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Kate & Queen Máxima Attend Remembrance Sunday

Sunday, November 8, 2015

Every year on Remembrance Sunday, the royals gather at Whitehall's Cenotaph for a ceremony paying tribute to Britain's fallen. It is a solemn and moving morning that focuses the nation on the debt that has been paid and should be acknowledged. Kate has gone every year since her marriage, and barring some extenuating circumstance, we can expect to continue to see her on the balcony of the Foreign Office in all the years to come. This year, the Duchess was joined by another royal. Queen Máxima of the Netherlands took her place next to Kate and Sophie, Countess of Wessex this morning. 



You might well wonder what brought the fashionable royal to this morning's event. King Willem-Alexander and Queen Máxima were invited to take part in the Remembrance Sunday events to mark the 70th Anniversary of the liberation of the Netherlands. Willem joined the Queen on the street in front of the Cenotaph to lay a wreath, and Maxima stood with the spouses. 



Some of you follow other European royals, but for those who do not, Queen Máxima has a real flair for fashion. Máxima is a relatively new Queen. Her mother-in-law Queen Beatrix abdicated the throne in 2013, which set off  a flurry of mis-placed speculation about whether Queen Elizabeth II would abdicate. Not many considered that abdication has been a bit of a tradition in the Netherlands, but certainly that has never been the case in Britain.  



Back to Máxima--she loves bold colors and big hats and I always notice news stories about her. I really enjoy her style. She is Argentinian, and I think that inspires her style. 



My first thought was that it must have been a little daunting for Máxima to attend an event next to the royal world's fashion cover girl, but I think it had to have been equally, if not more daunting, for Kate to think through her ensemble to stand next to Máxima with her very strong personal style. 


Both women stuck to their style and looked equally appropriate. I am so pleased that Kate had her hair pushed off her shoulders so we could see this beautiful coat. 



Perhaps in the wake of last year's light snafu with the similar McQueen coats, Kate didn't take any chances this year, and opted for a bespoke piece from McQueen and a brand new hat. This coat is clearly inspired by pieces in the current collection:


The wool coat features color-blocking to create a "patchwork" pattern and is trimmed in velvet. McQueen's tell-tale tight tailoring is evident and fits Kate like a glove. I love, love, this coat! It is fresh and modern and so interesting.



The designer of the Duchess's new hat has not been confirmed, but I think it is Jane Corbett. It has similar structure to several of her past pieces. If it isn't JC, it is likely Jane Taylor, who also has a few pieces that could be cousins, and the beading on the butterfly is in keeping with her style.  My money would be on Jane Corbett. This hat is even more interesting with the addition of the netting. Kate doesn't usually wear bird-cage, but it pops up every now and again. I don't love the butterfly design, but otherwise I like this hat. Kate seems to have a range of millinery style since getting married and this is closer to the bolder side of the spectrum, which I always encourage.


Kate was wearing her Annoushka Baroque Pearl Drops and carrying her Bayswater clutch from Mulberry. This was a really stellar ensemble. I loved it. 

As Britain and the Commonwealth mark another Remembrance Sunday, and the United States pays tribute to her fallen this weekend, I wanted to share this beautiful arrangement of Pie Jesu from John Rutter's Requiem.




Laurence Binyon composed his best known poem while sitting on the cliff-top looking out to sea from the dramatic scenery of the north Cornish coastline...The poem was written in mid September 1914, a few weeks after the outbreak of the First World War...Laurence said in 1939 that the four lines of the fourth stanza came to him first. These words of the fourth stanza have become especially familiar and famous, having been adopted by the Royal British Legion as an Exhortation for ceremonies of Remembrance to commemorate fallen Servicemen and women.
With proud thanksgiving, a mother for her children,
England mourns for her dead across the sea.
Flesh of her flesh they were, spirit of her spirit,
Fallen in the cause of the free.

Solemn the drums thrill: Death august and royal
Sings sorrow up into immortal spheres.
There is music in the midst of desolation
And a glory that shines upon our tears.

They went with songs to the battle, they were young,
Straight of limb, true of eye, steady and aglow.
They were staunch to the end against odds uncounted,
They fell with their faces to the foe.

They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old:
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning
We will remember them.

They mingle not with their laughing comrades again;
They sit no more at familiar tables of home;
They have no lot in our labour of the day-time;
They sleep beyond England's foam.

But where our desires are and our hopes profound,
Felt as a well-spring that is hidden from sight,
To the innermost heart of their own land they are known
As the stars are known to the Night;

As the stars that shall be bright when we are dust,
Moving in marches upon the heavenly plain,
As the stars that are starry in the time of our darkness,
To the end, to the end, they remain.


107 comments:

  1. Now THIS is the Kate I adore!!! She just can't go wrong in McQueen. I wish she wore nothing but McQueen and Jenny Packham, lol. But seriously she looks amazing, just amazing! Much more stylish than Maxima, in my opinion. And the hat is great too, although I agree about the butterfly design. Kate looks soooo great when she wears a hat that is tipped forward and rides low over her forehead, allowing her hair to fall down her back. The line is just so beautiful on her, it lifts the looks rather than drag it down like a big, heavy hat would do. It was such a relief to see her in this sophisticated ensemble, an antidote to all that recent lace. :)

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  2. Lovely hymn. Perfect. Thank you.

