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The Duchess Meets The Queen: Kate Co-Hosts Reception with HM and Meets Helen Mirren

Monday, February 17, 2014

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These in-house events can be very frustrating since it often takes a minor eternity to get a single photo. Kate was at BP this evening to co-host a reception with the Queen and Princess Michael of Kent for stars of the stage and screen. (Speaking of the movie The Queen, I always hear "stars of the stage and screen" just as Roger Allam says it to the Queen Mother in that movie.) Thankfully, this time around someone snapped a photo of Kate in the car on the way in. Her hair was down and she appeared to be wearing the red McQueen from the Thames River Pageant, which we also suspect she wore to the Queen's Christmas lunch. 

Kate heading into Christmas Lunch 2013
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This dress is not what I expected. I thought for an evening reception at Buckingham Palace with the Queen you would wear a floor length gown, but most of the stars were showing up in knee length and so it seems the dress code was in fact not that fancy.  This is a beautiful dress and can never fail to be a hit. I loved it when she wore it in June of 2012, and it is lovely this evening without the red topper and with dark, contrasting accessories.

William and Kate Arrive at the Thames for the River Pageant in June 2012
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William saw Helen Mirren just last night the BAFTA when he presented her with her award. ,Helen Mirren is of course renowned for her excellent portrayal of the Queen in the The Queen. He quipped, "perhaps I should be calling you granny."  Cute. Mirren mentioned this to Kate who laughed with the actress about the moment. I am sure it was very fun for Kate to meet Mirren, who did such an incredibly detailed and powerful rendition of her grandmother-in-law.


Kate also would have gotten to meet current British heartthrob Benedict Cumberbatch, aka Sherlock Holmes, who was doubtless on better behavior at BP tonight than his charming, but socially awkward screen character has been in the past. Click picture for video:


In more Kate news, she was photographed last week walking in Kensington Gardens with George in his pram, per usual. Not per usual, she was wearing spandex yoga pants and a knit vest of some kind over a turtle neck, and white scarf. Not something we see...ever? She looked ready to get sweaty as she pushed her baby son in front of her through the park, at one point walking a small distance from him to throw something in a trash bin. See all the photos at PopSugar by clicking here. You can see Lupo is along for the workout as well. 



Do you remember when Kate was spotted shopping at Zara Home after George's birth? She was wearing a new necklace that was difficult to make out, but it seemed to me at the time that there was a little baby figurine. It has now been confirmed that Merci Maman sent this personalized necklace to Pippa as a gift she could give to Kate, which is evidently what happened. We haven't seen it since, and I rather wonder if we will see it again now that it has garnered publicity as what seems to have been a free piece? Kate has worn free pieces before, but as a general rule royalty try to avoid that sort of thing. Perhaps Pips sent a check?


18 comments:

  1. When has Catherine worn free pieces before?

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    1. Before her marriage.

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    2. Well, I know this is going to sound lame, but...I can't remember. But, I KNOW that she has. I can remember the quote from the person who sent it saying how it was a complete shot in the dark and they felt like they had a one in a million chance, and they were so, so thrilled that she wore it and blah, blah, blah. You don't have too believe me, since I cannot come up with the documentation, but you should! :) Seriously, it happened. One day I will remember...

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    3. Sorry but I am just as sure that she hasn't - William and Catherine are adamant that they will not be hostages to fortune as his mother was - owing favours etc. Very clear statement by CH at the time.

      They have been sent items and I believe that if something is liked, then they pay for it. Nothing is accepted as a freebie.

      Yey! its stalemate but it doesn't matter that much - really like the blog and thanks,

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    4. Sorry but I am just as sure that she hasn't. William and Catherine made it very clear that they would not be hostages to fortune as his mother was (owing favours etc.) Very clear message from CH at the time of the engagement.

      I think that items have been sent and if liked they have been kept but they have been paid for.

      Yey! Its stalemate but that's ok. Really like the blog and thanks.

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    5. Sorry - the post from Richard Powell should have been from me - he knows nothing about Catherine's fashions! ooops

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  2. Thanks for getting this post up so fast!!! I really liked Kate's look tonight, the dress is gorgeous and the color suits her so well. I do think having her hair halfup/half down would have really set off her earrings, but other than that no complaints here. I thought the black shoes and clutch worked better than the nude shoes and red clutch she wore with this dress before. She has so many beautiful dresses that we've only seen once, and sometimes during her private time, that I looked forward to her rewears in order to get a better look at them.

