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Duchess Kate Debuts New Rebecca Taylor Sparkle Suit

Tuesday, February 28, 2017

"Love is lovelier the second time around..." at least that's what the song says. I don't know about love, but I can tell you that this Rebecca Taylor style is smashing the second time around. More on the fashion in just a moment. Today, Kate paid a morning visit to a Ronald McDonald House in London. 



This facility provides a "home away from home" for the families of children undergoing treatment at the nearby Evelina London Children's Hospital. Some families have to travel considerable distance and stay near a hospital for protracted periods of time. The Ronald McDonald House provides free housing for families already strained emotionally and financially by the illness of a loved one. The little girl tasked with presenting a bouquet of fragrant flowers to the duchess has a sibling undergoing treatment at Evelina right now.

Kensington Palace
Many fans have noted the similarity between this tyke's ensemble and one the then Kate Middleton wore on day shopping in 2007. Although, we don't have to go that far back. Kate wore this black knit top with a houndstooth skirt combo just last February on a visit to Edinburgh.  I am frankly inclined to think this was merely coincidence, but it may be that her mother thought it would be a sweet touch. Let's put it this way, she is certainly a girl after Kate's own fashion heart. 



The Duchess toured the complex which includes communal rooms, playrooms for younger children, and support rooms where families can meet and mingle. Of course, she also took time to chat with current guests. 


While chatting with a child, James Wheeler, Kate revealed that Prince George was at his Montessori school in Norfolk today and that the schedule included making pancakes for Pancake Day.  Many will fondly remember George's mummy tossing pancakes on the streets of Belfast six years ago. Time sure does fly!  (One of our faves, Emily Andrews is in the right of this photo enjoying the fun!)


A video from Simon Perry of People showing Kate leaving:


Ok. Time to chat about the fashion. To get it out of the way immediately, the hair. No, no, no. From the front, I was cheering what appeared to be a follow-up on last night's very successful coiffure. But, then I caught a look from the back and I thought, what is growing on Kate's head?  Is that a hair hernia? A sagging chignon? My best advice is ... never again. I don't know if that was Natasha or the brainchild of another stylist, but it was a bridge too far. Ok, that bitter pill is down and it is stratospherically positive from here on out.

via re_dailymail

To begin with, this is not a repeat of the very popular Rebecca Taylor suit Kate has worn on several other occasions, first in 2012 and most recently during Mental Health Week and in the Queen at 90 documentary. This is new:



Today's ensemble is from the same Sparkle Tweed collection, which is a feature of Rebecca Taylor's brand. The jacket is the "Sparkle Tweed Ruffle Jacket" and last retailed on sale for $199. The skirt is a bit more of a mystery. The collection included a dress with a flared skirt that is far fuller than Kate's skirt today. I frankly don't know if there was a skirt for sale once or if Kate had the dress cut down. It would not be the first time she has had a piece altered, as we saw with her Luisa Spagnoli.



The Rebecca Taylor suit might be Kate's best suit...ever. I think it is better even than the Spagnoli, in that it consistently gives a solid performance. That first tweed suit is endlessly flattering--a knock-out color on Kate, tailored to perfection to flatter her slim frame, and trendy enough to be hip and professional at the same time. I love it a million times over and it is no surprise to me that Kate returned for a variation on a very successful theme. (below are the four times Kate has worn the first Rebecca Taylor.)


Today's suit *might* be even better. The nipped in waist and peplum detailing on the jacket, complemented by the fringe that sketches out figure enhancing lines, is arresting and polished. The skirt features an a-line silhouette with just a hint of a swing, (see opening photos for best view) which as I have mentioned before, is very, very flattering to all legs. Here it also gives the suit a bit of a flirty feel, which matches the sparkle and fringe. It's a real knock-out. I didn't think the first suit could be improved upon, but today's suit might have.


