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Feast of St. Andrew: Scotland and the Cambridges

Saturday, November 30, 2013

It's the Feast of St. Andrew and so the National Day of Scotland. One year ago today, Kate was undertaking her last engagement at St. Andrew's Prep School before it was revealed she was pregnant with George! I expected Kate to have a little girl and to name her Alexandra, so I only briefly considered the possibility of a boy. I privately voted for George, but I also thought that Andrew might be a very strong contender. Of course, I wasn't really thinking about the family association, which certainly would have directed me away from the choice... I was thinking about how St. Andrew locations have played such prominent roles in this couple's life. From the small St. Andrew's church in Berkshire where Kate was baptized, to St. Andrews School near Pangboune where little Kate was enrolled after her family's return to the UK from Jordan, all the way to the most crucial location, St. Andrews in Scotland, where William and Kate fell in love. It is certainly a day to celebrate St. Andrew and the Cambridges. 

Speaking of St. Andrews, The Express is reporting that the little pub where William and Kate would hang out in the early days of their relationship has been put on the market now that the couple who have owned it twelve years are ready for a change of pace. 
Linda said: “We bought North Point 12 years ago, which was the time that William first started university at St Andrews, and he became quite a regular customer with his friends.
“Kate was also a customer with her friends and some rumours started circling around the town that maybe there was something going on between the two of them. Then they started coming in for coffee together a few times.
“They didn’t have anything major, just coffee and cake in the afternoons after lectures.
“There’s a bit of a town rumour that their first date was here, but I have no idea if that’s true.
“People come around here all the time and ask us which seat they used to sit in and they all want their photographs taken there, which is really crazy.”
Kate and William were so low-key that Linda claims some of her staff didn’t even realise they were serving royalty at the time.

Wills attended a motorcycle event today in Birmingham and received a little toy motorbike for George. It is actually super cute, with a G cypher and fake coat of arms, probably pretty close to what the prince will receive when he reaches 18. I always wonder if the Cambridges keep any of the gifts they receive.  Usually, I assume they don't--certainly when they are getting stuffed animals--but this was really cute. I would be disappointed if they didn't keep the little polo stick and this cool bike. George will complain once he is older, if they don't. Locals in Anglesey said they often saw William and Kate riding down the country roads around their farmhouse on his motorbike. Unfortunately, I have never seen a photo of this, although certainly believe it. William used to come to polo games on his motorcycle and zoom around London. Aside from the obvious fun of that mode of transport, it was also rumored he enjoyed the relative anonymity. 

I loved when William and Kate returned to St. Andrews after their engagement. It was such a poignant day. Imagine the thoughts going through Kate's head, returning to the place it all began so many years before. Not just to think about how she started at St. Andrews as an ordinary student, and was then returning with Diana's sapphire ring on her finger, but all the years in between when the royal relationship was up and down, the scrutiny of the press and the fans as she hat to publicly work through that private process. It certainly paid off--for us all! I hope the Cambridges have a bottle of champagne tonight to celebrate St. Andrew's Day! 

Kate Wears Temperley to SportsAid Ball

Thursday, November 28, 2013

I thought that for a ball Kate would wear a floor-length dress, but she stepped out of the car this evening at the SportBall for SportsAid wearing a knee length Temperley. I can't say I was disappointed.  I am a complete sucker for eyelet, and Kate seems to try and go a little more casual anytime it is appropriate. Given the occasion and the silk detail, this was a great choice. 

Kate has certainly been to her hair salon since the last time we saw her. Her hair was noticeably shorter, (I didn't mind the longer length) and she has darkened up her locks, entirely covering the lighter shades that framed her face before. I know that was bothering some of you, so it is your lucky day! Her eyes were incredible tonight. Several pictures captured them perfectly, just glowing color. she was stunning!

