Thursday, 28 November 2013

Elegant Kate In Black Temperley London Dress For SportsBall

The Duchess of Cambridge stepped out in London tonight to attend the glamorous SportsBall, the annual gala dinner of her patronage SportsAid.


The radiant Duchess was greeted by a large number of photographers and journalists who had waited for hours to catch a glimpse of the event's guest of honour.


Kate greeted Olympians at the entrance to the venue.


The black-tie event, sponsored by Tiffany & Co. and Laurent-Perrier Champagne was held at a luxurious pop-up venue, Supernova, in Embankment Gardens. Madhen, the band who provided tonight's musical entertainment shared a photo via Twitter. I think you'll agree, it looks fabulous.

Madhen Twitter Feed

The annual fundraising event was a star-studded evening of sports entertainment with a VIP guest list including Olympic and Paralympic legends Ade Adepitan, Anna Hemmings, Anna Watkins, Danny Crates and David Florence, to name a few. This year's ball focused on the 2014 Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games in Sochi, with a look further ahead to Rio in 2016. Also in attendance were Sam Branson and his wife Isabella, sister of Prince Harry's girlfriend Cressida Bonas.


SportsAid supports and celebrates aspiring British athletes and helps sportsmen and women achieve their ambitions by giving them cash awards during the defining early years of their careers. The athletes, who are typically aged 12 to 18 are thought to be the brightest hopes for the country's future Olympic and Paralympic success.


Kate became patron of the charity in April and attended an Athletes Workshop to learn more about the organisation in October.


Kate and guests enjoyed a three course meal of chicken and cranberry wellington, slow roasted shoulder of lamb and chocolate pudding before playing games.

Jaguar Academy of Sport Twitter Feed

The Duchess enjoyed chatting with the athletes.

PA

Kate spoke with Olympic gold-medallist rower Anna Watkins who is also a new mum. More from the Express Story:

'Anna said: "I've met Kate before during the Olympics, she's lovely and so interested and supportive of athletes. She asked me what I've been up to since the Olympics and I said 'Well actually I've had a baby. I had a son, William, two months ago'. Kate said congratulations and said 'Will you go back to rowing?' I told her I have no current plans but I'm not ruling it out.'

The Duchess announced the winner of the prestigious One-To-Watch Award and presented it to the delighted winner Amber Hill.

PA/Pool

More from SportsAid:

'Recognising young sports people who show through their performance, sacrifices, commitment and attitude that they have great potential for the future, the One-To-Watch Award will this year be chosen from more than 1,300 talented sportsmen and women from across the UK who have been supported by SportsAid in 2013.'

It was hoped Kate might follow in William's footsteps and show off her vocal talents at the ball :) Royal correspondent Rebecca English notes the Duchess can certainly pull off a tune:


Rebecca English Twitter Feed

For a black tie ball we had expected to see Kate in a dazzling floor-length gown. Instead the Duchess chose a simple little black dress by Temperley London. It is undoubtedly a beautiful dress, very pretty and understated yet it encompasses the timeless elegance we have come to expect from Alice Temperley designs.

Temperley London 

The Temperley London Templeton dress originally retailed for £450 before going on sale and selling out. It is described as:

'Inspired by Renaissance stained glass, it is made of a taffeta style fabric and has a plain body with a detailed neck yoke, sleeve and skirt finished with a feminine scallop. Demure and slightly Audrey Hepburn in feel, it has a nipped in waist, slight exaggerated shoulders and full skirt.'

A closer look at the garment.


Temperley London

A look at the back of Kate's dress.


In this photo we also see Kate's hair looks darker than we've seen recently. Darker hair has always suited her colouring much better and this shade looks lovely, very rich and vibrant.


Kate teamed the dress with her black suede Jimmy Choo Cosmic Pumps. They have served Kate very well on a number of occasions and they worked perfectly with tonight's look. They're available in black and nude patent for €542 at Nordstrom.

Jimmy Choo

Kate carried her red Alexander McQueen clutch which added a splash of colour to the ensemble. She accessorised with her Art Deco bracelet and matching diamond earrings, which were a wedding gift from Prince Charles.


Finally, J. Crew has landed in Britain and who better to sport the brand's designs than William and Kate? I love this mock-up, what a fun concept :)

Bloomberg Businessweek

Wednesday, 27 November 2013

New Engagement Announced + Winter Whites Gala Marks the End of a Successful Month for William

Hello-Hello Duchess Kate readers, we're back with several updates. In a change from our usual posts they're mostly about William (more on that a bit later).

