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William & Kate Charm Basildon During Coach Core Event

Tuesday, October 30, 2018

William and Kate undertook a joint engagement today in Basildon, Essex, for Coach Core Essex. Although the couple did host a reception at Kensington Palace last week, Kate has kept a low profile while Harry and Meghan have been touring overseas. As that tour winds to a close, these two stepped out for a sweet double-act.


The couple arrived to a crowd of excited well wishers outside the Basildon Sporting Village. It is so lovely to see Kate interacting with the crowds after her long absence. If I have said it once, I have said it a thousands times,
I love the way she matter-of-factly deals with children. 


William also had some sweet back and forth with a little local who didn't want to let go of his hand. The Prince was looking pretty dapper. I do love a man in a good half-zip sweater. 


William and Kate have done multiple events for Coach Core since launching the initiative under the Royal Foundation umbrella back in 2012. Coach Core is a program that helps to support and train the next generation of sports coaches by, among other things, facilitating apprenticeships for these young people. Representatives from Sport for Confidence and the South Essex Gym Club were on hand today, both of which are organizations that hire some of the Coach Core trainees. 

Kensington Palace Twitter Feed 
We can always be sure to see the royals take a hands-on approach at these sporty engagements, particularly Coach Core. Today was no exception as Kate took racquet in hand to volley a little with the young people.


I know there is some debate about how snug Kate likes her skinnies. I am going to talk about fashion in a bit, but I have to say that whatever else you can say, I think this head to toe black is very chic. To me it is reminiscent of Audrey Hepburn in Funny Face.


I have been hearing some complaints from various quarters that Kensington Palace does not feature the Cambridges enough, and/or that the Palace's social media coverage has shifted since Meghan's introduction to the family. I do think that Kensington Palace has upped its social media, but I think there are a number of reasons for that chance. First, they are just getting better at it. It baffles me (look away KP) how such a globally prominent office has such sloppy social media, but there we have it. Just in the last month whoever runs the Instagram account discovered that there are different fonts in Stories, in addition to other fun features. This seems pretty basic, but it has taken that account forever to begin to blossom. Their Stories are far more creative now and more visually pleasing, although they still have a ways to go. You might pint out that I am the pot calling the kettle black, which I am happy to admit, but I am just kid (30-year-old) winging it...KP is, well, a royal court. Standards, all y'all. So part of the shift is just that the social team, for whatever reason, is still getting its sea legs. 

KP Twitter

Second, I do agree that for years it has felt like the Palace has not been comfortable with social media or exposure. It has almost been as if  any coverage of Kate needed to be minimized just a tiny bit. Kate's entrance into the family was so gradual and cautious, I do wonder if old habits died hard, and the years of intense discretion both on Kate's part and on the part of the court didn't dissipate once she assumed HRH status. It is likely, too, that the Palace felt it needed to be very careful with its super star member (and there is no doubt Kate has been the BRF's biggest sensation since Diana) and ensure social media didn't turn into the Kate Middleton Circus. I think that was a wise goal, if indeed it was the case, but I do think they might have overdone it.

KP

Third, the Palace has had a war with the media for years, trying to manage access and manage exposure. They want to be the source, and in the internet world, you can only control so much. Yet,  KP does seem to have continued to operate as a (and I say this fondly) veritable PR control freak. I think in its zeal to try to keep a handle on everything, again, KP may have ended in stunting its social media in generally.  They might now be realizing that they are in the business of peddling their primary principals, so get it out there and spread the love!

KP

Finally, the introduction of the Duchess of Sussex has blown the uber discretion wide open, because it is clear that she and Harry are ready to maximize the spotlight.  Kensington Palace must perforce, then, throw social media output for the Cambridges into higher gear.

KP

So, in sum, yes, it seems that Kensington Palace is picking up speed with social media. But it isn't some conspiracy circling the Sussexes, although the Sussexes might have finally pushed KP to realize it was overdue in fully promoting its principals. Instead, it is an overdue modernization (to use a term the BRF seems to like).  Fashion? Anyone ready for some fashion? Let's do it!

@E_Whitehouse293

Early guesses on the ID for this coat included McQueen and Ralph Lauren, but it turned out that Kate's new blazer is by Smythe. This was yet another lightening ID by Christin, who has near magical prowess in the ID department. This jacket is the company's 2 Button Blazer in a Glen Check (aka Prince of Wales check) and features a contrasting collar and oversized leather buttons. 


Kate loves Smythe's impeccably tailored blazers. She first wore the Canadian brand's "Duchess" blazer (a one-button look with cut-outs in the back) boarding her flight form Heathrow to Canada on her first overseas tour in 2011. Since then, she has worn that jacket multiple times, as well as the blazer in an olive green. This hacking style jacket is also one of her signature Kate-Middleton styles. Kate's veritable uniform in the dating days was skinnies, a blazer, and suede boots. In many ways, this felt like a throw back to 2007. All that was missing was the knee-high suede boots! 


Kate was also wearing her Aquatalia "Fallon" booties. Neither her turtleneck nor her skinnies have been IDed at this time, but what a difference I good wash (i.e. color) will do! You all know how much I hate any kind of faded black jeans, and Kate has ruined several otherwise successful ensembles with skinnies that look like the wash had had its way with them. I will say this soft, luxe black looks like J.Crew to me, but only time, if anything, will tell. Because the jeans are so perfectly black, they seamlessly transition to her black booties, creating an uninterrupted line and the impression of beautiful legs-for-days that has so many women swooning over Kate's figure. I thought this was pretty supermodel style. 


Kate kept her accessories simple, adding Kiki McDonough cushion-cuts to add just a sparkle. I see pink in a lot of photos, but I agree that in many high-resolution images these appear to be white. Kate has Kiki's cushion cuts in multiple colors. It's hard to say, and I keep bouncing back and forth. I don't know!


Emily Andrews reported that Kate told children that "hugs are very important; I keep saying that to my children."  She certainly felt the love today, and gave it to lots of it to young and old. A great royal engagement all around!

@byEmilyAndrews


217 comments:

  1. Kate has been out of the spotlight during her maternity leave. It’s only natural that the Palace would be covering Harry and Meghan’s tour. You make a valid point with the Palace coverage. I’m just glad to see Kate back and looking so elegant.

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  2. Kate reminds me so much of Diana today. From her classically chic ensemble, thinking Diana in khakis and tailored shirt, to her embracing both children and adults so spontaneously and genuinely. She and William have such an easy rapport with each other and those around them. It is easy to see the huge impact they will have in the years to come.

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  3. The KP split was inevitable, unfortunately one person pushes two siblings away, but both have different paths and this trip, and with the lack of protocol there has been, nor does it seem that Harry was raised as Princepe, was the culmination. I'm sorry they did not put a point on the newspapers, about the trend only .. But if the queen dealt with what was good for Catherne, so also treat the rest, brief. Daily Mail I think Harry bought the newspaper is impossible to read. I hope, and I find now more than ever the owners of the pages, W / C, accept, do not block or put them in silence, or make new pages, unite again support them, just as you do on the other side, I hope without insults. I wish the best

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  4. Fascinating analysis, as always, Jane! I had not read much into KPs coverage of the Sussexes other than that they are on tour, and William and Kate are not. I expect the coverage to re-calibrate once the tour is over. However, I do agree with you, that I am regularly baffled by the workings of what is essentially one of the world's largest and long-lasting PR campaigns. How they have managed to keep this family relevant and (mostly) beloved for so long remains a mystery to me.

    As William and Kate continue to take on higher profile roles at events, I can't help but feel their confidence and ease radiating from them. They know who they are, they know their role, and I just don't think they are worried about Harry and Meghan's coverage. Short of a massive scandal or major PR mismanagement, they will be a beloved King and Queen. So they let Harry and Meghan have the spotlight, because why not? The end result will not change.

    Personally, I love seeing the quiet confidence and poise on Kate, and the increasingly commanding presence on William. I waited a while for them to accept and develop that, and it's reassuring to see. I can now better envision William running meetings, making his presence known, and setting a tone for his role. I'm also speaking as a woman in her 30s enjoying a newly discovered comfort with who I am, and can only hope the Cambridges have found it, too.

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  5. It’s possible, too, that Megs is showing her KP social media aids a thing or two about workin’ it on IG. As both an actress and a blogger she had to learn to be her own best advocate and PR person— just because she doesn’t have a personal account anymore doesn’t mean that she wouldn’t still be well served by tapping into the vast breath of knowledge and experience she gleaned from navigating a career in Hollywood. If Meg flexing her social media muscle behind the scenes leads to more pics of Kate, too (like at the state dinner last week) I’m all for it. As you said, KP needed to modernize their approach to social media, and maybe Ms. Markle was the breath of fresh air that made it happen!

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    1. That was my thought exactly. Meghan is new and brings fresh ideas to the team. Even if William and Kate resisted the idea, seeing that it's working for Meghan & Harry would naturally convince them to adopt it or at least give it a try.

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    2. I also believe that Meghan (with her social media savvy) encouraged the KP office to branch out a bit, maybe hire a staff member to just do social media (most brands do have this, with metrics tied to how many views, or hits, they get for their exposure- much like trying to see how well the advertising is going). She also has been to many tech/blogging conferences so she can also advise where to search for the perfect person. I think William was very controlling of the exposure Kate had in their relationship- I think he worried about Kate getting the same treatment as his mother. We can argue whether this has been a success or not for the Cambridges, but I think Kate is a Steel Magnolia (I've said this before) and can handle the scrutiny. It seems to me, the Cambridges are very secure with their family unit and quite happy when they are out together or with their kids.

      On the fashion front, I love Kate's look today. She definitely has the prettiest legs ever ( and these skinnies show everything!). If I were a fashion house, I would give my eye teeth to dress her!! I love a good princess, ball gown moment like everyone else, but these more casual looks are closer to the true Kate that William fell in love with!

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  6. I am so glad she's back doing engagements, and she looks lovely today- classic and very appropriate for a sporting event with kids. I love her ankle boots- are they new? I don't think I've seen her in ankle boots for so long. It is great to see her back in action!

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  7. Kate looked lovely, as usual. My issue with the skinnies has always been how revealing they are because she always wears them with such small, tailored jackets. I have no problem with skinnies when worn with longer or oversized blazers. I think a little left to the imagination is always a good thing! Sadly, no matter what, I do believe there is always going to be that "comparison" thing when it comes to the adoring public and these two couples. Will be very interesting to watch!

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    1. In my mind, if anyone should wear skinnies, it should be someone like Kate! She has the legs to do it! I think on a slim person who is VERY covered up, it doesn't look inappropriate.

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    2. Compared to the complete fashion faux pas Meghan had today with her see through skirt I would say Kate was close to wearing a snowsuit here. Talk about having nothing left to the imagination! There's being a boundary pusher, which Meghan has been from the start (not a tactic I admire), and then being a completely indiscreet rule breaker. I'm guessing a bit of "advice" from HM is in the offing when the Sussex's get home.

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    3. Meghan’s skirt wasn’t actually see through- the color changes made it look that way from certain angles (I’m assuming that wasn’t intentional), but it you look at more pictures, it’s described as not being see through.

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    4. I have only seen one photo where I thought there Might be a shadow of undies but it certainly required a bit of imagination. I didn't see some of the reportedly more revealing photos as I don't frequent those sites, as a rule. Apparently, DM ran an explanation of light versus fabric, angle etc. to say we really aren't seeing what the photos apparently printed are showing.
      I recall I once (or twice) made such explanations--most notably, in defence of Kate. It was the white lace dress at Ascot. Some imagination needed there, too.

      MY opinion: DM has had some "exclusives" attributed by some as originating with Camilla. C&C have publicly thrown their support behind Meghan. I think the tabloid was trying to have its cake and eat it too. Get the clicks with photos while appeasing a valuable royal news source.

      I suspect a whole lot more people look at photos than read the text.

      I really don't care if the skirt was see-through. (it was one of my favorites. I like blue and black and I like a pleated skirt) I think it is tacky to print such photos. Since the forums that make money off such pictures are not going to clean up their acts any time soon--barring a slew of lawsuits--it is up to us to let our fingers do the walking on sites that maintain some sort of ethical creed. Hahaha! Right.

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    5. Personally I think there's a big difference between publishing "whoops" wardrobe malfunction photos (like a skirt blown up by a brief single gust of wind, a button accidentally left open & later fixed, a fly not fully zipped for a brief minute) and publishing photos of a garment worn at a public event that has a very high thigh slit and/or appears to be semi-transparent.

