Thursday, 2 December 2021

Kate in Ralph Lauren for V&A Fabergé Exhibition Viewing

The Duchess of Cambridge kicked off her December engagements with a visit to her patronage, the Victoria & Albert Museum, to view the Fabergé exhibition.

The Duchess wore a face mask throughout the visit, in line with new rules to combat the potential spread of a new variant of COVID-19. In England, face coverings must be worn in shops, shopping centres, and on public transport. In indoor settings -- though it is not a legal requirement -- it is advised to wear a covering in crowded and enclosed spaces where one is spending time with people they would not normally meet. I've also noticed this is Kate's second consecutive engagement whereby a 'pool' system is in place regarding photos; just one photographer takes the images and they are shared afterwards. This was common practice last year, and we'll know in the coming weeks if it will remain in place. Unfortunately, it does mean a very limited selection of photos, however it is so important to err on the side of caution and follow the safety measures during this period of uncertainty.

The Duchess became the first Royal Patron of the V&A in 2018, and last visited in May. Today's visit was a wonderful opportunity to view the fascinating 'Fabergé in London: Romance to Revolution' exhibition, which officially opened a fortnight ago. Celebrating the life and work of Carl Fabergé, it features over 200 objects of historical and artistical significance. The pieces symbolise Russian craftsmanship at its finest.

Kensington Palace said, "During the visit, Her Royal Highness will hear more about Fabergé’s work and the relatively unknown Anglo-Russian nature of his enterprise, with his only branch outside of Russia opening in London in 1903. The exhibition features the largest display of his legendary Imperial Easter Eggs in a generation, several of which are being shown in the UK for the first time."

The exhibition includes three pieces loaned by the Queen, including the Colonnade Egg, Basket of Flowers Egg, and the Mosaic Egg.

The Palace added, "Items include the long lost Third Imperial Egg, discovered by a scrap dealer in 2011 after it went missing in 1964, the largest Imperial Egg -- the Moscow Kremlin Egg -- inspired by the architecture of the Dormition Cathedral in Moscow and featuring a music box that plays Tsar Nicholas II’s favourite hymn, and the Alexander Palace Egg, which contains a model of the palace inside."

The Duchess was "fascinated by the whole subject" according to curator Kieran McCarthy.

Hello! reports:

'The royal mother-of-three, who is known to be a keen photographer, showed her clear eye for detail, he added.

"That came through over and over again, just 'How did they do that? Why does that look like that?'

"There was a lot of why and wherefore in the discussion, which was very interesting because it takes a sophistication to look beyond seeing the spectacle to actually probe into the details, and that was there."

The Peacock Egg was presented by Emperor Nicholas II to Dowager Empress Maria Feodorovna during Easter 1908, made by chief workmaster Henrik Wigstrom for Fabergé.

Another item from the Royal Collection -- a cigarette case made by Fabergé in 1908.

Fabergé's premises in 1911 at 173 New Bond Street.

The exhibition is filled with royal connections. A fascinating read on the Sandringham Commission:

'Fabergé's most celebrated undertaking in Britain was the Sandringham Commission of 1907, when the firm modelled the menagerie of animals kept by King Edward VII and Queen Alexandra at their Sandringham estate in Norfolk. The firm produced wax models of the animals which were sent to Russia where they were carved in hardstone and mounted with gold and precious stones. The finished animals were then returned to London and sold to the King and Queen and members of their circle.'

Persimmon, statuette of King Edward VII's racehorse, by Fabergé, 1908.

Click here to discover the exhibition.

The Duchess wore Ralph Lauren's Georgette Tie-Neck Shirt for the engagement.

The £139 piece is described: "This airy georgette shirt is defined by its feminine tie at the neck and delicate shirring. The lightweight fabrication is enhanced by the season's paisley motif in a rich navy palette." It's currently available in sizes XS-XL on Ralph Lauren's website.


The Duchess wore navy trousers and I believe a pair of navy heels (possibly her Emmy London Josie pumps). Very unusually, we didn't see high-res full length photos, and unless the museum releases one it's difficult to be definitive on the pieces.


Kate accessorised with a pair of gold hoop earrings.


Pop back tomorrow evening if you can. We'll be chatting about Kate's upcoming Christmas concert and other festive matters :)

32 comments:

  1. Sarah from Calif.2 December 2021 at 16:40

    I so wish I could see this collection! I saw some of the Fabrergé eggs in SF. Incredible craftsmanship and detail! Of course Kate looks great!

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    1. @Sarah - I saw the Fabrergé exhibition in San Francisco many years ago - was it at the De Young Museum? I thought it was spectacular (I remember I got a book with all of the collection pieces on display). I found it fascinating. How the inside of each egg unveils is true mastery.

      Kate's blouse is nice, I would have chosen her Temperley London cream lacey blouse with the ruffles (she wore it at the BBC radio show with William). Given the room was so dark, she would have stood out more.

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    2. Tammy from California3 December 2021 at 06:14

      Elle, I LOVED that top.

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  2. Tammy from California2 December 2021 at 16:42

    This top is very festive and fitting for this outing. Love it paired with the navy pants. These eggs are not my thing, BUT, I sure wish the one with the model inside would have been open! I would like to see the model of the palace and how it fits inside.