We begin with news of a new engagement for our favourite royal couple. On Wednesday, 11 December The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge will attend a screening of naturalist Sir David Attenborough's Natural History Museum Alive 3D at the museum in London. Their Royal Highnesses will attend a reception with the film's producers, listen to speeches, watch the film and listen to a Question & Answers session about the project.

Natural History Museum

Those interested in natural history will be pleased to hear it will be broadcast on Sky in the New Year. More from Majesty Magazine's Facebook Page:

'The ground-breaking film sees David Attenborough bringing to life his favourite extinct creatures through 3D technology. In the film, Attenborough stays behind as the doors are locked and night falls, meeting dinosaurs, ice age beasts and giant reptiles which come alive in front of his eyes.
The resurrected beasts include Diplodocus, the dinosaur that welcomes visitors to Central Hall; the moa - a long extinct giant flightless bird; and Giganthopis, a snake that grew up to 36 metres around 40 million years ago.'

Kate has been patron of the Natural History Museum since April, and it promises to be a fascinating evening. I have no doubt the Cambridges will enjoy the screening. Speaking about it Mr. Attenborough said, "I hope that it will make people think about these extinct creatures differently and bring the museum to life in a new and exciting way."  David Attenborough is always so interesting to watch, and I'm somewhat addicted to his natural history programmes, which are packed with insightful information.

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Last night Kensington Palace was transformed into a wonderland for the long-awaited Winter Whites Gala. It was an incredible evening with an array of stars including Taylor Swift, Jon Bon Jovi, Colin Firth and Michelle Dockery gracing the red carpet in support of Prince William's patronage - homeless charity Centrepoint.

Centrepoint Facebook Page

Taylor Swift thoroughly enjoyed meeting Prince William: "It's my first time playing at Kensington Palace or any palace for that matter. I have to thank you Prince William for having me." The singer looked beautiful in a Reem Acra gown while her clutch was by one of Kate's favourite designers, Jenny Packham.

Centrepoint Facebook Page

Guests were incredibly excited when Bon Jovi took to the stage and prepared to perform one of his greatest hits, 'Livin' On A Prayer', when the star told guests if they promised to make a substantial online donation to Centrepoint they might get an 'early Christmas present'. He then urged William and Ms. Swift to join him as backing singers. And yes this really happened...

Centrepoint Facebook Page

Aides said the impromptu performance hadn't been planned in advance and was totally off the cuff. To view a video of the future king 'rockin' out' in front of six hundred guests please click here. It is such a pity Kate wasn't at the gala. I'm sure this is a moment she would have loved to have seen.

Centrepoint Facebook Page

Thank you Mr. Bon Jovi for asking William to join you on stage, what a memorable moment it was and how lovely to see the new dad sharing his fun side in aid of a cause so close to his heart. Below we see William with the Bon Jovi family.

Centrepoint Facebook Page

The best news to emerge from the gala was that the event raised a staggering amount - over £1 million in fact. The fabulous news prompted me to a little research on Centrepoint, something I'd done before for previous events where William and Kate supported the organisation. I instantly noticed the Christmas Appeal, my thoughts (like so many of us) were drawn to my own Christmas plans and the realisation of how lucky I am to have a safe, warm home when so many will be without shelter, food and company during the festivities this year. Centrepoint will do everything within their power to ensure homeless young people have hot, healthy food and people who care about their futures.

Centrepoint Facebook Page

If you wish to find out more or donate you can find all relevant information by visiting their Donation Page.

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The gala marked the end of what has been a hugely important month for Prince William. He has undertaken a string of engagements, championing causes close to his heart. It is perhaps the first step towards Kate and him becoming full-time royals. The Prince joined his father, The Prince of Wales, at London Zoo's Tiger Territory where the duo held a United For Wildlife meeting on anti-poaching initiatives.

Duke and Duchess of Cambridge Official Website

During the visit William revealed he hopes to visit Kenya at some point next year. Will the Duchess accompany him on the overseas trip? We won't know for quite a while as I imagine details will be ironed out in the coming months.