These blue ensembles give Kate the perfect palette to feature her gorgeous and iconic sapphires. I love this stunning shot by James Whatling that captures Kate on arrival in a stolen moment appreciating the blooms. Her rich blue suit sets off her sparkling engagement ring in the foreground, and we also get a hint of a glitter from the sapphire and diamond drops dangling at her ears. Those were also once Diana's and have been reset for Kate.


The duchess finished her look with her trusty Muse clutch and Rupert Sanderson Mallory pumps. This girl absolutely kills it in blue and today was a particularly notable win. I swooned this morning when I saw the first image. I can't see the future, but I think this is going to make the "Best of" list in 2017. 

81 comments:

  1. This is a much better daytime official engagement outfit! No heavy turtleneck, appropriate length, etc. At first glance I thought it was her Missoni coat but pleased to see it is a different outfit. Did she possibly wear this in an official photo before?

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    1. It is very, very, very similar to the one she wore for Mental Health Week last year but it is slightly different.
      It could almost be considered a replikate :)

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  2. Eh, it's okay. Bit too similar to her other one for me, and the wide button band doesn't look quite right.

    I seriously think she's on a mission to buy every peplum outfit in London ;)

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  3. Wow, I think she looks amazing! The cut of the suit, the frayed edges...it looks young, fun and completely appropriate. I would love that suit!

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  4. It's quite fun to see an update of an old stand-by and I like it! On the other hand I find her hairstyle a bit odd.

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    1. I agree on the hairstyle what are they thinking. Other than that I think she looks great, it's a nice suit, though weird (IMO) to buy something so similar to what you already own.

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    2. My unkind first thought was that she had never taken her down last night before she went to sleep and then forgot to brush it before she left this morning. In contrast to the rest of her look the hairstyle came off as rushed or unrefined

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  5. Is it only me or does anyone notice a little girl who greeted Kate replikating Kate's skirt and turtleneck?
    Girl greeting here,
    http://i.dailymail.co.uk/i/pix/2017/02/28/12/3DCC6B2300000578-4267020-image-a-22_1488285120523.jpg

    Kate in Scotland
    http://whatkatewore.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/02/Kate-Wester-Haile-Edinburgh-Scotland-Feb-24-2016-Great-Shot-Le-Kily-Vertical-Pool-Nunn-Polaris-700-x-1100.jpg

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    1. Jennifer from the SouthFebruary 28, 2017 at 2:20 PM

      Haha, I noticed the same thing! I thought - what a classic Kate Middleton outfit in which to meet Kate. ;) I can't help but wonder if it was intentional? And if Kate noticed??

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    2. Brandy from North CarolinaFebruary 28, 2017 at 2:55 PM

      Great minds think alike lol. When I saw the little girl that was my first thought as well. I have a similar skirt and turtle neck. I wonder if Kate noticed the similarity as well.

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    3. The look on that little girl's face is priceless! Nice to see Kate setting the example of classic style for a younger generation!

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  6. The hair is different and unusual, but fun. There is some fullness on top, which suits her and it is more "weather proof".
    Love the suit: the material is very like a suit and coat she has worn before.
    More important, she again showed her affinity with children. She talks to them and they respond. The Royal family would do well to hand children's charities to Catherine.

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  7. Looks very much like the Rebecca Taylor suit she wore in April 2012. More fringe this time and a different neckline on the suit. The suiting material and overall design not much different however.

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  8. Looks very much like the Rebecca Taylor suit she wore in April 2012. The jacket fringes are the same but the neckline of the jacket is changed. There are more fringes this time on the skirt. The suiting material and colour appear to be the same.

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    1. It's not skirt. It's a dress under the jacket.

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    2. Maybe. According to the WKW site though the original dress was quite flared below the waist. So either it was cut down into a fitted skirt or the dress was restyled or bespoke.

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  9. Like the suit. Not sure about the hair. I want to see it from the back. Based on last nights and todays hair style I think she is on the right idea but it is not being executed very well.

