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Kate at Evening Palace Reception

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Kate came to Buckingham Palace in her bathrobe. That's the bad news, but the good news is that we can only go up from here. This dress just left me so perplexed. Kate was attending a reception honoring Great Britain's Olympic teams, an event that straddled day and night when it came to dress code. That is never a fun middle ground to hit, and as it happened, Kate missed it.


I blame McQueen, I mean really. This pattern looks the result of a creative brainstorming session after a working lunch with a few cocktails. I don't
think there is any saving this poppy print. (Can we have a caption contest for Princess Anne in the background? She is TGIFing on a Tuesday. It's five o'clock somewhere, kids.) 

Kensington Palace twitter 
The original dress retails at over $3,000. I am the first to advocate for massive expenditures for Kate's royal wardrobe, so this is the first time I have truly cringed at a price tag. While Kate sometimes customizes a dress, this one is so far from the original design I would say that it was a bespoke piece, keeping only the general length and this...eye-catching pattern.



This dress reminded me of a shorter version of Kate's red Beulah, which, by the way, would have been endlessly preferable, although perhaps a bit too formal.  They both feature a slim silhouette, graceful sleeves, and a v-neck.  Had I been forced to guess on the label of this dress, I would have gone with Beulah, not McQueen.



Kate accessorized well. I love her in these red shoes by Gianvito Rossi, and her Miu Miu clutch debuted in Canada. She was wearing her Soru Baroque Pearl earrings, too, which I like a lot. The dress was a train wreck, but Kate was absolutely radiant, and I am not saying that to mollify those who loved the dress. She really glowed with beauty. 


William and Kate were in excellent spirits and Kate shared that Princess Charlotte is already riding, which is an interesting development. George has already told us that the Cambridges don't have their own pony and until just last year, Kate was still resisting allowing her kids on horses. I can only imagine how pleased the Queen must be. Apparently, Prince George is a water baby and loves to swim. 

If the pattern had been different, this would have been a win. I loved how the dress fell on Kate and those bright accessories. I loved how she lit up the room with her easy charm and sparkling eyes. I would love to burn that dress. Oh well, we all have our off days, as I seem to be learning daily. Many apologies for how late this post is! 


I have some fun posts coming up. Stay tuned!

137 comments:

  1. I'm starting to think Kate needs to revisit her relationship with McQueen. This dress is simply awful - my first thought was that she wandered over from Apartment 1A in her floral bathrobe.

    Do love the colored shoes though!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Simply awful?? What? I love this dress!

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    2. To each their own!

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    3. I second that Anon. 1:33. Starchild

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    4. Oh my gosh, now I can't look at this McQueen without seeing a floral dressing gown ~
      Love the image of her wandering over from 1A!

      Wish she would have chosen the sleeveless version and maybe it would have cost a little less?

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    5. From 1A in her floral bathrobe! Haaaaaa! I'm all for a print usually but Kate never seems to nail them. I can think of some very odd ones and none of her big wins for me have been prints. And as for today, sadly I must agree with you. Who wants to wear that print? And at that price, and that length, and with so many other options?! I'm left totally confused. I don't get it. Kate, please explain.

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    6. Well since the coat she wore the other day was also compared to a bathrobe it must be the current critique. I sort of like it. I especially like the red accessories. A real change up.

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  2. I aslo am not fond of the dress or even how Kate looks in it. Maybe it works better in person.

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  3. I absolutely love this dress. It's a bit more contemporary than she normally chooses, bit it looks fabulous on her. Oh and she looks wonderfully at ease. I'm hoping she is starting to gain her confidence in this new "life" role. She is doing a great job!

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    Replies
    1. Sigh. And I feel it's as far from contemporary as she's ever worn. What an old lady dress.

      Delete
  4. Jennifer from the SouthOctober 18, 2016 at 2:06 PM

    The cut of the dress is lovely. The length is atrocious - it hits at her ankles and is not a true midi length dress. I agree it hits probably where a bathrobe should. I get why she wanted a dress the length it was supposed to be - it makes it seem a bit dressier than a cocktail dress - but this is not making the cut. Also the pattern screams 70s - perhaps she found this in a closet in 1A left over from Princess Margaret's days?? This hurts my eyes as bad as the Erdem coat the other day. Kate looks her best in something well tailored in a solid print. Her eye for patterns leaves much to be desired. Also, while I normally applaud her use of a non-nude shoe, here her shoes absolutely blend into the carpet. I had such high hopes for this evening.

    At least her hair looks good.

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    Replies
    1. I too am disappointed (we really should manage our expectations better). I didn't think that it was a find from Princess Margaret, but my granny's maid had a dress (still vivid in my memory) almost identical. McQueen or not, I don't like this look. Nothing classy about it. Did you see the Queen?! What a lady she is!

      Royal fan in Northern Ontario

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    2. The print, the length....absolutely awful. I would put it on top of a list as her biggest miss.

