.

    I think Kate looks very sweet in the shopping photos-minimal makeup, comfortable clothes. Just trying for some personal time before life changes completely.

    I think Kate would have been a major distraction at the Percy wedding through no fault of her own. She was clearly very aware of it so she decided not to go.

    It wouldn't have been fair to the newlyweds, especially since the Percy connection in that part of England is so strong and ancient.(Historical side note: Henry Percy, Earl of Northumberland, wanted to marry Anne Boleyn in the late 1520s. Henry VIII broke them up so he could have her! That's how old the Percy family is.) It was obviously a very "public" day for the bride's family. More like Downton Abbey than anything else still around.

    Many thanks to you and other friends here for the good wishes for Calgary and the rest of Alberta. How fantastic and encouraging for the Cambridges to send their best wishes.

    I'm thousands of miles away from Calgary within Canada but still closely connected. I had business there for several years and travelled to Alberta often. My husband writes a column for The Calgary Sun every week. It's a "slice of life" column but he often writes about Canadian politics, etc. If interested, check out his columns at www.lautens.com.

    Canadians are so blessed that we're prosperous and can help our fellow citizens. The Canadian Red Cross has launched a massive campaign. Many people in other parts of Canada are loading up trucks with supplies and just driving there to do whatever they can. Within Calgary itself, 2500 (!) people showed up yesterday to volunteer to help their neighbours despite their own problems.

    Other Alberta cities are also flooded. The hometown of our Prime Minister's wife, High River, is badly flooded and still evacuated. Luckily, Medicine Hat has been spared and residents are returning home. Prime Minister Harper holds a Parliamentary seat in Calgary so he and many Cabinet ministers are there to help and bring attention to the situation. The weather is getting better which is key to having the water levels go down.

    Calgary is hanging tough. The Calgary Stampede begins on July 5. You'll remember that Kate and William visited it in 2011. It has never been cancelled in its 100 year history. It's not just a big rodeo but a huge fair (like an American State Fair) with agricultural competitions, cattle auctions, two weeks of musical shows, etc. It's a huge jumping off point for touring the Rockies, vacationing, etc. so very important to the local economy. The Director of the CS has said it will go ahead "...come Hell or high water..." Let's hope they can do it!

    Keep Canada in your thoughts and prayers, along with Kate too! It means a lot! Thanks!

  17. Kate, Texas, USA25 June 2013 at 22:03

    Charlotte, I hope you enjoyed your time away! Wherever you were, you deserve a break!!! I have to agree with Ana B. that Kate looked tired. The last few weeks of my pregnancies I was exhausted, especially having other kiddos to still chase and love. Even in her tiredness she is still beautiful. I LOVED the picture with her hand resting on her belly. Such a sweet time and moments she will always remember. Her hair looks lovely and so full. I loved her look of casual black with the trench coat and flats. Pregnancy really does suit her well. :-)

    Hopefully things are coming together in decorating Amner Hall and 1A. Would love to one day have a sneak peak to the inside. Maybe a future photo session with Baby C will show us a tad bit. It will be lovely and Kate seems to be hard at work decorating. Not that it really matters, but I wonder if the palace had a say in Kate remaining close to home this past weekend? It's not just a Royal baby, but heir to the throne. Just a thought.

    It's got to be a bit daunting knowing the entire world is waiting with bated breath for you to go in to labor. I pray she can rest and have some quiet time during this special time.

  18. Sarah from Calif.25 June 2013 at 22:25

    Planning a funeral now. All else besides life (Baby Cambridge) and death (my Father in law) I can't quit ingage.in. My best wishes for a healthy happy delivery for Baby Cambridge. I hope that William ànd Kate have a truely wonderful and safe experience.
    tiny toes, tiny hands, little ears, button nose....the essence of life and ohhh the sweet smell of a new born baby!!!