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  10. I have to agree that it looks quite a bit like the Rebecca Taylor suit but she does look beautiful in it. I think her hair looks lovely and healthy. It's her interaction with the children that really stands out to me. Today is a win!

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    1. Agree with you, Robin! Plus, gotta love those blue suede shoes!! ...anon1

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    2. And don't you step on those blue suede shoes! ;-)

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    3. I do have to say that I'm not crazy about the back of the hair. The front is beautiful but I can't figure out that back styling.

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    4. Jane's "hair hernia" is descriptive. ;+) ] I have several theories -one, that she had her head leaning back on the car seat; two, Charlotte did a last minute hair rearrangement a la George in New Zealand; three,it was actually Princess Anne, not Kate.

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    5. LOL! I remember when my daughter was younger and there was this thing that would flip a ponytail inside out or some such thing. It looks like one of those was resurrected for this style. "Hair hernia" is certainly a good description!

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    6. Wasn't that thing called a topsy tail Robin? This hair "thing" does look like that.


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    7. Yes, lizzie! That's what it was called! It didn't last very long as a style. Maybe whoever did Kate's hair still had one of those lying around. ;-)

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  11. Kate looks great today from head to toe. Lately, her outfits have been hit and miss, such as bad fit or length, wrong accessories, lack of any accessories, not appropriate for occasion, etc. it seemed like 90% of each outfit was fine, but the last 10% was a missed opportunity to really achieve perfection. That last 10% is why many of us wish to see her get a good stylist. Today, though, she looks well put together in a great looking suit, which hopefully is signaling a developing trend towards suits instead of coat dresses. Also, she is way overdue for a hair cut.

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  12. Love the whole outfit. Kate looks gorgeous, yet professional. She certainly is out and about, and right after a late night. Wonderful post at Ronald McDonald House.

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  13. Oh, how pretty! I love her hair, the outfit, and the fact that the suit falls above her knee. It gives such a youthful appearance. I approve 100%.

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  14. This looks good, I always like it when she wears blue and the hair looks lovely, but--doesn't it look a LOT like another blue, tweedy, frayed seams outfit she already has? Why not just wear that one and buy something new that is totally different? (a bit like the identical Preen gowns, lol)

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    1. Jennifer from the SouthFebruary 28, 2017 at 2:21 PM

      Amanda, I agree. I love the suit, and Kate looks great today... BUT it's too close (even an exact tweed/color match??) to the other Rebecca Taylor suit. I would have preferred a different color... Or perhaps the old suit is being retired and this is the replacement? I like the new suit better than the old, and think this one is more polished... Hoping it's a replacement!!

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    2. Check out What Kate Wore for a full explanation of the suit. And JC, there is a particularly nice video at ITN source, where she speaks briefly at the end.

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  15. Love this whole look- very professional, very put-together. I just wish she didn't have so much royal blue in her closet! Makes me yearn for the purple Oscar de la Renta! I prefer this incarnation of the suit than her earlier one (she can give that one to Rebecca Deaton! or to Pippa!)

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  16. Love it!!! Yes, a bit similar to the Taylor suit but much more modern with interesting design details. Her hair looks fabulous. Much better than last night, more polished. Complete win in every way.

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    1. I will amend my opinion of the hair style now that I have seen the back. Still like it from front and sides as it has great volume and polish but the back is a disaster. I can't believe she left the house like that. It looks like she planned on a chignon but it was aborted half way through.

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  17. I can't get over the resemblance between Kate and Charlotte in the photo where she is smelling the flowers!

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    1. Yes! It's a charming trait Charlotte has inherited from her mother :)

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  18. Does anybody know with which hospital this Ronald McDonald House is associated? For many decades the UK has had its own version of RM Houses called The Sick Children's Trust Home from Homes and they are next to hospitals throughout the UK. I've done several fundraisers for them in the past and had the great opportunity to have tours through Guilford Street House in London and Crawford House in Newcastle. They are wonderful and serve the same purpose as a RM House. I just never thought the two would coexist in the UK.