      Delete
  5. Victoria Murphy is saying the flower is a rose. That would make sense as the rose is not only England's national flower, sports teams also use the rose as their symbol. Always amused that when Kate wears anything with print it suddenly is reminiscent of wallpaper, bathrobes, curtains and so on. I just smile!

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    1. Jennifer from the SouthOctober 18, 2016 at 4:11 PM

      Probably because 95% of the time, her choice in prints is atrocious... although if it's actually a rose here, at least this qualifies as thematic dressing, which I can always get on board with, even if the outfit itself is ugly. The dress would have been perhaps saved from bathrobe territory if it had been a few inches longer or shorter.

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    2. Sorry Jennifer, I disagree. I like this dress and find it anything but "atrocious" or ugly" or "awful" as someone else suggested. I have several dresses where the hem hits just above my ankle. I think this length is appropriate for this evening occasion.

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  6. I love Kate...and her fashion, most of the time! But this look is terrible.

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  7. I can't get past Princess Anne in the background. Hilarious!

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    Replies
    1. She is smiling and looks happier than a lot of appearances.

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  8. I read that she was wearing a floral poppy print dress tonight and got so excited. It would be lovely, I could just tell. Then I saw the picture. Not impressed.

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  9. Instead of feeling youthful, the print just seems took casual for the dress and the event.

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  10. You made me laugh out loud at your comment about Anne! Hey, sometimes by Tuesday, it's already been a long week! Been there! :)

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  11. I prefer not to say anything this time..
    Anon2

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  12. I think Kate looks great! Interesting print and a terrific fit on her. The earrings, shoes and clutch are always gorgeous. All of this is such a refreshing change from her typically dull and boring cream, beige and white dresses and nude shoes and purses. Kate seems to branching out and trying more lively prints and bolder colours - it's wonderful to see. And much more interesting to look at too.

    Can't wait to see little Charlotte on horseback :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. So according to Kate Charlotte is learning to ride horses and according to Will she is starting to play soccer/football????? She seemed to be a spunky actibe kid in Canada but she's less than 1 1/2 yrs old!

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  13. Thanks for the preview, Jane.
    The dress reminds me of DVF-is that a wrap-around with a soft tie? Can't see the front.
    It looks silk. Roses so much better than poppies here.
    Anne? Ha! She does look smart. If I had to attend as many receptions as she has over a
    lifetime, every day would be Friday at five o'clock.

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  14. Jane, that's her clutch. She wore it before. That's why I recognise it.

    https://www.net-a-porter.com/gb/en/product/740063?cm_mmc=LinkshareUK-_-QFGLnEolOWg-_-Custom-_-LinkBuilder&siteID=QFGLnEolOWg-72wcjwRezub5KZSBiDvnlw

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  15. I think this print would work better if the flowers were closer together. As is, it does look rather like dated wallpaper.

    Also doesn't come across as formal enough for the event (or for the setting?) imho.

    Wish she wouldn't do that weird backwards lean thing she does in heels. Looks a bit strange!

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  16. I like the dress. She looks great and RED shoes!

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    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  17. Not my favorite look-- do not care for the odd length especially. I guess the flowers could be roses although Saks just describes the print as "floral." I think the flowers look more like poppies than roses because of the prominent centers.

    The dress seems so different from the stock $3000 (gasp) version it seems she might have just said "make me a dress from that material" vs change the existing dress for me. The neck and waist look different and Kate's looks like more of a wrap style. I assume the back is different too plus the sleeves of course. Can't imagine what the bespoke version cost!

    ReplyDelete
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    1. I would like to see another person wearing that dress, as Angelina Jolie, for example. Sometimes it not the garment if not if the style agrees with you..

      Anon2

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    2. Fair enough. I don't think I'd like this style and pattern with this *length* on anyone though. It also seems like more of a spring dress to me. I noticed the original version is available only for pre-order to be delivered sometime in January. That makes me think spring too. But the colors do stand out among all the darker clothes!

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    3. Anyway, I would have worn black sandals ....the length migth have been hidden a bit,....maybe..

      Anon2

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  18. I think she looks lovely, elegant and appropriate - as she always does. I can't believe the level of criticism on her clothes! How can you really say this is awful. She may not always dress to my taste but I don't think this can ever be legitimately called "awful". I guess everyone has high standards for her because she dresses so well. Majoring in the minors people. I think she is lovely both in character and outward appearance.

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    1. I'm not sure if like this dress on anyone. It looks poorly constructed and if Kate can't pull off the awkward length I'm not sure who could

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    2. I am with you Anon 5:55. May not be everyone's style, but far from awful, ugly, atrocious, and definitely not dull and boring.

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    3. Well I think it's awful Eva B. I usually love wrap dresses but in ivory/white and with that length it looks like a bathrobe. And for a bespoke garment costing thousands of pounds I would expect them to match the pattern on the seams but as it is I think it looks poorly constructed. So yep I think it's awful.

