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The Cambridges Kick off Royal Visit Pakistan

Monday, October 14, 2019

Ever with their focus on their little ones, the Cambridges spent the weekend at home and did the school run themselves this morning before boarding their jet to head to Pakistan. Royal reporters confirmed with the Palace that the couple's flight schedule was coordinated specifically so they could take George and Charlotte to Thomas's Battersea before departing on tour. Obviously due to school schedules and the security issues with this particular destination, this was not a tour that the kids were going to come on. I suspect Mike and Carole are spending the week at KP! The royal flight landed in Islamabad just before 9:30pm local time where a formal welcome awaited the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge. 


Kate opened this tour with an ensemble by Catherine Walker. Locals have described this as a modern twist on a traditional salwar kameez, and it is just the type of ensemble I have been hoping Kate would wear. Diana and Camilla have both embraced local styles on tour, and although Kate certainly chose "inspired" ensembles in India, this is the most explicitly local ensemble she has worn, and I am delighted. I think for Pakistanis (from what I am hearing), they see even more--from the draping to the buttons to the fabric, that are features of their traditional dress and they are loving this tribute. Kate paired her Catherine Walker ensemble with earrings and a clutch from local label ZEEN and wore her Rupert Sanderson Malory pumps.  This very bright turquoise with the ombre caught me a little off guard. It was not what I was expecting at all, but it quickly grew on me, and I thought the whole ensemble looked bright and airy, but also sophisticated. 


I will say I didn't expect Kate to start the tour on this foot, but now that she has, I am even more certain we are in for a spectacular tour. The couple's itinerary has not been released, but the Cambridges are planning to see as much and meet as many Pakistanis as they can. Should be a great tour to follow!

Kate In Autumnal Hues for Natural History Museum Visit

Wednesday, October 9, 2019

If you remember my comments on Kate's ensemble for her visit to Evelina, you know that I don't love the type of cropped trousers loosely termed "culottes" these days. This morning when I peeked at the early videos of Kate arriving at the Natural History Museum, I wasn't thrilled to spy what appeared to be another pair of culottes, but once I saw more pictures and videos, I actually ended loving this ensemble.


So what's different? A few things. These trousers are so "wide-legged" they almost look like a skirt, and as a result they have a beautiful motion that the Zara trousers didn't. More importantly, they are just long enough to be truly cropped pants, rather than culottes. My primary complaint with the culotte style is the where the trousers end. If you look like a sailor in the Royal Navy circa 1840, I am not thrilled. Although it is very slight, today's Jigsaw trousers have just a little more length than the Zara's from Evelina. They look like genuine cropped trousers, even when she is in motion, and that has made all the difference for me. 


I also loved how Kate has color-coordinated the Warehouse scalloped sweater-top with her Chanel purse and everyone's favorite Tod's heels, and paired them with the olive color of the trousers. The gold of the Asprey Oak leaf earrings, matched the gold of the Chanel handle, and even the buckles of her shoes. This ensemble just looks very fresh and thought through. The top is feminine and interesting, and the accessories are certainly some of her best. It seemed like a fashion-statement moment, and I really liked that. When your pieces coordinate this well and your ensemble looks like you put it together with purpose, it gives the entire ensemble a real pizazz. 


So, I loved it! It helped that she looks absolutely radiant. I want to know what her current routine is, because she was just glowing. That being said, I hope she doesn't make this look a new staple. I think it is nice for a change of pace, but it still is not my preferred look. I'd love to see her try full-length trousers--which would make her legs look model long--and, of course, more beautiful dresses. But, for today, it was a super win.


Kate Gives a Peek At Diplomatic Tour Dressing at the Aga Khan Centre

Wednesday, October 2, 2019

Generally the royals announce their visits about a week out (sometimes further out for big events, but run-of-the-mill is about a week) or they show up entirely announced. So, I was surprised yesterday to see Kensington Palace tweet that William and Kate would visit the Aga Khan Centre...today! I think that was less than 24 hours notice. [They announced this event Sept. 20 and I forgot....guys, I don't know what to tell you. I am just not what I used to be. ;)] In any event, it was a welcome distraction for fans after the Sussexes' bombshell close to their tour. More on that here if you missed the fun.


William and Kate are visiting Pakistan later this month, and if Kate has just given us a peek into what she intends to roll out during their trip, we are in for a treat. The princess debuted a new, silk-georgette dress from ARoss Girl x Soler in a deep aquamarine with a complementing green sash. The dress featured sheer blossom sleeves with little ties at the cuffs for an added feminine touch. This was a beautiful pre-tour dress to set the tone. I do think that a royal ladies' tour wardrobe should celebrate the host nation, so it should be festive and should stand out a little from her day-to-day wardrobe. I think it is great to lean into the local styles or artistically incorporate parts of the culture through color and texture. Diana was a genius in this department. This hat is still one of my favorites of hers:

Embed from Getty Images

This ensemble was also fabulous. A nod to her host country with a very themed outfit, but without crossing the line into weird.

Embed from Getty Images

Kate has already shown herself to be excellent in the diplomatic dressing department. Hopefully, we see more of this in just a few weeks. 



Today, Kate paired the dress with bright earrings from Pakistani label ZEEN, and we can expect Kate to choose more local jewelry later this month. She has used her accessories to pay tribute to her host country before, and we just saw Meghan feature a number of designers from Southern Africa with her jewelry choices, too. It is a great way to incorporate the host country and its community, even on a day when a royal lady is choosing to wear one of her own preferred labels.


Finally, Kate was wearing her Emmy London Rebecca pumps and carrying her Natasha clutch from the same label. I know these aren't faves with many of you, but she sure likes this contrasting duo. I thought this ensemble was a home-run and it has me really excited for the trip to Pakistan. 


Harry's Statement on the Sussexes Lawsuit Against the Daily Mail

Tuesday, October 1, 2019


One of Frank Sinatra’s most iconic songs is “My Way"—the passionate and rousing pledge of a man determined to live life on his own terms… I wonder if Harry was listening to this song as he wrote his statement. 