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    1. I second that......mk

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  3. So beautiful!! Only improvement for me would be that the birdcage come down a little futher over her face so it would be more dramatic. And I think she either needs a little more color in the cheeks or on the lips.

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  4. Beautiful but wish she had some color on her lips or cheeks and wish the birdcage went down futher so as to be more dramatic.

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  5. Yes I love her hat also the tall point of her hats makes her presence so much more known she becomes the main focus of any group she is with.

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  6. Jane another great post. Kate looked stunning again. Do you know if they have a lunch after. It would be to bad if they didn't do the other royal couple could not visit with our royals.
    Now we wait until the 17th to see Kate again. Then who knows when after that. I heard they are to go on holiday sometime this month instead of January because of their tour.

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    1. I heard the vacation rumour too, and am wondering if it will happen. Time will tell...!

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    2. There was also rumour that she will get RFO. Didn't happen.

      I loved the coat today, great choice!:-)

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    3. Puline
      After the 17th she has an engagement with Place2B on the 18th

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    4. Thank-you, Jean......mk

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    5. I will have no problem if they have a vacation in November. If they have the ability to take a vacation then GREAT. William has been doing a lot of both Royal Duties and working. I think Kate has had a pretty hectic schedule lately and if taking a vacation more frequently to keep this pace then so be it. I know posters are waiting to pounce - sorry Kate.

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  7. Another black coat? How many does she need?

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    1. I think I can answer this quickly. Yes. Yet another black coat. She is going to need literally dozens over the course of her life. Kate is a Princess of the United Kingdom, one of the most senior royals in "the Firm," and the future Queen. Part of her job is wear beautiful clothes, and increasingly to debut new clothes. We will continue to see her wear new and expensive pieces for the rest of her life. Her clothes budget will always be eye-popping. If that doesn't sit well with you, you might not know how this whole royal families thing works. And, if it irks you, you might not want to continue royal watching. This is par for the course, it's a mandatory element of the job. New clothes. With regularity.

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    2. I'm fine with a lot of different coats and clothes that will be worn multiple times for different occasions I don't see the point in having a lot of black coats when she really.would only wear them for remeberance day and a funeral

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    3. From my recollection, it does seem that the black coats she wears on Remembrance Sunday are seldom worn again. She has numerous coats (or varying colors) that seem to be worn with much more frequency. I partially agree with you, and partially agree with Jane. It seems odd, but there is nothing we can do about it, and lot's of new clothes is par for her role's course.

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    4. Well allow me to point out that Kate wears nothing but her skinnies multiple times on multiple occasions. (This is not addressing her private coats, like her Temperley or LK Bennett) Most public pieces get a recycle. Three at the most. That's of any color. Kate has recycled every single one of her Remembrance Day coats. Everyone has gotten two wears, which is, as I say, pretty standard for her closet. Kate has a huge closet of one-offs that we may or may not see again. If anything, Remembrance Sunday is when she seems to be the thriftiest. Perhaps as we move forward we will start to see more and more repeats, but right now, one recycle is pretty good, and she has recycled everything from Remembrance Sunday. So, I kind of have to object to framing these coats as a special subcategory separate from her other habits, because that just isn't the case. I fully expect this coat to get a second wear, too.

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    5. Jane if you don't mind me saying, that seems like an unusual and unnecessarily snide response to the first anon. So she thinks Kate should recycle more, is it any different from someone who thinks she should have a more extensive wardrobe? Should that anon really be excluded or discouraged from royal watching for that opinion?

      Also to be clear, in May Americans do not recognize the living at all, or the wounded. Memorial Day is a true day of Remembrance for all those killed while in service to the United States.

      Veterans Day is a day to honor and thank anyone who ever served in the armed forces, in wartime or peacetime.

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    6. Thank you Jane for stopping the post from drifting into further bashing of Kate at the get go.

      I do not think it was snide as Anon 1:56 suggests. I for one am tired and have been tired of the growing bashing of Kate. Let her have 100 black coats. Good grief.

      Kate looked wonderful and elegant. Love lover love the coat! Love the birdcage! I do wish she would add a touch of color to her lips.

      DB

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    7. Anon 1:56. I started a long explanation, and decided to keep it short. I gave the snide response I did because I found that kind of unqualified criticism to be something of a one-two punch at Kate and insulting to me as a fashion blogger. I read hundreds and hundreds of comments and I usually—although I have been wrong once or twice—am right about the tone of the comment. That wasn’t a positive comment. It also came to me in a slew of other very negative comments that I did not allow to go live. When I get a lot of negative comments in, I will often let one go live and respond to it pretty sharply. It is my way of letting those people know that while I do allow all sorts of comments to go live, this isn’t a free for all. If people want to be unkind, they can. And 90% of the time, I will quietly delete it with no one the wiser, but as I say, every now and again you get to be the example that tells all the other people who don’t like Kate that this isn’t the place to voice that sentiment.