      I do clearly see the curved seam of what looks like underwear in the pleaped skirt photos. In one photo the curve begins much higher on one side than the other. So it's not associated with the position of the pleats and/or the colors of the pleats nor is it something I had to "look for." Regardless of the story peddled by DM, I do not believe the underwear outline is an optical illusion/camera strobe (although the appearance of white streaky areas in some photos may very well be strobe.) Similarly, I didn't have to concentrate to see the thigh high split or the semi-transparent nature of the sundress Meghan wore earlier in the tour either.

      I'm not going to argue the press is always impartial, but I don't think it openly should "work for the palace" either. Suppressing photos of royals at public events simply because they might cause controversy would seem to fall into that category.

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    6. You're agreeing with me, lizzie? (sorta) Ha!
      So the DM Did or Did Not publish those photos?

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    7. Even Hello published them...

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  8. Kate looks perfectly lovely and appropriate for the event, as always. She is amazing. ❤️

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  9. I agree with Diamond Ripples above re:the skinny jeans. I generally don’t mind them but I also understand where people are coming from that don’t think skinny jeans are appropriate for work. I personally only wear skinny pants with a top long enough to cover the crotch. And I go mid-thigh (so tunic length) for anything resembling work events, whether on the clock / with clients or even in the most casual situations.

    I believe skinny jeans with such a tight/tailored and short top half to be proportionally wrong. A bit more volume up top would balance the skinny bottom half.

    Ulta-skinny jeans like this just invite comment, which is wrong and I hate about our society, but there it is. Luckily Kate has an almost faultless figure, at least by current standards (again, not saying I agree or that everyone has the same taste) so thankfully no one is body shaming her, just complaining that the ultra skinny jeans aten’t appropriate for work.

    All that said - she looks smoking hot in this outfit. I hope she takes it for a spin for a cozy date night with will ;-)

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    1. Agree with you Shannon regarding the skinny jeans. A slightly longer, or larger style jacket would balance the look a bit more.

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    2. I think the skinnies are one of those showing/dressing her age things. If she would've put a long top on, which I don't ever recall her doing, then people would say she was dressing dowdy.. I really don't think there's a win for her.. I think she looks youthful, happy, gorgeous, and simply at her best!

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    3. True! Sometimes Meghan gets slammed for wearing too baggy of clothing.

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    4. Ellen, now that the pregnancy news is out--way out--I suspect the camouflaging baggy clothes days are mostly over, except as required for allowing pregnancy expansion and comfort. The skinny jeans she wore on one of the outdoor tour events were extremely creased and form-fitting and worn with a barely waist-covering top. That particular brand advertises stretch and figure enhancing construction and support in the jeans/jeggings. (sometimes I can't tell the difference) She also wore an uncomfortable-looking tight white dress, over which she threw one of her trench coats.
      The fact that there was time to have a dress completely re-done prior to the trip, which tipped off a designer, hints that there were some non RF members who knew. There were likely a number of designers who had to be re-contacted to alter outfits. Obviously, there wasn't time to alter them all and a number seemed already suited to pregnancy wear. One designer said he got the news the week prior to his Bridal show, which is usually during either the NY Fashion Week (February) or in April for the next year's season. The couple was dead serious about starting a family ASAP.

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    5. Valerie I don’t think it’s an age thing. I’m just now 38 so just a year or two older than Kate, although I’ve been in traditional, professional, conservative office settings for 20 years now. Most of my peers and friends have the same policy of covering the crotch for more formal/work events if wearing skinnies.

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    6. If MM goes with the current trend of body hugging maternity wear instead of something more like what Kate wore Her Majesty's head is going to explode. She wasn't even seen in the latter months of her pregnancy and feels the less mentioned about it the better. Times may have changed but HM has been on the throne for a very long time and the institution just doesn't change as quickly.

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    7. Robin, I didn't "go there" yet, but I have a feeling you're correct and we will see some trendy maternity wear.

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    8. Kate wore many very short dresses when she was pregnant (I always remember the white dress with black polka dots that she wore to a Harry Potter engagement and then to a wedding- a gust of wind at the wedding almost led to a wardrobe malfunction!)- I’m not sure I see the difference between very short hems and more figure hugging maternity wear as one being more appropriate than the other?

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    9. Anon, I don't get your point? You seem to say short dresses weren't appropriate, then that figure hugging is as appropriate as short dresses? I understand your opinion is that figure hugging is not appropriate but you feel Kate should have had more backlash for her short dresses? I can reassure you, she has had quite a lot of critics for them.

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    10. Anon 1:57- I wasn’t very clear- what I meant was that Kate wore very short hemlines when pregnant and I was wondering if those who are concerned that Meghan will wear figure-hugging maternity clothes were also bothered by Kate’s short hems? I think the short hems were too short, but I guess that I’m not bothered by figuring-hugging maternity clothes, as long as it’s appropriate for the event it’s worn for. Tent-style maternity wear doesn’t seem to be worn anymore.

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    11. Kate did wear some short dresses during her pregnancies and during her first, especially, she did try to recycle as much of her existing wardrobe as possible. I think Robin's reference was to body hugging styles, and not length. I can post links to photos of Princess Victoria wearing a few very short dresses while she was pregnant, even more so than Kate, IMO. I don't have an issue with length because I think it's understandable that a woman still wants to feel attractive and good about herself and showing a bit more leg when one has the legs to pull it off is okay, I think. I also believe this is preferable to lycra-tight tops, dresses, and gowns. It reminds me of a young wife of a certain celebrity who couldn't share enough profile selfies during her pregnancies. I'll vote for a modest tent over that any day of the week. :-)

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    12. Yes, royalfan. However... Demi Moore broke the bump barrier in her time. Everything since then seems a bit tame. Ha!
      I agree about the leg thing. If you have a good feature left when everything else is literally going to pot, I say...bring it on!

      I do think a bump is cute the first 5-6 months. After that, attire with fabric stretched tightly over the tummy area looks just plain awkward and uncomfortable to me. I don't think it is a matter of shaming or glorifying the pregnant human form: I think it is a matter of aesthetics.

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    13. I tend to prefer clothing for work/public events that isn't skin-tight & my opinion doesn't change simply because a woman is pregnant. There are alot of attractive options for maternity wear that aren't tents but aren't so tight that we all know the time the woman's belly button "popped!"

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    14. I agree Lizzie. Skintight isn't attractive pregnant or not. I really liked Kate's brown coat ,EW? she wore at St Patrick and again this time for Easter, it was so well tailored, but not to tight, that's the perfect medium IMO

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    15. Anon1 "broke the bump barrier". Thanks for the giggle. By the way, I agree with your timeframe.

      Lizzie, it's true that there are happy mediums. And Kate's brown Catherine Walker coat was an excellent example, as Anon mentioned.

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    16. Alliteration is kind of my thing, royalfan. ;+)

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    17. :-)

      By the way, it may be easier to respond to your receiving line comment here since the other post is in "load more" status at this point. Do you recall where you saw what you described?

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  10. Very insightful post! I think one other factor contributing to the rise in social media from Kensington Palace could be a realization that a younger (i.e. under 35-40) demographic no longer reads tabloids, subscribes to cable, or purchases newspapers. Instagram is unavoidable these days, as everyone becomes more attached to their phones.

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    1. Very true. I haven't bought a tabloid forever. Actually, since Diana died. We have satellite but we only watch things we DVR and avoid the nightly (or any other time) news and cancelled our newspaper subscription 25 years ago. Actually, I only look at Instagram every few days and not on my phone because I have a love/hate relationship with social media. But, you're right that the under 40 set is attached to their phones (and plenty over 40s as well) and if the BRF is going to stay relevant they need to connect with a younger generation. I'm just surprised that it took KP this long to figure it out. I still maintain that it's time to bring fresh blood into the PR office there.

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  11. KPs social media presence has not been impressive in the past: spelling errors, incorrect names for foreign dignitaries, etc. It's baffling!

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  12. I think Kate looks perfect today. She is comfortable in her own skin, which is refreshing. I love that she is naturally athletic and obviously enjoys partiticipating in activities at any level. Spontaneous, gentle and always unscripted. Very refreshing. She was always a 10 but she has re emerged a 12! Yay Kate!

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  13. W&K at there best in an informal setting. I really like her jacket and agree with Jane that the head to toe black is very chic. I know the skinnies are a hot topic, but they're in style and she has the figure to pull it off.

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    1. Fantastic look. Much more sucessful than her faded black skinnies. Sleek and sophisticated. One of her best cadual/ sporty looks imo.

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    2. Kate and her skinny jeans continue to be a fashion topic. Kate is still in her 30's, has a fantastic figure and is dressed for a casual event. The Duchess has plenty of decades in her future to wear slacks.

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    3. I know I'm likely older than many commenting & may be in the minority re: my opinion but I  don't really see the issue of jeggings through an age prism.  In many workplaces where I live in the US, professional staff don't wear jeans OR jeggings to work. So I've seen plenty of women much younger than Kate wearing a variety of trouser types including slim-cut. To me, those women look professional and polished, not matronly. Of course, there are exceptions--- In a geeky IT shop everybody may wear jeans & t-shirts or in an "arty" setting, people may wear clothes and hairstyles that would be considered a bit flamboyant in other work settings. But in non-work more private settings I've also seen 50+ year old women in good shape look fabulous in jeggings (& some women in their 20s who probably ought not to ever wear such, um, "revealing" clothes anywhere but in their own homes.) I don't know what things are like in the UK, but looking at event photos it doesn't seem many female *employees* of the places Kate visits are dressed in jeggings, jeans, or casual athletic wear. (I'm talking about employees, not visiting members of the public, clients of the particular venue, or coaches/members of a featured athletic team.) Most seem to wear dresses, suits, skirts, or true trousers.

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    4. True Lizzie, but casual athletic wear is very appropriate if you are going to play tennis

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    5. I’m not sure Kate’s outfit would qualify as “casual athletic wear”- she had on low heeled boots, skin-tight denim and a turtleneck. We’ve seen her in casual athletic outfits in the past, when she was at a sporty event, and this outfit was quite different.

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    6. Also, those other people at the venues are dressing up to meet the DoC (who is in turn dressing down to be able to play a bit of sport and show she's relatable). The way they dress on a day-to-day basis may well be far more casual - we just don't get pics on those days!

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    7. I agree completely, Tsipa. When you know you're going to meet a member of the royal family, especially from the younger set, you dress up. One never knows what Kate will turn up wearing and it's always better to be over dressed and under. (No problem with HM because it's always the same. :-) )

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    8. Tsipa, I think you're exactly right.

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    9. I have seen staff dressed nicely--Sunday best type-but I have also noticed on many occasions when she visits organisations serving children that the staff are dressed appropriately for child care work. Also, it seems that during her outdoor gardening and indoor sport engagements, for example, the staff appear attired for the activity not for royal company.

      The only time I have noticed any special spiffiness in host attire is during museum-type visits and with upper level personnel-the ones who greet her at the door- who are likely just dressing as they would for their job . Maybe an extra trip to the hairdresser's. Probably the museum officials dress just about the same for their daily work as well. Of course, dress is more formal for evening occasions and garden-parties.

      To sum up--with Kate,I think staff are likely attired for their job and activity more than a royal visit and I think that I just the way Kate would have it.
      I think there are other expectations for a Queen visit.

      One thing I am always amazed to see is that during an activity all eyes are usually focused on the center of the activity , not on Kate. (I would have a very hard time not sneaking a peek at Kate from time to time. ;+) I think that may be the attitude she endeavors to encourage. She nearly always, when not giving a speech, seems to blend into the activity. She is definitely not a spotlight-seeker.

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  14. I think W&K should "remain calm and carry on". Literally. As I said, it's natural for H&M to receive the coverage they do right now, but they cannot fly on PDA and "popularity" alone. In the long run, the public will want to see depth and sincerity.

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    1. I dont think they are flying on PDA and popularity ALONE. That is too much of a simplification. I barely follow them, but if one is objective, it would not be fair and it is too easy to reduce HM to that. Tidefi

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    2. What are talking about? Their tour was awesome, and did not fly on PDA and popularity alone. I don't want to make comparisons, as both couples have their own agenda or not but suggesting there is no depth and sincerity there is beyond me.

      But I do agree about one thing, the public want to see depth from W&K too, after years of taking it easy.