Regrets, I've had a few
But then again, too few to mention
I did what I had to do
And saw it through without exemption

I planned each charted course
Each careful step along the byway
And more, much more than this
I did it my way


This is going to get very interesting. In a statement on a new website launched today (separate from the British Royal Family's website, that is) Harry has announced that the Sussexes are suing the Daily Mail for publishing a letter that Meghan wrote to her father. You probably remember when that circulated. I have been expecting Meghan and Harry to ultimately take legal action against the negative press they have been getting, but frankly didn't expect it quite yet, and didn't think this would be the target of the suit. This is going to be very interesting from a legal perspective, and I look forward to following the case. 

For the moment, though, I will just note a few things about the press release. Harry talks about the press’s double-standard in giving positive coverage to Meghan during the tour, in light of the negative press she has been getting over the past year.

Harry might have a point if he recognizes that part of the source of Meghan's struggle for popularity has been her perceived mission to challenge the traditions and customs of the Royal Family. Because, if he recognizes that, then some of the press headlines I have seen that fete Meghan for "shaking up the Palace" would, indeed, feel quite hypocritical. But, Harry's point seems more general. Worded as it is, it seems he is saying that just because Meghan wasn't visible—out and active—over the past few months, papers made up ugly headlines about her, and now she is out and about they are producing positive content. I don't think that is the right cause and effect progression. 

The Sussexes have labored under bad press for a while now. Speculation and confirmation about a royal rift and the subsequent split of the Royal Foundation are not media fabrications. The split happened, and Palace leakers have shared a lot of dirty laundry from inside the Palace gates. Then, Harry and Meghan made the decision, which I still believe showed poor judgment, to cut the press out of Archie's birth, after voluntarily committing to tell the press when Meghan went into labor. Some people would characterize that as double-crossing the press, and it wasn't well received by the public. The secrecy around Archie's birth, their decision not to share more than a few pictures from the christening, all, rightly or wrongly, has rubbed the public the wrong way. Meghan's use of Instagram, the exclusives pictures shared only on their page, and the desire to build their own brand there, could be seen as self-commoditizing. Finally, Meghan's big return with her Vogue feature was a hit in some quarters, but certainly a strike for others, and there was almost uniform condemnation of the couple's multiple trips in private jets at the same time that the two were telling everyone else to do their part for the climate, no matter how small. 

We could break down each of these stories and argue about the details, but the idea that the negative press has been wholly without foundation and the press is just swinging back and forth because Meghan hasn't been visible is...silly. I honestly wonder if Harry truly believes that none of the decisions he has made and the actions he has taken have anything to do with the bad press. That would be extraordinary, but perhaps that is the case. I cannot imagine that the Queen, Charles, and William are not counseling him otherwise. 

In short, Harry and Meghan have suffered a lot of bad press. Some of it might be unfair, but it is very clear that they have provided the fodder for a lot of it. It is not unfounded. Harry needs to remember the final line of Sinatra's My Way, "the record shows I took the blows."

Finally, Harry should have the good grace to realize that tours are festive and fun events (at least traditionally, they are) and that the monarchy would indeed be at a crisis point if the press, whatever its dispute with the royals, didn't call a truce long enough to give polite and even positive coverage to a royal tour—which is, after all, supposed to be a trip featuring royals out representing the monarch. 

I just was telling a reporter this morning that I don't think that this tour has smoothed away Meghan's troubles, but that at least it has given her some respite from bad press. The two of them could have built on that respite. But, Harry just blew it up. 

I don't know if he will win in court, but he isn't going to win in the bigger PR conflict. This was an emotional outburst, and while some people are guided purely by feelings, most people think. Which means, this isn't going to win Harry friends. It will strike the average, sensible person as—at best—an illogical free association. Harry, suing over one thing he has a legal foundation to complain about, and trying to attach all his angry feelings about the press to that single suit. His passion for his wife is admirable, his claim that Meghan is getting the Diana treatment is questionable at best. The Sussexes have a PR problem and it is primarily of their own making. Harry said in his statement that "[t]hough this action may not be the safe one, it is the right one." That has been his modus operandi for a while, see above. Against better judgment, he does what feels right to him, and damn the outcome. He needs to learn that a consequence of stepping out and following your own judgment is living with the results. Thoughtful people review their actions and consequences with some healthy self-reflection and change course if they want to alter outcomes. The suit I cannot speak to, yet; but this statement was yet another PR blunder.

Kate Christens Boaty McB...oops, the RSS Sir David Attenborough

Thursday, September 26, 2019

Do you remember the birth of Boaty McBoatface? This was several years ago--boats take a while to build, I suppose--but anyway, several years ago I read an article about how the name of this new polar research boat was put to a public vote in the UK. The vote resulted in the name Boaty McBoatface, which made international headlines, as you can imagine. I remember reading about it from a news report and thinking, well they brought that name upon themselves. Apparently, the will of the people was over-ridden, though, because today the Duchess of Cambridge officially christened the erstwhile-almost-RSS Boaty McBoatface the RRS Sir David Attenborough. 


As a consolation prize to the will of the people, the company named (what I believe is) a small research submarine on the boat Boaty McBoatface. 

@NERCScience

Kate recycled her "geometric" McQueen coat, which she debuted on tour Down Under in 2014. I am surprised this coat has gotten so many rewears. It is bespoke, and when she first wore it I certainly thought it would be one of those more unusual ensembles that are made with a touch of pizazz for a tour, but are never seen again in the ordinary day-to-day of her royal engagements.  But, Kate recycled the coat to the 70th Anniversary of D-Day, where it worked well, and again to the 75th Anniversary of the RAF Air Cadets, which was a very, very successful rewear, possibly it's best. And, of course, she wore it today. 

It's not my favorite coat, because the pockets are so unusually large and boxy, and because the collar feels a little uptight to me. Those features, along with the pleated back, though, are what make it so great for military-themed events. It looked fabulous with the RAF Air Cadets, and was very good at Normandy, too. 


I suppose I don't have a strong feeling about today's wear. It isn't my favorite coat, but although it wasn't particularly exciting to see it again, I wasn't disappointed. She looks very nice in it, and I do love the pleats. Clearly Kate really likes it, since although four wears it not unprecedented, it is not the norm. The color is stunning on her and the details--the pleats, the pockets, the belt--all give it a little more interest than the run-of-the-mill coat. I imagine she reaches for it when she wants just a touch more flair. 