I thought perhaps William was with George tonight, but Martin from Royal Central recently tweeted that William had an event of his own tonight, albeit announced:

William hosted the Winter Whites Gala at KP just a few nights ago. The entire palace facade was transformed for the gala, including fake snow! Colin and Olivia Firth were guests as well as Downton Abbey's Michelle Dockery and Allen Leech. He appears to have no trouble mingling with the "upstairs" crowd in real life. :)  The noted rock star Bon Jovi was a guest of honor at the ball, along with pop star Taylor Swift. All this to say that the encounter between Wills and Taylor Swift was the height of awkwardness, in a funny way. I have to hand it to her, she took a page out of Kate's playbook. Her dress was decidedly Kate-like, and her clutch was a nod to Kate's favorite evening designer, Jenny P.  Although, Zara Tindall long ago dismissed the myth that William sang Livin' on a Prayer at her wedding reception, he joined Taylor and Bon Jovi on stage to sing it that night. Where Harry would jump up and rock out like a natural, William looked like he was good-naturedly doing his job, but feeling awkward inside. He was certainly putting himself out there. I could almost see Kate chilling next door at their apartment with George, watching the Twitter feed and laughing. William might be at his most charming when he is out of his element. Back to Kate tonight! She accessorized with Jimmy Choo heels and a bright pop of red from her clutch, curtesy of McQueen. 

Kate presented the One-to-Watch Award to a 16 year-old Amber Hill who competes on a shooting team. The event was co-sponsored by Tiffany as the iconic blue box is evidence of:

All around success for Kate this evening: beautiful dress; hair back in top, lustrous form; energy and stunning smile. Eyelet was a little risky for an evening event, because it seems to be the daytime counterpart to lace, but this dress pulled the night off well. Kate clearly has a soft spot for eyelet. The gorgeous yellow dress she wore on the Solomon Islands tour is purportedly her own design executed by, perhaps, Angela Kelly, or one of the Queen's personal seamstresses. 

Or the blue Mulberry from the same tour:

If William was at a dinner tonight, I imagine either Grandma Carole or Jessie Webb was on duty at the Cambridge's KP apartment. William was quoted at the Winter Whites Ball saying that George had been, "screaming his head off" when he left for the evening. Hopefully, our favorite little prince is calmer this week.

It is Thanksgiving Day in the United States of America and a friend of mine texted and asked me what I was thankful for today. Among the many things I am grateful for, it made me think when I sat down to write this post how thankful I am to write this blog and to have you all reading it! It has been such fun these past few years to watch Kate and share my thoughts with you all. Thank you for coming back again and again to keep up with Kate with me! At the moment, Kate and William are due at a film premiere on December 5th! Not long to wait for the next appearance...
Good night to you all!

Can Kate Put George Ahead of Job?

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

N.B. This post is a follow-up to the original piece, Does Kate Really Work...Enough? I read all responses to that post, and appreciated all the perspectives. Although, I have plenty of opinions on many issues, I do my best to keep this blog and my Twitter feed as free of politics as possible, so it can be a recreational zone without unnecessary tension. I felt that a stronger clarification was needed in fairness to Kate and to make my position crystal clear. But, in an effort to stop this ballooning into a debate that I would rather not get too sidetracked by, the comments will be closed on this post. At some point, I think there is a wisdom to agreeing to disagree. I hope everyone understands. We will be back to normal on Thursday!

When all accidentals—that is all non-essential elements of the argument—are stripped away, the fundamental disagreement seems to be whether choosing a stay-at-home situation is a legitimate choice for a woman to make. I will be very clear on my position: I think it is, and I am going to lay out why I think that Kate should be treated fairly and equally on this issue. 

Kate is a princess. I like to stress that here on this blog. She is a princess! But, she is not Princess Catherine. She is Princess William of Wales. She is an HRH, a duchess, a countess, and a baroness. She is a Princess of the UK, but she is all of these titles because she is married to Prince William. She married a royal and she now holds the commensurate titles of her spouse. William is the reason she lives in Kensington Palace, and the reason she has a security detail; William is the reason any of us have ever heard of her! William was born to a job, not Kate. William works pretty hard and will only work harder and harder as time moves on. He was born royal, he will die royal; his duty and honor are inextricably bound with public service and the monarchy.