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    4. Eva 8:43- You forgot "horrible" and "aging." Ha!
      Seam matching was a big deal in Home Ec 101 years ago. Not so sure the current
      designers all follow that rule.

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    5. Well it looks horrible so maybe the current designers should think about heading back to Home Ec 101

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    6. Take another look at the seams. There is a repeating pattern in how the edges of the fabric are brought together. It is not a mistake or shoddy seamstress work. It is part of the design. Maybe not the type of design your Home Ec teacher encourges-that's pretty basic. Fashion changes and evolves. In my day, shoes were dyed to match,purses were exact matches of shoes, necklines were symmetric.Balance and
      coordination were the rule.
      It has nothing to do with how much a garment cost. It is style.


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    7. Just wondering if anyone here has ever tried to match seams on a patterned fabric like this. It is almost impossible because the patteren is in a repeated line and the body is really straight. Kate my be of slender build, but she still has the curves of a women.

      Could you not just state "I not not like this dress for......." And save the stronger words used by some to describe a simple piece of clothing for acts of terror and the such. It is only a dress!!!

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    8. No Eva B I will use any adjective I choose to express my personal opinion about those dress and you are free to use any adjective you may wish to use. I think it is a horrible dress. My opinion about the dress is not a personal attack on Kate or anyone else. So please lay off!

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    9. Sorry anon 1 I just don't see the "pattern" on the seams. But if there is a high end seamstress amongst the commenters here I would love to stand corrected about how what looks like a disaster in craftsmanship to me is in fact the way things are done these days

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    10. I am learning heaps about needlework.

      Anon

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    11. I certainly wouldn't call myself anywhere near a "high end seamstress" but I think it may not be possible to match the seam pattern with THIS dress style and THIS "large floral with lots of plain background" pattern given the scale and the "repeat" distances. I had not commented on that aspect of this dress but had commented about mismatched seams on other bespoke outfits and/or super-pricey outfits Kate has worn. In those cases the mismatches seemed quite sloppy. But as even any experienced but not high-end seamstress knows, some fabrics simply are not suitable for certain styles. This fabric works IMO for a blouse or even a mini dress because mismatched seams at the sides of a blouse or very short skirt are not nearly so distracting as mismatched seams at the sides of a long flowing skirt. IF the fabric was used to make a button-up-the-front blouse and the pattern across the front wasn't matched, yuck. I don't see the mismatched seams here as a "style" though, but more of an unfortunate consequence. If the McQueen co intends it to be a style, it sure doesn't seem that way to many people here! And if mismatched seams are to be considered "fashionable" in the future, I'm sure lots of "cheap" clothes makers are happy. It takes much more material to match patterns or even to match the grain on corduroy, velvet etc.

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    12. Ha! Careful, Anon 6:39! Most of the remarks are just opinion from non-experts. Including me. Try a needlework book if you really want reliable information.

      Anon 10:23- a question: would you have no reaction to a dress you chose and wore
      being called horrible, creepy, atrocious...? Our choices are an extension of ourselves. Even if Natasha selects Kate's clothes, as some have opined, Kate is the one who chooses to appear in them. I don't imagine she purposefully sets out to wear a dress that she hates.
      People's choices ARE them. One's dislike of a garment can be kindly expressed.
      Hoosier Laurie does a great job of this, for one.

      Delete
    13. Nobody called this dress creepy anon 1. If you can't distinguish between a person herself and her dress then I'm not sure what to say. Yes one might say that ones sartorial choices are an extension of ones "self" (although I like to think that ones entire self cannot be merely reduced to ones personal fashion style) but calling this *dress* horrible is NOT calling *Kate* horrible. I can't understand your desire to be the word police and censor other commenters.

      Delete
    14. It looks like they did do a better job matching the pattern on the blouse version Lizzie:

      http://www.alexandermcqueen.com/us/alexandermcqueen/top-shirt_cod38588587fd.html#dept=wssprcllctn

      I agree with your assessment that perhaps this just wasn't the right fabric (because of the print - I think otherwise it drapes quite nicely) for this particular dress pattern.

      Delete
    15. The front matching is great Anon 11:17. I had not seen that particular link--thanks-- but had seen the "ruffled" short dress. In neither case do the side seams show but in both the seams are short so unmatched they would not be terribly distracting IMO.

      Delete
    16. anon 10:51- are you anon 10:23 as well? I asked that commenter a question.How would you react, feel?

      anon 10:51- apparently, I didn't stop or censor you. If I give an opinion, it's censoring,moderating? Everyone else must be given free rein to toss out pejoratives
      at will, I suppose. ie "word police" I rarely make direct personal comments, but I do feel I have a right to speak up for myself.

      I feel some remarks about Kate and her choices are vey close to the type of name-calling that occurs on social
      media and some blogs- the type of attitude behind the sort of thing that W C H are fighting against. Again, my opinion. I certainly do not seek the job of blog
      moderating, but I do feel I have just as much a right to express my opinion. (minus name-calling) as those who claim the right to use unkind descriptions of Kate's choices. It is possible to express an opinion using tact and a little kindness. There are many, many examples on this comment site. It just takes a moment or two of thought
      before dashing off an opinion. I am Not suggesting not to criticise.