Kate paired the coat with her Empress pendant earrings and a new Asprey clutch that looks very sharp, and she wore her "Josie" block heels from Emmy London. Those shoes are structurally very strange. Something about the curved, block heel and the pointed toe... maybe too creative? Finally, Kate didn't wear a hat, which has drawn quite a bit of comment. I am not sure why she didn't, since it is the type of event you'd expect a hat. Maybe she didn't find one that suited her fancy, or perhaps they wore hard hats to tour the boat and she didn't want to remove her hat? I don't know the answer. :) 

Although it wasn't a super exciting day for fashion, that blue is particularly good with Kate's coloring, and she looked fabulous. Plus, it is just nice to see our favorite princess out and about, and Mr. Security keeping a watchful eye out... :) 

Recycles & No Ring: What's Gone Wrong With Meghan's Tour Wardrobe?

Tuesday, September 24, 2019

The Duke & Duchess of Sussex in Morocco
Meghan and Harry completed the second day of their trip to South Africa. It has been going well, but after two days I have a complaint to lodge about the fashion. In just forty-eight hours, Meghan has already recycled twice, three times if you count the Madewell jean jacket. (I don’t think you need to count the jacket, because she hasn’t worn it publicly, although she has been photographed in it, but you can.) Whether you count the jean jacket or not, she has had two major recycles--the blue Veronica Beard she wore in Tonga last year and the striped maxi she debuted on the beach in Australia. Meghan is also not wearing her engagement ring or her diamond circled eternity band. Instead she is wearing her gold wedding band with another thin gold band with a small turquoise, which apparently cost about £200. 

I have heard that her recycles and the absence of her sparkler might be meant to be symbols of her sensitivity to the economic gulf between her and the majority of those she is meeting and to “keep the focus on the issues,” and some have speculated that it is also damage control after her summer of private-jet headlines. It could be a mixture of both, but regardless, it is most certainly rubbing me the wrong way. 

Meghan is a princess. She is not Meghan Markle, the actress of yesteryear, visiting Africa as part of her charity development. She is a royal duchess representing the Queen and the British monarchy. Royalty is not celebrity. Royals are supposed to be a little different, they should have an aura of mystery, and a hint of old-world sophistication. Do-gooding, globe-trotting celebrities out and about on their humanitarian missions are, to be very frank, a dime a dozen. Royalty is unique. That’s why fashion isimportant. We expect royals, despite the culture around them, to have a certain timelessness and glamour--a wow factor.  

What Meghan wears—how she presents herself—is important. I think about all the sweet little girls who waited to see “Princess Kate” in some of those early tours the Cambridges undertook (that’s when I noticed—I am sure they wait for her still on each new tour), and there are little girls (and big girls!) excited to see Princess Meghan. Trying to be as ordinary and common impossible is not part of Meghan’s job description. 

There has been disappointment with Meghan’s wardrobe, and I think what people are struggling to put their finger on, and why Meghan seems to stumble so badly in her tour wardrobes, is this missing element. Meghan is dressing like she moved from Toronto to Rodeo Drive, but of course that isn’t what happened. She didn’t make a stratospheric leap up the celebrity food chain, she changed genres entirely. Hollywood cool doesn’t cut it in the monarchy, and while celebrities are very right to dress down when they visit Africa on their goodwill missions, it is the opposite for royals. Royals need to keep up the standard, because unlike celebrities, when a royal touches down he or she isn’t visiting to burnish the resume. It’s about far more than just an individual royal as a person, or about his or her own track record of do-gooding—it is about the institution. It’s about royalty

This is certainly not to say that Meghan should not dress for the event. I am not suggesting she should show up to casual events dressed in ball gowns, or choose outrageously flashy ensembles when visiting people in extreme poverty, but she does have a different dress code. While she should not be ostentatious, she has a broader range to choose from in terms of formality, and she should be mindful of not using too many recycles, or using them at the right times. One of Kate’s best tours for recycles was the visit to India and Bhutan. Kate wore recycles to arrive and depart. It was exciting to see old favorites and to see how she stretched her budget and added a touch of thrift, but she accomplished that without detracting from the main events where she stunned in a variety of theme-appropriate and regal ensembles. 

If people find this idea archaic, I can understand that. Royalty done right is increasingly difficult to maintain in our ever-modernizing world, but if royalty can’t maintain the standard, then they are just rich people with fancy houses, and increasingly you would have to wonder…why is the public paying to keep them up? It is possible for the royals to modernize themselves out of existence—the pomp and the circumstance are what help maintain the magic and that allows royalty to hold its value. 

The second reason that Meghan should wear her ring and not shy away from a sparkling wardrobe is that although I am certain she is trying to be sensitive, it comes across as condescending. Like Marie-Antoinette* dressing in her peasant clothes and playing the part of shepherdess at her meticulous curated little play village, radically shifting your usual style to a much lower price point and even eschewing your engagement ring that is, literally, world famous, just feels absurd. It is such a stark contrast it almost highlights that she is descending the ladder to mix with mere mortals for a brief time. Cringe. Again, she is a princess, the people of her host country know she has a different lifestyle from their own, presumably everyone who came out to see her is excited to see a princess, a member of the royal family, to see “the fairytale” in real life. 

I hope she puts her engagement ring back on and that she steps up her style. People have a sense of proportion and a natural sense of dignity—a thoughtful, royal wardrobe that suits her position as a princess is not just appropriate, it is expected and a sign of respect to others. She shouldn’t slip into a different gear, as if she is changing roles in a play. If she wears mega designers in Britain, we should see some big designers in Africa. If she wears fresh evening ensembles while on tour elsewhere, as she did in Morocco and Australia, we should see fresh styles in Africa. The issues are important, but her position is, too. The world’s media isn’t following her around Africa solely because she is a very caring person who wants to do good in the world. They are following her because she is HRH the Duchess of Sussex, married to the son of the late Princess of Wales, and a member of the most prestigious surviving monarchy in the world. Saying the trappings of that position are frivolous is not a good look.





*I love Marie-Antoinette. I think she matured, deepened, and died a holy woman. A topic for another day... ;)

Kate in Culottes for Evelina Event

Saturday, September 21, 2019

On Thursday, Kate made a surprise appearance at Sunshine House Children and Young People's Development Centre where she learned more about a program (managed by Kate's patronage Evelina London) that helps first-time parents. The Duchess now does a fair number of her engagements without any advance notice. Obviously the charity plans for her visit and the press are notified, but the general public don't get a heads up. I imagine this eases at least some of the security concerns that arise when Kate (or any royal) attends a public event, and it eases the burden a little on the charity, too.