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    3. I see a great deal of depth and sincerity from Harry all the time. It's the PDA and pushing Meghan out front to blatantly with the speech making at events she's not officially connected to that maybe isn't insincere but it does seem very forced.

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    4. Many of the comments on this post (including this thread) are very interesting because they highlight what seems to be a conflict between those who are traditional monarchists and those who are not. It seems to me that the traditional monarchists really do not care for Meghan because she represents a very different type of royal. But for the monachy to survive in the 21st century, it has to adapt and appeal to others besides the core group of monarchists and this is where Meghan is a great strength. Meghan is appealing to many who may not normally follow the BRF- ultimately, doesn’t this help the BRF? So, shouldn’t traditional monarchists applaud her successes because, in the end, that reflects well on the BRF and increases interest/support for the BRF? I think there’s nothing wrong with Meghan and Harry being different from Kate and William- different isn’t bad. These couples have different roles in the BRF and if Harry and Meghan drum up excitement/support, I feel that strengthens the institution that William will one day be the head of.

      I’m not sure I expressed myself clearly. I just think that the criticism of Meghan from traditional monarchists, hurts the institution these same royalists support. Meghan and Harry won’t have this level of popularity forever and their roles will shrink compared to William and Kate. Meghan is excited, enjoys her role and has done a great job thus far. Is she perfect? No, but none of the others in the family are either, so I wish we could cut her some slack.

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    5. You are right. And usually monarchists support a new member of the royal family even if they think it is a poor choice because they have loyalty to the institution. Those who aren't monarchist may like or not Meghan but it doesn't matter if they don't also support the institution. In my case I do not feel bound by loyalty towards the British royal family. I wouldn't say a word against or indeed about the RF of my own country here.
      But I feel free to give my opinion on Meghan and think it is an interesting topic.

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    6. I wouldn't call myself a monarchist- I am American, as is this blog's author and many of the commenters who support Kate. I do enjoy looking at tiaras and gorgeous gowns and the whole royal show. Some of the traditions can be altered, such as the RFO on glass instead of ivory, without much notice. A small but meaningful change on W&C's part. It will contribute to the relevance of the Monarchy without detracting from its dignity. That's how changes are made in a 1000 year old institution. Swift change is possible via revolution or a massive republican movement but that isn't changing the Monarchy--it is destroying it.

      We are talking about an individual who publicly stated in a promotional interview as an actress that she thought the pageantry of W&C's wedding was "pomp and circumstance," while criticizing the attention paid to Kate at the time. The context of the interview lent itself to such a statement. Then we see this same person as a new member of the RF out-doing former royal weddings with pomp and circumstance. Why the change in attitude? That is just one of the questions that niggle and nudge my thoughts. Thoughts of Trojan horses.

      I am also reminded of an ice-sculpture.
      I think there is great potential for the Harry-Meghan team. They can do a lot of good.
      They just need to make sure the chipping away at traditions and protocol does not destroy the institution that makes their efforts possible.

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    7. I, too, am American and don't consider myself a monarchist. Perhaps a case of "when in Rome.....…."

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    8. Anon1, I know most of the commenters are from the US, but I hope those who aren't are welcomed too! At least I feel very welcome here. In fact since I started reading this blog, I have learned a lot more about the US than about Kate. And IMO there is a fundamental difference of perspective about the RF between the US and Europe as I know it ( In my personal experience, I don't mean to generalise). And it applies also to Meghan and how she is perceived. One hand a perspective where individualism, self assurance and working hard to make money are considered not only positive but moral values, "good". On the other, my old fashioned world where bragging is distasteful and speaking about money dreadfully bad manners. There are in fact a lot of things that are considered bad manners where I live, all of them unimportant actually I know, but that I keep repeating to my children: don't cross your legs, don't interrupt, hands out of your pockets, it is Harry and me, not me and Harry...you get it. It is difficult for me not to notice. I really enjoy reading the thoughts of those who have a different point of view, even if sometimes I am astonished by what they call amazing...

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    9. Helen--the international flavor of this blog adds a richness and variety that a strictly American forum would not. I can't stress enough how much I enjoy and appreciate hearing the views of those from the many different countries who gather here to chat. Without you, we might as well go to the hairdresser's and have a good gossip. Speaking of amazing: blogging in a second language.

      By the way, I was taught at my Mother's knee essentially the same things you were. I don't really think those "old fashioned" values are strictly European nor the other examples strictly American.

      And don't get me started on the use of the subjective versus objective. "...between you and I..." like scraping fingers across a chalkboard. "They honored my husband and I..." ME!Objective! It is just a pet-peeve of mine.I realise pot-kettle: the Queen of the run-on sentence and comma-splice speaking here. Ha!

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  15. As I said on the earlier post, I'm glad to see W&K out working together. Also, while I like Kate's overall sleek and streamlined look, I think slim leg pants would have looked much better with this length jacket and would have still allowed her to participate in the activities. For this particular skinny jeans, a longer jacket would have worked better; but that's just my opinion, and at the end of the day is way less important than seeing her out working and looking happy and engaged with everyone who came out to meet them.

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  16. You're very spot on, well done Jane!! On everything!! The very first thing I noticed was that all the black matched and that's extremely rare, even if it's the same brand new brand!! She does look model ready and we know she can walk the catwalk!! Love;)!!

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  17. I read an article (probably on the dail mail site) that said that Harry and Meghan had a social media specialist with them on the tour which might explain the improvement in the kp social media

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  18. I like the outfit! I love the whole black alone and the jacket makes the outfit classy. I don’t mind about the skinnies because of the type of event, I guess she finds them comfortable for the sporty activities she was going to do.

    I have loved the event, they have shown their true self from the behinning. I love how on their arrival Kate suddenly starts walking slowly so as William gets first to greet people, I like how she truly respects his position.

    About KP, I find your points really logical. To be honest I am a recent Instagram user so I cannot really talk about the past but about the current situation. I perfectly understand that a tour is a major event and of course it is going to be extra covered, my ‘problem’ is with the type of pictures they post. We have seen M hugging children every single day of the tour and we have seen them holding hands or looking at each other in every event. That is not coverage but self promotion. What about the picture of H practising his speech while M listens sitting in the empty arena? It is about them all the time, not about the events. And then when it comes to the C the style of pictures is opposite and less flattering.

    Maybe the C like it that way, although I don’t think anyone likes to be portraited as boring, but a separation is more than needed so as the differences are less highlighted.

    BM

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    1. I do agree that the coverage of this tour had a celebrity feel to it and felt as though it was about them, rather than the engagement(s) itself. Some of it they cannot control, but some of it they can.

      I also agree about Kate being mindful of William's role. On more than one occasion, I have observed H&M meeting officials and it is awkward the way they stand and take turns shaking hands. Instead of walking down the line and each one acknowledging the officials individually, they will stand across from them and take turns shaking the same person's hand. I guess I've been watching royals at work for a long time, but this method just seems a bit sloppy and suggests that Meghan isn't accepting of her role.

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    2. I agree, royalfan. The whole greeting with the King and Queen of Tonga was awkward at best. Harry knows better and after so many greetings on this tour and much time spent with HM Meghan should too.

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    3. Talking about celebrity pictures...check the last picture at Instagram. Taken and posted by Harry, Meghan standing in the middle of the forest holding her bump. Come on, is this necessary in an official account? I have a feeling they will release a bump holding shot as well for christmas...and the photos when the baby is born are going to be like a People’s cover. As I said before, totally inappropriate.

      BM

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    4. I agree BM! People's cover, absolutely!

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    5. It was inappropriate. Harry too busy pleasing meghan and probably trying to make her feel more apart of the family. He's forgotten about protocol. Yes I get he probably wants her to feel equal in this institution but Harry needs to remember he didn't marry her and her lifestyle but she married him in this monarchy so she needs to follow the protocol. I have my doubts about them there both still in the honeymoon infatuation stage usually they never last just my opinion.

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    6. Thank you, Robin. I'm not alone. :-)

      BMI agree; I looked for myself and my first thought was...that belongs in a personal album, and not an official website.

      8:03, I think you're exactly right.

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    7. It was the the inspirational quotation on that last KP post with Meghan cradling her "bump" in the forest that got me thinking she actually curated same - the social media ante has definitely been upped on account of her arrival to BRF, no doubt about it.

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  19. I agree Jane and Valerie J - all the blacks matching makes all the difference. I remember Kate previously wearing skinnies with an oversized red blazer and an oversized blue blazer - and I think the same boots. To me, those looks were out of proportion because the blazers seemed to be way too big. Today, Kate rocked a better quality pair of black jeggings that made the boots (which I previously didn't like) look much more sleek. I adored the jacket, but without it - WOW - very Audrey Hepburn. I'm a bit of a fan of the slightly tight fitted jacket, especially on someone with Kate's physique. I've commented before that I'm not a fan of Kate wearing skinnies, but today, I have to eat my words. Nat B

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    1. I remember those jackets NatB. (They were by Philosophy, I think.) As I recall, they did look bulky and oversized. They were double-breasted (that style adds width, bulk on everyone I think and pretty much has to be worn buttoned up), had lots of gold buttons, large wide lapels and large patch pockets and were made of a sort of stiff-looking fabric that looked synthetic (but may not have been-- as I recall those jackets were pretty pricey.) So I'm not sure the bulkiness factor came from the length or general fit of those jackets.

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    2. Wasn't she pregnant at the time?

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    3. She wasn't pregnant (at least so far as the public knew) when she debuted the red version in Feb 2017. I think she wore (or rewore) the blue one in the early fall when pregnant with Louis.

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  20. Catherine looks fabulous. Just fabulous. Head to toe black is chic, and her long, lean body is perfect for it. She can pull off the leggings, but I would like to her in slim leg trousers now and then too.
    The jacket looked great with the all black top and pants. I agree that the dark black was what the outfit needed. Dark top, pants,and booties combined with Catherine's height created a casually dramatic look.


    I liked the high neck on the sweater. I don't like to wear them personally because I don't like the feel around my neck, but I like the look on others.

    I love the Kiki McDonough jewels. All of them. Anytime the duchess wears them I go into serious gem envy.

    The Cambridges come across as totally sincere and increasingly regal. I think letting them have time to be themselves; to let William be a pilot and Catherine to be a mommy was a wise decision. Because William will not have to be king for a number of years, they have the time to be themselves before they have to be Their Majesties. It's healthier for them and healthier for the monarchy in the long run.

    Ultimately the Cambridges will be king and queen. The Sussexes will always be the Sussexes. Although I think Meghan still has a LOT to learn, (especially controlling a Hollywood ego and general decorum) I think she will help more than hurt the monarchy.
    I don't like seeing attempts to pit one family against the other. I would hate to see William and Harry become as distant as Charles and Andrew. And I really hope Harry can avoid some of the bitterness that comes from being second.

    Back to Catherine - she looked wonderful,and I can't wait until she's out again!

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  21. I believe her boots are actually Russell & Bromley, not Aquatalia.
    http://www.russellandbromley.co.uk/ankle-boots/fallon-dry/invt/372730

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    1. Russell & Bromley sell them, but they are the same boots. They might be exclusive to R&B, I haven't looked into that, but they are made by Aquatalia.

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  22. Sheer elegance.

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  23. I have a theory that the person in charge of KP social media might have been slacking/not staying on top of things because they know their bosses don’t really know how social media work themselves.
    I am the same age as W&K and I got my first SM account when they were already dating and doing everything they could do to stay out of the limelight.
    Over the years they might have had personal accounts under pseudonyms but the aim would always be to stay under the radar.
    Now add Meghan to the mix and the dynamics change. She doesn’t even need to flex her muscles or say a word. Her mere presence would make the SM team up their game.

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  24. I think the reason the KP social channels seem a bit disjointed is due to different people posting for the Sussexes in AU/NZ and the Cambridges back in London. Could be wrong on that but it would explain why their posts seem different. I believe the reason their social channels seem to finally be catching up with modern stories and fonts (though they do have a ways to go) is in part to them hiring on staff that are younger and more savvy with the channels/content creation.

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  25. Catherine is at the Imperial War Museum this afternoon to see letters about her Gt Grandmother's three brothers killed in WW1

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    1. thank you Jean!

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    2. You always have the most up-to-date information!!