      If someone identifies with something I write, I can't help that.I do think it is counter-productive for me to continue to engage anonymouses who give no indication which anonymouses they are. Very confusing. I am not suggesting anyone else do so.

      Delete
    17. In my 9:55 remark I was replying to anon 6:19, not anon 6:39.

      Delete
    18. 10:51- please note- I said people are their choices, not people are their dresses.
      There's a difference, as much as politicians like to ignore that fact.

      Delete
    19. Choice in dress anon 1. You do love to be obtuse

      Delete
    20. 7:40- are you also 10:23 & 10:51? Just add "obtuse" to word police and censor on your list. When one's argument is weak, one can resort to name-calling.
      Feel free. It looks like name-calling is ok now because your comments were approved.
      It looks like my comment in explanation was not.
      I do not plan to indulge in name-calling, however. Although...

      Delete
    21. With all due respect Anon 1. But why do you want to tell others what to think or rather no to think? You also mention too many times your response is not published. Why do you think that is? Maybe some soul searching will be nice.

      You stated you feel very protective towards the Middletons including Kate, I don't even understand this kind of investment. Relax please.

      People come here to express their opinion on her outfits, some hit some miss. And horrible is just fine, last time I checked it was as much part of the English vocabulary as beautiful.

      And we ain't started talking about anything else just clothes.

      Thanks Jane for working so hard on this!

      Delete
  19. It just seemed like a poor style and fit for the occasion, and yikes is right on the price! I did love the shoes though. And your comment on princess Anne that it's 5pm somewhere - HILARIOUS. Love it!

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  20. This is a big miss for me. The fact that it comes from Alexander McQueen does not necessarily make it a winner. The dress is wearing Kate, which of course is not what's supposed to happen. I think that Kate looks better in solids or quiet prints. Busy fabric does not do her justice. The whole look is blah and rather matronly and aging. Oh well - none of us hit it out of the park all the time. Nice to see her out and about so much. Perhaps She and William are truly stepping up their engagements now - which has to be a great assistance to the Queen and Prince Phillip.

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  21. I like this dress- but I need a frontal view to give my official judgment. I like the print and it's a silhouette Kate likes. I think I would wear the strappy black sandals that she wore in India with it though. And since she went down the street to Granny's, I probably would've ditched the clutch (although it probably hides the ever present phone- might get a text from the nanny!) I think black accessories would've made the poppy design pop a bit more. Kate likes the poppy motif- doesn't she have at least one or two other dresses with that design?

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    1. Agreed, black sandals much better..
      I don't like matching shoes and clutches...I thought it was and Enghish thing, however a good friend adviced me sbout the New British firm "Boden" and very few times bags and stilettos come out in the same colour...

      Delete
    2. Ok- Jane found a photo with a frontal view. I still like the print (maybe Kate just likes it too). It's not a groundbreaking dress- appropriate for the occasion and appropriate for Kate. I don't love it or hate it. But as a counterpoint, I hated the green Mulberry dress she wore to a media reception at BP, and I loved the black Temperley she wore to the 2012 reception for the British Olympian teams. Kate has trouble finding her way sartorially when the rest of the senior royal ladies are present!

      Delete
  22. Okay, this dress struck me as so bizarre that I had to retreat to my attic/what there is of a mind and root around for a bit. I came up with three finds: 1. Remembrance Day isn't far away, and, since Kate is forced to wear black on said day...well, theres more than one way to skin a cat; 2. surely, some members of the UK Paralympic Team have seen combat, so, why not give them a nod? I tested these two...did they meet Kate's symbolic dress standard? Yes, they did.

    The third thought I had was just about as bizarre as this dress, but, is it possible that certain UK fashion houses--Erdem and McQueen spring to mind--are battling it out to determine which will win the Gold Medal for worst print pattern of the decade? If so, Erdem would get my vote today, but certainly, of late, McQueen has been stepping up to the plate.

    JC

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    1. You gave me a good laugh.:-))

      Actually, I like the pattern, but that's all the good part I can say about this dress. I'd have appreciated a repeat and something a bit more subdued colour.

      About the Erdem print I am in total agreement.

      I wonder why she dresses so horribly for each GB receptions. I think the black dress she wore was also a miss.

      Delete
    2. @ Anonymous, October 19, 2016 at 6:20 AM

      Always happy to oblige, Anon. Now, as to why Kate generally dresses so horribly at palace receptions, my theory is that it is understood that NO ONE is to out-shine the Queen; such temerity would no doubt result in the 21st equivalent of a a trip to the Tower. Rumours (caused by palace leaks) would abound that such an individual was attempting to upstage the Queen, a sin in her eyes, far worse than cheating on ones spouse, for example. Now if you're as pretty as Kate, and if its verboten to wear a brown paper bag over your head, you are left with little alternative but to dress as unattractively as possible without going too far OTT, which, in turn, would call attention to oneself! (Have I just inadvertently explained the many bloopers of the two young Yorks, who are dying, esp. Beatrice, to be hired as full-time members of the Family Firm?)