Kate's visit comes in the midst of a number of reports of her "away from the camera" schedule. In the past fortnight, Kate has had a number of engagements reported on the court circular, that suggest she is staying very busy. Additionally, KP just posted this photo of the Duchess (wearing the L.K. Bennett dress she wore to polo) helping to choose the winner of Blue Peter's garden competition.


Quite apart from her royal duties, Kate is busy being a hands-on-mom, and you may have seen the report that she attends meetings at her Thomas's Battersea, including sitting in on a three-hour parents' meeting addressing mental health. 



Let's talk about the fashion...This won't be a popular opinion, but although Kate herself looked fabulous Thursday--trim and fit with bouncing beautiful hair--I just really did not like this ensemble. She was wearing a blouse from Equipment and black "culottes" from Zara. I know that culottes were en vogue this summer, but I dislike the style intensely. I say that knowing many of you certainly love the look. I have a number of friends, all of whom I consider beautiful women with keen senses of style, who have embraced the culotte trend whole-heartedly. But, to me, these are a miss. I have never seen a friend on whom I thought they looked good, and not even Kate can pull it off for me. I hope this trend, along with rompers, disappears with the fall and never returns.


Kate finished her look off with her Piper heels from Gianvito Rossi and earrings she debuted at RHS Wisley. Those earrings have left the royal fashionistas in various positions of disagreement. From what I can glean, some think these are by Accessorize and others think not...and due to a dearth of high-resolution photos from all the right angles, the jury is still out. I suspect the ID will be ferreted out eventually. 

Kate's Back to Nature Garden at Wisley

Friday, September 13, 2019

On Tuesday, Kate was out and about debuting her final "Back to Nature" design. The Duchess gathered people associated with the charities she has worked with in her Early Years initiative at RHS Garden Wisley to launch her third garden. According to royal reporter Emily Andrews, Kate has incorporated elements from both her Chelsea garden and her Hampton Court garden at Wisley.  Kate arrived by tractor with Mary Berry, which made for fabulous photos.


I just recently started watching the Great British Bake Off, and I love it. I love Prue and the new team (probably the most), but I have enjoyed going back to some of the earlier seasons when Mary was still on the show. She is delightful. Kate is known to be a huge Mary Berry fan and has been one for many years. There are times when I think that Kate must really love the perks royalty has brought her--Wimbledon is close to the top of that list, but these kinds of collabs are also doubtless pretty high up there, too.


Kate wore the "Aurora" dress from Emilia Wickstead, which is a debut to her closet. It exclusive to Net-a-Porter, but you will note the pattern is quite similar to one of Sophie's Ascot Aurora dresses:


Kate's dress made me chuckle a little when I saw it, because it has little flaps on the bust, just like the ones on Kate's white Wickstead she wore in India. You will notice they are placed higher than the flaps on the India dress. It's like Emilia read your feedback and thought, no more nipple flaps in future. Better placement, EW--keep it up. ;)


I really like this new dress. I love the busy floral print, and if she is going to go with a midi, I like that this one has a super fitted bust and belt. It looks feminine and fun, but it is also interesting. There is a  elasticity in the fabric which gives the top an almost smocked look, and the print not only is floral, but also incorporates a swiss dot. It's a busy, busy dress, and gets two thumbs up from me.




First Day of School: Shy Charlotte & Kate's New Cut

Sunday, September 8, 2019

You never know what will strike people on Kate's public engagements. At Charlotte's first day of school at Thomas's Battersea, the Duchess new "do" stole the show. I received a deluge of comments on the cut, color, and possible message of a change up in her style! So, we'll chat about that this morning, among other things.



As you all know, when George began school two years ago Kate was still sick with hyperemesis gravidarum. She was gutted to miss out on the milestone, and of course, fans were pretty disappointed, too. That made Charlotte's big day even more exciting. The Cambridge family--sans Louis--made quite a pretty picture arriving in the morning sunshine at Thomas's Battersea.



I was struck by how obviously shy Charlotte was feeling. Certainly she knew the day was about her and that she was starting a new school, etc. I am also sure that William and Kate would have discussed with her the media presence and attention. Hiding behind Kate and then twisting her ponytail at a furious speed are both signs of nervousness we haven't seen from the usually spunky Charlotte, but she still stared down the photographers as she entered the building. It was interesting to see her channel her nervous energy outward and into action, while George seems to choose the more introverted path.


Kate appears to have gotten a trim since we saw her last, although this honey-colored brown is a color she has had for a while now. She may have lightened it up just a tad, but she was pretty honey-brown at the King's Cup, it just wasn't as obvious because her hair was curlier and up in a pony. Straightening her hair, as she did for this morning, can also make the light color stand out more. It also gives hair the beautiful movement so many noted as she walked and the wind played with it. I definitely don't want Kate to slide into blond, but I don't mind when she lightens her color up on occasion. I think it worked beautiful with her still dark summer tan and she looked absolutely glowing. 


Some people wonder if this change signals another little Cambridge will soon be on the way. I believe this thinking stems from the general agreement that women change hairstyles around the time they make big changes in their personal lives, and more particularly because Kate made her first major hairstyle move in 2012 right before she announced she was pregnant with George (see below). Kate has switched up her hair a number of times since, and with increasing regularity, but in 2012 making a move from her signature style was very unexpected, so I think the memory stuck for royal-watchers.  For myself, I don't think Kate's cut is linked to an impending announcement, or if there is a forthcoming announcement, it is pure coincidence. Of course, I'd be thrilled to be wrong, and I do think that I have more hope/expectation for a fourth Cambridge than many. We shall see. 


Kate's dress, as you know, is Michael Kors. We first got a little peak at in in 2018 when Kate was pictured in a car on her way to Windsor Castle for Harry and Meghan's wedding reception. We never got a full length shot of her in the dress, and based just on the shot of her in the car, I wasn't enthusiastic about how I'd like it on her if I ever saw the "full picture." So, I was very surprised on Thursday to find that I absolutely loved it. The small print, which was one of the drawbacks for me, is so small that it almost blends, and the feminine sleeves with the slight balloon are one of my favorite current trends, and one that is also a favorite of many of Kate's favorite labels, like Beulah London and L.K. Bennett. 