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    1. ST Thomas's Hospital, Lambeth Road.

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    2. It is for families of children in the Evelina Children's Hospital.

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    3. Thanks you. It appears the Evelina Children's Hospital is near Guy's Hospital across the Thames. I'm happy those families have a nice place to stay while their children are in hospital. I cannot imagine having a child that ill. It is such an enormous stress on the family mentally, physically, and financially.

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  19. So similar to her other Rebecca Taylor blue suit! No expense spared by the charity for this royal visit, a half-eaten packet of Rich Tea biscuits decorating the table!!!

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  20. The pockets on the suit just below the bust are odd.

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  21. It strikes me that this is simply an updated version of an earlier blue tweed suit Kate has worn by Rebecca Taylor--altho the fit of the new one is better. The skirt seems longer and not as tight, at the least. It might've been better to purchase the jacket one size up in order to avoid, or mitigate, the short waist. However, the addition of the peplum helps.

    I'm sure I'm not the only one to visit other sites and to see more videos, but for those who haven't, it sure looked like the adults in the receiving line and Kate hit it off--lots of laughter. And at the end of the line, still more, thanks to the smartly dressed little girl who greeted Kate with posies.

    Kate seemed to have a real rapport with parents, kids, staff and trustees at this event; a good match.

    JC

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    1. Agree on the fit of the jacket. To me the peplum doesn't quite work though...it flares out so high in back. I also think the jacket looks oddly tight through the torso. But I love blues on Kate and think the skirt fits well...not too tight, not too loose and a nice daytime length.

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  22. JC, on one of those other sites there is a model wearing the jacket with jeans. One can see from the posterior view that the "waist" area hits high on the model as well. It is part of the design and is meant as a slenderizing effect. If you look at the assumed natural waist area of the model, it seems wider than the above the waist area. Great design for a "spare tire." although I doubt that either has one.

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    1. anon 1, eventually, I made over to a site showing the back of this jacket, and yes, I guess it's supposed to ride high, especially in the back. Can't say that I particularly care for the look--it strikes me as quite trendy which gets old fast, and seems geared toward teens and twenty-somethings. Think I'd prefer these two pieces worn as separates; keep the jacket for casual wear, perhaps open with a thin blouse or even a tee underneath, paired with jeans.

      JC

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    2. I'm not partial to the high waist look, either; but if anyone can pull it off, it's Kate. I think it is meant to be worn with a dress, not a skirt. It is trendy, but that's what makes it youthful. I think the first jacket might work better with a tee as it has that elaborate collar to off-set the plainness of the tee. Maybe not.

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    3. I've been looking around on some designer web sites at their spring collections and I've noticed a lot of high waists. It's not a favorite look but Kate is certainly on trend. Or it's the "Kate effect" and she's the trend setter.

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    4. Gawd, Robin, that IS NOT good news! May someone see fit to keep Kate well away from same--unless, of course, the designers have made two versions, one for the short-waisted (which seems to describe many women in the UK) and another for the norm and long-waisted.

      JC

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    5. It is sort of a weird in-between look. Not at the waist but not quite empire. Sometimes these designers, in an attempt to create something different, miss the mark altogether.

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  23. Reminds me so much of the Missoni; I suddenly miss the nude Cory's;) Lovely look for the day's events!

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  24. I'm afraid I disagree with Jane this time; the first version of this suit benefited from being streamlined and more subdued, which allowed the color and texture to show. With this fringe spackled on next to the pockets it's just far too much going on. That's a bit of a theme for the Duchess, whose style seems sometimes to be 'pile on every single thing I like.' If we could find her a peplumed lace tea length dress with pleats and then tossed some glitter on it she'd buy it in every colorway. I much prefer her simpler outfits, or those with one feature (like the peplum on the dress from The Fold), which allow her to shine.

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    1. I am so looking forward to her recycling The Fold dress. It was one of my favorites!