      :)))

      JC

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    3. Hahaha you are incredible!! LOL

      I read also that she usually rewears pieces when she has some engagement with the Queen. Not to outshine her. But this dress is out-shining her as being white and bizarre, she couldn't blend in the crowd. She did manage to call attention to herself! I don't know what would be her punishment but soon we find out:)))

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  23. I like it! Fresh, youthful and elegant. I think the black in the print makes it more sophticated. She looks lovely. I am glad the top is a "wrap" style. They tend to be sexy but conservative at the same time. Very nice choice.

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    1. I think so too! I think wrap dresses are one of her best looks. They give her slender figure great shape in an appropriate way. This dress reminds me of the bohemian flare we saw a lot of in India and it is very pretty

      Delete
  24. I asked my 16 year old daughter what she thought, and she said: "Well, Kate is a Mum now, so she needs to bring out her Mum clothes, I think this dress is nice. Is there anything wrong with it? Are those flowers on the dress". I said: "Yes, they are poppies, and I just couldn't decide whether they were nice or not". Daughter: "I think they are nice. It is a nice dress". Youth has spoken :-)

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    1. ouch. Mom clothes. That's a putdown.

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    2. It was a compliment, actually :-)

      Delete
  25. It is a total miss ! Again ! We French fashionistas are increasingly finding Kate's outfits completely outdated, boring and aging. Sorry ! Poor Kate, what such a change ? She definitely needs a new stylist.

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    1. errr perhaps she's not here to placate french fashionistas?

      Delete
  26. Sonja from BavariaOctober 19, 2016 at 5:41 AM

    Anne in the background is like 'Thank God I don't have to wear such sky-high heels like Kate' :D

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  27. Again......prints seem to be problematic....don't want to be too critical...Kate did seem to stand out like a tall flower arrangement in that group....maybe that was the point...price is crazy...can't say much more

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  28. Unfortunately most of the photos show this from the side, which emphasizes the mismatched seams.
    I think she looks elegant and graceful. The reception was at a difficult time--6pm. Is that evening or afternoon?
    The team were mostly in the team's uniforms, as was Princess Anne, so Catherine looked bright and cheerful amongst all the dark colours.
    Reminds me very much of pictures of ladies at Ascot in the 1920s and of an Aunt's bridesmaids about the same time.

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  29. I don't understand why my comment has not appeared. This has happened before. I've always been so supportive of this blog. I don't understand this at all. Sorry, I give up.

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    1. Hi there! You have been such a loyal reader! I haven't held any of your comments and I just checked spam, too, and I don't see anything. Please email me if the problem continues and I will see if I can sort it. I'd start by reloading the page--a hard refresh.

      Delete
  30. Wonderful event. Love the dress, shoes, clutch and hair. A true princess. Kate is always gorgeous. And how about the Queen, I thought she looked lovely. What an amazing couple, here's to the Queen and Prince Philip! Cute shot of Anne.

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  31. That is not a dress I'd buy and wear to an important gathering, but I think Catherine looks beautiful in it, as she does in most everything she wears.

    I don't really expect high fashion from her at every event. But once she's the Princess of Wales, she will likely have access to more professional stylists and higher-end clothing. Remember, she's still just The Duchess of Cambridge, for possibly 10 more years. She does the best she can with what she has to work with.

    Belle
    Belle

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    1. How much higher end can you go than McQueen?

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    2. If you believe the French are inherently higher end than the British perhaps but McQueen was high end enough to design Kates royal wedding dress

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    3. Yes, anon 4:46- fit for a Duchess.

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    4. A Duchess who is the future Queen (yes I know technically queen consort). So do you believe she will need to abandon British designers once she is coronated?

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    5. doubt kate will ever wear Chanel not after creepy Karl insulted her sister. I hope Kate isnt that much of a slave to fashion that she would feel the need to support such a pompous man. Kate is at her best, most endearing when she is supporting UK fashion. This is not likely to change in ten years time. How do you even know people will care what Kate wears when she's Princess of Wales? I would suggest the fashion brigade would have moved on to someone younger by then. It is an incredibly shallow industry after all.

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  32. I'm sorry, but I think this is her biggest miss ever. It honestly looks much more well suited to Cressida Bonas' styles aesthetic, not Kate's. The pattern, the cut, you name it, just wrong. I think she has exhausted the midi trend. I appreciate that she has been trying to push the envelope from a style perspective lately (and there have been some major wins!), but it's time to bring it back to her classic style while still incorporating fashion forward elements.

    -Brooke in South Carolina

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  33. I love this dress! It is perfect for this time of year. I like that she managed to be edgy and elegant at the same time. I am glad she is wearing some fun patterns a bit more often now.