    1. Robin Indiana USA
      Sarah so sorry you are going through a difficult time. Were you close to your Father inlaw? My Mom is under the care of Hospice just taking it one day at a time. She is 74 with terminal COPD. Baby Cambridge is helping me get through the rough days. My wish for William and Catherine is to have a happy and healthy newborn! May God be with you Sarah and your family. I am praying for you. Hugs from Indiana

  19. Robin Indiana USA
    Just because the Duchess didn't go to the wedding doesn't mean she needs to stay inside like a child. William and Catherine know what they are doing and it was much safer for her to stay home. With a large wedding and your close to your due date getting all dressed up just is not appealing to me. Comfy clothes are the way to go. So the Duchess went shopping no big deal. I am glad she can go out and about have some fun. To my Canadian friends I have seen video of the flooding and it is heartbreaking. I wish you the best may God be with you during this difficult time. Thanks Charlotte your the best. Everyone have a great week! Sunny and muggy in Indiana.

  20. I watched some of those brief videos of the wedding party leaving the ceremony and completely understood why Kate wouldn't be there. The wedding was a really nice public event, allowing everyone to watch and celebrate as the party and guests left the church and walked to the castle. But if Kate had come, the media would have gone absolutely mental over her - they even went a bit crazy over Pippa! It was gross hearing the photographers call out the names of famous people as if they knew them personally, just to get a shot of them.

    And the last stage of pregnancy is hard. You need to rest, take things easy and enjoy time to yourself. A bit of shopping and last minute errands sounds just the ticket to me :)

    1. Sarah from Calif.26 June 2013 at 04:50

      Well said Amber.

    2. Robin Indiana USA
      I totally agree with Sarah and Amber the Duchess would not of had a relaxing time at the wedding. Now it's time to slow down and enjoy these last few weeks before she becomes a mom. Her life will change forever, once a mom, a mom for life.

  21. Well i watch all the society wedding she attend i think you can never blame the duchess to attend society wedding a lot of person are there imagine chelsy davy and there cressidra all eyes are on them maybe if the duchess is there maybe she upstage the bride one the duchess looks besutiful and relaxed on saturday shopping

  22. First time posting today but I have been enjoying the blog and visiting daily for the past few months! Thank you Charlotte for your dedication! I have had 2 children in the last 3 years so I may be able give some additional info on the pregnancy travel discussion. My OB/gyn recommends being within a 3 hour travel time of the hospital where you plan to deliver at all times after 32 weeks. The risk of early labor which often involves complications goes up around this time. I was given additional paperwork to read at my 7 month check ups of many different early labor signs to watch for. Also towards the end of pregnancy the risk of blood clots especially in the legs increases and sitting for lOng periods of time ( like driving 300 miles) is very dangerous! My sister works in a hospital and recently saw a woman come in at 38 weeks (8.5 months) pregnant that had travelled from a neighboring state to attend a funeral. She had developed a blood clot on the ride and it dislodged killing her and her precious child. This is not a risk to take to attend a wedding! I think Catherine made a wise decision to stay close to her doctor and enjoy a day of shopping.

  23. Robin Indiana USA
    Nice to meet you Courney welcome to the blog. I totally agree with you. Blood clots are something you don't want to mess with. I had them in my left leg had no idea how dangerous until my Dr. sent me directly to the hospital. Catherine was very wise not to attend the wedding. She will never make everyone happy. The most important thing she and William and baby C are happy and healthy. Any time now she could give birth babies don't wait!

  24. Beatrix in New York27 June 2013 at 17:07

    Kate looks lovely, as always and her bump is "hidden" but not as much as with the buttoned up coats we have seen her. My first thought when I saw the photos was, "Yay! flats! At last." :p

    I am not a mother, nor have I experienced a pregnancy but I would have not attended the wedding:
    * Risk of early delivery, AT A WEDDING, and one that had so much publicity surrounding it. Definitely not. The bride would never forgive her :P
    * So I can imagine you feeling big and uncomfortable and having all eyes on you. Ugh. What is she wanted to leave early? not possible. What is she wanted to put her feet up, or nap? not possible. Plus the time to get there and get back home after a long day at a party? Definitely not.

    Shopping is different. I would go shopping. I'm sure she has a million things to do for her homes + nursery and the time to the store is probably a minimum.

  25. Great to see, looks like Kate has a great taste in antique clocks!


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