Kate accessorized with her Asprey London oak leaf earrings and wore her blue suede Prada heels. The belt she is wearing has still not been IDed, it may be custom, as some have speculated. It was such fun to see Kate's first "first day of school" photo. Can you imagine the fun when Louis is up to bat and all five of them troop in? 

I am hoping to get a post up with thoughts on Meghan soon. I am traveling this coming week and will probably write it on the plane, so look for it Friday or over the weekend. 



The Cambridges' Scottish Holiday

Tuesday, September 3, 2019

Last weekend, the Cambridges traveled to Scotland for their annual visit with the Queen. They flew on a budget airline from Norwich to Aberdeen and were photographed deplaning and walking across the tarmac by a fellow passenger from the plane. The picture and video made headlines...



The timing of the Cambridges' trip was a little unfortunate for Harry and Meghan, because the two were being excoriated by the press and public alike for having just jetted to and from Ibiza for holiday, and then just days later flying south again to Nice, France--all by private jet.  That topic is probably better left to a different post, but the key for our chat about the Balmoral trip is that this was not a change of plans on the part of the Cambridges to deliberately cast the Sussexes in a bad light. 

William and Kate have occasionally flown to Scotland by private jet, most notably when George was a relative newborn. The couple took him by private plan to Scotland that year, probably to avoid the intense media interest and the germs of a commercial flight. When he was alive, the Duke of Westminster would loan the Cambridges his private plane and they seemed to use that most to travel to France. The Luberon, Biarritz, etc. I think they do like private when they are headed out of the country to a vacation in a nation where they have less control over the security. When traveling outside the U.K., it is more important to keep their whereabouts under wraps for as long as possible to achieve a modicum of privacy at their destination, and it probably simplifies customs, too. But, the Cambridges otherwise generally fly commercial to Scotland. This was not a deviation. 

The Queen holidays at Balmoral throughout August, September, and into October! It is a long stretch of time, during which various family members trickle up to see her. It is not an annual gathering at which all members visit at the same time. Andrew and Fergie were up very early on in the Queen's stay. When William and Kate were up last week, Anne and her husband were there along with Autumn and Peter Philips and their family. We expect the Sussexes will visit, as well. It is not unusual for them to come at separate times. 

It was reported that Kate, William, and their little ones stayed at a separate cottage on the estate. Before the trip, Vanity Fair reported that the family was planning to stay at Tam-na-Ghar. If you are a long-time follower, you might remember that this three-bedroom cottage on the estate was reportedly given to William by the late Queen Mother. When William and Kate were dating, we'd hear reports that he'd taken her there for various weekend getaways when the two needed privacy. Now, with three children of their own, it wouldn't be surprising if they did indeed stay at the little house rather than at the castle, but it certainly was not because of a feud with the Sussexes, as was the story on some outlets. 

Whenever the Cambridges visit the Queen, we are sure to get photos of them going to Crathie Kirk on Sunday morning, but we only occasionally get snaps of the royals in their down-time on the estate. This year was a real treat, because we did get a few pictures of the family dressed down. William and Kate joined other family members at a lodge on the estate near Loch Muick. Kate was wearing jeans and blouse with her Fjallraven sweater she wears so often.


Right on schedule Sunday, William and Kate were pictured accompanying the Queen to church. Kate debuted a new label to her closet. She was wearing a navy, Herringbone trench from Guinea London. I already was familiar with Guinea London and have browsed their stunning selection of coats in the past and thought it was a great label for Kate. It's very exciting to see her add a new label. A number of you remarked on the weather, but I checked the weather for Balmoral on Sunday morning, and although it was undoubtedly unseasonably warm, it was still in the vey low fifties overnight, which means when they went to church in the morning, it was still crisp enough for a coat.


Kate was wearing her peacock printed dress from Michael Kors (which she also wore to fly home a few days later), and a Lock & Co. percher. I think she was wearing her Asprey oak leaf earrings she loves so much.

On Tuesday, the family flew back to the U.K. They took the budget flight to Norwich, which strongly suggests they were headed to Anmer Hall, which is less than an hour from the Norwich airport, to eek out the last bits of summer.


George and Charlotte head back to school on Thursday. Charlotte will be starting at Thomas's Battersea, and William and Kate will drop both children off. You likely remember that Kate missed George's first day due to HG with Louis, so this will count for both for us. 




Kate's Mojo is Marriage & Motherhood

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

I have been thinking about this post for a long time. Last week, the Telegraph ran an article about Kate with the headline Princess of Wales-in-Waiting: How Kate Got Her Groove Back which proved to be the nudge I needed to finally sit down and pen these thoughts.  The Telegraph article itself is an excellent piece that highlights the remarkable successful royal Kate has become, and I highly recommend you give it a read. The headline (likely not written by the author) bugged me, and it reminded me of the theme of a number of other articles we have seen in the past year and a half.  Many articles where the substance, not just the headline, suggested that Kate has only recently started to get it right, to get her "mojo" on as she begins to unveil more of her charitable initiatives. These other articles, and the headline of the Telegraph's otherwise great article, all push the same theme--Kate is only a successful royal to the extent she is ramping up her public engagements and exposure. I think that is all wrong. 


While all of these articles are right to laud Kate’s initiatives, and many make valid points about how successfully she has grown into her role within the royal family, the idea that Kate has turned a corner, or righted her ship, or gotten back on track is completely wrong. Kate hasn’t “gotten her groove back,” she never got out of her groove. Her life is unfolding just as she hope and worked for  all those years ago, and just as she has continued to craft it. Her grace and gravitas are not the result of a change in course, but the natural result of her own, long-standing strategy for royal life. 

Many of the articles we have seen refer back to the Duchess’s “Waity Katie” days, which if you are new to the block (or not even that new, because at this point a reference to “Waity Katie” is a serious throw-back), refer to the fact that Kate dated William for many years before they married. Some sniping socialites, and a number of tabloids and papers, too, dubbed her “Waity Katie.” All number of people were intent on shaming Kate for putting her relationship first. Kate received harsh criticism for not more aggressively pursuing a “real” career and, instead, working jobs that allowed her flexibility to adapt her schedule to accommodate William’s military commitments. To be blunt, people criticized her for obviously wanting to marry William and arranging her affairs to maximize the chances of success in that respect. 