Duke and Duchess of Cambridge Official Website

It's great to see William immersing himself in his royal role. The royals have the power to do so much good for their chosen charities and in the current economic climate their support is needed more than ever. Royal reporter Richard Palmer, who has accompanied William on his recent engagements, noted he seems very 'happy and relaxed. I'd guess it's down to a happy family life'.

We'll see Kate tomorrow when she attends the SportsBall. Until then, I'd very much like to wish our readers across the pond a very Happy Thanksgiving! :)

Sunday, 24 November 2013

Kate Loves: Jewellery (Bracelets, Watches, Rings)

We continue our look at Kate's jewellery collection tonight with bracelets, watches and rings. As with the rest of the Duchess' pieces she favours several items which we see repeatedly. We begin with Kate's charm bracelet.


The gold bracelet was a wedding gift from Kate's step-mother-in-law, The Duchess of Cornwall. The disc charm has Kate's monogram on one side, and Camilla's on the other. Both Cs are under a coronet, but Kate's C has an extra curl, while Camilla's is surrounded by a circle. We haven't seen it in a while but the Duchess wore it quite frequently following the royal wedding at events such as Armed Forces Day and Wimbledon.


Below we see Kate's and Camilla's monograms on official letters.


St James's Palace/Birkhall/ Diana's Jewels

Every girl loves Tiffany jewellery, and Kate is no exception. One of her go-to bracelets is her Tiffany & Co. Diamonds By The Yard Bracelet.

Tiffany & Co.

The $525 Elsa Perretti design features round diamonds in sterling silver with three bezel-set diamonds separated by a chain. Kate has worn it with a disk charm on several occasions.

Canadian Heritage Flickr

Kate has only worn her Catherine Zoraida 'Spread Your Wings' bracelet once thus far, at a reception hosted by His Majesty The Agong in Malaysia. The gold bracelet has four gold leaves side by side and a single leaf at its closure. I mentioned before, this was the event where many of us were expecting a tiara but the 18 carat  piece worked with the McQueen dress.



Next, we look at a heart charm bracelet worn by Kate at Harry Aubrey-Fletcher's wedding. It remains unidentified. Perhaps a gift from William? It's a lovely piece.

Splash News/Allpix

Moving on to some serious bling, we previously looked at Kate's diamond and ruby necklace which looks as though it can be converted into a tiara. Today we take a look at the matching bracelet. It is beautiful. The cluster bracelet is truly a statement piece.


Kate debuted a stunning diamond bracelet at a BAFTA event in Los Angeles in 2011. It is believed they are part of a wedding gift from Prince Charles. As we can see the Art Deco design is composed of flower clusters alternating with baguette diamonds.


The bracelet came with matching earrings.

Splash News

And possibly the bow shaped ring Kate wore to the 100 Women In Hedge Funds Gala in October 2013.


We also look at Kate's garnet and pearl ring. It has been in her possession since at least 2005 and Kate has been photographed wearing it on multiple occasions both pre and post wedding. Diana's Jewels correctly noted garnet is Kate's birthstone while pearl is William's. I expect it may have been a very early gift from the Prince to his future bride. It obviously holds sentimental significance for Kate.

Diana's Jewels

Finally, we take a look at Kate's watch. The Duchess has been wearing one much more frequently since Prince George was born. Below we look at her stainless steel and gold plated piece initially thought to be by Gucci.

Splash News.

It is in fact a two tone Tissot watch, as identified by My Small Obsessions. The Swiss firm was founded in 1853 and since 1983 a member of The Swatch Group Ltd. 

My Small Obsessions

In our next 'Kate Loves' post we'll conclude our jewellery series with a predictions post taking an in depth look at pieces from The Royal Collection and Princess Diana's collection which we hope to see Kate wear in the future. I have ridiculously very much enjoyed researching tiaras and look forward to sharing it with you all :)

Wednesday, 20 November 2013

Kate Attends Place2Be Forum in Max Mara and Orla Kiely

The Duchess of Cambridge stepped out at a cold and wet Canary Wharf in London this morning to attend a forum meeting for her patronage Place2Be.


Kate struggled to prevent a 'Marilyn Moment' as she exited the car due to the very blustery conditions in London's Docklands (One can imagine what the headlines will focus in on today).


The Duchess was presented with a bouquet of flowers by a little girl.


Our go-to photographer, the very talented James Whatling, shared just how cold it was via Twitter.

James Whatling Twitter Feed

There was much excitement surrounding today's royal visit. Kate greeted children from a local school upon arrival.


