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Kate Wears LK Bennet to Visit Blood Swept Lands & Seas of Red at the Tower of London with Wills and Harry

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Today, William, Kate, and Harry visited the Tower of London to view the poppy installation, Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red, where 888,246 are in the process of being installed in the dry moat of the medieval fortress.






The poppies in this display are ceramic and are handmade in Derby:


As one woman in the video pointed out, because they are handmade, they each are unique.  I think that beautifully mirrors the people they represent...each unique.


You can watch the quick video of the making of the poppies here:







The royal trio making their way through the sea of red makes for a very striking photo:


The poppies flow out from a window of the tower and into the dry moat, very accurately given a sense of blood flowing:


The Cambridges and Harry met with both artists who created the poppies as well as various representatives of the charities who will benefit from the millions that will be raised from the sale of the flowers, before they moved to place their own blooms.

All three royals planted a poppy on the site:





The three royal poppies are visible here standing just a little taller:

@SkyHarriet Twitter
A great video recap of the visit:



I was lying in bed last night wondering what color Kate would wear today. Obviously not red, and she needed to wear a shade that would pop against the sea of poppies. White was out, which left black or blue. She went snorkel blue in a recycle, which again is fairly predictable. After yesterday's double debut, she was bound to pull from her closet for this event.  Thankfully, she chose a dress she has worn before and with great success. Kate initially wore this to open an ICAP art room at Northolt Highschool on Valentine's Day of this year. 


Today, she did wear a new pair of Jimmy Choo "Georgia" pumps, accessorized with her sapphire drops, Russell & Bromley "Muse" clutch:


More exciting even than new shoes, is new jewelry, and Kate was sporting some of that, too.  Her necklace is assuredly a new piece.


As mentioned on Facebook this morning, Anna, from My Small Obsessions identified it as Mappin & Webb. The pendant is described as the Empress Mini White Gold & Diamond Pendant and retails for £1,850.00.

Splash/Mappin & Webb
Her hair looked pretty fantastic, too. If not the iconic, bouncy curls, certainly with plenty of twirling wave:



Th verdict today is certainly a positive, if not glowing, one. She needed to wear a shade that popped, and she chose to complement not just the flowers, but the boys, too, by wearing a shade of blue rather than black. We have seen this dress before, and for whatever reason it isn't blowing me away as it did on her first wear. Nevertheless, in every element it was the perfect choice for the occasion, so I assume my apathy stems from the recycle.


The poppy installation is quite eye popping. :) In all seriousness, a very impressive tribute to the souls lost in World War I. It fits really beautifully into the historic magnificence that is the Tower of London.



I did come across another interesting commemorative fundraiser that I wanted to quickly pass on to you all. Solid brass cufflinks made from World War I shells can be purchased with the proceeds to benefit veterans. This is a fantastic idea to raise money while providing small pieces of history that are both artistic and useful:

Cufflinks can be purchased here at The Poppy Shop.

I will update this post later in the day....


32 comments:

  1. While a tasteful choice, I think it didn't "pop" as at first it looked as though she was wearing her Stella McCartney deep blue dress she wore last week! They are similar enough in color and cut that at first glance it's easy to mistake one for another!

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    1. Not pop stylistically, but certainly stood out in contrast to the sea of red, which is something she had to be conscious of when choosing a dress. Among other things, this was obviously a photo op to raise awareness for fundraiser. I certainly agree the color is almost identical to the Stella! I wonder if it was chance that saw the other woman in an almost identical shade, as well...

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  2. Amazing installation, I'm sure it's even more poignant in person.

    I love Kate, but I do wish she (and William and Harry, to be fair) wouldn't laugh so much at war-related commemorations.

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    1. Hi Am,
      I too noticed there are many photos of them laughing. I was surprised because normally it's not their manner. Maybe they were all taken in a short period of time because I can't believe they laughed that much.

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    2. I'm sorry, is it Remembrance Day? Is it even the opening of the display? No, they're simply making a visit to the installation--which is still in progress--and giving attention to the project. It is certainly not as solemn an engagement as the one they did the other day in Belgium. Why shouldn't they smile? They gave appropriate respect when placing their own poppies, but the rest of the time I don't think there's anything wrong with smiling and enjoying themselves as they interact with the people whose hard work made this installation possible. If they hadn't smiled and laughed, someone would have criticized them for looking like they didn't want to be there and being too serious--they can't win!