    Well Charlotte I WILL pop in for some chat on upcoming things, THANK YOU MUCH!

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    1. I'm with you on this Tammy, the blouse is very fitting for this event. The jewel tone colors blend well as a backdrop behind the eggs in some of the photos. Love her hair pulled back, a nicely put together business look. The eggs are a work of art, and an appropriately "Kate thing" to attend.

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  3. I am shocked at how Kate has almost completely switched from skirts&dresses to pants. She looks nice and very artsy though.

    I can't wait for the carol concert. I hope she brings the kids to enjoy and sing along!
    Ella

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  4. I'm glad to see some visits, etc. starting -- I am expecting a lot of activity from both duchesses before Christmas! :) These eggs are so fascinating! They are my guilty pleasure -- on the one hand, they represent to me the inequities in Russia before the revolution, but on the other, they are simply beautiful! The basket of flowers egg is so intricate. Thank you for showing all these gems. I'm surprised that Kate is not wearing a dress, but she looks splendid. Love the blouse! And she always looks terrific with her hair pulled back.

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    1. Agreed Allison! Glad Kate puled her hair back so that it was out of the way when leaning to view the beautiful collection.

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  5. And the video was lovely -- more eggs!

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  6. Errgh. I can’t muster any positive feeling for this. I know Kate likes her pussy bows but sheesh, this one feels like it belongs on a great grandma along with stretchy pants.
    Not sure why, but I think this is one of my least favorite things she’s ever worn! Although it still doesn’t overcome the Swedish Erdem horror.
    -PB

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  7. Love this blouse. Jewel tones are divine on her. Beautiful!

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  8. The video seems to show, for example at 1.02, but also elsewhere, that she was wearing flattish heels, which I applaud.

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  9. Eggs are great, I only know them by photos, it would be wonderful to see them in original! As to Kate's outfit, the design of the blouse will look amazing as a dress, don't you think? Zofia

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    1. Agreed Zofia!! The paisley design and the jewel tones are very nice!

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  10. What a fantastic exhibition. But what on earth is she doing fashion wise? I know taste is subjective but that’s the outfit of my 87 year old grandmother. And that’s not meant as a compliment.
    C.

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  11. I like the blouse todays hairdo is very nice too. Dss Kate is always nice dressed. I would love to be at the V@A hall today to view all the Farberge pieces.

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  12. I would love to be able to enjoy this collection. What a memorable afternoon out. It will be nice as Charlotte gets older to be able to go along with Kate for special exhibits, an education in itself. Kate looks fabulous from head to toe. I am thrilled to see her embracing a more realistic approach to her fashion statements that compliment the event and take on the appearance of many ladies on an afternoon out.

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  13. Love her look today! The paisley is fabulous. Her hair and make-up look great today also.
    What a fascinating exhibition to attend so many beautiful and delicate pieces.

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  14. I absolutely love paisley prints, always have. For me, somehow the richness of the print and the deep, jewell tones compliment and echo the baroque nature of the Faberge pieces. Gorgeous. DOC is stunning and so smart Thanks! Thanks, Charlotte!

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  15. I don't like her outfit but always like seeing her! Interesting exhibition.

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  16. For our American readers,the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts in Richmond has the largest Faberge collection outside of Russia. It's amazing and well worth a visit!

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    1. @Holly Grace - thanks for sharing. I'll put Virginia Museum of Fine Arts on my bucket list.

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    2. Not quite. It has the largest collection of Faberge eggs, but not of Faberge items.

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  17. I love her new taste in clothes. Perfect every time. Since we can't see the pants I'm not commenting, but I'm sure they look great. I see why she is a fashion icon.

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  18. What a gorgeous exhibition! What a thrill to see this collection. I love the photo that KP posted of Kate looking at the items from behind the glass. The style and colors of the blouse look nice. Other than that, the whole outfit is not my particular style or pattern. Happy to see her out and about! Sue

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  19. hmm i love her outfit hmm fantastic she been doing things like this normal like before hmm these since the lockdown was ease covid we stay on us so we have to lived with - that

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  20. Susan in Florida3 December 2021 at 05:02

    Thank you for the link to see more of the exhibit. I’m very happy to see what was inside some of the eggs. I want that shirt the Duchess is wearing ! It’s perfect for the holidays.




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  21. Zora from Prague3 December 2021 at 17:50

    Thank you for the post, Charlotte! Somehow, Kate's blouse reminded me of Russian easter eggs... I think she looks elegant and sophisticated.

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  22. Fun tidbit here. The man in the light blue facemask in the second photo was my daughter's mentor for her Master's Study at University of Glasgow. Her topic was the house of Faberge. They met two or three times in London. My daughter was delighted and stunned to know that he got to take Kate through the tour.

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    1. How fun! Your daughter must be so excited!

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  23. I don’t love the paisley. It reminds me too much of my dad’s neckties and my mom’s dresses/blouses/skirts from the late 80s and early 90s. Her hair is very pretty though.

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  24. what a beautiful egg with the peacock from 1908!
    also kate looks lovely

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