      In the US we never focus solely on the dead. I have never seen a Memorial Day celebration that does not also pay tribute to the wounded warriors and veterans. Even the Memorial Day concert, which is arguably our most public ceremony/display, puts a heavy emphasis on the wounded. I certainly agree that the two holidays are different, I agree that Memorial Day gets the lion’s share of the attention (perhaps that is one reason we have shifted more focus to veterans there as well) but I don’t see a strict separation. Britain makes the distinction far better than we do.

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    8. I agree and understand that the DOC will have a lifetime of new and beautiful clothes, but I think the point some are trying to make is she doesn't have to buy them all in her first five years. As a part-time royal.

      I'd be in more sympathy if everything she purchased & wore was "made in Great Britain" because one could argue that was supporting and boosting the UK economy. (Same with the Middleton Party Pieces company - how much of that merchandise is imported from China?)

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    9. Hi Kaye! I don't mind any of my readers feeling that way, or making that argument. Many have expressed it before, many will do it again. But, I do mind the manner in which this comment made the point. Anyone who wants to make a negative comment may do so, but it must be qualified so that I--as the moderator--can clearly see you are a reasonable fan who disagrees and not a Kate Hater come to my blog to let me know how ridiculous this all is. :) Hope you see my point. But it's true in other points. I do moderate out super negative comments from people I think are unkind or anti-fans. It really is important to be clear about what you think and why. Anonymous messaging is a tough medium.

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    10. I started following the BRF when Lady Diana Spencer became the Princess of Wales, 30+ years ago. And I do not recall any royal lady wearing anything but black for this occasion.

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    11. Jane, it's been nice seeing you more interactive today :-)

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    12. I think Jane is being completely reasonable. It's been 5 years since Will and Kate got engaged. If people aren't used to a new coat each November then they will never get used to it. The annoyance over Kate spending money on new clothes is a dead horse that people need to stop beating. Think about it, when she married William, tons of charities wanted her to be their patron. Why? Because they know she is very popular and will bring a lot of needed attention to their charities with her visits. Why does she have that attention follow her? A huge part of that are her clothes. Her clothes raise awareness for charities. Because people see a picture of her in an outfit, they go to a site like FBTB to learn more about the outfit, they read that she was visiting a charity and what the charity is about, they are moved by what that charity does and then they donate. Or they find a charity near them that deals with the same cause to volunteer with or to donate to. I live in the US but I know of more British charities than I do about American charities and its because of Kate and her clothes. I didn't even know there was such a thing as a children's hospice until Kate became the patron of EACH. Her clothes are worth the money if they are raising awareness for causes on a global level.
      Jane, I don't know how you do it. You are so much more composed and show much more restraint than most people. I don't know how you constantly can go through negative comments and only say something about one on occasion but when you do say something I think it's totally warranted. And when you do it's still very well written as is everything you write.

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    13. Personally, I have no problem with her new coats, dresses etc. as long as it makes sense. Many times though she buys similar coats and dresses which is a bit disturbing. Also she has tons of bespoke ones lately, maybe because of the post preggo body, though she is very thin again. So despite of the bespoke pieces, I tend to find off the rack nicer and more reasonable.

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    14. I suspect Catherine's black coats/dresses get packed and repacked so often that they become worn out. All members of the royal family, when away from home, take a black outfit with them. Also, I expect she keeps such an outfit in Norfolk and probably also at her parent's home.Done so that in the event of a sudden death in the family, they appear suitably dressed.

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    15. I forgot about that. Thanks for reminding me, Jean. The possibility gets more likely every day. Not just HM and
      the Duke.: for that matter, the heir and his wife. and .all those cousins are aging.I dread the thought.
      The BRF will lose some of its sparkle without Alexandra. She shines brighter than the Queen's diamonds to me.
      Well-that was maudlin..........sorry.....mk


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    16. Anon 01:56. I also took the comment anon 11:43 as a snide comment and feel Jane said what a lot of us feel - why are you here if you are always finding fault with everything Kate wears, does, or says (or doesn't say). I feel the comment section on many blogs have become a breeding ground for negativity and who can complain most. Not a fun read!! So I therefore applaude Jane for keeping the negativity in check..

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    17. mk, Princess Alexandra and Princess Michael stand out in my mind for their non-Windsor-like flare for fashion.

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    18. I think Princess Michael is very stylish, but she doesn't sparkle. Glow, maybe. Her husband's no slouch, too. He looks so much like George V and Czar Nicholas, it gives me a start sometimes.....mk

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    19. Jane, I was cheering when I read your response to anon 11:43!

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    20. Prince Michael is a handsome man. The best looking of that generation, IMO.

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    21. Prince and Princess Michael of Kent are so elegant. He's so dashing and she's so lovely.

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  8. Hi Jane, I have a slight correction to your comments. The US is not honoring its fallen this weekend. We honor all Veterans (living included) on Veterans Day. The US honors its fallen in May on Memorial Day. I don't know why we don't follow the rest of the world, but so it is.