The 'Resilience and Emotional Strength in Schools Forum' was held at the offices of Clifford Chance where the Duchess listened to leading experts, including Professor Tanya Byron and Professor Stephen Scott address some of the key topics that are so pertinent in building children's emotional resilience and strength, including cyber bullying, helping parents make strong, well-adjusted children, self-harm, special education needs today, raising aspirations, access and achievements, and preventing addiction.


The event brought together experts and leaders from across the health and education sectors, to engage in stimulating dialogue and address these issues collaboratively, to improve attainment and nurture good mental health in children, giving them the opportunity to achieve their full potential. As a new mother, the topics discussed would have been of great interest to Kate.

Duke and Duchess of Cambridge Official Website

Kate met the experts, including head teachers and the founder of an addiction treatment centre.


Place2Be is a national charity providing emotional support to children in schools. The organisation works with 200 schools in some of the most deprived areas of the country, helping children aged 4 to 14 cope with not only bullying but bereavement, neglect, violence, family breakdown and other issues. Through their help and intervention the charity aims to steer children away from the downward spiral that can lead to addiction and mental health problems.


Sadly bullying is such a prevalent problem in our schools. I think it very important for members of the Royal family to support charities like Place2Be and increase awareness where possible.

Place2Be

Kate became patron of the organisation in April 2012, and launched a counselling programme at The Willows Primary School in Manchester the same month.  A spokesman for St James's Palace said at the time it was through her work with Action on Addiction, that the Duchess became interested in the charity rather than any personal experience of bullying (Kate reportedly left Downe House School after two terms because of bullying, moving on to board at Marlborough College). The Duchess's inspiration for choosing the charity came from her belief in increased understanding of the need to intervene early with children.

Place2Be Facebook Page

Has Place2Be been successful in their efforts thus far? I think the statistics speak for themselves.

Place2Be

Benita Refson, chief executive of Place2Be, showed Kate around at the event. She told the Daily Express:

'We truly value her shared passion and commitment to supporting children's mental health. Life can be tough for children for all sorts of reasons - from entrenched issues such as neglect and abuse, through to facing family breakdowns and loss - and it's critical that children have someone to turn to who will listen'.

More from royal reporter Richard Palmer.

Richard Palmer Twitter Feed

Kate's jacket is by Max Mara. Ashley Marie emailed the brand and discovered it as piece from their Autumn/Winter 2013 Collection.


It appears the jacket is a past season piece and currently unavailable to purchase, however a WKW FB reader noted similarities between Kate's jacket and the Max Mara 'Bamby' Ribbed Wool Jacket. It's not identical to Kate's but it's quite close for those wishing to emulate the look. It's on sale at the moment, reduced from €740 to €446 at Nordstrom.

Max Mara

The Duchess chose a garment by versatile Irish designer Orla Kiely for the second consecutive day. The wonderful Anna from My Small Obsessions identified Kate's navy skirt as the Solid Crepe Blend Skirt from the Spring/Summer 2012 Collection. The classic pleated skirt in crepe fabric features pleats all the way around with a button and concealed zip to fasten at centre back. It originally retailed for €150.

Orla Kiely

The Duchess accessorised with her Annoushka pearls.
Annoushka

The wonderful Anna also identified Kate's watch as Tissot piece, the Swiss firm was founded in 1853 and since 1983 a member of The Swatch Group Ltd. She has worn her gold and silver watch on several occasions. Many of you will have noticed she is wearing a watch much more frequently since George was born.
My Small Obsessions

Kate carried her Russell and Bromley Muse clutch and debuted a new pair of Cornelia James bow gloves.


The Duchess selected her navy suede Alexander McQueen shoes to complete the look.


What did you think of Kate's look today? I thought the navy accessories added a lovely touch to the ensemble. It was a youthful choice for the Duchess and it was great to see her wearing her hair differently. The half up-half down style was an excellent choice for her. On a more important note, I was very impressed to hear Kate decided to stay an additional hour to hear about addiction and self-harm. It proves she is dedicated to learning more about her patronages.


Kate was applauded as she left the building and those at the forum could not praise her enough with comments including "She's very bright", "You can see this means something to her" and "She was very interested in 0 to 5-year-olds particularly". It was a great day for Kate and Place2Be.


You can view videos at The Telegraph and ITN Source.

Kate's Favourites