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  25. I'm voting that she's wearing the dress under the jacket, but that it was altered into the A-line. If you look closly at the second to last image in the post, there is a little V of fringe on the side of the hip below the hem of the jacket, the same detail as on the dress. It'd be simple enough to cut out the extra material and seam down the side. A good idea to update a fuller skirted dress!

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    1. I noticed that as well and agree that the dress is probably under the jacket.

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    2. Hmmm... Ladies, the jacket looks too snug for her to be wearing the dress under it, IMO, especially given the textured material and the sleeves of the dress. My two cents anyway...

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    3. Maybe the jacket is so snug because the dress is underneath. Ha!

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    4. A possibility. Yes. 🤓

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  26. I'm voting that she's wearing the dress underneath of the jacket, it's just been altered to an A-line. If you look closely at the second to last image in the post, a small V of fringe is visible on the side of the hip right below the hem of the jacket, the same detail as seen in the picture of the dress. It'd be simple enough to cut out the extra material and seam down the sides to slim up the skirt. A good idea to keep in mind of updating a fuller skirted dress!

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  27. I noticed that too, Gina. I thought I was imagining things. I think you are right.

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  28. She looks better than ever!

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  29. REPLI-KATE Time! The Kensington Palace gift shop has added some "Kate" items. That is not what they're calling them but we know...

    First is a replica of Kate's wedding earrings. They're just calling them "Acorn Drop Earrings" but they are an exact replica except for actually materials and, most especially, price. £70.

    Second: They've added acorn themed earrings. One is an acorn/oak leaf silver and rose gold combination they are saying is symbolic of Royal Oak where Charles II hid out during the Battle of Worcester in 1651. I don't believe that's the real reason for a minute since they've never been a feature before. These are studs and not drop earrings but are very pretty. £120.

    Third: There is a silver and rose gold oak leaf/acorn pendant that matches the above earrings. £140

    Fourth: A second acorn themed stud with little acorn drops. They are said to represent the English countryside but, again, the acorn theme seems to be very popular all of a sudden. The cap of the acorn is gold with a Swarovski crystal as the body. £55.

    Fifth: There is a pendant they are calling the "Love Vine" pendant which is a rose gold, 9ct gold, and diamond leaf that has a suspiciously similar shape as those Lauren earrings so many people dislike. The shape is the same but it isn't pavé. £800

    Side note: They also have the Princess Diana Earrings (and that's what they are calling them) that Kate has made into drop earrings and wore with this Rebecca Taylor suit. What they are selling are the earrings as a stud like Diana wore them. At £14.99 they are probably not the best quality. There is a matching Princess Diana Pendant for £29.99 and, of course, the charm that is a replica of the engagement ring for £100. I have the charm and it's lovely!

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    1. Great. Thanks for the information, Robin. Lovely to see Kate's wedding earrings. They also have a pair of amethyst earrings that look like a replica of her tanzanite earrings (although they are amethyst).

      Also great to see Diana being recognized with quite a few items. I still recall the Firm's attempt to eliminate any reminder of her life and place in history. I checked the KP giftshop website, and many items are similar to ones I had seen at Althorp.

      I am tempted to treat myself to something.......decisions decisions 😍

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    2. , Robin and Royalfan, I wonder if the gift shop Diana items would be there if William and Catherine had not set out to keep her in people's minds and hearts by first the steady presence of her engagement ring? This Is the 20th anniversary, however; I'm sure there will be some extra tourists to take part in the memorials and exhibits. Perhaps the acorn-themed objects aren't attributed to the Duchess in order to keep Diana in the spotlight this year. If there weren't also a "colouring-in" book, I'd say the jewelry was thought too blatant a commercialsation of her "brand."