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    1. Hi Lynn, sorry that was awkwardly worded. I was just trying to point out that we have overlap and some continuity, since we do honor our fallen today as well, but you are correct that our exclusive "memorial" is in May, and this weekend is formally for the veterans. I think there is continuity in terms of sacrifice, and we seem to mix them a little. In May we always recognize the living and particularly wounded, in addition to the dead, and in November, we recognize the dead, in addition to the living--maybe because it is hard to separate the two. I think our veterans day is a little short changed. I actually have to say that I LOVE Memorial Day in the spring...for a lot of different reasons. But, you are correct, this weekend focuses more on honoring the vets rather than the deceased. Sorry for that scramble. :)

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  9. I think this is a great example of how one can have a "uniform" for a certain type of engagement, yet keep the look fresh and interesting with fabulous elements of design. She wears a black hat and coat each year for this event, however, it doesn't feel like she always looks the same. This was the disappointment with the black lace last night. It was more of he same old thing.

    I love this coat with the velvet pieces and it is perfectly tailored to her frame. Has she worn a birdcage before? If she did, I didn't see it, so this is a new look on her for me, and I do love it. The shape of the hat is lovely and I think the butterfly ornamentation is lovely, whimsical and apropos.

    I think all three ladies look wonderful. Maxima looks deliciously expensive and I'm really interested in Sophie's coat (coatdress?). The texture of the fabric and the design structure of the waist is eyecatching. I would like to see what the entire piece looks like.

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    1. I consider both of these birdcages:

      http://www.katesclothes.com/hat/nude-beaded-cocktail-hat/
      http://www.katesclothes.com/hat/2762-2/

      Haha, but I am not a hat expert...what do you think? Wouldn't those be birdcages?

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    2. Yup, definitely birdcages. Forgot about those two. The black percher with birdcage is from eons ago but that is what it is for sure. I forgot that the nude beaded hat has a veil that falls that low. I suppose it would still be considered a birdcage even though both eyes aren't completely covered. I stand enlightened :-)

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    3. I only remembered because making Kate's Clothes conferred an unlooked for PhD in her wardrobe on me. ;)

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    4. No kidding! You must know her wardrobe inside and out at this point. Your "PhD" will come in handy if you ever get a Kate wardrobe trivia question thrown at you.

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    5. Is the outfit from the St. Andrews fashion show somewhere in Kate's Clothes? I looked, but could not find it.
      I made a comment about it last post and then retroactively decided to varify my memory.....mk

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  10. Carmen, The NetherlandsNovember 8, 2015 at 12:01 PM

    Kate and Máxima both look beautiful and appropriate. Kate looks a bit pale, but still gorgeous!
    I love the poem. They will never be forgotten...

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  11. Catherine looked stunning---love the coat and the hat perched over her forehead, suits her perfectly.
    I am not usually enamoured of Queen Maxima's clothes or her hair, but today she looked great.
    Sophie looked as though she was wearing just a dress--but surely she would have been too cold today.
    However, three lovely ladies in a row and the gentleman is not bad either.

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  12. Oops I hit send on my last comment before adding.... While Veterans Day includes the dead its focus is a bit different. The true US equivalent of Remebrance Day is really Memorial Day. And that is when we would also wear poppies although few do.

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    1. I completely agree; you are right!

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    2. In Canada we have Remembrance Day on November 11th. It is a paid statutory holiday, and if it falls on a weekend we get the following Monday off work/school. We wear poppies, and the author of 'In Flanders Fields' was Canadian. We commemorate all Veterans - alive and those who paid the ultimate sacrifice.

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    3. It should be a statuary holiday but it's only for government, banks workers.

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  13. I don't like the coat. And 4 new coats within 5 years for a somber event? I like how Queen Maxima wore a simple coat, probably something existing in her wardrobe. I don't have a problem with Kate purchasing expensive new clothing, I just don't think this is the event to continually debut coats that cost thousands of pounds.

    On to the accessories, no gloves?! She always wears gloves to this mid-November event. I like the hat. At first I didn't like the birdcage veil...seemed a little 1950's mourning widow to me, but it didn't take long for me to warm up to it! I agree that she looks best in these hats tipped forward.

    I think Kate could learn from Queen Maxima, so hopefully they could spend a bit of time together. I also liked that there wasn't a balcony debacle today, and Kate was rightfully on display center, next to a Queen Consort. If Camilla had been present, I suspect Sophie would have been shuffled down one more spot.

    There were rumors of a Cambridge/Middleton Mustique trip in November. It either isn't happening...or it just hasn't happened yet...

    ps. not sure if I was moderated, or if my post was lost.

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    1. Well, Kate wore an entirely new ensemble for her first year, then she recycled entirely the next year, she wore a new coat the following year with a recycled hat, (she has since worn that coat elsewhere), and last year she was pregnant and so wore a new coat, but a recycled hat. This year it seems pretty reasonable to have a new outfit, especially considering she was appearing with Máxima.
      Um, I just checked spam. Poor Carmen, who always ends up in spam it seems, was being held there, but I didn't see anything else. If you have commented and aren't seeing it, it must have gotten lost. :( I am so sorry about that, I know how frustrating it is.