    I thought the Queen looked lovely as always, but a tad grumpy. Of course she does sufffer from Bitchy Resting Face so that's probably it. I wonder if these events with the Queen are stressful for Kate or if she really enjoys them? I hope Kate takes the time to observe the Queen and learns how to handle herself in the spotlight which will be on her for years to come.

    Jane, I didn't realize that Kate has worn free pieces before, I thought that was strictly forbidden. Since Merci Maman sent the piece to Pippa first maybe Kate doesn't realize it was a freebie. It's such a great idea, when her little boy is grown and King, she'll have this little memento to remember him as a baby. I hope this little snafu doesn't tarnish her feelings for it.

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    1. Yes, there are some dresses I am dying for a rewear. I wanted a rewear of the ink blue Jenny P and I wanted a rear of the white Mouret. I am hoping for a rewear of George's Christening suit. THAT was obviously so beautiful and I would love a full shot of it without George's billowing baptismal robes in the way...although, those were some beautiful shots. :)

      As I mentioned in the comment above, she has warn at least one freebie before and I just can't remember the details. I thought I'd never forget all my Kate's details. Oh well! I can't say for certain that it was before or after her wedding, either, although for all practical purposes it wouldn't make much difference. She would have received similar media flak back in the dating days...maybe more.

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  3. I adore Kate, really truly. However I would love her to add more pieces to her wardrobe. She's still on maternity leave, and with the upcoming tour, I'm certain these are preventing her from buying new pieces...but a change sooner rather than later would be nice.

    Also, I am really starting to believe that hemline rumor.

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    1. I do think the tour is having an impact, although, she has always been thrifty and prone to recycles when she can. We are due for a whole spate of new pieces, so right now I am feeling lenient. :)

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  4. any1 knows the bran/model of sports shoes kate middlton was wearing while walking in the park, thanks

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    1. I don't know, although they are clearly visible in photos, so anyone who knows their athletic shoes should be able to ID. I just am not as sporty as Kate and do not know the design. Sorry! I will update if I find out!

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    2. P.S. I will say that the design on the side reminds me of my Asics from college. They could very well be Asics, very well respected sports shoe.

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  5. I like this outfit for the first time it was somehow complete. For this event it seemed tad boring black shoes, hair, clutch. Boringgggg!!! Iam certainly more than disappointed! A.

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    1. I am sorry. :( It was not as flashy an event as I thought, although I have always felt this was quite a beautiful and intricate dress, as is not unusual for McQueen.

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  6. Hi jane, I was surprised kate wore this dress and like you, I thought she would wear something floor length or at least slightly more fancy. However as I always say she could have changed the feel of this dress and it's simplicity, and shown of her earrings by wearing her up in an elegant up do. But as always she does look beautiful and I do really like the dress. I also am Starting to believe the hemline rule I wonder how much the queen gives kate advice and support and also what she thinks about the number of enagements kate carries out. As for the hemline rumour I think we will know more when we see the outfits she puts together for her tour.

    Jane, as your an expert on all things kate I would like your thoughts on how much input you think the queen has . Great post as always hope she doesn't disappear after this!

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    1. Hello simmy22! Well thank you. :) I like to consider myself a bit of an expert. In all seriousness, I think that there is less truth than all the headlines scream and more than the naysayers want to admit. The Queen is the head of the family and she certainly weighs in on plenty of issues. I don't think she meddles much with Kate, because Kate pretty much does everything right on her own! The reports have always been that Kate is very popular with the Queen and the Queen always approved of Kate's calm and dignity during the ups and downs of dating, particularly she appreciated Kate's discretion when William and Kate briefly, but very painfully spilt. You can tell Kate would never be one to kiss and tell. Clearly, Kate had "princess lessons" when she got engaged to William, probably at the behest of the Queen, but also at the advice of skilled advisors. Now, I think the only measurable input the Queen has is when she takes Kate with her on these public engagements to teach her the ropes, etc. Although, I am sure the Queen has plenty of opinions about Kate's hemline, I highly doubt she voices many of her thoughts at all. Mostly, I truly believe that her hemline is perfectly appropriately for a modern young royal and the Queen understands that. I don't think she has a problem with the hemline. She may very well want to see more jewelry and a hint more gravitas via pageantry, and if she feels that way she will have dictated that change. If she has, we may be able to tell from the tour. That's my two cents. :)

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  7. Interested CanadianFebruary 19, 2014 at 4:31 PM

    What struck me most about this engagement, and Kate, was how lovely her hair looked; new cut and shape, great blowout, shiny and healthy, too. New hairdresser, maybe?

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