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  26. Kate's clothing choices are consistently impeccable. She has had years to figure things out, but fashion changes with the seasons and she has evolved beautifully. The BRF is a family but it is also a big business, so I wonder, does the BRF offer support in areas like fashion that affect the company image? If they don't offer support, wouldn't it be nice for the ones getting it right to offer help and advice to those who struggle? (Weights on a child's dress hem, slips under a woman's sheer skirt, coordinating a man's belt and shoes, whatever the case may be.) Perhaps they have offered, I don't know. And no one is responsible for anyone else's choices. But they're a royal FAMILY, they live in the same town, some share the same building, so can they not send their stylist down the hall to share their wisdom?

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  27. About KP social media. I agree it is inevitable nowadays. But they should not go the road of celebrities and so called influencers and document every little step of their lives. They are not defined by they followers on social media. I thought the endless coverage of H&M boring and I can't even say who they met. Right in the middle of it, and quite lost, a tweet about the condolences of the Duke of Cambridge after the helicopter crash felt very incongruous. Having different accounts would help. And IMO the Cambridge are right in trying to keep it boring. There is popularity and popularity. And having a serious and relatively discrete image is not a bad thing.

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    1. anon 10:55- I noticed today that that condolence letter had moved to the top. Apparently, you weren't the only one unhappy with this. Did H&M even mention that tragic crash? Hopefully, they took time out to say a few words. It was a horrible tragedy. It did involve a non-UK resident but that man has been a strong financial support of the Football Association---which Harry is involved in, I believe. I think it happened just outside a stadium.

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  28. Apparently, essentially the same entourage except for hairdresser etc. are accompanying the Suxexes as traveled with the Cambridges. They know the drill and the countries, and have the potential to advise on protocol as well. There have been changes in many staffs, but the core tour personnel are fairly standard, I believe. Same with the press pack, some of whom travel with the touring couples. I did notice a large group of photographers snapping W&C.I wonder if some of them returned slightly early from New Zealand to cover the Cambridge event?
    I notice Kate is wearing POW plaid again. She recently wore it- the magnificent Erdem- to the V&A engagement. It seems to have re-emerged as a popular weave.

    Thanks, Jane for including the full length version rather than the cropped version of the photo of Catherine and flower girl. Seeing the little one's long dress adds to the sweetness of the picture for me. A Princess in the making?

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    1. So who will get them when the two offices split? Now there's a question!

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  29. Hmm, that's interesting. I don't use social media so maybe the content is different from online and network news. I read a great deal about who they meet; with many accompanying pictures showing them interacting with their hosts and with adequate information on who they are. There are a lot of news coverage of her powerful speeches highlighting the events she and Harry attend. I've never learned more about the events of a royal tour. Those two were fabulous.
    Here's what was boring though: her wardrobe. Sigh...

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  30. Interesting & enjoyable post Jane. I thought Kate looked fabulous. Readers of this blog need to remember Kate is a “young” women ie: wife & mother. She has a ultra thin body ( sometimes a bit too thin) I thought she looked healthiest in her college days. However with the public watching her in photos...it would cause one to be nervous & bring criticism. I say ignore the critics Kate!
    I would like to share in regards to the length of the blazer lots of comments of it being too short. I have noticed many brands have a shortened look of blazers this season in both ladies & men’s blazers. If one looks of photos of Prince Harry on his recent tour with Megan Markle his blazers are short. I think being tall brings an awareness to the length of the blazer. I thought Kate looked great in it. All I. All a super crisp outdoor head to toe.

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    1. These are general remarks and not meant as a response to any one specific comment.

      I never could understand why, in her pre-pregnant days, Meghan's comparatively small arms and legs and rectangular-shaped mid-section were called "petite," while Catherine ,with normal sized arms and legs but hour-glassed waist/torso area is labeled " too thin." I think there is more than height involved here because people are speaking of Meghan's body frame, not just her height. If she were a size 24 and still the same height, she would not be called "petite."

      It is a matter of perception and personal experience of the viewer. I have seen wild speculation again with veiled references to Diana (elsewhere) and statements like, "I'm worried " (concerned about her: eating habits, over-exercising, mental ("nerves") or physical health, trying to emulate Meghan etc.)

      Here's the deal: Meghan's tendency toward small ankles and calves and Catherine's lean torso are likely genetically based. It is just the way they are. It is just as inconsiderate, actually rude, to call Kate's small waist too thin as it would be to call Meghan's small ankles and calves too thin. It is just how they naturally are.
      Kate's hips and thighs are obviously noticeably-sized since there are many remarks about the skinny jeans being too tight. If she were dangerously, rail-thin there would be no basis for tight skinny jeans remarks. So choose one Kate criticism: too thin or too tight jeans? Ya can't reasonably have both.


      PS I have a vague recollection of someone here or elsewhere during a past "Is Kate Too Thin" discussion-- and I think I know who-- coming up with the idea that even a starving person can conceivably wear jeans that are too tight. Then we get into territory that no one wants to visit. Besides, that lewd comparison to a cloved-hoof critter is applicable neither to recent M or C clothing.
      I guess I did "go there;" there were vague references to the above situation here and I was feeling antsy about it. Put it out in the light of day and then take a good look at what is being said, however obliquely. And I see no indication Kate's stream-lined self is the result of nerves about criticism. She is the Webster definition of a confident,full-filled woman. In fact, I fully expect the next volume of Webster's Dictionary will include her name as part of the definition of confident.

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    2. Anon1, I have no idea why others choose the adjectives they do to describe Kate and Meghan. However, I do know that in the US, "petite" clothing is made for "petite" women who are shorter than average (typically below 5'4.") In most clothing lines, petite sizes aren't tiny all over but are cut shorter in key areas like crotch rise, waist length, inseam, sleeve length. So a person wearing petite sizes may or may not be "skinny" but is shorter than the average woman. Women buying off-the-rack, who are on the shorter side & are short-waisted like Meghan (even if they are a little taller than 5'4") may find petite-sized jackets and dresses that have a set-in waist fit better than misses sizes. Similarly, long-waisted women who are neither short nor especially tall may find "tall" sized jackets sometime fit better through the torso even if the sleeves have to be shortened.

      I know there's been controversy about Kate and Meghan's heights (personally I think they are BOTH shorter than their commonly reported heights) but whatever their heights, clearly Meghan is shorter than Kate by several inches. Even in very high heels Meghan is very noticeably shorter than Harry. Hence the label of petite for Meghan. (That label is also frequently used to describe Pippa.)

      Kate is most often reported to be 5'9". Assuming that height is accurate within an inch or two, I would never ever call her petite. That has nothing to do with her weight, or her shape but I'd just never call a woman "petite" who is many inches taller than the average woman, not to mention several inches taller than me! (According to many sources the average adult woman in the US is 5'4""-5'5" whereas the reported average is a bit less --5'3"-- in the UK.) So to me, petite as a general adjective must acknowledge height. A short muscular person could weigh more than a tall exceptionally thin model but that doesn't make the tall model petite.

      I do think Kate's jeggings were tight. I say that because of the horizontal wrinkles in the thigh & calf area. They are less noticeable when the jeggings aren't faded (yay!), but even with very black ones wrinkles could still be seen. Whether people think that's appropriate for work or appropriate for work when worn with a non-tunic top is obviously a matter of opinion. But I think it's hard to argue those jeggings weren't tight! Also we all know all-black clothing can make people look thinner. That may have led to concerned comments about Kate's weight loss since giving birth.

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    3. I dont know about these previous discussions, i have to admit. But of course someone "too skinny" can wear too tight jeans. Believe me, i have witnessed that too often. (I dont consider Kate as very skinny though)

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    4. lizzie---there are essentially two main issues --both topics supposedly not encouraged here: are Kate's jeans too tight and is she too thin, based on this appearance. I don't believe anyone said her jeans aren't tight. They said yes tight, but she looks good in them.
      The point is "tight" versus "too tight." One is a description and the other a value judgement that depends on individual experience. Same as thin versus too thin. Nobody said she isn't thin.
      Another point was a different standard for the two women. Meghan appeared at least twice on tour in tight jeans/jeggings that had more horizontal wrinkles (your proof of too-tightness)than these of Kate's as well as a derriere- defining fit. The photos of Kate were taken in a brightly-lit gym. So there is that.
      Labeling Kate "too thin" (apparently because she has a naturally small mid-section) is a judgement that carries a lot of baggage these days. That description of Kate contrasts with labeling Meghan the acceptable "petite" while she has extremely slender ankles and calves as well as small arms. Again, would the label petite be used if Meghan were size 24? Petite is obviously referring to her small size as well as stature, regardless of the official meaning of petite.

      I did not suggest that Kate be called petite. I did not say we should call Meghan too thin.

      I am saying that we need to be careful about applying judgment labels such as "too thin." We need to ask ourselves--what am I really saying here and why? I think this need is especially important with the increasing on-line tendency to indiscriminately label and judge. The tabloids are delighted when we do this because it feeds the polarization and controversy that sells their sites.

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    5. I think I see your point, Anon 1, (although I'm not sure I fully understand.) I know Meghan has also worn jeggings for public events and I don't like them on her either. But as many commenting here have pointed out (repeatedly!), this is a Kate site. While Meghan is sometimes discussed, it is my impression that "comparing & contrasting" the two women IS discouraged by Jane (IMO for good reason as things seem to spin out of control quickly.) So if Kate wears something that Meghan has also worn (like tight jeggings) and Kate is critiqued while Meghan goes largely unmentioned, that may seem unfair but I think that's just a consequence of this being a Kate blog. So I'm not sure the "fairness" *I think* you are saying you want can be fully achieved here.

      I do know comments discussing whether Kate is too thin have been actively discouraged by Jane. That's in the instructions & so far as I know, I've not violated that rule. And Jane has also said, if a comment goes live, she's approved it (although at busy times things may slip through.) But I certainly wasn't aware that whether Kate's clothes look too tight was similarly discouraged! People of ANY size/weight can wear clothes that some think look too tight or too loose and when that happens those outfits may elicit comments on a site like this that involves discussion of fashion. And aren't ideas about fashion almost always a matter of making a "judgment" vs a descriptive comment? I really don't understand how one could leave values and opinions out of a fashion discussion and while I may be wrong, it seems that is what you are suggesting people do.

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  31. Back for the cheese puffs. Ha! (Jane was luring us away from the SneakPeek with culinary bribes.) Did anyone see KP coverage of W&C's engagement in Leeds today? Not one peep of pre-publicity but once the Sussex's had their last tour event, KP jumped in with the most complete coverage I have seen for the Cambridges for at least a year or two. Another engagement to come November 8. In addition to Remembrance Sunday.

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    1. I found it odd that the Cambridges Leeds engagement got no advance notice and very little coverage. Kate looked stunning and it was such a poignant visit for her.

      I am surprised at how sick to death I am of the Sussex's right now. I thought I would enjoy their tour more but I'm ready for them to take a break. I was over at a Meghan blog and was surprised that every single comment was so glowing and fawning over each little aspect of their tour. It seems to me that the particular blog (which shall remain nameless) doesn't allow any comments that aren't over the top cheerleading for MM or effusive compliments for the author of the blog. FBTB is far more open to exchange of ideas.

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    2. I have to say I agree - I am very much Sussex fatigued - the constant hand holding and fawning over each over is getting a little old at this stage - we get it You are both in Love!! It's very unprofessional too when representing the Queen abroad- I still like them both in general but a little break from them now for a while will be no harm.

      Seeing Kate and William's normal interactions with one another is very refreshing.

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    3. Anonymous 11:41, I know the blog to which you are referring and can't agree more. I've decided not to go back there because it's boring and annoying l. How many super fan comments can you read that are all saying the same thing ? Unless, what I post over there is 100% positive, it does not get published. I made one comment about the tour having a Hollywood feel and that never made the light of day. It's too bad because the sister site used to allow a lot of discussion. I'm glad Jane allows discussion that is not constantly fawning.

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    4. Susan, I have watched some videos of H&M on tour, and I think that, at least in some instances, the hand holding is more of a guidance thing. For example, if M was taking too long in one place (talking with people lined up to meet them), then H would go over, take her hand (without having to say anything), and they would start walking on together. It's similar to how William guides Kate with his hand on her upper back.

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    5. Regarding Kate's solo Imperial War Museum engagement coverage: I wrote some of the following on another blog--twice--because I thought it did not go through the first time. It was edited out the second time as well.