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    2. I did notice the recycling of hats in past years :-) It was more a comment for expensive coats, and I'm sure Sarah Burton designed last year's coat knowing they could take it in once Kate discovered her post-baby body...or Kate is leaving it unaltered in case of a baby #3. I hear you regarding Maxima...I just think her outfit was a tad more appropriate, as it was more simple to focus on the occasion. Just reminds me of the criticism of Kate's prison outfit, but how many voiced something pretty, but simple and muted, was more appropriate. I think a recycled coat would have been great, or skipping the combo of 'brand new & trendy' hat and coat. I do hear your point though :-)

      No worries. it is a tad frustrating; however, I'm more concerned about you posting two almost duplicates, as I try to retype from memory.

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    3. Perhaps Maxima opted for this coat because she is aware of her royal status (in comparison to Kate and Sophie) and that she was a guest today and did not want to make it about HER.

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    4. Royalfan ~ I agree! because we could debate this so many ways. I'm sure that Sophie's outfit took into account Máxima's attendance, as well. My point was that for this event I don't think we need as many expensive & new coats have we seen. We always talk about Kate's recycle choices to keep focus on charities...then we get a fashion show on Remeberance Sunday. I don't think she's disrespectful. Anyway, I didn't like the coat. Perhaps she'll recycle it in the near future so we can see it fully - then my opinion may change.

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    5. I qiuckly looked through the archives - she wore the same DVF coat in 2011 and 2012. In 2013 she wore the Termperley qiulted 'Noa' coat which was recycled at hte ANZAC day dawn ceremony during the ANZ tour in April 2014. In 2014 she wore the McQueen double breasted coat but was 4-5 months pregnant so it probably wouldnt fit her now AND she recycled it at the 1851 Trust Board meeting (worn over a navy blue Seraphine maternity dress) where she was papped leaving the event. The only other black coats we have seen are the Temperley Odele sheepskin which is too casual and the UF fringe trim coat which is front open and would not provide enough warmth on the balcony. When you look at the data its not surprising she opted for a new coat, and I completey agree with everyone else who's said we will see this coat multiple times in the future.

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    6. Not sure I can see your point "I don't have a problem with Kate purchasing expensive new clothing, I just don't think this is the event to continually debut coats that cost thousands of pound". Why should she not show her respect not only to all those who gave there lives but also to all those who marched past the Cenotaph yesterday in a new appropriate black outfit. Why is it ok for her to continually recycle on just this particular day. It really feels like just another unreasonable made up excuse for criticism of Kate. It is amazing how when she does recycle or use her sports " uniform" she is again critizied.

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    7. IMO, recycling should be kept to a minimum on this important day. It might imply that she couldn't be bothered to buy a new coat.

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    8. Anon 11:20am I don't understand why you aren't allowing someone else to have an opinion different than yours. It isn't Kate criticism, it's a different perspective. Share your perspective, but don't tell me why I'm "wrong". Thank you.

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    9. Royalfan ~ interesting thought!

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    10. Good morning, I just have to jump in here to say that the blog does not allow people to attack other people, e.g. "what a stupid comment," or "you must be an idiot" and the like. But, it is permissible to disagree with a point and make a counter-argument, which is what anon 11:20 did. S/he took the argument, quoted it fairly, and responded as to why s/he disagreed. It was not an attack on the original writer, it was a critique of the position. Anon 8:46, you are certainly allowed to either shrug and let it go, or return with a polite rebuttal of the position, but I just wanted to clarify that anon 11:20 didn't break any rules of the blog or civility by quoting a part of your position with which she disagreed and pointing out the reasons in a polite manner. That is allowed on the blog.

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    11. Jane my point is do we need to continue disagreeing? Plus Anon 11:20 doesn't know me. I have no issues with Kate's sport uniform - I quite like it. I don't need to be lumped in. It just feels exhausting. Attack or not, people should be able to just comment. There is a difference between Royalfan and Anon 11:20 in approach to disagreement - sharing another perspective versus criticizing. It wasn't an attack, I just feel criticism isn't need. Good night.

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    12. Soldier's DaughterNovember 11, 2015 at 9:02 PM

      Thank you Jane for bringing up the point that the occasion also involved a visit from Maxima and WA. Sharper minds than mine will probably have a better recollection, but it seems the royal family does not recycle so often when other monarchs or heads of state visit. I have had too many occasions to wear black in recent years as the many veterans and other loved ones in my family died. Looking elegant and appropriate on a day of public and private remembrance and mourning is no small task. Kate certainly recycles her expensive shoes often enough.
      I could never keep them looking good through so many appearances.

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  14. What is the poppy story? Her first year she wore two of the 'disposable' poppies. Then for 3 consecutive years she wore the poppy brooches that are released in a different style every year. Then this year 3 'disposable' poppies. Is there a significance on why she went from 2-3? I kind of miss seeing the new brooch design every year, but c'est la vie.

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  15. She's such a naturally beautiful woman, but she does look tired I think.

