Wednesday, 24 November 2021

Kate in Hobbs London for Harrow School Visit

Good afternoon! The Duchess of Cambridge stepped out today to visit Nower Hill High School in Harrow. Kate joined a science lesson studying neuroscience and early childhood development.

Kensington Palace said, "This visit comes after Her Royal Highness launched the Royal Foundation Centre for Early Childhood this summer, which aims to drive awareness of and action on the extraordinary impact of the early years. The Duchess will join a Year 8 science lesson recapping on the learning which took place as part of a research project run by Oxford University that looks to embed the key principles of early childhood development and neuroscience in students. The focus of this research aligns strongly with the Duchess and her work on early childhood, as it is steeped in the understanding of the critical importance of early child development and its influence on an individual’s long-term health, wellbeing and potential in the future. The lessons focused on the neuroscience underpinning how a caregiver’s behaviour is pivotal to childhood development and children’s future outcomes."

A Palace spokesperson continued: "Over the last ten years, Her Royal Highness has spent time looking into how challenges in later life such as addiction, family breakdown, poor mental health, suicide and homelessness can have their roots in the earliest years of someone’s life. Through her work with The Royal Foundation Centre for Early Childhood, she is aiming to highlight how what we experience in early childhood shapes the developing brain, which is why positive relationships, environments and experiences during this period are so crucial."

The Duchess was excited to join students.

Kate told students, "I was so fascinated when I first learnt about this. How babies’ brains are formed and how they developed and what this means for us when we grow up." The Duchess added: "Keep thinking about it, keep talking about it with your friends. Well done, I'm super impressed. Thank you for having me today."

The Duchess asked children about the class and raised questions on early years.

People reports:

'Louise Voden, the headteacher of the school, tells PEOPLE she was surprised that Kate actually joined in with the class. "I never thought she would do that!"

"She was an absolute natural. She was really interested in what they had to say and their thoughts about the materials they had been learning about," Voden adds. "She clearly feels very passionately about it."

The children, who were ages 12 and 13, didn't know until about 15 minutes before the royal entered the classroom that she was coming.

As Kate walked down the hall, children from other classrooms got out of their seats in excitement. Voden told Kate they had asked the students not to do that, but she was relaxed and waved back and said hello. "It was all delightful," Voden says.'

A wave from Kate.

After the engagement, the Duchess joined a meeting of Chief Executives of Academy Trusts at Buckingham Palace to discuss the results of a research projected conducted by Oxford University.

More on the study from the BBC:

'Teaching teenagers the science behind babies' brain development gives them practical skills as future parents, a University of Oxford study has found.

Teenagers in 21 schools took part in a pilot scheme, which is now being rolled out more widely.

The Duchess of Cambridge is backing the project and visited one of the schools involved earlier on Wednesday.

Previous research has suggested only a quarter of adults understand how much the first few years shape life chances.

Almost 4,000 pupils have taken part in the special science lessons, designed by researchers from the University of Oxford.'

Kate spoke with leaders and experts during the event.

Have you begun to add a festive touch to your wardrobe yet? Following Kate's festive green repeat for the Royal Variety Performance last week, she chose a seasonal warm fuchsia pink coat and sweater by Hobbs London.

The Tilda Wool coat is presently reduced by 25% on the Hobbs London website. It's also in stock and on sale at Bloomingdales.

The piece is made from a biodegradable wool fabric. More from the product description:

'Immaculately cut, your forever wardrobe starts with our iconic tailored Tilda coat. Seam detailing creates a feminine shape, while the colour-matched piping and Melton undercollar showcase the attention to detail Hobbs is known for. We've also added a handy internal ticket pocket to keep your phone and cards accessible. This garment is made from naturally warm and biodegradable brushed wool fabric that's kinder on the planet with a recycled polyester lining to help reduce landfill.'

The Tilda is available in multiple colours. 

Also from the Hobbs London Sustain Collection -- the Lara Merino Wool Roll Neck Sweater. The fine-gauge knit piece features gold button detailing on the sleeves, and is crafted from merino wool certified by the Responsible Wool Standard. It's discounted by 25% on the Hobbs website and Bloomingdales.

Below, the Lara sweater in black and chocolate brown. 

Kate accessorised with her Daniella Draper 'cupid' hoops. 

It looks like the Duchess wore her Gianvito Rossi 85 pumps. 

I'll have our annual Black Friday post coming up soon. There's also talk of the Duchess hosting a Christmas concert at Westminster Abbey, which will be televised. According to a couple of outlets it will be filmed in early December.