Kate did not apply to be a royal, she didn’t provide a resume on which she proved her ability to connect with people, her possible popularity ratings, her talent to turn a skirt to the best advantage of the British fashion industry, her fertility and ability to bear an heir. It wasn't a job interview! Whereas Henry II may have married Eleanor of Aquitaine for a myriad of tactical and political reasons, the world has evolved. Out of all the women who were doubtlessly preening themselves for royal attention, William married Kate because he loved her. He married her because he wanted her for his wife, his life partner, his soul-mate. Kate gave up many things to marry William, and she gained many privileges, but she didn’t give up the sacred right of a woman to decide her child’s upbringing: intensive nanny time or hands-on mom. 

The various trappings of royalty and position might cloud the debate momentarily, but Kate is still a wife and now very importantly a mother, and she has the freedom that every other woman in society, whose finances are not a hindrance, has: she gets to decide to what extent she works and to what extent she stays with George. 

William had a mother who loved him. Diana fought to provide him with as normal an upbringing as possible; she did her best to give him love and stability. But, Diana was a busy woman and William knows firsthand what it is to have nannies play a significant role in the home. He turned out well, but no one can look to the heartbreaking story of the late Princess of Wales and say it was all it could have been.

Kate has never given an intimate interview, other than the engagement interview, but since she has been a public figure for over ten years now, we certainly have had some insights into her upbringing. In an "interview" for her family's Party Times blog, she revealed various childhood memories of birthday parties, fancy-dress occasions, and home-baking:

From Pippa’s Celebrate we can draw a picture of a very close, warm, and intimate family situation.  We can easily see that Carole was obviously a very hands-on mother. From detailed and labor intensive birthday parties to the carefully maintained clothes and meticulously sewn nametags that peers say set the Middletons apart at school, the picture drawn of Carole is of a mother entirely wrapped up in the welfare, happiness, and success of her children. Given Kate’s story started in a small house in West Berkshire and has led her through the turmoil of her dating years to a position  only steps away from being future queen of England, Carole did something right. It seems very likely that Kate will want to give George a similar childhood, filled with memories of special parties and interactive time with his mom.

Both William and Kate want their children to be raised as normally as possible given the circumstances. Diana did her best giving Wills an idea of normal, but Kate was normal and no doubt has a strong sense of how she wants to raise George.

Some women would go crazy staying in the home. Some women must work due to financial necessity. When financial burdens don't dictate otherwise, women should be free to choose on this very personal and very important issue. No one should feel they must stay home, and no one should feel they must go back to work. No one judges the women who choose to balance their work and their family, and it is hypocritical to judge women who take a different path when the option is open to them. Kate continues to work for her various charities, she continues to support William and attend events by his side, but there has been a shift.

Kate has a child now. The most precious and wonderful blessing: a little life in her care. Another human dependent on her love, her attention, and her time. Kate is the most important person in George's world. Someone will form that soul and shape that personality. Someone's influence will be the dominant force that moulds that child. Should Kate share a little of that role with another woman? Should she be forced to share a lot of that role with another woman? No one has the right to tell Kate that she, his mother, can't be that primary person if that is what she wants. Every mother has a challenge to nurture her charge and to give her child the best possible chance of stability, happiness, and success. Kate’s job is magnified a hundredfold given the unusual position her little prince holds. Raising him like any other normal child will make the difficult job of a mother all the harder and more time-consuming. 

Kate’s job, her duty, is to fulfill her obligations to that little boy and any siblings he might have. The world is full of hurt and broken people, and I know that Kate wants to be part of making a difference for those people. I know this because she has said it more than once, and I know it because I can recognize a genuine smile and genuine enthusiasm. But, Kate cannot and should not put anything before her duty to raise her child surrounded by her love, affection, affirmation, and to keep her marriage healthy and strong. She has a job to make sure her choices or a misplaced sense of duty don't contribute a few more broken and hurt people to society.  She has absolutely every right to pour her energy and direct her focus inward to the sanctity of her private life. 

Soon enough, George and his siblings will be off to their prestigious schools, and Kate will still be radiantly beautiful, wildly popular, and ready to draw the international spotlight on many worthy causes. But, only after she has not just produced an heir (and spares?) but after she has assured that the monarchy is stable in the hands of child who will grow to be a boy, who will mature into a reasonable, normal, modern, and confident man. The monarchy will benefit in the long run from Kate's choice to focus on her child.