      Some forums referred to the event being "embargoed." None of the usual royal sites had any information until some time after the event. As I understand it, an embargo is usually for security reasons and is followed up by a statement about the event being embargoed. KP did not mention an embargo that I could find.
      My opinion is that there was no pre-promotion/publicity because H&M were still on tour. I believe the actual IWM event took place after the final event of the South Pacific tour. I don't think this was coincidence since apparently the visit was only recently scheduled. (the items she came to draw attention to have reportedly only been there a month) There are time zone differences; however, the event could have taken place the day before at the culmination of H&M's tour and consequently dominating the next-day's royal news on the final day of H&M's tour. Obviously, KP considered the tour the top focus. Only after the Sussexes were on their way home was the attention turned to W&C. After the tour was over, however, I noticed the KP coverage of W&C was some of the best I have seen for a routine Wand/or C engagement since the emphasis on Harry and then H&M started nearly two years ago.

      I also noticed hints here and there in various forums that this was only a personal visit for Kate: for example,remarks about the museum only receiving the documents a month ago from family and that Kate had personally requested the visit. Maybe no one else picked up hints from that information that this visit was a Kate promotion. KP made it clear that the engagement was a part of the run-up to the 100th Anniversary of the 1918 Armistice.
      I expressed the hope that the Cambridge's withholding of conflicting publicity as well as not announcing the November 8 Cambridge engagement until after the tour might indicate a cooperative effort between the two establishments. At least there was pre-promotion this time--although less notice for the November 8 engagement than the average used to be--two weeks. Also, hopefully, Meghan will be given some time to rest, while Kate and William provide media distraction. I hope the fans are kinder to Meghan's taking a rest after a tour than they were to Kate. A few days off the grid the complaints started. I think that was the time a scar on her left leg was later noted. It looked like a surgical scar to me

      My hope is that the two Princes are able to coordinate with and support each other, despite media( and possibly other) efforts to divide them. Not only fans but also royal reporters and writers seem to be lining up on one side or the other. This may be symptomatic of the divisive and polarising times but I can't believe that HM is going to allow competition to escalate. The Queen will likely continue to extend favor to which ever side needs a boost to accomplish equilibrium, keeping in mind the needs of the RF and the government and that William is the future king. I think she saw enough of this sibling rivalry with her own children and is not about to leave the next generation of royals at odds.


      anon 11:41--I know what you mean. I sometimes feel the need for insulin after reading that blog.

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    6. I do hope Kate will be seen more. She has been sorely missed, I think.
      I have also completely overdosed on the Sussexes. I do like what they are trying to do - don't get me wrong, and I very much appreciate Meghan's speeches and her warm and down-to-earth manner. At the same time I felt that the tour was just too long. After about 10 days I tuned out. I felt it was at least a week too long. Also, the number of outfits changes had be gobsmacked. Is that normal for a tour - did Kate do this as well? I don't seem to recall.
      I completely understand and agree about comments on the other blog also. Many of you may recognize my moniker - I was loyal to that blog for years but the recent horrible bullying of old posters (which was completely allowed by the moderator, btw - she could have and should have stopped it much before it got that ugly) as well as the fawning is just too much to bear. Like many others I like to give a nuanced opinion on things. I don't see much point of comments that are repeated rapturous praise - it is beyond boring. Any time I have said anything remotely non-fawning - like I wish they would stop holding hands so much because it can make other people uncomfortable - it was not published. The moderator claims that she wants objective opinions but she really doesn't. Not at all. So I hope to migrate to this blog and hope others will do so as well.
      On the topic of handholding - I am as much of a fan of PDA as anybody else, but honestly if my friends were constantly holding hands over say even a dinner party I think my husband and I would get uncomfortable after a while. There is something intimate about it - it's like a shared moment within the couple and it can feel exclusionary to others. It is completely inappropriate in a work setting. I can't imagine anybody I know doing this in a professional environment. I am actually really shocked that they don't get called out for it.

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    7. All the blogs on Meghan are just fan blogs, where one cannot have a discussion about her role and about the RF in general. I find this blog very refreshing in that respect, we are allowed to write about those questions the same way we do about Kate. I am an external observer, neither from the UK nor the US and a monarchist. One of the strengths of the RF is the way it teaches and integrates its new members and ultimately transforms them. It is sometimes hard and inhumane, Diana is the best example, but it succeeds in having a structure that can share its knowledge to the younger generation. And that knowledge cannot be found in any book or any university, that's what makes the BRF unique. I think Kate was and is very ready to learn, for her own sake, but also for the sake of her children and ultimately for the sake of the RF and the UK. I do not get the same impression from Meghan, she clearly didn't know a lot about the BRF and only the superficial aspects of it, the palaces and pretty dresses. IMO, she is a show person, her speeches for instance are very well delivered, but not very interesting to read or very well written ( in contrast with those of William). I don't think she has the personality to notice she has a lot to learn, she is more focused on what she can bring. It isn't a bad thing, only she should be aware that her values and goals are not always those of the RF or the UK as a whole.

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    8. I suspect the War Museum visit was embargoed because it remained open to the public. Had her visit been highlighted earlier, it would have been full of people who had gone to see Catherine and not the exhibits. There would have also been security fears.

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    9. Hi Rosman 😊 I don't know what is going on over there. I think discussion in general is not being repressed on the Kate site, is it? I have two theories: 1- The administrator has aspirations other than the blog and wants her site to reflect extreme positivity to further that. What that would be I don't know. A book about Meghan commissioned by Meghan?

      2- Between running the two blogs, she can't handle the discussion that critical comments would invite. I mean, if you say one non glowing thing about Meghan over there, you've got 20 posters telling you how lousy a human being you are. She may not feel she wants to sift through the wide range of comments that would incite. What has shocked me is the number of comments she has allowed to go live that are not so thinly veiled comments against Kate. What's that all about?

      It's odd you mentioned that the tour became boring for you because I can say the same thing, and I love a good royal tour, so it surprised me. I was into the first few days and then it all started blending. I can't really pinpoint why. Maybe because a lot of the clothing was the same sort of thing, so the events started blurring for me? I don't know. I thought her speeches were great, the banana bread gesture was lovely and her girl centered engagements were powerful but it didn't feel like a royal tour to me. I will say as a newbie royal, Meghan did extremely well under fire but a certain interest level just wasn't there for me.

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    10. When did they go to Leeds---can't find anything anywhere?

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    11. Good point, Jean. Thank-you.

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    12. I know the other blog everyone is referring to and I’ve always thought it was very well run- it doesn’t feel very nice to come onto this blog to complain about that other blog. If you don’t enjoy that blog, don’t read it!

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    13. Hi Erika :) So glad to see you here ! Completely agree with you on feelings about the tour. I was also surprised at my own indifference towards Meghan because she is perfect on paper for the reasons you state. But yeah it felt oddly empty to me. I can't really put my finger on it. I felt the same way on her wedding btw. In theory it was amazing but there was a certain quality to it that felt alien to me.

      As for moderation on the other blog I think it is number 2 - that the moderation on the Meghan blog became insanely depressing for her and so she made it tighter and tighter to the point where it is like scrolling through a fansite of middle schoolers. I do understand that reaction in the aftermath of the truly sad bullying that happened but I was truly confused about the moderation of that particular episode. One thing about both blogs I suspect is that the moderator editorializes through the comments (unlike this blog where the blogger states her own position). For whatever reason she had had enough of the old posters, who in her opinion were rabble-rousing and she let the bullies take their course.. Nothing else explains her moderation, to me. She was definitely screening my comments calling out the rudeness yet she allowed each rude and personal comment attacking me to be posted once after another. I gave this thought and benefit of the doubt for a long time but after being pretty much clamped down again after trying to post on that blog the second time, I am pretty sure that was the case. She just wanted a bunch of us to leave. After Eugenie's wedding I had posted a comment on royal weddings (on the Kate blog) after Julia's comment where I said something like Meghan's wedding lacked a mystique to me and felt somewhat different me to - and she never published it ! It was a mild comment - nothing even remotely negative about Meghan and she wouldn't publish it!! I am convinced she just wanted me to shut up. So I am done with that blogger.

      As for Kate - she won't come out and say it but I am certain that she does not have unadulterated positive feelings towards Kate's work ethic. It wasn't like this in the beginning - she was definitely more positive for the first few years. At some point the tone of her own posts changed and she herself did go on record a number of years ago (I want to say after the Queen's Jubilee celebrations), saying that Kate needed to assume more responsibilities and embrace her role more wholeheartedly. So she did make an official statement that one time and then one or two more times after that. I do understand why - Kate has lost popularity among the 30 -40 something professional women after William's comments on how one can't work and raise a family and the series of KP PR blunders. I personally know a few people who once liked her but now roll their eyes at her.
      Anyway, I really hope we can stick around here otherwise we'll have to start our own LOL.

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    14. Jean, that was my error. I was confusing the home-base area of the family with the location of the museum in the London area.

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    15. Ericka I believe the theory she might be having a hard time navigating the discussion between the two. Also considering meghan is biracial she might not want the fear of so many critics coming on her blog to spew hate or any rational discussion fear of being label a racist.

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    16. I am a passive reader cursed with a long memory and I know what you are talking about Rosman. Anyway, whatever is happening elsewhere on the internet, it is nice to know that on this blog we can discuss Meghan, and voice our opinion on her, when relevant, like it is the case talking about the announced split of households.

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    17. On hand holding and PDA, those who support it use the argument that H&M do it because they are tactile, in love,not shy to show their emotions...they usually go on and say K&W are more reserved, introverts, and that's why they don't do it, because they aren't that way. I think it not true and not fair. IMO, W&K are in love and quite as tactile. The few glimpses we have of them of duty they always hold hands. And when they thought nobody could see them at Eugenie's wedding, they were very sweet. Only they have a very clear line between their public and their private life. And they have a professional outlook. When working, no PDA. Not because they don't feel the need, or because they are emotionally crippled, but because they decide not to. I rather admire them for it.

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    18. PS--I agree the embargo may have been in place to allow the museum to carry on business as usual. I think the usual visitors to the museum would be less of a problem than crowd and traffic control.

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    19. PPS.--HOWEVER...this was obviously a Kate chosen engagement. The point remains-she chose a day after the tour was over. She could have easily gone a day or so earlier--the artifacts had been there for a month. The tour was dragging on. Here was fresh Kate news. Any bets on who would dominate the coverage the next day?

      My end point, my hope, was that this signaled a spirit of cooperation between the two brothers.

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    20. I do think it was an example of cooperation between the two couples. And for it to work going forward, the effort has to be equal on both sides. Time will tell, eh?

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  32. I think the Cambridge's and the Sussex's couldn't be more opposite. Kate and William have more staid positions and expectations on their time. The Sussex's will be able to have a more relaxed lifestyle and different responsibilities. Someday the Cambridges will be the head of "The Firm" and any missteps could affect their future. To me, the Cambridges are confident and secure in their life and their role. The Sussex's are like a shiny new penny and will continue to be more like a "Hollywood" couple in the future.

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    1. I couldn't agree more. I hope Kate and William stay on course and are able to avoid any pressure to become celebrity icons. One "Hollywood" couple is quite enough - tradition outweighs trendy IMO.

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    2. Anon at 7:51, I don't know about that. Diana became a "Hollywood" celebrity, especially post divorce. Diana's fame still lives on. I don't think W&C should become something they're not in an effort to please the mass That's always a recipe for failure. I think Kate can be re-branded playing up to her strength. Jane wrote an post recently about how Kate might possibly be re-introduced with a very regal image -- looking every bit the part of a queen. That's something we all know she is well suited for and would enjoy. Unfortunately, it doesn't look like that's the direction the palace is going right now and why I detest this painted-on jeans outfit. Hopefully, the PR team will read Jane's post and soon change course.

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    3. I don't believe this outfit is anything but what Kate has always been. She's sporty, fun, relatable, and is able to move and stoop down to visit with children AND she looks regal while she's doing it. This is her strength. I hope her brand of regal never becomes stuffy and hands off. It's not William & Kate becoming more "Hollywood" that people want. What we want is fair coverage for what the Cambridges do and a little (a lot) less of pushing the Sussex's out in front of the future king and his consort.

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    4. Diana's popularity was/is undeniable, but I have trouble with her being put in the "Hollywood" category because of the negative connotations. When she came on the scene, her youth, looks and interest in fashion were a breath of fresh air, but the core of her popularity was based on so much more; Diana was sincere, vulnerable, insecure, relatable yet regal, warm, intuitive, and of course unappreciated behind palace walls (understatement). And it was the way in which she dealt with her weaknesses and problems and continued to carry on that earned her respect and admiration.