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    1. I completely agree! She doesn't always have to be in buttoned up conservative fashion to be beautiful. I think it's great that she allows herself to try out different fashion styles, fun florals and varied lengths dresses.

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  34. I can't believe this is a McQueen! It's nothing like any McQueen I've ever seen. No structure, no seaming, no artful draping, just boring. Hate the print, hate the length, the sleeves - so sick of those 70's sleeves! Don't like the red shoe either, or the earrings with this! We just saw those earrings, they should be saved for a while. She is gorgeous, her hair is lovely, and that clutch is pretty fabulous. But I'm really disappointed in McQueen, they used to be my fail-safe favorite designer.

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  35. It strikes me that Kate likes to wear things that really catch the eye and make her stand out from others in the room. This is confusing to me because a) surely she doesn't need to and b) I thought she preferred that people don't focus too much on her clothes. I wonder what the queen thinks of these loud prints with the huge price tags?! I love it when Kate wears block colors that are just very well tailored. It gives a much better impression than these sort of clothes.

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    1. Oh!! I gather the Queen loves the flowers...

      http://images.teinteresa.es/gente/Kate-Middleton-Reina-Isabel-Inglaterra_TINIMA20120402_0869_3.jpg

      http://www.gettyimages.es/evento/the-queen-and-prince-philip-meeting-business-leaders-at-st-jamespalace-79831127?#queen-elizabeth-ii-meets-business-leaders-at-a-reception-for-the-of-picture-id79836624

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    2. imo kate has a love of patterns. Not because she wants to standout but becausr she gravitates to patterns. I nitice this because i only like patterns in limited usage.

      Delete
  36. i dont know. my views are mixed about this dress. At first i thought it was lovely because its bright and fun, but upon closer inspection and in regards to the event, its not the best choice. I also think the poppy image is a bit strange. i especially dont like how the image of the poppies is cut in the sash/belt? portion of the dress. it just looks odd. my ocd doesnt like it at all haha! definitely not a win for the occasion or design. i think if it was a daytime event outside it may have more success.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. ha! Yes, how many times does something just look off and it is internally irksome to look at? Good point!

      Delete
  37. Four years ago she wore that unfortunate Temperley dress. She must have issues with these Olympic receptions LOL:-))))

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  38. I held off on commenting until I could see the front of the dress. I’m in the minority, but all in all, I think Kate looked nice. I love wrap dresses. In my opinion, you really can't go wrong with a wrap style. The problem here is the print. I agree that it does look kind of grandmotherly (although I've seen worse). If the dress had been a solid color—a vibrant red, perhaps—it would have been very pretty.

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  39. Thanks for the photo of the front of the dress--looks lovely when the bad tailoring is hidden.

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  40. OK, while I don't dislike this as much as many of you, I have to say, it's not a great pattern (although I personally have no issues with the length).

    I think there is a broader point here which is that Kate really seems to struggle with what to wear to these types of Buckingham Palace/Windsor Castle semi-formal occasions.

    This outfit, I think, is one of the worst things Kate has ever worn, bar the Stella McCartney at the Riverside Cafe:

    https://fromberkshiretobuckingham.blogspot.co.uk/2012/10/kate-wears-temperley-to-reception-with.html

    And this, also, just didn't work for a fully indoor cocktail reception:

    http://www.katesclothes.com/outfit/olympic-reception-opening-ceremony/

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    Replies
    1. YES! I could NOT AGREE MORE! That Stella McCartney is the Worst Thing Kate Has Ever Worn, in my humble opinion. This is pretty high up there too, definitely top 5. So glad someone else remembers the SM tragedy and I'm not alone in cyberspace.

      Honestly, when she misses, she sometimes REALLY misses. You if you took five of the misses and put them all next to each other people would dismiss her as not fashionable at all, which is far from true!

      Delete
    2. Is this the Stella McCartney you mean:

      http://www.katesclothes.com/dress/pleated-pencil-dress/

      £1,525 for a one-time wear to a private dinner = wow.

      Delete
    3. I totally agree with you both, Georgia Rose and Anonymous 2:38. I immediately thought of the Temperley when I saw the McQueen and I really dislike both dresses. Kate does seem to have more misses than hits when it comes to these types of events.
      I thought HM looked amazing. I like seeing her without a hat.

      Delete
  41. No one has brought up the skull image in the poppy design. Love or hate the dress, I think it is an ingenious way to incorporate the brand's trademark.

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  42. I have just seen a tv presenter in a dress and that length...

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  43. Jennifer from the SouthOctober 20, 2016 at 10:19 AM

    Jane, thank you for being honest in your assessment.

    I agree that Kate looked radiant, especially in that picture where she is smiling through the crowd. Whoever did her hair and makeup need to be the new go-to.