Kate Glows at William as She Complete Her Vows at Their Wedding
She owes herself happiness—a stable marriage and fulfillment as a mother to her standards. She owes her child the best she can give him in their circumstances. In actual fact, Kate made a vow to William and to God:
Catherine Elizabeth, wilt thou have this man to thy wedded husband, to live together according to God's law in the holy estate of matrimony? Wilt thou love him, comfort him, honour and keep him, in sickness and in health; and, forsaking all other, keep thee only unto him, so long as ye both shall live?
Nowhere did it say “to put others before my family.” That seems to be the push. Kate doesn’t work enough, Kate should be out shining light on the plight of strangers. Kate does do that, and will continue to do that, and her workload will grow as the years slip by, but it is ludicrous to argue that Kate must prioritize strangers over what are in fact the two most important duties on her heart right now: William and George and the family unit that they are together.

Can women have it all? It is an old debate that continues to rage. And at some point, every mother has to decide. She must weigh the facts and heated testimonies, and then she has to roll the dice and choose. And she has to live with her choice and their outcomes. People are different, situations vary, perhaps there is no one right answer. 

I will tell you this. For all her titles, wealth, and opportunities, Kate is still a woman, just like any other woman. Faster than she can imagine, her tiny little babies will be adults, and I don't get the impression she is a woman who intends to risk any kind of regret. She will fit her public engagements in as she can, and I am confident with increasing regularity, but first and foremost she will focus on her most precious little charge. To you and to me, she is a glamorous royal, a woman who will be a queen, a fashion icon, a role model to girls everywhere. But, Kate is now a mother, and in her heart, that will be her defining role and her lasting legacy.  Expect her to conduct herself accordingly.  

Kate's Hair Stylist & Pippa's New Workout

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Kate at the Ward salon with Pryce in 2011

It has been hard for me to figure out what happened to Pryce after he split with Ward. Although, Kate was photographed visiting another salon while pregnant, where both Carole and Pippa are known to go, The Telegraph's Mandrake has reported that Kate still gets her hair cut and colored by Richard Ward. 
Sadly, Mandrake hears that Pryce has not been able to retain his most famous client. “Richard Ward still cuts Kate’s hair and she has her colour done at the salon,” one of Pryce’s fellow crimpers tells me.
Pryce was a protégé of Ward and styled Kate's hair for her wedding in addition to accompanying her on her tour of North America, but it isn't clear to me that there would be any reason for Kate to follow Pryce rather than staying with Ward. It is Ward's salon and the Middleton women have been going for years. If Ward gave Pryce the responsibility of his highest profile client, it doesn't follow that Kate would abandon the whole salon for him. Pryce commented on Kate recently and his remarks were very gracious. Just given the fact that he styled the Kate's hair for the Royal Wedding should keep him with a fairly steady clientele for years.

In her fortnightly column in The Telegraph, Pippa is out testing a new workout craze in London, hydro-spinning, which is exactly what it sounds like: spinning in water. An over-simplification is that the added resistance of the water is apparently easier on the joints than traditional spinning. Pippa mentioned how great of a workout it is for mothers after giving birth. My bet is that the Duchess of Cambridge has or will try this workout at some point. Maybe Pippa and Kate will use the pod for two?
...The hydro-bikes are in fact suitable for all physical abilities, as the cushioning effect of the water means less impact on feet and knees than you get in normal spinning classes. Indeed, early versions of these machines were designed specifically for post-injury rehabilitation. According to Delphine it’s an ideal activity for strengthening joints and muscles and is particularly good for boosting post-pregnancy muscle tone (from about four weeks after birth).
Pippa was recently photographed attending the Sugarplum Ball in a floor length Temperley. Nico was along, too, go course, and the two made a pretty glamorous pair.

Looking forward to seeing Kate at her own ball this week!

Telegraph articles
Richard Ward/James Pryce 
Pippa's Hydro-spinning

Does Kate Really Work...Enough?