To which I reply, so what if she did? So what if Kate fell in love with William and decided to clear the decks and make the success of that relationship her top priority? Does anyone want to raise their hand and say it didn’t work out well for her? She is happily married to her handsome prince, she has beautiful homes, darling children, and the option to pursue activities outside her home when those projects fit her family’s schedule. She has complete flexibility to pursue charitable work, aka her career, and also raise her children herself. Sounds like the dream to me. What’s wrong with setting your sights on your preferred life and pursuing it single-mindedly? 


Since their marriage, Kate has been vilified for not throwing herself into a frenzy of royal activity. Instead, in the first few years, she retreated to the relative seclusion of Anglesey to start her family. Even as the couple eased more and more into their increasingly active royal duties, Kate has been continually criticized for not working enough. Ludicrously, there are some who even cite her three children, not as the blessings she clearly cherishes, but as excuses that permit her to skirt her work commitments! (You can’t make this stuff up, I’m telling you!) 

What so many of these critics won’t accept is that Kate and William have made a conscious choice. They laid a careful plan. They have a strategy to achieve both happy personal lives for themselves and their children, and successful tenures as senior royals, and ultimately a successful reign as king and queen. We are not seeing Kate get her mojo back (which is code for finally conforming to societal standards for women working), rather we are seeing yet another stage of her strategy unfolding. This is just the next scene, with several already played, and a number of acts to follow. 


The Duke and Duchess were crystal clear that they would slowly ease into their roles, that their family would always be their first priority, and that intense, full-time work would only come in time—they have, after all, quite a bit of time—a lifetime, in fact. The Telegraph article makes this point when it notes that: 
William and Kate both insist that they drive their children to school and nursery themselves; drop-offs and pick-ups are "sacred" time, and staff know it would have to be "a very high bar" to disturb it. "She's a very hands-on mother," said one insider.
Kate has always prioritized being a wife and mother, and it is part of what has made her the smashing success she has been in the Royal Family. To repeat. We aren’t seeing Kate getting her mojo back; we aren’t seeing Kate finally figuring out her priorities; we are seeing the fruit of her strategy, the results of her game plan, the wisdom of her choices. Kate always knew what she wanted, and understood the best order in which to pursue her life plans. From her first focus on marrying William, to their decision to kick off their first few years of marriage in relatively privacy, to her slow transition to working royal, to her current emphasis on her children, Kate has always been clear on what she wanted. She has been very happy to support William and raise her family and play her part within the family. It's this sense of purpose and personal identity that has endeared her to the British people and to her husband's family. 

Today, society lauds as a chief virtue the ability to “be your own person” and “think for yourself” and “stand out from the crowd.” I have found this societal mission statement is little more than a farce. The truth is that society does not welcome those who really chart their own course and the overwhelming majority of people swim with the stream. Most who are hailed as bold and forward leaning, are only bold in the direction in which they know the majority will agree and applaud them. One of the reasons I have always admired Kate is that she truly is her own women. She really does live the life she chooses, and often she must swim upstream to do it. Since she started dating William she has made the decisions that suited her goals, and pursued the future of her own dreams, regardless of the naysayers, or the abuse from the public or media. She wanted to get married, she wanted to have children, she wanted and wants to focus more on her family than her "career." So she does. 


Today, women don’t like to openly admit they want to marry, and we are, truthfully, expected to pursue a career first, and balance family second. Obviously I have no problem with women pursuing careers, but I do have a problem with being told that we must. The reality is that it is quite counter-cultural for Kate to have made the choices she has. She has actually stood out from the crowd, bucked the system, and danced to the tune of her own tango—with her handsome prince. And society has not applauded her for it. She has been cast as lazy, vapid, a social climber, and a trophy wife. Society seems to only truly celebrate Kate when she pushes back into the spotlight, back into “career-centered” activities. But, we shouldn’t steal from Kate her sweet victory. The victory of a woman who knew what she wanted and pursued it first, despite the pressure to conform. Someone who wanted  motherhood more than "mojo," and who put that before everything else. Kate's beautiful persona today (a blend of beauty, maturity, circumspection, empathy and authenticity) are the result of her grounding in who she is and who she has always been. It's the source of her success.  Now, having achieved the life she wanted for her heart, she can--in the right season for her life plan--continue to develop her professional track. But, always on her own terms. That is what we should celebrate. 


King's Cup Regatta

Thursday, August 8, 2019

Today the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge competed in the highly anticipated King's Cup Regatta off the coast of Cowes, Isle of Wight. The regatta benefited a fleet of the couple's Royal Foundation charities. William and Kate brought their whole family to the Isle of Wight, and Carole and Michael Middleton were with George and Charlotte on a boat that tracked the race and permitted them all to enjoy the action from the sea. Louis came to the Isle of Wight, too, but he didn't come to the regatta. He must have been with Nanny Maria. The Isle of Wight is famous for being, among others things, a holiday retreat for Queen Victoria, Prince Albert, and their family. Osborne House is now a museum, but certainly lots of royal history in the air.


Kate arrived at the regatta wearing a new striped top from Sandro Paris that featured a busy peplum at the sleeves and hem. She was wearing her Parker trousers from L.K. Bennett that have such a nautical style, and her trusty Supergas. She completed her look with her delicate Lauren leaf earrings from Kiki McDonough. 

I loved the pop of color, and Kate's long, beachy waves, and at first that was my only focus. I do agree with those who feel that the peplum is ultimately too much for an already busy print. Paired with the voluminous trousers, the look just didn't come together for me. I don't think it was a disaster, but it wasn't a huge win. Still, her fresh tan from Mustique made it hard to focus on anything other than how healthy and glowing she looked.


She changed into more sporty pieces for the race. Those are New Balance 611 cross-trainers, and she was wearing a branded jacket and hat. Her shorts look like they are J.Crew to me, but that is based purely on the way they photograph. I have several pairs of J.Crew shorts, and they photograph a little oddly--almost as if the hem is coming in. It gives the shorts a barely discernible balloon shape when you are standing "at attention." They are great shorts, but that part annoys me just a little, and I think I see it in Kate's shorts. The star of the show, and indeed the focus of the day, became Kate's incredible legs. We know she has near perfect pins, but today certainly accentuated how toned she is. I agree with one of you who remarked that Kate's appearance today was single-handedly getting you back to the gym. Same.