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    3. Well, frankly, I think they were natural. They laughed when they were supposed to be laughing, those photos came particularly when they were interacting with others, they were pretty somber when they first walked alone through the poppies. But, this was not a cemetery, this was not a disaster site, they weren't meeting with the broken or the grieved, or the suffering. They were commemorating. I think it would have felt disingenuous had they looked all broken-up throughout. If you look at their faces in the shots were they are walking through the poppies--and no doubt interiorly contemplating the significance of the loss and sacrifice--they are frowning, as is appropriate and natural. But, as they chat with their hosts and no doubt discuss the creation of the project and who knows what other details associated with it, they are natural and pleasant and bright. To be otherwise, as I say, would feel like they were posers. Which they are not. Faces should reflect truth.

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    4. Well said, Jane! My comment reads more confrontational than I intended it, so thank you for saying what I meant much more gracefully than I did. :)

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    5. Well I didn't say anything about smiling, and I only said laugh *less*. I don't know, if I were surrounded by a field of poppies representing blood and dead soldiers, I wouldn't be laughing at all but perhaps I'm just more sentimental than most. Sometimes I wonder if the laughing (and playing with her hair) is just some kind of nervous tick.

      Maybe the cameras just took a short moment or two and dragged out a few frames into what appeared to be a common occurrence. Perhaps they just wanted happier pictures of her.

      However, she *has* been criticized for not being solemn enough at a Cenotaph appearance before. I know someone will argue it's not the same type of event, but I respectfully disagree and think all events representing the brave war-dead are equal.

      On a lighter note, anyone know who buys her jewelry? She seems to get quite a few new pieces a year, and William doesn't make much as a pilot. Does she get an allowance from Charles, or does William get money from his father's duchy?

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    6. I certainly do not know without a doubt who purchases her jewelry but when Diana died she left William and Harry an inheritance of $20 million which over 15 years could have easily doubled if invested intelligently. The annual income at 5 percent is 1 million. Enough for a few baubles.

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    7. Kathy,

      Yes, very true. Forgot about the interest! Was also mainly curious if he gets any money from his father's Duchy, or just when Charles agrees to pay for things (like Kate's dresses). I also always wonder which pieces she gets from William and which are gifts from her parents, siblings, or even Charles and Camilla (besides the C bracelet).

      I heard William spent a good chunk of his inheritance on a down payment for the Middleton's new home, but that seems a bit suspect to me.

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  3. I totally agree with you, Jane. I loved the dress the first time she wore it and I loved it today. It looks beautiful in contrast to the red poppies. And it matches to William's and Harry's suits. This dress is perfect in every way, in my opinion. It's one of my favourites.
    The installation is very impressive and very reminding of how many were killed in WWI.

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    1. I love this whole project! I think it is striking and beautiful...which is not always the case with memorials. :)

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  4. What a hauntingly beautiful tribute to the many men and women who gave their all. The poppies flowing out of the Tower window onto the lawn gives me the chills, so much like the blood that covered the battlefields. When will we ever learn?

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    1. When I first saw a picture, before I even knew what it was, I thought it was meant to be blood. But, I thought of the Tower's medieval history executions. :( When I learned what it was, I was very impressed. It is excellently done. Beautiful, but horrible--in the most poetic way possible. :)

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  5. I knew today would be a repeat...haha. some amazing pics

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    1. Agree, she is predictable, isnt she?:)

      Wonderful coverage about this poppy installation, disturbing and moving at the same time.

      New shoes, new necklace, new hair, for me looks shorter but probably the curles are misleading. Loved her hair, wish we could do sth about her hands. She was touching it again all the time.

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    2. Yes, it had to be a repeat if she wants to keep the bill down. There are certain events, like meeting the Queen of the Belgians and representing your country at the largest international WWI commemoration ceremony, when one must wear new things. :) But, today was bound to be a closet. I liked it. :)

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  6. Thank you Jane, for such wonderful coverage. You do a great job of covering the royals, but more significantly, the event and its' meaning. Another post very well done.