Thursday, November 21, 2013

With some regularity, I get a comment that wonders at Kate vacationing or remarks that she should work more, and I have been promising to write my thoughts on Kate and just how much I think she should be "working."

Let’s start at the beginning. Catherine Elizabeth Middleton was born to a hardworking couple in Berkshire, England. Michael and Carole Middleton were an ordinary couple, with normal jobs. He was a steward, she was a stewardess. I am not privy to the inside details, but somewhere along the line Carole decided to commercialize her creative side and began selling the party favors she made for her children’s birthdays. This business made the Middletons multi-millionaires. It enabled them to join the ranks of the (financial) crème de la crème of society and to give Kate and her siblings a privileged upbringing. All of this would have been fairly ordinary in the big scheme of things, except that Kate met, fell in love with, and married, the heir to the most prestigious monarchy in history: Prince William Arthur Philip Louis, son of the Prince and Princess of Wales.

Kate is the daughter of self-made millionaires, married to a man who is heir, not just to a throne and a title, but to a fabulous financial inheritance. Practically speaking, Catherine Cambridge does not have to work another day in her life. 

Some people work because they love to, and that is good. Perhaps they have a passion for their job and they couldn’t function without it.  Most people work because they must, to sustain life or at least their lifestyle. That you love your work might be a wonderful bonus, but that you must work to pay for shelter, food, and other daily necessities is the first priority. 

But, if you remove that necessity, if you have worked long and hard enough, or if you have just gotten lucky, so that you do not have to work to sustain life, than work becomes optional and other opportunities open up. The idea that to be a useful member of society you must craft and maintain a career is false. Life is a precious gift and shouldn't be wasted, yes, but the definition of useful activity can be found in a myriad of places. Once your basic needs are met, the only duty you have to life is that you cultivate the talents and abilities that you have. Aristotle, the ancient philosopher, pointed out how absolutely necessary it is for growth that we have leisure. Only in a society in which a certain amount of leisure time is available to people do the fine arts flourish. We work so that we can have leisure. If Kate has more leisure time than the rest of us, who are we to begrudge her that? People who argue that she doesn’t do anything seem to have an attitude that the life choices she makes and prioritizes are somehow inferior to their own. But, why? 

If Kate’s practical needs are taken care of by her husband’s fortune or her inheritance from her parents, she has every right to indulge her personal passions. Art, gardening, history, photography, reading, raising her children, making a beautiful home for herself and her family. If Kate gets up every morning and showers her child with love and attention, reads great literature, indulges in her passion for art and photography, enjoys the outdoors in Kensington Gardens with Lupo, plans a dinner party to bring together her friends and family, lives, laughs, loves, savors life, why would anyone complain about that with any other motivation than jealousy?  

Kate is not a full-time working royal yet. William is clearly quickly moving in that direction, but even he, with his significantly busier calendar, is not a full-time royal. Nevertheless, Kate is working and fulfilling the duties of her "job" quite seriously. The problem is, her job is very unusual.  Part of Kate's job is to look like a million bucks. We expect her to step out of the car at every engagement looking radiantly lovely, perfectly coiffed, immaculately dressed. That takes work! It takes work to stay so beautiful for high-definition cameras. People scoff as she traipses from hair salon, to clothes boutique, to department store, but look what happens when she steps out with roots showing and an exhausted face? Public outcry! We feel cheated! The charity is upstaged while the world wonders everything from, "Is Kate sleeping well?" to "Is there trouble in royal paradise?!" My mom always told me when I was little, as she ran a comb through my tangled hair or stuffed me into an "itchy" dress, you have to suffer for beauty. Now that I am older I learn you have to work hard for it, too. From the gym to the hair salon, Kate's personal upkeep is no small thing. It's an unusual job, but it is most certainly time-consuming work.