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    1. My guess is the last few weeks have been exhausting for her. Planning, prep, multiple engagements in one day (including morning & late night events in the same day), kids, wife, grooming, etc. maybe she's even planning for Christmas already!

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  16. Hi, Jane,

    Thank you for this post when you're so busy with your studies.

    Also, thank you for "Kate's Clothes". It's a fantastic resource. I find myself going to it when Kate wears a dress like yesterday's lace one and I want to be reminded of her other dresses and why she might not have gone with a recycle, etc.

    I love her new Remembrance Day coat. I only wish we could get a better look at it. The details on dark coloured items are hard to see in photographs.

    I don't like her hat. Frankly, I'm bored with this style of hat on Kate. There's something "little girl" about it which I wish she could develop beyond. I think it might be the combination of this style of hat with her long hair that is too much. It just doesn't look sophisticated to me.

    Queen Maxima's hat is a bit too big but I wish Kate would wear a picture hat with a wider brim. These are stunning on her but she hardly wears them at all. She really needs to up her game hat-wise.

    I think Sophie of Wessex looks really nice. I think Kate could take some lessons from her in how she puts everything together-hats, hair, clothes, etc.

    Have a great week, everyone!

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    1. Haha, Máxima's hat being too big. I think this is where her South American personality comes in, and she doesn't care if it's "too big" :-)

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    2. I also feel Maxima's hat was also too big drawing attention to her. I feel Kate looks great as does Sophia and Maxima. The most important thing..... They are comfortable in who they are and what they wear. They are all different in their roles and lives. None of them need to take lessons from anyone else!

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    3. "The most important thing...." How right you are.I think your last three sentences should be a mantra for all
      royal and fashion blogs.

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  17. Like her coat and hat very much. She looked wonderful along with the other ladies. ali

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  18. The coat was perfect for Kate; I liked the style very much. The hat not so much, but my preference is more along the lines of the one Maxima was wearing.

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  19. The coat looks great on her; she wears double breasted coats beautifully. The patchwork look makes the all-black fresh without being too bold. The birdcage on the hat is a nice change for her - I didn't realize how rarely she wears hats with that feature, I don't really like the butterfly design...seems too whimsical for such a somber occasion. Worse, it looks like batgirl ears on top of her head. Also, I think she went way too heavy on her eyebrows today. Don't jump all over me on this observation: I think her eyebrows are her least appealing feature on an otherwise exquisite face. They don't have a very feminine shape and it looks like she trouble creating a nice arch with them. From time to time, like today (and her wedding), she seems to go overboard with eyebrow filler and it ends up emphasizing the lack of arch. She's still a rare beauty and filling a difficult role with grace and style. I just wish she'd get herself to someone who can redo those brows.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. :-) I won't jump on you. I too have noticed this, and secretly like that I'm not the only one who struggles with my eyebrows. Some women are naturally blessed with beautiful brows- others of us struggle to create a good shape. Some have decent shape that can easily be reshape - other of us struggle to create good shape. It doesn't make her less beautiful.

      Delete
  20. Love the coat, the tailoring is beautiful. The hat, not so much. This would have been a grand slam for me if she had worn her Jane Corbett hat from last year's Remembrance Sunday. It remains one of my favorites of hers.

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  21. She may get her brows dyed. They do look very dark today, not sure if shadow from hat or just a new dye job. She has great brows probably just needs someone who will leave them strong but give a bit more shape from end to end. A good brow person regardless if you have zero brows or nice thick ones can make a world of difference. ali

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm sure she does get her brows dyed, since her hair and brows aren't naturally that dark (as you can see in pre-HRH pictures). Personally, getting your brows dyed is amazing and I keep meaning to get it done again - I have those incredibly faint eyebrows that only sort of indicate where they ought to be.

      Anyway, it's also possible that Kate emphasized her brows for today's appearance given its highly public nature. She'd have to wear her makeup stronger for those in the distance to see her features, although it's hard to know if she takes that into account...I've been wondering about that. In stage makeup that's the primary consideration for how starkly you do your makeup, and I'd imagine that it's at least slightly in her mind as she gets ready for her days out!

      Delete
  22. Great post, as usual. Thank you so much for including the history behind/a link to the remembrance music piece–very interesting and informative. S.

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  23. I like this coat, specifically the structure of this coat. I very much dislike the patchwork. It just confuses me because I feel like it's just the coat having a sheen on certain places that light hits. And then the patchwork part by her stomach made me wonder for a second where have I been that I didn't know she's pregnant with baby 3. And then I realised she's not pregnant, it's just the fabric of the bottom part of the coat contrasted with the fabric of the coat's bodice. I got excited for a second there.
    I do like the hat. I just wish the butterfly wasn't there. It seems too juvenile for the occasion.
    I hope she wears this coat again though so we can get a full shot. I'd like to see how the entire coat looks because the top part is very nice and the patchwork element doesn't bother me so much there.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I had the same thought about a possible pregnancy and the stomatch area :)

      Delete
    2. I love the butterfly. It signifies hope and rebirth. A bright spot in a mournful day. In the midst of the sadness and
      loss of war, a sight as simple as a butterfly can inspire renewed resolve.
      That's how I choose to view the butterfly.
      I bet the veterans who took note of it thought that, too. The thoughts and memories that go through their heads
      on such occasions must be overwhelming at times. And for the families also..
      It seems to me, Kate always, always thinks of the impact of meaning and symbolism before fashion impact.