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    3. Diana is definitely being kept in the memory of the people at KP these days. When I was there in 2001 you would have thought she never existed. When I was there in 2015 there was a whole line of items such as porcelain boxes and even a Christmas ornament all done in pink and silver that were memorials to Diana. I bought a couple of things. I wish I could post pictures here. Her portrait hanging in the front gallery as you walk in for the tour is larger than that of W&K, Princess Margaret, or any other royals that have lived at KP. It's one of the Testino portraits of her all in white. I think William and Harry coming "of age" have brought her memory to the forefront again.

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    4. Anon 1, this will sound like a chicken or the egg argument :) but I think the first ingredient" here was/is W&H being old enough to call the shots (as it pertains to Diana - I am not suggesting they have total control) - as Robin stated. It is THEIR determination to keep her memory alive that matters, with Kate being happy (I assume) to honor her husband's mother and children's grandmother. It isn't something that Kate would be free to do on her own, IMO. Would there have been a concert to honor Diana in 2007 if not for her sons? I highly doubt it. Similarly, I doubt there would be any focus on the 20th anniversary of her death. Me thinks this is the last thing Charles wants or needs at this stage of the game.

      Prediction from royalfan: let's wait and see if any dirt is discovered and/or re-hashed in an attempt to detract from the respect she deserves.

      Robin, I am happy to hear it because I do recall the years that there was no evidence of her in any of the shops at BP, KP, Windsor Castle, etc.

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    5. Is this the ultimate repli-Kate? Ha! Forgive my cheekiness, but I had to go there... ;-)

      http://www.gettyimages.com/event/the-queen-attends-a-reception-for-female-permanent-secretaries-700003980?#queen-elizabeth-ii-attends-a-reception-for-female-permanent-at-the-picture-id643489822

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    6. Oh, royalfan, you're right! HM's dress is slightly reminiscent of the Taj Mahal dress!

      Here is the link for the Diana items. I got the tree ornament (because, believe it or not I decorate a small tree entirely with ornaments I've purchased in the UK) and the trinket box because I also have a collection of those on my desk to hold stamps, paper clips, and various other desk related items. So much prettier than office supply store solutions!

      http://www.historicroyalpalaces.com/collections/history/princessdiana-herfashionstory-kensington.html

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    7. Thank you for the link, Robin. I keep eyeing the cameo silk scarf. Beautiful and feminine.

      And your Christmas tree sounds lovely...my cup of tea. :-)

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  30. Nice, but why? Why wear something so similar - almost exactly - like a very old piece you've worn many times? I can't think of one good enough reason, for a royal princess. For the rest of us I can think of a million good reasons, but for Kate? It really seems bizarre to me. Like many of her recent fashion choices.

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    1. I'm NOT comparing the two women, but stating a fact here...prior to becoming Queen, Letizia appeared to have the monopoly on navy pant suits. Afterwards she really stepped it up.

      For the time being, I can think of one very good reason for Kate to stay below the radar. 😉

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    2. I must be a little thick Royalfan - I can't guess what it is! :) Please enlighten.

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  31. Lol, that said I really like this suit. Much better than the old one. ;)

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  32. Just announced that The Duke and Duchess will make official visits to Poland and Germany in July.
    Glad to see they are beginning to get to know Europe.

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    1. Wonderful! I love when they go on tour! I do think we can probably rule out baby #3 for this year.

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    2. I'm happy and sad about this. I guess this means no more baby Cambridges:(

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    3. 12:19, maybe ... maybe not... :-)

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    4. Maybe just for this year. Or, maybe they decided two is enough.

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    5. Some heavy-weight activities. Mr. Johnson must have a great deal of confidence in the Cambridges.

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    6. Baby Cambridge- just for perspective and agreeing with royalfan's "maybe not," how old was HM when Edward was born? And how many years between Anne and Andrew?

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    7. HM had her first two children in her early twenties. There is a ten year difference between Anne and Andrew. I believe she was around 34 when she had Andrew while 38 when Edward was born. Kate certainly has time to have more children. Not sure Kate would want George and Charlotte to be years older than a third child. She seems to like the closeness she has had with her siblings but who knows.

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