Kate gave up many things to marry the man she loved and step onto the world stage for the rest of her life. Think about it. She will never be normal again. She will live and die under the spotlight of world attention. We will watch her every mood and move, we will carefully categorize her every fashion choice, her every patronage and event. When she has a bad hair day, she will make front-page news. She can’t step out of her house without a tourist taking a snap and sharing on Twitter. The vociferous appetite of her adoring fans will never dim. Kate, like Diana, will grow and grow in the public consciousness until even she can barely keep up with the image we create. Do I think this is all unfair or that we should feel sorry for her? No. She lives a life of extreme privilege and significant glamour. She is up for it. Some women would bend or break, Kate will thrive. But, she has every right to indulge when and where she chooses. She takes our scrutiny with dignity and grace, because when she wants space she has the money and flexibility to find it. She can jet to the wispy, snowy solitude of the Alps, or the secluded, sunny beaches of Mustique. We get to follow her life to the best of the paparazzis' ability, she gets to travel and vacation when the whim takes her.

I don’t have the choice to live that lifestyle. Many people around the globe don’t either, we have to work most days and take our vacations when we can. Nevertheless, I submit that anyone reading this blog is miles ahead of many of the downtrodden the earth has watched live and die throughout human history. If you are in doubt, look to the slums of India, the far-reaches of Africa, read Solzhenitsyn’s One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich about the Communist labor camps. Most of us are pretty blessed, even with our 9-5s and our annoying work colleagues. 

Ultimately, Kate owes you and me not a single thing. She signed on the dotted line to live under a microscope when she accepted her life of privilege. But, if she has the means and the time to jet to Mustique three times a year, more power to her. She generates revenue for the airlines and their employees, the island workers, the villa renters, the shops where she buys her holiday clothes, etc. Those people take that profit and they go home and have that much more extra with which to indulge their families. That’s how a free society works. That is how an honorable society works. We applaud the successful and we work toward success ourselves. The green-eyed monster of jealousy won’t destroy Kate's or the Middletons' peace as they sun on the sandy beaches of the Caribbean, it will only steal the happiness and peace that you could have. 

Kate is doing her job. Every day. She is raising a little heir to the British throne in a stable family environment. She is working with her charities, she is highlighting British fashion, she is being happy. That’s her job. Her job is to be happy, healthy, and normal. To be the beautiful woman that other women want to emulate. Britain’s princess is soon to be the most photographed woman on earth. That’s good for business, kids. Her job is to keep her marriage stable so we don’t have a re-run of the ‘90’s. The royals give so much more to the UK than they take. I won’t even open the discussion of the benefits of the monarchy, many others make that argument far more succinctly. Kate lives in a fishbowl, her every public move is dissected, her family is vilified, her personal life is the subject of constant speculation. She may choose when and where to accept a public engagement, and if she spends the rest of her free time sipping tea and chatting with her mom, that is her absolute right. 

Don’t follow the royals with resentment. Enjoy the fashion, the history, the pageantry. Savor a country walk with a solid pair of wellies, snag some holiday tips from Pippa, learn about the sick and the hurt who are benefitted by the charities that the Royals highlight. Thank God for your blessings, for they are many, and enjoy your life.

Kate is a wealthy, wealthy woman. She is wealthy because she was born to it, she got lucky, she won the genetic lottery. She doesn’t have to work. She gets to invest her time in what she chooses. What fabulous freedom. I hope she indulges that freedom wisely, and enriches her personal life through her free-time. I am glad that William met such a beautiful woman, with such a beautiful family, and introduced the world to her so that we may enjoy “watching our neighbors” while we go about making our own happiness.

Kate Mixes MaxMara and Orla Kiely to Battle Sexting and Addictions at Place2Be

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Kate braved the blustry winds today to attend forums presented by one of her patronages, Place2Be, on their work with children fighting cyber-bullying, self-harm, and various addictions.  Kate was particularly interested in asking how to fight sexting.
Kate had other interests, too, said Byron. "She was at a engagement yesterday and they mentioned sexting. … She was interested in what we do and my colleagues' work on addiction." (via People)
Kate got involved with Place2Be in the hopes of proactively battling damaging habits and behavior, by reaching children before they get involved. To the clothes...If you were disappointed about Kate wearing an identical recycle yesterday, today she was all in new pieces. 