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    1. Thank you, Kathy! I very much appreciate your comment. :)

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  7. Hey Jane, Lovely post as per usual!! Kate looks amazing - as per usual! :P I wish I had the $$ and time to go see the Tower of London right now - it looks incredible. I'm a huge WW1 and WW2 'junkie' and I find this tribute to be so incredibly moving.
    On another note: Do you know of any bloggers who following Prince Harry? He always does such great work for veterans (I have a soft spot for veterans) and would love to follow more of what he does for charity work. I'd appreciate your help.
    Thanks!

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    1. I am feeling the same thing. I want to see this in person!
      I am sorry to say that I do not believe there are. People ask a similar question about William...
      You know, there are a ton of "Hot Harry" Tumblrs, haha, but no, I have no knowledge of a blog that takes on his work in charity as its focus. If I hear about one, I will pass the info on, certainly.

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  8. Jane, you do a stellar job when choosing your pics; hats off. I loved Kate's hair today--but liked it much better before she tucked it behind her ears; call me crazy, but I favour well-cut hair, as hers is now, which is permitted to blow in a light breeze, and which, pre-tuck, showed off the lovely neckline of this dress.

    Re the colour of this dress, no problem there, IMO. On trend--and, come on, she would go nuts if every outfit she wore had to somehow manage to blend in with/compliment the background. I liked this dress the first time Kate wore it and I like it still. Okay sure, maybe its a bit of a comedown after yesterdays McQueen, but if the public demands that she wear couturier on a constant basis, then they had bloody well better be ready to pay for it--because no one else will. Kate is no grand heiress nor does she have (apparently) a trust fund set up by her parents.

    Has anyone else noticed that better pics of Kate emerge when she is out-of-country?

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    1. Thank yo so much! :) I also think hair untucked usually looks better than tucked. There are certainly times when I prefer it up, but there were some beautiful shots today of her hairpin the wind. She is such a lovely woman.

      I haven't noticed that. Maybe it is simply the higher concentration of interest and media allowing for a large pool to choose from?

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  9. Thanks for the post Jane! I agree that, while I love this blue dress, it looked better on the previous wear. It almost seems like Kate's dresses are becoming "looser" or are being tailored with a bit of wiggle room lately. Maybe because she's tired of pulling seams when she sits or bends down to talk to children?

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  10. l wish she would try suits, skirt suits, pants suits would be nice for such occassions where she had to lay flowers and plant things, her dresses are too short for someone who constantly bending over to talk to children, her hair makes her look messy she should have tied it, and the heels to high

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  11. Maybe, Jane, maybe. Or maybe you simply have better taste than some other Kate-friendly sites. Carry on the good work--cannot wait for YOUR pics of Kate in Malta.

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  12. I agree. Thought Kate looked lovely and very appropriate in her choice of attaire. Feel a bit sorry for Harry though - needs his lady to stand by his side.

    KiwiNic

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  13. There is a funny clip, that I found on a Belgian website, where William asks someone how much a poppy costs. You should see his reaction! Hilarious! I'll post the link if anyone is interested. Kate's reaction is great as well! http://www.hln.be/hln/nl/3805/Buitenland/video/detail/1981105/Gierige-William-valt-even-door-de-mand.dhtml

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  14. I found a very funny clip of William asking the price of a poppy. It's hilarious! But a very normal human reaction. :) I'll post the link if anyone is interested. http://www.hln.be/hln/nl/922/Nieuws/article/detail/1981124/2014/08/05/Gierige-William-valt-even-door-de-mand.dhtml

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  15. Hi all,

    Just wanted to let everyone know, I read on another news site, that blue is the color of peace. Hence, the color choice for Queen Mathilde yesterday and Kate today.

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  16. Wonderfull fotos Duke and Duchess of Cambridge in fields poppies;and vidéo , best regard from Belgium

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  17. Poppy planting by the Royals does create a great sense of move. As said it definitely resembles the bloody stream. The Duchess of Cambridge looks awesome and pretty at the event.

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