  1. A nice outfit for the engagement and a pretty deep pink shade. It's a color I've always liked. However, the Duchess's hair is really bothering me. It's just too long, and these curls and waves aren't doing her look any favors. Because of the length and weight of her hair at the moment, they will go limp, as they did at the Royal Variety Performance. They also look rather messy. Perhaps it's largely a matter of taste, but I really prefer her hair in smoother styles and somewhat shorter. It's just more professional.

    1. Kate;s hair is naturally extremely curly and frizzes easily. I think it must take a lot of effort for her to straighten her hair for every engagement.

    2. I agree entirely about her hair. It is too long. I think it is a lot of work for her to have these curls and the result is not fantastic. However the pink looks smashing.

    3. Ivy, I don't think her hair is naturally "extremely curly" and frizzy. Old photos dating back to her adolescence don't suggest that. Her hair takes effort to style no matter what is done with it because it's long and thick, but the curls we've seen recently are not natural. They are the result of styling, not the result of the absence of it.

    4. There are times when I love her hair longer, but other times it seems like it’s in need of a trim. I didn’t prefer the length when she cut off quite a bit, as I do like some length on her. One thing I remember when I turned forty, my hair texture changed. That might also be happening. When I think back to some of her earlier outfits I’d love to see again, I think how the current coloring of her hair might change how the outfit looks and I might prefer it with her darker hair…if that makes sense? Either way she shows up looking her best with a smile. :) Sue

    5. I do believe that Kate has naturally curly hair thinking back to her very first post marriage working engagement with William. Shortly after it was noticeable that she had a professional on call. Occasionally if an event is back to back we see day after hair. I have said this before and have been chastised for saying that in my opinion the current length is not age approperate. I am not saying that I don't care for long hair. The Times is calling it mermaid hair and also questioning the use of extensions. As been stated at a certain length it pulls you down and is no longer attractive and that applies to everyone regardless of age. Its time for a good six inches to be lost. As another thought I love Hobbs. I have a closet filled with both coats and dresses. I do wish however, Kate would have removed her coat while sitting with the students in the classroom and after when mixing and mingling with the adults. It always gives me the impression that one is just dropping in rather then wanting to be at the engagement. A pointy toe flat would have looked perfect with her slacks.

    6. Vittoria, this is what her hair looks like when it's not straightened:

    7. I agree about the waves in her hair lately. I’m not sure if it’s the length, a lack of some kind of product to smooth/shine, or that if it’s that the colour is lighter. I can’t quite put my finger on it.

    8. When Kate's hair is shorter, not in "waves," and its natural shade and shine, she looks beyond amazing. She apparently wants a warmer shade, but I wish it could be different. When she wears her hair up for special occasions or in a pony tail, it looks wonderful. But it's too heavy looking now. It does not frame her face well. There are so many wonderful styles for shoulder-length hair. I do like her outfit including the pants.

    9. Tammy from California25 November 2021 at 18:38

      I agree with Ivy Lynn, her hair does get curly and frizzy in cold weather. I think I am the only one here that likes her hair long, but having said that: today was a little too unprofessional. It would have looked nice pulled back halfway or a chic ponytail.
      I actually thought her hair looked pretty at the RVP.

    10. Ivy, the pictures of her in that sleeveless navy dress were taken on one of her early tours when the weather was very warm and humid. My hair is normally pretty straight, but in conditions of high humidity, it kinks up like that, even if I use a straightening iron to try to keep it in line. In any case, I'm quite certain that the curls she's sporting in the pictures above are the result of a curling iron. that they are not natural. The ones she wore to the Royal Variety Performance wouldn't have gone limp the way they did if they'd been natural.

    11. Hee hee, I love her long hair, think it looks great shorter also but like it at this length and the way it is styled.

  2. Wow I love love love this look! This shade of dark pink looks amazing on Kate. I so want her coat -- I actually have one very similar to hers. She looks great! AND her pants fit her this time -- no more baggy, floor-sweeping pants!

  3. Valerie in Arizona24 November 2021 at 17:31

    Fantastic! As a supply teacher, I can only say how important it is to engage students about how and when children learn. I watched the video and, as always, Kate is so natural and engaging; the students at her table were really enjoying talking with her.