This asymmetrical jacket is MaxMara, while the pleated skirt is Orla Kiely. Kate accessorized with sensibly warm Cornelia James gloves, and wore tinted stockings and McQueen pumps. I really like this whole assemble! The MaxMara jacket is particularly lovely.  What I think is extraordinary is how perfectly the blue of the jacket and the skirt match, despite the different labels. They look like they could have been made for each other! That can be such a tricky, tricky match; I am very impressed! Kate loves these asymmetrical zippers, and this reminds me of her beautiful Temperley coat:

Kate's skirt flirted with a bit of a Calgary situation, as the unruly winds whipped it about.  Thankfully, it didn't develop into the problem we saw in Canada. It does give us a sense of the skirt's movement, which is lovely!  

She was a little bold pairing a lightly different shade of blue suede shoes and matching clutch. I would probably be more comfortable with more of a contrast, but I think she pulled it off, and it was fun to see her switch up her shoes. 

via Twitter @RoseSkyNews

via Twitter @VixSmith_Mirror
To me, this is also her second day of hair success. The half-sweep is very flattering on her, and puts her beautiful bone structure on display, while of course highlighting her delicate drop earrings.

I meant to update yesterday's post on William and Kate's visit to Only Connect, but life got busy. Kate did look tired at times, but she didn't look worn out and haggard. Every young mother I know with a child under 6 months is pretty tired, and we know that Kate is a hands on mom, so she is not passing the nightly feeds and fussy time off to the nanny. I thought seeing these two together-- tired, but happy--was just lovely.

I love Kate's timing. Yesterday, the excitement of a joint engagement was enough and she recycled a fabulous dress, but she saved pizazz for her solo visit today with a whole new ensemble. Many of us were rattled after the Poppy Day Supporters event, but she has bounced back from that, barely missing a beat. We will see Kate again at the SportsAid's One-to-Watch Ball on the 28th. For those of you in the United States, that will be Thanksgiving Day. A little holiday treat, I'd say.

Kate Recycles Orla Kiely for a Visit With William to Only Connect [Photo Updates]

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

I was crossing my fingers that Kate would show up in something that really was perfect today. I wanted to love every element, and I almost held my breath in that second before I saw her. Then there she was in one of my absolute favorite, and what I consider one of the most flattering, coat dresses she has worn! The brown Orla Kiely that she wore to Rose Hill Primary School in Oxford in February of 2012, what a fabulous engagement. It is so wonderful to see her in it again. As I mentioned earlier this month, this is an absolutely fabulous silhouette on our Duchess, a lovely pattern, great color, etc, etc. My day is made. Was William in the Falklands for this event? I feel like he was... If I were Kate, I would want to rewear this on a joint engagement, just so my husband could see how awesome I looked in it in person... 

Kate in Oxford, February 2012

Today, Kate's hair was also looking gorgeous. I am loving it today She still is keeping the more relaxed, layered waves, instead of the bouncy blowout, but her part is more to the side and the beautiful layers are framing her face perfectly. It appears she has very sensibly not bowed to the media frenzy and dyed her hair, but has probably utilized the quick-fix sprays that tone down the roots if you are putting off a full color treatment, as the mother of an adorable little prince would want to do... Her hair looked great! 

William and Kate were visiting Only Connect, a charity in London that helps disadvantaged young people, as well as prisoners, and ex-offenders. They are not patrons, to my knowledge, but were visiting because of their keen involvement with youth programs. 

I love this picture of Kate in the background smiling at William as they arrive:

Kate accessorized with the same Aquatalia boots, and clutch that she wore to Rose Hill, it was a flawless recycle, with only her hairstyle changing slightly. She really looked picture perfect today. I was just scrolling through Orla Kiely's Facebook page last night, which does not do this lovely label credit, and thinking how both the wonderful pieces Kate has chosen from Kiely have suited her.  The grey dress she wore on her outing with Charles and Camilla was also Orla Kiely:

She looked rested and relaxed, smiling and happy. Everything about this appearance hit the right balance of young mother with bigger priorities, but still looking every part the modern princess. Well done, Kate; I can't wait to see her tomorrow!