      Bottom line … while I think KP hasn't always been on the ball in the PR department, I don't want to see either couple promoted like celebrities. I think this approach lacks substance and ultimately will backfire and cheapen the monarchy. Both couples have youth and appeal on their side, but this shouldn't be featured as the main ingredient. Perhaps W&K have been held back a little too much (and I have my suspicions on that!), but allowing H&M to become the Firm's very own Brad & Angelina is equally, if not even more, unwise.

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    5. Royal fan, I agree with you. I believe a royal family, and that is true for all of them, should be taken seriously, as a state institution, that gives a country stability and a respected neutral head of state. All monarchies know professionalism and dignity are the way to stay relevant, and cheap celebrity, magazine kind of press must be avoided. They do not need to be global stars, they must be respected at home.

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    6. I could not agree more, royal fan, very well said.

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    7. Perfectly well said, royalfan. I couldn't have addressed the Diana comment better which is why I didn't try. Post divorce she had been so vilified by The Firm she did the only thing she could do. She used her immense popularity to put a focus on good causes. She did it with great dignity in the face of all she was enduring.

      When I first heard that the Cambridge and Sussex household were going to split their offices I thought it was a bad idea. Since the end of the Sussex's tour, however, I am convinced it is the best idea. William and Kate need to set themselves apart from the Hollywood hoopla because they have a long distance and essential role to fill for their country.

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    8. Anon @ 3:24, The Palace PR promoted W&C using this very same "celebrity, magazine kind of press". W&C's first US visit was to rub shoulders with the Hollywood stars that we now think is beneath them. That PR approach successfully made Kate a "global star". As Royal Fan warns, such strategy ultimately backfires due to lack of substance.

      Will this same approach work any differently for H&M? I think most certainly yes. Why? for the reasons Royal Fan mentioned regarding Diana being "sincere, vulnerable, insecure, relatable, warm..." -- all qualities shared by Harry who is so much like his mother. I don't think Diana was so loved and enjoyed as much sympathy prior to her death as Harry does. And as for substance, that couple has it in spades. Just 5 1/2 months on the job, Meghan has the world in awe of her ability to get things done and to command a stage. She has branded herself and has proven herself to be a brainy, capable and powerful woman. Her youth and appeal is secondary to her image. It's just the icing on the cake. Meghan is a woman of substance. Those qualities have staying power.

      I like seeing Kate. She has a unique quality of loveliness that makes me happy when I see her. There's no reason for that ever change. Meghan motivates me. Kate soothes me. I want to see both couples happy and thriving. W&K are no longer the only kids on the block. That can't be easy. The challenge is for place PR to find a way for them to share the stage. There's room on the stage for both couples. This is not a zero sum gain. The Royals are not like sports teams that must have divided camps. We can be fans of many as we are of novelists and actors.They don't have to compete for our attention if they bring different things to the table.
      I understand the complaint of giving one couple more coverage than the other. That should never happen and I don't know if that's what's happening considering that Kate was on maternity leave and other issues related to lack of social media use in the past that might've changed. It's not in the royal family's best interest to promote one couple at the expense of the other.
      The BRF has a challenge in it's hands for sure. Meghan's role as Commonwealth ambassador and her personal interest in female empowerment are more clearly defined than Kate's role as future queen consort and her interest in children's mental health. How do you create measurable goals for something that's nonspecific? Without that, you have no choice but to create a brand that's mostly based on image and perception. I guess I'll have to wait and see and hope for the best.
      Fabie (AKA Fabulous)

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    9. Fabie, to understand, you say Kate doesn’t have substance because being a future queen consort isn’t as clearly defined as being a Commonwealth ambassador and feminist? Really? No, thy should not share the same stage. The second in line should never outshine the first in line. That is the way it is and Harry and Meghan have to realize they will have to take a back seat to W&K.

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    10. I don't know, Fabie. I remember that first Canada tour, and there was huge interest, but it seemed to originate in the press, not the palace. And their personal interaction as a young married couple wasn't continuously glossed over. It was more, much more about the fashion for the press, and the fashion was definitely worth the attention. But I got the impression the palace didn't want to foster that kind of publicity. I even think the palace didn't take enough advantage of W&K enormous popularity, and didn't give them opportunities to shine like attending state dinners or Ascot. About the meeting with Hollywood in LA, well I don't think I was the only one who thought Kate had much more elegance and class than those stars... She was and is a global star but it wasn't induced by the palace, I very much agree with Jane's take on it. Anyway being a global star is not what makes her relevant and a good future queen.
      Anon3:24

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    11. The first in line is C&C, not W&K though W&K outshines them.

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    12. I agree, Anon - but look how massively Will and Kate and now Harry and Meghan have upstaged Prince Charles and Camilla! Sometimes it's easy to forget that William is not the next King.

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    13. Fabie, I also don't understand your comment. How can being an ambassador and feminist be more clearly defined than future queen consort and children's mental health advocate? She is also parenting another future king. I also don't understand your comment about Diana only being loved and enjoyed because of sympathy. I can assure you, as someone who is the same age she would have been, she was adored by the world from the moment she hit the scene.

      As for William and Kate being in Hollywood, they tagged it on to their visit to Canada and the events they attended were a charity polo game in which they raised money for their royal foundation, an event to promote trade between the UK and the US, they were hosted by the British Consul-General where British and Commonwealth expats and some politicians attended, and they went to a BAFTA event because William is president of BAFTA. They were not there to "rub shoulders" with celebrities - they were working for British and Commonwealth causes.

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    14. Fabie, I don't think Kate's popularity has anything to do with one stop in Hollywood during their first tour. As a matter of fact, it seemed to me that Hollywood went gaga over the royal couple. And despite the interest in them, W&K have always done their best to deflect the attention and keep the focus on the engagement.

      And I do agree regarding some of Harry's traits, but I think they are being overpowered at the moment. IMO, his focus is on pleasing Meghan to the point of losing who HE is. As has been pointed out here, Meghan married into the BRF; he did not marry into Hollywood, although it is coming across that way more often than not.

      I do believe that H&M can play a useful role in the Firm, but HM should give them a crash course on the fine print that came with the "I wills".

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    15. Fabie--I believe you make some interesting and valid points. Part of the following addresses your comment but I also am responding to previous comments in the thread.

      I will point out that the Hollywood aspect of the Cambridge's first Canada tour, which made a brief detour into the US,was one day only---it also centered around BAFTA. I don't subscribe to Twitter, or Instagram or other forums. From what commenters have said the IG account during this tour was intensely personal and focused on the couple, not the tour objectives. It sounds similar to a personal blog such as The Tig more than an official account of an arm of the royal family. It hasn't been just one evening of Hollywood-like promotion--it has been an on-going theme for the Sussexes.

      About the uneven coverage. As I have pointed out in specific terms in past comments, the expanded KP coverage of Harry and then Harry and Meghan did not start with Kate's so-called maternity leave.

      I think KP's publishing in November 2016 Harry's unprecedented official request for the media to go easy on his girlfriend and family was the prologue to what followed. There was an increasingly noticeable emphasis on coverage for Harry, with his events receiving an average of six-eight posts or more per event, with 2-3 posts in pre-publicity, compared to a William and/or Kate event--usually 3-4 posts total. Every aspect of Harry's day was pictured.

      This reflects a bias, in my opinion. If it were only due to KP's lack of PR experience, why was it done so much more reliably, professionally, and completely with the one Prince's coverage over the other? Think about it. Sloppy spelling errors and inept quotes and information were always centered on William and Kate's activities. Part of this occurred during Rebecca's tenure as Private Secretary but KP was responsible for the content of its Twitter posts.Where were the errors with Harry's coverage?
      Either KP PR is competent or not. Since the quality of coverage seemed to me to be stronger in the one case, this disparity had to be intentional.

      It soon became clear that 2018 would be the year of the Commonwealth for various reasons.

      We see Harry being made a Youth Ambassador. An Invictus event is shoved to the background to promote a spectacular Commonwealth tour. There was a personal promotion of his intended spouse. There were engagement interviews. The heralded appearance at Sandringham. A huge build-up to the wedding."Queen of the World" came about with Meghan placed in a starring role. Meghan's community cooking project, which took place when Kate was busy with engagements and an overseas tour, was intensely promoted. The timing of the release of the book was interesting, to say the least. There is a spectacular and very dramatic wedding. Then the pregnancy and tour. The most astute Hollywood publicity agent could not have done a more thorough job of promoting a client.
      Kate was swept under the bus in that 'Queen..." series. She was not even given satisfactory recognition for an event she hosted--the Commonwealth Fashion event. Earlier photos and a brief interview of Sophie from the event were featured. The excuse of her being on maternity leave and therefore unavailable for interview was ludicrous. The project was in the works for a year and there was no problem using old footage for other royals.


      There is more but I have said most of this before. I can only assume some commenters have either not read those particular comments or have read and promptly ignored the fact that the shift to Harry occurred well before Kate's maternity leave and the recent tour. Maybe no one else was paying attention as this Harry/Sussex promotion progressed.

      All I have left to say is: WOW! judging by the number of times her relatively brief Louis-related absence
      has been used as an excuse for promoting H&M one would think she had been off the planet for at least a year.

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    16. Anon1 @ 11:33 Amen someone finally echoed exactly what has been happening. My one question is why is KP and the firm allowing this promotion of H&M? Whst is the purpose of it and why are W&K not being promoted over them, as W&K and his family are the future, not H&M.

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    17. Anon1, PERFECT COMMENT

      BM

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    18. Anon1, I thoroughly enjoyed reading your post. I appreciate the information and objective reasoning regarding the perceived disparity in media promotion of the two couples. While I understand the reasons for the outcry and suspicion of foul play, I remain skeptical and still give the palace PR the benefit of the doubt. It simply defies logic for them to favor H&M over W&K. The Firm's stars' individual and collective strengths provide greater benefit to the Firm and if one must be favored over the other, W&K would be the obvious choice.
      Again, if I must speculate, my guess would be that since Meghan is hitting the ground running, she needs to be introduced using a far more aggressive strategy than was needed for Kate who was being slowly introduced. And with the expected baby manias to follow, I don't expect H&M's media promotion to slow down any time soon. It is therefore W&K's media promotion that will be brought up to speed. We shall see.
      Fabie (AKA Fabulous)

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    19. I agree with much of what is posted here. It seems that Kate's entry into royal life was managed differently than Meghan's. While there are various theories about why Kate's occurred the way it did (jealous Charles, different time, desire to avoid the "Diana in the deep end" issue, ages of other royals, etc) it's clear to me Will wasn't ready for a full-time or even a regular royal life when he and Kate married. So there was no way Kate could function as a more senior-level royal even IF she and Will wanted her to (and I don't think they did.) As I recall, shortly after the wedding it was announced to the great surprise of some that Kate would be a "stay-at-home housewife" for some period of time. I also think Will has typically been more openly adverse to the media. And much of  the implicit message he conveyed in his early years of marriage was "leave us alone" and unfortunately, PR from KP has seemed to echo that message. (PR that often says "go away"? A little odd.) Right or wrong, H&M seem more willing to be on the stage (while obviously still protecting their private time.) But since their engagement was announced, their predominant message to the public hasn't been "leave us alone."

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    20. I have a theory to throw out for consideration. All my opinion of course. And at the core is the difference in Charles' relationship with his two sons.

      William was older when Diana died and he would have been more aware of her circumstances at the hands of her husband and the Firm. Harry, on the other hand, was just shy of his 13th birthday and perhaps a bit more naΓ―ve (sheltered) about his mother's reality.

      Perhaps William has held his father more accountable for Diana's situation and this isn't a stretch if you consider how determined William has been regarding his own marriage and children. Add his relationship with the Middleton's and it makes even more sense; a relationship which I firmly believe Charles resents.

      And perhaps Harry, despite his bad boy antics, has been easier for Charles to deal with. The trouble Harry has found himself in may be less challenging for Charles than being held accountable (even if passively) for his own actions.

      And as far as Kate and Charles are concerned, I believe they have a satisfactory relationship, but I cannot imagine Kate doing anything other than being firmly behind her husband and having him set the tone, so to speak.

      Meghan, on the other hand, appears to enjoy charming Charles and he eats it up; this is one of his weaknesses IMO and is the reason Camilla has had such a strong influence on him.

      Could we be seeing a reward vs. punishment scenario, even if it does no favors for the Firm as a whole? It wouldn't be the first time, would it?