      OK. That's it for me today. Hanky in hand....mk

      Delete
    3. mk, I totally agree with you...symbolism before fashion. Another indication that it isn't about HER.

      Delete
  24. I would love to know the story behind this photo... :))

    http://www.gettyimages.com/detail/news-photo/catherine-duchess-of-cambridge-and-queen-maxima-of-the-news-photo/496248852

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. royalfan-I didn't check it out, because I still don't know how. But I think I have seen the picture you referenced
      and I would give my last brownie to know what was going on....mk

      Delete
    2. Someone's got to come out with a good meme for that one! I'm imagining Catherine is talking about a scenario with George, and Maxima is responding in kind from memories of raising her own toddlers.??? Just a way out guess... ;)

      Delete
    3. mk, I may be seeing things, but a moment ago the link appeared in pink and you can just click on it. What do you use...a personal computer? It's the photo of Maxima looking very animated as she looks downward and Kate is looking towards her. Last brownie indeed. Lol.

      Victoria, that's a good guess. :)

      Delete
  25. What a beautiful hat--love it! Not so sure about the coat for this occasion. The patchwork looks a little too busy, especially on the arms. The velvet collar/lapel looks too large and bulky. She looks beautiful though, as always!

    ReplyDelete
  26. Memorial Day in the US pre-dates the "11th month of the 11th day" of the end of WW1. Initially named Decoration Day, it was a time to decorate the graves of Civil War soldiers on both sides of the conflict as well as soldiers graves nationwide. It is observed on May 30 to take advantage of spring flowers. It began in 1868.
    For more info: www.va.gov/opa/speceven/memday/history.asp

    Nina

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Nina---I appreciate your adding that information. I remember all the beautiful flowers on the graves. This was also
      a family day in the US South. It wasn't just a day to honor war dead, but also lost family members.
      I think flags are used now.

      Delete
  27. My thoughts for the day:
    1) I am very touched by how deeply the British honour their military veterans and those who have given their lives for their country. The ceremony today was very moving and all British readers on this blog should be very proud of your traditions and care taken to remember the fall outs of armed conflict.
    2) All the ladies looked lovely
    - Max is my all time favorite royal and she always knows excatly what notes to hit - regal, elegant and restrained with just a touch of flair from that wonderful picture hat. Kate could learn a lot from her style as she matures into her role as a full time royal - balancing between dressing conservatively and appropriately as well as stylishly.
    -Sophie continues to get better with age - her coat was my favorite of the three and her hat very dashing
    -Kate's coat was elegant and tailored fabulously - no one does better than McQueen for bespoke outfits. I thought her hat was too fussy for the outfit - the butterfly was a bit twee and along with her open hair gave her a somewhat younger girlish look. A simple chignon like Max and Sophie would have looked more sophisticated.
    I also thought it interesting to see Kate and Max standing together - Max is tall and whilst not big built by any means, Kate looked slight next to her which shows how petite her frame is for someone who is also relatively tall.
    Overall a lovely day and thank you Jane for the great work you do keeping this blog a happy positive space!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. All three of them in stylish chignons would have looked like the Andrews sisters.I would have expected them to break
      into a syncopated tune.
      Why can Sophie look dashing , but Kate not look young? Twee?
      Bias and perspective. Thin versus petite.
      My thoughts.

      Delete
  28. In the US, Memorial Day began after the Civil War and was known as Decoration Day; where citizens were called upon to decorate the graves of the fallen. May was chosen in the belief that flowers would be available for this purpose. In contrast, Veterans Day began as Armistice Day to celebrate the end of WWI and to honor the service of those living or dead. That is why it is celebrated on the 11th hour of the 11th day, etc. In the 1950's following both WWII and the Korean War, veterans groups successfully advocated to change the name to Veterans Day. My grandparents and parents still refer to the holidays as Decoration Day and Armistice Day.

    As for black coats, I have upwards of 15; long, short, formal, informal and a couple of duplicates. In my opinion, one cannot have enough little black dresses and coats. I wish I could have this one. It's fabulous and the Duchess looks both gorgeous and appropriate.

    ReplyDelete
  29. Love, love, love the tailoring of this coat! I do find the shape of the hat a bit Mary Poppins though.

    ReplyDelete
  30. Mhmm..netting! Mhmm..coat pattern..! Love love love!
    Minus the butterfly, as you already said, Jane.
    Where was Camilla might I ask?

    Alice

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Charles and Camilla are on tour in New Zealand and Australia.

      Delete
  31. I really love Kate's coat! It's lovely and I just love butterflies, so I really love the hat too!
    Máxima looks awesome (such a good hat and hairdo), I think I can be proud of my King and Queen.
    Kate and Máxima must meet more often in my opinion, that would be awesome really. They seem to get on well.