    I think Charlotte might really like horses, but Kate seems to tell people that her children absolutely L-O-V-E whatever it is that she happens to being seeing or talking about at that time. I take what she says about their interests with a grain of salt - it's not like Charlotte is a superb rider yet, she may get on a pony and someone holds her and they ride gently, and Charlotte likely thinks it's great fun, as any little kid would who was exposed to horses at that age. George also probably likes playing swords, so voila, he is now into fencing. Kate does this all the time - oh, you are an Italian cook? Pizza and pasta are my child's favorite food, etc. I'm not knocking her, I think it's natural and what many people pleasers want to do. But it's funny that people take these things and run, just like they did when Kate said she was allergic to horses to get that reporter to leave her alone.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It is small talk which all the Royals are good at doing. William does it as well with the kids and Harry has done it with George. It is also a little bit of their way of giving insight into their children and is not meant to be taken as gospel. Imagine having to constantly meet people and come up with something to say to make yourself more relatable.

      Delete
    2. Please also keep in mind that these "quotes" are mostly remembrances uttered by someone who has met the Duchess and is enthusiastically relating it to a reporter, who probably also adds hs own little bit to the "quote." we are not necessarily hearing Kate's exact words. What needs to be taken with a grain of salt is tabloid
      stories about her statements.
      "People pleaser?"Kate? Is ths the same Kate who has the audicity to not please her
      fans in her sartorial choices?

      Delete
    3. anon 1...You always seem to have an ax to grind; again...THIS IS A FASHION BLOG. Relax.

      Delete
    4. did kate really use the wird fencing when discussing george? Too funny. He's a little squirt, too small to fence yet. But i agree he might be playing with a plastic sword.

      Or maybe kate said sword play and others turned it into fencing.

      Delete
    5. And sometimes these "quotes" are actually recorded utterances

      Delete
  44. I'm in the middle of the move that never ends so I'm a little late to this party. As for this dress, I don't hate it. I like the structure, the flow of the fabric, the length, and Kate looks fantastic. I suspect it's the print that's made this dress go off. It's a bit like the goth version of 1950's wallpaper. If it were done in an all over watercolor print it would be gorgeous. I'm tired of the solids so I applaud her branching out but it may be time to give McQueen a rest. The red shoes and clutch are wonderful but I'm a little bit over those earrings. It is nice to see how relaxed they all are at a BP reception. For them it's just a party at Granny's place!

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  45. I think the dress is lovely--the poppy is such a symbol for the Brits and she can absolutely carry off a bold print.

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  46. Jane's frank comments about Kate's outfits make this blog more interesting than the other Kate blog I read. I agree with your assessment this time, Jane. When I saw the pictures I immediately flashed on my late mother's nightgowns with matching robes from the 60's and 70's. Obviously Kate is gorgeous, but why would she wear this when she could wear anything???

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  47. I guess that's kind of true Anon 6:23..using the poppy to represent lives lost in WWI apparently began in Britain.  But isn't "Flanders Field" in Belgium? And the poem written by a Canadian? I am an American and perhaps I am unfamiliar with all the nuances (and with European widflowers!) While many of our citizens don't wear poppies on our Nov 11 "Veteran's Day" as frequently as people do in the Commonwealth nations on their Nov 11 "Remembrance Day" (or even wear them as often as when I was very young), I've never really thought of the poppy as particularly British. And while I admire Olympians from all countries, I don't tend to put them in the same category as soldiers killed in battle. So I am not sure I fully understand the symbolism here if any was intended. Frankly, I thought the McQueen poppy/skull design was just an edgy print that didn't translate too well to the bespoke dress style, at least IMO.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I read somewhere that the flowers on her dress were intended to be roses - which also makes one scratch their head - so the poppy wouldn't really come into play if that was the intention.

      You are correct that Flanders Fields are in Belgium and the poem, "In Flanders Fields" was written by a Canadian. He was a doctor who wrote it to honor a friend lost in battle. It was first published, however, in London. The battle of Ypres (the 2nd one) saw the loss of almost 60,000 British soldiers - the most of any country. After the publication of the poem the poppy became the remembrance symbol. I've traveled to England in November and they hand out paper poppies to wear all over the streets. You'll hardly see a person without them.

      Delete
    2. Thanks for the info Robin! I didn't know the poem was published first in London.

      I had thought the flowers were poppies because of the large centers but I guess some wild single petal roses have those too.

      Delete
    3. lizzie 9:09 pm-I think the idea might be that those particular athletes at that reception overcame difficulties and faced challenges to represent GB beyond that even of other Olympians.I think in the US, at one time at least, the DAV-Disabled American Veterans-sold and benefitted from the poppy sale. Probably not relevant here.

      The fact that Kate also wore the dress to an event in her home that honored others sacrificing for GB leads me to agree with anon 10/20@ 10:23.
      I do understand your question as it IS McQueen and KP has not said the poppies from her dress
      were meant to honor anyone.