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    21. anon1 @11:33PM - well said!

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    22. I appreciate your support Anonymous, Fabie, BM, Kiwi Gal-my 11:33 comment has been in the works for a long time. Thank-you Jane for allowing my thoughts to be heard.
      I agree, Fabie. It does defy logic "...for them to favor H&M over W&K."

      royalfan--there does seem to be a difference in the Fathers relationships with the two sons and likely, at least partly, for the reasons you suggest. I don't think Camilla's possible influence regarding the difference can be ignored. I think you probably alluded to this when referencing William's awareness of circumstances. She knows that he knows and will not forget.
      However, as we have discussed here previously, William's view was through the inexperience and dependence/independence needs of an adolescent. He may have been somewhat older and wiser than Harry but he still was basically a child. His memories of that time will forever be viewed through that lense--in spite of new realisations.
      These details may have something to do with the seeming promotion over the past year or two of one son and wife as well as the marginalizing of the other--which, I am convinced has happened in the Palace presentation of the various royals.
      It Could simply be a matter of Harry's living so long in William's shadow (Andrew-Charles?) and a father's (and grandmother's) attempt to even things out and prevent a life long resentment and competition. That sounds reasonable. I think I'll choose to believe that...at least until/unless facts prove otherwise.

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    23. I agree largely with what lizzie said and think that Harry and William have different approaches to media and that is being reflected in the coverage. Harry and Meghan seem to be more open with photographers and aren't saying "go away" - as lizzie says. I don't think KP is favoring one couple over another. Speculating along those lines can be a depressing endeavour. When anyone in the royal family go on tour they get the most coverage. That is why H&M have been in the public eye more. Kate is not seen as much these days, and William alone is less popular than Harry (nor does he seem to want that much coverage), so KP is promoting H&M right now. When Kate is back I am sure we will see more of her.

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    24. I think it is also important to remember that, as caring a mother as Diana seemed to be with her sons, she was also a deeply flawed one. It's common knowledge that Diana relied on William as a confidant and that is likely to have had a deep effect on William's relationship with Charles, and especially Camilla.

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    25. True, W&K, or rather William was weary of the press. He also said he was in awe of how his grandmother managed to keep her private life to herself. He certainly has another approach to privacy than that of Meghan. Harry seemed to follow in his brothers footstep with the statement about his girlfriends invasion of privacy. Since then, he has given the press quite a glimpse of his private life. Also, I have the impression the princes tried never to read the gossip published about them. Meghan seems to do otherwise, for instance she spoke about her dog saying the press was wrong about its name. Meghan brings an opposite perspective, she has been courting the press for years, and lived in a world where you only exist if someone publishes something about you. IMO the different PR treatment of both couples is due to their different wishes. It is not a conspiracy to favour H&M over W&K, it is a consequence of Meghan's desire to be talked about.

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    26. royalfan, I couldn't agree more with your comment @ Nov.3, 8:23PM. I've often been tempted to say much the same--however, I wouldn't have been as polite. So thank you; I will only add that, for some time, pre-Meghan, Harry's been Charlie's favourite son and that I suspect it has something to do with the fact that Charles wanted neither son to marry whilst he was still rehabilitating his own, and his second wife's image; nor did he want their wives outshining Camilla.

      Harry towed his father's line and ended his earlier relationships; William tried, didn't like life without Kate, went back to her and married her. But when I see the way he (Charles) favours one son over another, so blatantly, I have to conclude that it's jealousy; that is, that Charles fears W&K more. He doesn't seem to realize that, sooner or later, William will wake up and see what is so easy for objective onlookers to see, there'll be a reckoning. In the meantime, Kate might want to set some money aside for a pair of boxing gloves and a bag, for William.

      William is SO lucky to have Kate; she's not simply steadfast in the face of adversity, but she seems to truly love her husband.

      JC

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    27. JC, I suspect William and Kate already know Charles's secret as well as his fear. I even think they pity him at times and simply ignore the obvious. And Kate is indeed a rock; she will not be moved. I like that she keeps her own counsel and while doing so manages to keeps her countenance even (except for the occasional side-eye of course).

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    28. JC I totally laughed out loud reading your comments but I agree with all you said. Wouldn’t it be interesting to watch the boxing match though, ha πŸ˜€

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    29. 12:19 I disagree that Diana was "flawed" as a mother. She made a conscious decision to end the cycle (regarding her own childhood) by giving her sons all the love and encouragement that she had to offer; this required recognition and commitment on her part. Also, how much of it was "confiding" as we understand it to be vs. needing to explain something to her son(s) that they may have heard/read elsewhere? Should she have left it to the editors to fill in the blanks?

      Helen, speaking of....I would really like to understand what privacy was being invaded when Harry issued the statement on her (their) behalf. From what I have read over the last two years, many people had no idea who Meghan was or that she was having a relationship with Harry. *My* thought was that perhaps she was not pleased with the public not knowing about the relationship and, short of an engagement announcement, nothing could have made it more "official". And I do agree that since then privacy has not been such a concern. ;-)

      Thank you, JC. And I'm glad you chimed in!! The possibilities are interesting, are they not?! And I couldn't agree more regarding William's good fortune in finding Kate. She's a royal gem.

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    30. Royalfan, you read my mind! I have thought the same many times...when the statement was released nobody knew about her/them. After that she started to be talked about as a Hollywood celebrity which, if we are honest, she has never been.

      BM

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    31. I didn't think I was alone, BM. :-)

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  33. I love all of the photos you chose, Jane! I agree that Kate looked very chic and supermodel-like at this engagement. They were both charming.

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  34. If Kate's message is that pregnancy doesn't have to result in extra pounds, this look conveys that message. But in a historical context, it fails on two fronts. First, throughout history, notable female costumes have always accentuated the hourglass look. This costume will go down in history as "boyish." The queen, at the same age, sought out more suitable silhouettes, even when casual/sporting was the order of the day. Second, black is not "regal" and again, the point of royalty is to be special. It's likely there are only 300,000 other females of Kate's age who went out in public looking like this in the last week. With her money, she can find a sporting color all her own and suitable designs that set her apart. Hire a colorist and Ralph Lauren, or a European counterpart, and restyle the entire casual/sporting line that is duchess-appropriate.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Actually Meghan is not Ambassador to the Commonwealth; Harry is youth ambassador.
      Her job, like Catherine's is supportive.

      Delete
  35. A day late here, but as per usual, LOVED the Duchess' outfit, both yesterday and today. To me, all black is understated, always chic, and can never go wrong. I love the blazer and I love that she took it off so we could get the full black outfit alone.

    I get people's more old-school thoughts about clothing that hugs too close to the body...and I understand. However, DOC has the body for it. I would definitely raise an eyebrow if she didn't. But she looks impeccable and can actually pull off something totally figure-hugging.

    Also, I personally think the close-fitting jeans is about as far outside of her usual style realm we will ever see her. Aside from these very chic looks, I doubt we will ever see her take larger fashion risks, i.e., the more trendy type of clothing out there.

    It's always a win for me. She looks damn fabulous. How does she manage to get better and better looking.

    ReplyDelete
  36. Meghan had a large presence on social media prior to her relationship (and now marriage) to Harry. I wonder if she is teaching KP a few things or two. I also noticed (and maybe it's just me) that their Royal Tour coverage on social media is putting them into the limelight in a more shall I say a "hollywood celebrity kind of way" something that doesn't really fit Kate and William (check out the latest posting by KP on IG). I think it's good that the household's are separating it's clearly time. Each couple can set their own life course without everyone always comparing the two.

    I think Kate returned from her maternity leave with a new maturity and she looks AMAZING!! I feel like she is stepping up her game and getting herself positioned and ready for her next role as the Princess of Wales. She is clearly ready.

    Keep in mind I live in the USA so my perspective on the RF may be bit off.
    Dianne

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Jane,
      I just wanted to say that I'm a new reader and I found your blog about 2 weeks ago when I stumbled upon your post titled "Meghan & Harry Should Not "Push the Envelope"". I found your assessment to be "spot on".
      Dianne

      Delete
    2. I'm in the camp that feels the "Other" blog has lost objectivity, I too have had comments not so favorable to Meghan that were not published. So, Jane Barr, I hope to visit your site exclusively, if you'll have me. I also am over the hand holding/arm clutching and now stomach patting by Meghan. I think she needs to be reminded there is a time and place for everything. I'm new to your site - thanks for making it so informative.

      Delete
    3. Welcome Dianne and anon12:01. You will find that Jane allows objective criticism and exchange of opinions here as long as we're respectful to each other. We love Kate but we point out what we might perceive as a misstep when she has them those comments are published. This is the best go-to royal blog out there!

      Delete
    4. To anon. 12:01, I respect your opinion. I have a different perspective and it may be due to being old enough to remember when Prince Harry was a little boy. Harry was always hugging and kissing his mother. Being physically demonstrative seems to be part of who he has been from a young age. It does not surprise me that he fell in love with a woman who is comfortable showing her emotions.

      Delete
    5. I am very comfortable with sharing my emotions. But being comfortable does not mean I should share them all the time. Or do you think W&K are not comfortable with sharing their emotions? I think they are, they are just being professional and know there are times and places. It is called self control.

      Delete
  37. Jane forgive me but I'm quite surprised at you. I enjoy your blog, I enjoy other kate blogs, I enjoy the new Meghan blogs. I am someone who likes watching both - For their fashion and fabulous lifestyle! I gave up twitter because of the "for or against" attitude there and mainly stick to my favorite blogs or websites.

    Are you really now allowing these comments bashing other blogs? You usually have higher standards (and manners) than that.
    It's very disappointing. I don't want to be somewhere where I have to defend kate or Meghan and I don't want to have to wade through this ugliness here either.
    I'm sure you would want the basic courtesy, that if someone has a problem with you, they take it up with you.
    People coming here and using your comment section as an outlet to attack others seems like the last thing you'd approve.
    If you havent noticed or fully read the comments as you've been busy or posting quickly, I understand. But I hope you take another look.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Again, discussion is being termed as an attack. It's very frustrating to think there isn't any forum to discuss Kate, Meghan and the royal blogging community's less than positive traits. When all comments are expected to be completely positive, the conversation becomes unrealistic, untrue and devoid of true thought.

      Delete
    2. I agree Anon 9:24. There must be some place where we can be honest with each other?

      Delete
    3. When we talk about William, Kate, Harry, and now Meghan, and their push for overall good mental health we must also be aware that many suicides happen in the world today when people think Facebook lives are real. Fakebooking. Everything that goes on in life is not all vacations, birthday parties, and happy faces. This is true of everything in the internet world. Nobody here is out for an attack. What people are doing is acknowledging the perception of how they've been treated somewhere else. Some people have a perception, be it good or not so good, of one duchess or another. It's OK if people don't all have the same opinion. Let it go. Don't accuse people of attacking or being racist, or being haters if they don't share your opinion. I don't know about the rest of the English speaking world but this is exactly the reason everything is so toxic here in the US right now. We are a country divided because nobody is tolerant of an opinion that isn't their own. People only believe what is said by others if it agrees with how they feel. As long as we are being respectful of each other and not crossing the line into threatening behavior (which has sadly happened before), Jane lets us enjoy a back and forth dialogue. If all you want is to read your own opinion then maybe this isn't the blog for you. From what I understand there is somewhere out there you can enjoy yourself better. This one is my only go to. I ventured over to a couple others while Kate was on maternity leave but they didn't feel like home so I left.

      Delete
    4. Exactly, Robin. I also wonder if an issue might be that the strife and competition humans have exhibited since Cain and Abel is now being played out 24/7 and globally instead of around the cracker barrel at the local trading goods store. We no longer see each other's faces as we speak. We have also discussed this aspect here before.
      In fact, my life has been enriched and my opinions shaded and nuanced from our friendly--and sometimes not so friendly--chats and debates here. I have enjoyed and participated in the back and forth dialogue here; I can own my opinions by using a recognizable "handle," which allows me to receive the praise/criticism that follow as well as giving others a sense of who I am. Using a name provides context and puts my opinions in that perspective. For example, am I an elderly retired school-teacher or a twenty-something yoga enthusiast. If one chooses to use "Anonymous," it would be helpful in understanding if a brief background could be given---"this 42 year old housewife thinks..."
      However, when one's opinion, assuming it is respectfully stated toward both one's fellow commenters and the subject of conversation-- is not even allowed to be expressed--when one is muzzled ---that is when one feels excluded from the dialogue. This feeling is heightened when others are allowed to make not-so-respectful comments.
      I don't think it is just a matter of enjoying the reading of one's own opinion. Commenters here mostly read and reflect on the comments of others before responding with a personal opinion. I think it is the hit and run one-liners who need to go elsewhere, whether named or Anonymous.