  4. I absolutely love this coat, she looks so happy and glowing. And I love these school visits!

  5. Very nice again today. Kate look happy, I think this was a very nice engagement today.

  6. Last time Kate wore a high neck sweater, I loved it and didn't personally think it made her look like she had double chin. This time though, I donť think that the roll neck is particularly fitting. In some pictures it really doesn't seem very flattering and it makes me wonder how I, a naturally double-chinned and chubby-faced person, would look in this sweater, if Kate, amazingly beautiful and lean person, looks a bit chubby-faced in it.

    I love all the other elements of the outfit anyway. The color is pretty, the pants are perfect for the occasion and I can't wait what Kate pulls off at the concert. One observation here - don' t any of you fellow readers think that Kate has been building a sort of a "speaker"/host/presenter persona lately? She moderated the discussion with Colonel Blum and Cub Emily brilliantly and now if I understand correctly, she is about to host a concert. I feel like in this, she is finding her public speaking niche - she doesn't want to talk about herself so she could become a sort of a guide for other people's stories.

    1. I agree Ella. She is comfortable when she can make others shine, not so much when the focus is on her. She has found a way that works for her

    2. Tammy from California25 November 2021 at 18:41

      Ella, your comment made me giggle. I liked how you instantly went to "What must I look like?!" I do the same thing! I bet you're beautiful!

    3. Tammy thank you and likewise! I am happy that I am not the only one doing this!

      And also I have to add I can't wait for the carol concert. This year I can't catch the xmas vibe somehow (might be the fact that I am traveling for work more than usual) and I just can't wait to be sipping hot chocolate, baking and watching Kate do festive stuff :-)

  7. I love this entire outfit from the cut and color of the coat to her tailored pants. I wonder why the shift away from a purse over the last few engagements. As a person with naturally curly hair, I wish she would occasionally embrace hers. It is very long and has a red tone to it. I think it looks best a bit shorter and in a darker tone. But, as always, beautiful inside and out.

    Hope from USA

  8. I do love this shade of pink on the DoC !

  9. Great look on the duchess. Very cohesive and she looks polished. This tailored pants with this coat combo looks so much better than her previous looks (wide legged pants and longer coat).

  10. oh i love the duchess she with her element and he loves kids

  11. Early childhood development is so important and her commitment is really astonishing! She really cares about this cause and intervention. When she is among children she even sparkles more! Reg.the just perfect. It looks pink from school event's photos, and red from BP's event! She's just beautiful with a beautiful soul and mind!

  12. I really like the look. At first sight I thought she repeated the pink coat from her USA trip in 2014. Buttons and neckline are different but the colour kind of swallows those details. I wish she would have repeated old one, maybe having it reworked because she was pregnant at the time. As she probably won’t need maternity clothes again, she could invest in re-fitting those pieces and bring them back I stead of purchasing similar new ones.

  13. Great cause, the students must have been thrilled and I suppose Kate's visit will really have made an impact on them! Having seen her interest and enthusiasm, perhaps they'll be inspired to get involved in the research in the sphere of mental health. No doubt Kate's promoting the importance of early years can bring a lot of good!
    I LOVE her outfit, the colour is just gorgeous!
    Thank you, Charlotte!

  14. Tammy from California25 November 2021 at 18:33

    VERY interesting the studies coming out of Oxford about teaching teens about babies and development. A great study AND an important one that will impact future generations. So worthwhile.

    Onto fashion: I have decided that I don't love high turtlenecks on Kate. It's a swing opinion for me because one of my favorite outfits she has ever worn was when her and W were newly engaged or married, they went back to their university and she wore a red dress suit with a black turtleneck underneath it. I was wowed by the outfit. Lately though, not so much. The color of the turtleneck and the coat were beautiful and cheerful. The pants I didn't care for at all, nor the shoes with the outfit. I admit I don't like pink and navy together, so that's my own little quirk. I would have loved to see a pair of longer pants with the outfit and more of a straight leg to the floor. Ankle pants just didn't do it for me with this coat. But what do I know... I'm the world's worst dresser, so there ya go.

  15. Sarah from Calif.26 November 2021 at 04:32

    Love this! I just had my first grandchild and understand the need for education in child care.
    Oh, I love that coat!!!!

  16. Kate's hair looks fantastic. And as always, she radiates positivity and energy.

  17. Becca in Colorado1 December 2021 at 23:45

    I've always liked longer hair on Kate, but this color doesn't suit her at all, in my opinion. It's the wrong shade of warm and errs on the side of looking brassy. Darker browns have always looked best on her. Even if she wanted warmth, a warm chocolate brown would look better than whatever color she's had lately.


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