      Delete
    4. With the McQueen house one never knows Anon 1!  And there have been so many attributions re: the original patterns in this collection... British folk art, gypsy caravans (the dress worn in Canada),  wallpaper... I agree KP hasn't commented but does KP ever comment on the possible symbolism in Kate's attire? Maybe I haven't been paying attention but I don't recall that happening. 

      One thing I wonder about especially after seeing this dress. It SEEMS to me that Kate or her team must have requested this general sort of dress from that particular material instead of asking the house to design a totally original dress for her. As posters have opined (me included) for lots of reasons this fabric doesn't work nearly so well for the bespoke version as it did for the originals. While it could be a reluctance to say no to Kate, it is also true if McQueen (or any other designer) doesn't use "recognizable" fabric or design elements, there may not be the same "Kate effect" on future sales. It may also be the case that Kate prefers to appear to wear "modified" versions of originals vs totally bespoke (although honestly I doubt there is a huge price difference..the original price of the sleeveless back ruffle dress (yikes on its own) likely was much much less than the price of this custom dress)  I think it might be better to give the designers a free hand vs modify styles. I understand Kate has to look more conservative than some originals tend to be and believe me, I am not a fan of super-edgy fashions that appear to be designed mainly for the (ultra-rich)16-24 yr old set. But I can count on one hand the times I think Kate's bespoke version looked nicer overall than the original when we've had that comparison to make. Something always seemed a bit lost in the translation. I don't agree though that Kate needs to turn to non-British designers to be well-dressed and think that could cause problems. (Remember the kind of big deal criticism of Jackie Kennedy for her preference for French designers. And as others have said, being First Lady in the US isn't like being part of the BRF.)

      Delete
    5. I'm sorry anon 1 but I'm not sure how you got "sacrificing for GB" as the theme for the bbc radio 1 teen heroes event. From what I've read their stories were generally about overcoming personal adversity completely.

      Delete
  48. The pattern is said to be British folk art so that is why it was worn on this British Pride occassion, I think.....

    ReplyDelete
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    1. Interesting thought, anon 10:23.

      Delete
    2. Who said it was British folk art?

      Delete
    3. Sounds good to me! The company did anon 5:17. I think they said the prints for the resort collection were based on hand painted wallpaper found in vintage British canal barges, if I remember correctly.

      Delete
    4. That's very cool!

      Delete
    5. Isn't it?! As an art history major, Kate must have loved the concept.

      Delete
    6. I agree, Faith. It may also explain why she seems fascinated with unique patterns and designs.
      What was Máxima's major? :)

      Delete
    7. It was economics/finance

      Delete
    8. Maxima might like dresses with $$$ sign pattern haha :-)

      Delete
  49. I laughed at your intro - hilarious! I loved the red Beulah dress, one of my favs. Princess Anne comment, another killer! Keep them coming, makes for good reading.

    I started riding at 4, real riding, no one with me or holding the reins. I was really tall for my age. But Charlotte is way too little. Obviously someone is with her, but things happen. I would vote no on this.

    ReplyDelete
  50. I have seen Kate commit far worse crimes against fashion than this dress (The Erdem alouhette for instance...ick). I quite like it and it's silhouette, does look more DVF to me though than McQueen. Having recently read McQueen's biography, I often wonder what he would make of Kate's penchant for his design's. He was quite the character.. (to put it mildly)

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  51. William and Catherine met a group of young people who were BBC Radio I "Shing Light " winners, Catherine is wearing the same dress. There is a video on!"U-Tube".
    The dress Looks so much better from the front!

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  52. Thank God her hair is back!! And I bet it stays. After listening to the peanut gallery, changing styles, lengths, etc. many times, going back to her long hair fits Kate. It is beautiful and it is her. Not many people have hair like this and can wear it this way.

    ReplyDelete
  53. Several sites seem to have missed this, but, according to people.com (under News) W&K hosted a small reception of their own on Oct. 18 at KP for those teens who were winners of a contest held by BBC 1, celebrating young heroes who have focused on volunteering and mental health awareness in the UK.

    Perhaps this is a repeat of a post, above--I confess that I have yet to read all. If so, sorry to waste readers time.

    JC

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  54. I like this dress, the length and her accessorizing. Due to lighting, sometimes clothing doesn't photograph well, and I suspect this dress looks better in person. But every time I go on this blog, I just shake my head at some of the comments and avoid viewing for a long time. Jane, sorry - but I think the "nighty" reference is a bit unwarranted. Here's maybe a copy of Kate's dress in a short version - Spain's Queen, http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-3860480/Queen-Letizia-Spain-takes-inspiration-Kate.html

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  55. Kate was absolutely stunning from the waist up! I may be in the minority when it comes to loving the 70s hair/sleeves vibe, and I like the poppy print. A different cut of the skirt (floor length for the full 70s effect? knee length? pencil skirt?) would have saved the look a bit, and for the designer/price, the print absolutely should have matched at the seams.

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  56. Yes the dress was a rather big thumbs down but the way Jane expressed her views was so graceful and charming - you should give lessons

    ReplyDelete

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