      Delete
    5. Excellent comment, Robin.

      Delete
    6. Jane I believe you may be referring to my response and I'm happy with you copying and pasting my points otherwise. I hope you at least were able to read it as I find this all very sad more than anything.
      Anon 847

      Delete
    7. Well said, Robin and Anon1.

      There's a difference between one-liner, dismissive comments that are personal in nature, vs. a reasoned debate/discussion.

      Delete
  38. Jane this post is for your eyes only. I loved your site when it was about Kate.

    I check in every day and have done so for 4 years. Now it is going in another direction Kate fan site and Megan hater site and a hater site for another blogger. It's no fun now and not a place for Kate fans.

    I will not visit again. Thank you for years of enjoyable Kate watching.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This is not a Meghan hater site, nor is it another blogger hating cite. Every now and again other blogs are mentioned in the FBTB comment section. Usually when those blogs appear to be identifiable or criticism gets too heated, I ask people to move to another topic. If you have truly been a daily reader for four years, I suspect there is something else that is pushing you to pull the plug, and not this brief discussion about another blog (far from the first time). I wish you well, but cannot say I feel responsible for whatever that other unposted reason really is.

      Delete
  39. This is a good read for anyone interested about the separation.

    http://therumbleonline.com/partingprinces.html

    ReplyDelete
  40. Not sure if this was posted. Sorry if this is repeated. But this is a rather interesting read about the separation of houses. I do agree with most of what the writer write.

    http://therumbleonline.com/partingprinces.html

    ReplyDelete
  41. Sorry having problems with this posting. Sorry Jane, I tried posting this twice and was having problems. This may appear three times. Thanks.

    http://therumbleonline.com/partingprinces.html

    ReplyDelete
  42. This is a good read about the separation of houses. I think most of what the writer says is good insight.

    http://therumbleonline.com/partingprinces.html

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    Replies
    1. This is a good read. I think it's probably true. However it made me a little sad. For all the privilege William and Harry have, they do not have an easy life. So much of their lives is completely out of their control. I can't imagine not being able to choose my own profession!

      I can understand some of Andrew's irritation for himself and his daughters. Although I think the lovely young princesses are handling their lives pretty well now that they are grown. Being known as the "spare" is demeaning. How awful to go through life being thought of as an extra just in case a tragedy happens.

      It must be easier for Edward. He's not the heir or the spare. He's just Edward and has a beautiful wife and precious children and seems to enjoy his life.

      It's probably the same for Anne.

      When Charles ascends the throne, it will be interesting to see how their roles change. Or if they they do.

      If there is some division newts between William and Harry,I hope it's temporary. I hope they can come to terms with what fate has handed them and be a close as always. Family is family even if it's the BRF. Maybe it's even more important because only a royal understands royalty.

      As for the beautiful wives,I hope they can follow the lead of their husbands. I have no doubt Catherine will. One of the things I find fascinating about her is her almost Zen-like demeanor. She shows happiness and joy easily and often, but I don't notice envy or ego. She makes royal watching so much fun.😊

      Delete
    2. Thank you! Very interesting. I think W&H have known this all their life. Their role is to support the one at the top job. Grandmother, father, and in Harry's case, brother. I don't think Harry resents it. I hope he will always give William his support, or better that they will always support each other.

      Delete
    3. I found the article to be slightly offensive.
      I thought that was a highly speculative article and not particularly flattering to Harry. I highly doubt Harry is even remotely jealous or resentful of his brother. They have different approaches to publicity and different levels of comfort with public attention. William resents the media intrusion but Harry (maybe under Meghan's influence) seems to be a lot more comfortable with it. That is possibly why they split offices. That way William can control how much he and Kate get coverage while Harry can do the same.
      I think it's a bit unkind to read more into it - especially implying that the brothers have underlying envy/jealousy issues. There is no way anyone can possibly know that.

      Delete
    4. I agree with Rosman regarding the speculative nature of the article.

      What it suggests is not what we have seen play out over the years. I think the boys have been a good team, very protective of each other, and Kate meshed with this beautifully.

      As Robin suggested previously, things appear to have changed since Meghan came on the scene. I, too, believe that her influence and her approach to the family Dynamics is the key to "what happened?".

      Delete
    5. We are not sure yet something has happened. Even if they split offices, it doesn't mean the brothers are not close. We need more time to see what kind of influence Meghan has. She has a lot of influence on Harry, that seems to be clear. How she is using it, we must wait and see. This is only idle speculation, pure gossip, but I think she is as good a flatterer as Camilla, only Camilla is much cleverer.

      Delete
  43. I don't mind discussions that occasionally refer to the broader royal watching community (e.g. whether other blogs have more open or closed comment sections, etc.). I get a little uncomfortable when one blog is discussed and people seem to be able to identify it, even if it is not named. I don't think it is clear what blog is being discussed, but there seems to be an unspoken consensus among you all. So, I think we have established that other blogs have a stricter policy on commenting, for whatever reason (and I am sure there are several), and for the time being, it is probably best to move on from the topic.

    ReplyDelete
  44. Can I point out the book that Meghan is promoting is raising money to assist survivors for the Grenfell fire survivors; who wouldn't want it to sell sell sell? And a lot of the clothes she wears come from a variety of labels with a bigger message attached. Like jeans form a local Irish factory, providing jobs and skills from survivors of domestic abuse or more sustainable manufacturing practices.
    Maybe Meghan knowing she would have an audience chose to exploit it to try and build up smaller labels with her fashion choices. Harry is also exploiting his reach to help veterans that typically worldwide have been unsupported when they are injured or come home; (Vietnam vets). That poor child that lost his mom to suicide found a connection with Harry and can see he can make it. Why can't we celebrate that. We are spending so much energy tearing each other down instead of lifting each other up. There is enough attention for all.
    William and Kate can choose what and how hard they they want to promote their causes. Right now while there is interest let Harry and Meghan do the heavy lifting, Kate should relax cause her turn at the marathon will come.
    Quick question what happens to the succession line if Charles dies before the Queen? Does the line then fall to Andrew?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The second in line is William. If Charles dies before the Queen, William becomes first in line, and eventually prince of Wales.

      Delete
    2. No, it would fall to William. The line of succession doesn't end if Charles does. That would have been the case had Charles died prior to having children. Andrew was third in line and therefore his line would then become the succession line. Charles DOES have children and heirs and therefore it would just go on as if Charles took the throne.

      Delete
    3. I agree that Meghan has done some very good things, but her downfall is in not keeping the focus on the cause she's embracing. Instead, she appears to thrive on the attention she receives.

      Delete
    4. Royalfan it's a bit early to be declaring Meghan has a downfall.

      Delete
  45. I don't think the ending of male primogeniture relates to Anne's position in the succession. The new law was reportedly initiated to allow William's first child to take precedence, whether male or female. It came a little too late for Anne, unfortunately. I think she would make a fierce monarch. :+) Andrew was actually second in line, behind Charles, before the birth of Charles's children, although Anne was the older sibling.

    The situation you describe, the death of the heir apparent, has happened a number of times throughout the history of the British Monarchy. Usually, that heir had no legitimate sons and the crown passed to the next son. As I recall, Victoria's becoming Queen was the result of just such a situation Her Uncle, the King, had no children with his wife, although a number of children by his mistress.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The end of male primogeniture, it was specifically stated, was not retroactive.

      Delete
    2. Sometimes my "I don't think" is rhetorical, Robin. ;+)

      Delete
  46. I think William and Harry learned the lessons of both their parents and their parents families well enough. From their maternal uncle to father's brothers and sisters they have seen how disharmony can create challenges in the working lives of the royal family especially for the children. The brothers have always supported each other and I think they will continue to do that. The largest changes in their future responsibilities will occur because of personal loss of loved ones as archaic as it is. This is something they both understand very deeply. The Yoko narrative around the Duchess of Sussex is silly. There is plenty of room for beautiful clothes and good works for all of them.

    ReplyDelete
  47. Okay, in addition to the theory I shared earlier this evening, I now see that Elle and Bazaar have articles about the close relationship between Camilla and Meghan. Hmmm...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Is this supposed to mean something other than a wife wanting to have a good relationship with her new husband's family, regardless of what outsiders may think of them or their history?

      Delete
    2. I swear these guys read FBTB, royalfan. Ha! The source of the information would seem telling.
      Well, the tour is over and Kate is back- yet the build-up continues and lines are being drawn.
      Of course, it could be based on old news and speculation made to look like an exclusive and/or to promote the idea of competition. One must read cautiously.

      If it is factual it would tend to support a number of our theories.

      Delete
    3. In some families it means nothing more than a new member of the family wanting to establish good family relationships, but in other families it can also mean forming strategic alliances to ensure one's survival. History is, of course, replete with examples.

      Delete
    4. Sheri, I might be more inclined to accept an innocent version if I had not been following the BRF for 30+ years at this point.

      Anon1, I think they do and it wouldn't be the first time! ;-)

      Delete
  48. Prince William was out this morning, laying a wreath at the Submariner's memorial--well covered on the KP twitter and DM.
    I suspect he and Catherine were very pleased to find the press busy with the Sussex tour as they obviously had the time with the children who were on half-term.
    The media always go for the latest arrival; building them up to knock down.
    I was acutely disappointed with Meghan's clothes on this trip, but it is not easy to have well fitting clothes when pregnant and chasing shape almost daily---and she has been pregnant practically as soon as she came off honeymoon.
    William and Catherine are in for the long haul, whereas Harry and Meghan will move ever more distant from the throne.
    I can remember when Princess Margaret was the star and then Andrew---the hero of the Falklands.
    I am sure the Duke and Duchess Of Cambridge will be glad to keep their family in the shade, because those children will have plenty to contend with when they reach their teens.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I enjoy reading your thoughts, Jean.
      And- thanks for the update.

      Delete
  49. Anon,

    You are correct, I am not going to publish your comment. It's not a drama I care to engage in. Something about it feels a little too high school for me. I have a thick skin. Everyone should have a thick skin, because a thick skin is one of the primary marks of real maturity. An internet forum in particular is an area where people need to have thick skins—the anonymity gives rise to bolder statements and franker opinions than one might assert face to face. There is a lot of assumption of the risk when you write your opinion in the public sphere.

    With regard to comment moderation: I have two options, I can over moderate to achieve an entirely non-controversial forum, which will inevitably silence plenty of perfectly permissible opinions, or I can “under moderate,” permitting wider latitude and greater freedom of expression and debate. That second choice means there will be grey area, and there will be the occasional slip up, or the occasional thread that runs out of control and has to be shut-down. I prefer more free speech and the occasional explosion that inevitably accompanies this kind of disagreement, to a Draconian moderation policy. I am sorry you are offended, but I am not going to markedly change the manner in which I moderate. Could it be better? Absolutely. But, the cost of a perfectly moderated comment section would be crippling to me. I don't have time to moderate that closely. Between two imperfect choices, I have elected to permit the more open forum.

    That's where I stand, and I am very confident in my position. I don't mind if others disagree. That does not ruffle my feathers. I blog because I love it—the writing, the creativity, the wonderful friendships we enjoy over this shared passion. All the rest is background noise.

    As I say, I could not access your full comment, but I wish you well,

    JCB

    ReplyDelete
  50. Why are people so mad that Meghan went to Fiji and Tonga. If Meghan gets Zika she will either have an abortion or give birth. If she gives birth they have enough money to cover the medical costs for treatment or an abortion. So I don’t get why you are mad your pocketbook is safe.

    ReplyDelete

The rules for commenting are simple: be polite. Please be respectful of the BRF/Middletons, even in criticism; please be respectful of your fellow readers, even in disagreement. Vulgarity will disqualify a comment.

Debate is welcome, direct and personal insults are not. Topics we tend to avoid here: "does Kate work enough?" and "Is Kate too skinny?" Everything is subject to approval.

I (Jane Barr) moderate all comments. If a comment is live, I approved it. If you find something offensive, or think my approval was an error, please email me at princesskateblog(at)gmail.com.

At times, an acceptable comment just goes missing. If you think your comment should have been approved, but it did not show up within five hours, again, pop an email to the above address.

Happy chatting!