Kate's legs were the star of the show for me, but Charlotte did almost steal the limelight. You have probably seen this video below where Kate and Catherine Quinn are encouraging Charlotte to wave at someone, and she ultimately stuck her tongue out rather cheekily. Kate's reaction was hilarious as she realized what her daughter was up to, and cast a look and an embarrassed laugh toward the audience as she shooed her little princess along. For her part, Charlotte clearly knew she had been naughty, and the gleam in her eye tells me she is one of those four year olds who doesn't let life get dull or slow for her parents. ;)



Some people find this behavior more charming than others. The key is that this can be both bad behavior and cute at the same time--in fact, it is cute because it is bad behavior. I am sure that Kate will tell Charlotte later that she isn't to stick her tongue out at people, which Kate should do. As Charlotte's parent, she should teach her about polite manners and how to behave with decorum, etc. At the same time, Charlotte is four years old, and she still has some years in which she can work on her grown-up manners. I am surprised by how many people were worked up about this. She is a child, children do naughty things. This wasn't terribly egregious, and her youth and saucy attitude elicited understandable delight from her elders. As with all children, she will have to be told to moderate her behavior many, many, many times before she is all polished up and ready to be an adult.

I love events that put Kate on the water. She is always in her element in these sporty environments, and today was particular special because of the inclusion of the children and Kate's parents. A wonderful day all around! 

The Cambridges Stayed at Villa Antilles in Mustique

Wednesday, July 31, 2019

Emily Andrews at the Sun is reporting that William, Kate, their children, and Michael and Carole Middleton returned to the United Kingdon yesterday after two weeks on the idyllic luxury island Mustique. 


The Middletons and the Cambridges have been vacationing on Mustique for years now. The Middletons used to go every year at the end of January to celebrate Carole's birthday, but in the past few years they seemed to have made the shift to July. Although January is generally when one craves an island escape more than in July, William and Kate in the past two or three years have jumped back into royal duties in January and February, which has precluded them from joining the family holiday. The Middletons still slip away in the early part of the year, but it looks like they have shifted their Mustique get-away to better accommodate the Cambridges. The families went to Mustique in July of last year, too.


Emily Andrews can now tell us that they rented a new villa this year, Antilles, which was apparently built by a friend of Prince William's who is a property developer. This video of the villa gives you a sense of the fabulous accommodation and stunning views the royal party enjoyed these past two weeks. 



No pictures of the royals have emerged. It is possible they just weren't photographed this year, or it could be there are photos that will take some time to surface. We will have to wait and see. Emily has more details about the Cambridges vacation and great still-shots of their villa here

Meghan's Overhauled Engagement Ring

Wednesday, July 24, 2019

In the last week or so, the news circulated that Meghan had her engagement ring overhauled. Everyone had already noticed that she added an eternity ring recently, but Town & Country shared two close ups that demonstrated Meghan had her engagement ring changed, too. Whereas before the ring featured a large diamond and two small diamonds on a gold band, the band is now a much thinner and more delicate band set with pavé diamonds. I also think the primary diamond's setting has been scaled back, so it lies closer to her hand. It is a pretty significant overhaul of an engagement ring.

via Hello!
I was surprised she made such a big change to her ring so quickly after receiving it, but I don't think she was wrong to do so. It does give us an interesting peek into the couple's pre-engagement dynamic. Harry clearly didn't consult Meghan's preference on the ring, and Meghan must not have spoken up and given Harry any pointers on what she wanted, which is interesting. She is the type of woman who would have pretty specific expectations (I fall in that category of woman, by the way, so this is not a negative judgment). 

The ring, as it was designed originally, didn't really seem to be Meghan's style. When it debuted, it surprised me. It definitely was not what I expected Prince Harry to pick. The three-stone "trilogy" was very, very popular about seven years ago or so, but engagement ring styles have shifted since. Obviously when it comes to engagement rings, if you choose a style that is trendy, you can be sure it will look dated sooner or later. So, most engagement rings are dated to some extent, which is why it is very important to love your ring because you love the style, and not just because it is en vogue. But, in addition to looking dated, which I don't think Meghan would want, I also didn't think it was really Meghan's style generally, and especially not with that plain gold band. So, this switch does not shock me.


I think that if you get an engagement ring you don't love, you should change it. If you are a girl who is pretty romantic and wants to be surprised by the style your fiancĂ© chooses, and you will be happy with his choice...great! But, if you have strong preferences, better to just speak up. Again, it is very interesting to me that Meghan hadn't given Harry some direction on what she wanted. Perhaps she thought he'd research better with her besties, or that he would design a more contemporary and splashy ring on his own? Who knows. 

I had one girlfriend who dated and married her carbon copy. These two were (are) so similar. I don't think they discussed the ring, but perhaps they did. He chose a simple solitaire diamond with a pavĂ© diamond band. It was classic with lots of statement--right up her alley. So, sometimes just assuming your partner knows you well enough works out. 

I had another friend who was in more of an opposites attract kind of relationship and her fiancĂ© (now husband) proposed without consulting her. She confided in me that she did not like the ring. I told her flat out she should find a way to nicely tell him she didn't love it, and get something else. But, she decided that he had chosen it and she'd learn to love it. She is still wearing it. :) 

My point is, different strokes for different folks. Both approaches are valid and depend upon the personalities of the parties. I heard from a lot of you that you would never get the ring your fiancĂ© chose changed, and I respect that attitude. My second girlfriend above took that position, and genuine kudos. For myself, I would head the problem off at the pass and discuss the ring at some point before the proposal. As my mother told me when I was little, "men don't pop the question out of the blue. By the time you get engaged, you will have had so many discussions about marriage, and children, and finances, and family...it's not like the movies. You won't be surprised." All I say is, make sure that in the midst of discussing the children, and finances, and sundry...you talk about the ring! Otherwise you will find yourself with Meghan--paying to have your ring overhauled. 

I do not think this was a planned upgrade for their first anniversary, or anything like that. Harry gave Meghan a very thoughtful eternity band to mark their anniversary and Archie's arrival. When you have an engagement ring custom made, as Harry did, you expect it to stay the same at least for the first few years or so. This fast change, one that gives it a slightly more sparkling and modern edge, is pretty obviously a change made at the behest of the bride, to better suit her preferences. 