    Jane, are you going to add the appereance from the 27th of October, the SPECRRE appereance and the state visit dress on Kate's clothes? That would make the website complete!

    ReplyDelete
  32. Seems like many commentators dislike the butterfly. I suspect it was a deliberate design choice added in homage to the occasion. In many, many cultures the butterfly is a symbol of the soul, transformation and resurrections. This is because of the various transformative stages in the life of a butterfly culminating in flight. I'm not a Catholic, but in the church it symbolizes a release of the soul to a higher calling. There's a butterfly in many representations of Jesus. Butterfly's are often a symbolic element at memorials. And I have been to several funerals where butterfly's are released graveside. If the choice of a butterfly on the hat was deliberate for symbolic meaning, then I think it was brilliant. Jane, maybe you can look for some references of butterflies and their meaning to add to your article.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I am not a fan of this hat, but I totally agree with you, and I admire Kate's attention to detail.

      Delete
  33. Kate pretty much always gets it right on Remembrance Sunday and I think she definitely did this year as well. I also dislike the butterfly but I think the interesting netting makes up for that. My favourite still remains 2013.

    Also, can I jump in to this slightly crazy conversation about recycles and clothes price...

    1.) Kate is the future Queen of England. If she didn't wear new clothes regularly, she would be deviating from a tradition of hundreds of years in which senior royals (and often, not so senior ones) have a closet pack with new clothes which get doled out for various occasions. Queen Elizabeth I, to give you just one of many examples, had a vast wardrobe. Queen Victoria had a large collection of plain black dresses she wore after Prince Albert died, even though she was rarely seen in public. I just read a biography on the Romanov Grand Duchess, and itemised clothing lists from just one year of their lives show that each of the Grand Duchesses had a huge range of clothes ordered for them from all over Europe.

    2.) If you don't enjoy seeing Kate in new clothes, why on earth are you on this blog?!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I looked at some photos of QEII over the last 5 years, and she does seem to wear a new black coat almost every year for this event. Apparently the Queen does not consider this unreasonable. Who better for Kate to emulate than her?

      Delete
    2. Perhaps the term "Sunday's best" is a nice way of explaining why a new coat is the way to go.

      Delete
  34. Maxima must be so tall - I believe Kate is nearly 6 feet in heels and Maxima towers over her!

    ReplyDelete
  35. Kate and Maxima really seemed to enjoy each others' company. Am I the only one imagining a close friendship between the Cambridges and the Dutch Royal Family? ;)
    I like that Max struck to her style with the big hat. Her look reminded me a bit of Kate in 2012, probably because of the hat.
    Kate looked really good, I like the velvet trims on her coat and I hope that we'll see full body pictures of this garment when she wears it to another event in the future. And a girl can never have enough black coats for freezing snowy winter months, right?
    I also think the hat is nice, I like the 'butterfly'. But I'm not sure about the netting. It expresses mourning, yes, but in my opinion, it looks kinda weird in photos.

    I think Remembrence Sunday and the red poppies are a wonderful tradition and it is great that it's such a big issue in Britain. The German equivalent 'Volkstrauertag' when we are mourning tthefallen soldiers is on Nov 15 this year, but sadly, it's not very present in daily life and not such a big issue. Commemorating and mourning are very important.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sonja, I think it would be great for W&K to be friends with this couple and it would be helpful on so many levels.

      Delete
  36. They will be comfortable with each other but they are not of the same generation to be close friends. They are 11 years apart in age. When you hit 50 not such a big deal but for William and Catherine still a bit of an issue. Maxima and hubby are the age of W&C,s relatives. Sophie and Edward could be close friends with them, but not William and Catherine.I think they could be fond of each other but not "close friends".

    ReplyDelete
  37. Very nice coverage of the events of this solemn day. Thank you for including the Rutter excerpt as well-it was beautifully done.

    ReplyDelete
  38. I love this coat! It's stylish, new, and still solemn enough for the occasion. I'll be the next time we see it she will pair it with her favorite blue! I'm not crazy about the hat but I think it's because I really don't like the birdcage look. That's just a preference but she does look beautiful in it.

    I've read about half of the comments on this post so far and I have to say that, for those who thought Jane was harsh, none of us knew what other comments she's had to moderate and I know I would be hard pressed to be as patient as she is with the negativity that can sometimes erupt. Just like any other subject on the internet, there are always going to be trolls who come for their own nefarious purposes and make contrary comments. Jane, you're very good at what you do and respond far more kindly than I might on some occasions.

    ReplyDelete
  39. Dear Jane, I wanted to draw you attention to two photos I saw on pinterest:

    https://www.pinterest.com/carlamauger/royal-prince-george/

    First, another cute one of him in the museum, playing with a toy. In the second one is written in German (unfortunately, I couldn't figure out in what magazine so I couldn't buy it and look for other photos in there) that George was 'playing bodyguard' for Charlotte who was laying in her pram pushed by nanny maria theresa. Isn't he a sweet big brother? Looking forward to christmas pictures!

    ReplyDelete

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