I am glad Meghan has a ring that suits her better, because she will be wearing it a long time!

Quick update: I am aware of Scobie’s report that Harry had the ring redesigned. I am sure Harry handled the details, but the point is that Harry custom-designed this ring just a little over a year before. I don’t think he said, “fix me up a sub-par ring for engagement photos that will go down in history, and the year after I will come back and spend a fortune redesigning it.” I think he had what he felt was a beautiful ring made, and it wasn’t entirely to Meghan’s taste, and instead of saying, “Meghan didn’t love her ring” the spin is, “Harry is a romantic, and why not add some sparkle.” My only point is, Harry didn’t set out to make a ring Meghan wouldn’t love, and Meghan was the one who made the choice to have the ring altered, even if Harry was the one who interfaced with the jeweler. My post is based on what I think is very clear happened, not the spin the Sussexes put on the story, as understandable as that spin might have been.

Prince George's Birthday Photos

Tuesday, July 23, 2019

George was born on July 22nd, but because he wasn't presented on the steps of the Lindo Wing until July 23rd, I always celebrate both days. The 23rd certainly sticks in my head, and I have to remember that George's birthday is one day before what I think of as his birthday. :) The Cambridges are holidaying in Mustique right now, an idyllic and exclusive island in the Caribbean. They released three photos of the now six year old prince to mark his special day, all three taken by his mother the Duchess of Cambridge. Two were taken at home at Kensington Palace earlier this summer, but one of the photos was taken on Mustique just this week. 


All three of these photos were lovely. I often think of tennis when I think of George and sport, because Kate has such a love for the game and it has been the sport that she has discussed in connection to George the most. But, when George and Charlotte were photographed playing around at polo earlier this month, it was clear that George has been practicing his football (aka soccer), too, so it was fun to see his interest in football featured here, a passion he shares with his father.


I also love that the England National Football Club's logo on his shirt is so prominent. The club uses a variation of the Royal Arms of England, the three lions on the shield. Richard the Lionheart is the earliest king to use these three lions on a shield, I believe, and that shield is deeply connected to British history and to the monarchy. It's an iconic shield, and I am sure that symbolism and connection was not lost on Kate when she chose how to present her future king's birthday shots. 


Finally, of course, the vacation snap. I was obviously so pleased to see the Cambridges release a picture like this from their personal holiday. I think it is important to share various parts of the future king's life, and everyone loves a good royal beach vacation. I also like that the Cambridges are owning their luxe holiday with this photo, too. That said, this isn't the best vacation snap. I think they should have gone full on holiday-vibe, rather than having him pose by this picnic table in a quasi-formal manner. It would have been fun to just do a surf shot, or a pool shot...but, hey. Baby steps. I'm on board for this progression!


Finally, did you all see this snap of William with his three kids at polo? Super sweet. Louis is such a serious little dude, just like George was at his age. 


Later this week I will be posting my thoughts on Meghan's reworked engagement ring, so keep an eye out for that post! It is already written, I just have to hit publish. Happy Birthday, George! 

Polo + Wimbledon = Better Balance Between the Duchesses of Cambridge & Sussex

Saturday, July 13, 2019


Between polo on Wednesday and today's Wimbledon outing, we have gotten a more authentic look at these two princesses more balanced and authentic rapport. When Meghan joined the family, there was a fan-created expectation that the two women would be besties. In my opinion, that seemed unlikely based purely on their interests and personalities, and I felt we saw that unlikelihood ripen to reality even before Meghan and Harry tied the knot. I don't see a real desire on the part of the royals to push Meghan and Kate together anymore. They tried that tack in the first few months, and it is my opinion that it backfired rather badly. I already mentioned how uncomfortable last year's Wimbledon appearance was, and the Christmas display of happy unity was, in hindsight, a little embarrassing. What we saw from these two events is a far more realistic relationship, and more authentic, which is good for the public and good for the ladies themselves. Let's look at polo first, and then chat about Wimbledon. 

On Wednesday, William and Harry competed in the King Power Polo Challenge. Some of you missed this bulletin, but the two princes announced last year that moving forward they would play less polo, but the polo they did play would be for big money. This is a disappointing development for fans, but not shocking. It makes sense that they'll scale back on polo as the years roll on. The result, though, is that the polo they do play is an even bigger treat for us all, and a bigger family event for them, too. 


Polo is a quasi-public/private event. Obviously Harry and William are playing for charity, but their families show up or don't at their pleasure. Sometimes Kate comes, sometimes she doesn't show. Given how infrequently William plays now, I knew that both Kate and Meghan would be there and that they'd bring their children. I do think in the last few years that polo changed from a family event where the royals knew they would be photographed, to more of public engagement vibe--or at least a bit of a photoshoot thing. That's not a criticism, it is just a function of where the family is right now with the current media mood. Nevertheless, it remains a private event, and so we see a more natural and relaxed side, even if they look a little more dressed for the press. 

One thing that was clear from polo is that while Meghan and Kate are friendly, they are not chummy. There were photos of the two women interacting--they did talk to each other, and smile and laugh together--everything seemed perfectly calm and friendly, but they obviously are not close. Meghan stood the majority of the match, and she was just slightly off to the side--just a little apart with Archie. More than a few pointed out the contrast between Meghan and Kate at this match and Kate and, say Zara, or Kate and Autumn Philips at other horsey events.  


I have said it once, I will repeat: they just aren't great friends.  Meghan has not fit into the royal family seamlessly, which is not surprising. It wouldn't have been seamless in the best of circumstances. She is a foreigner married into not just a foreign family, but a royal family. I suspect the culture shock, and the culture clash, is greater than any of us have really imagined. That is a universal culture issue that any foreign woman would face. With Meghan in particular, there are the  bumps along that way that we have already discussed, which are in addition to that base culture clash. So, the body language at polo was not out of left field, it was to be expected. This isn't to say she isn't welcome, but it takes time for people from different cultures to assimilate among themselves. 

A quick note about Archie's presence. Many were surprised to see Meghan bring Archie. Kate never brought her little ones when they were that young, but again, this really is a family thing, and if Meghan wanted to bring her baby, more power to her. In years past, we would have been thrilled to see any of Kate's little ones, had she decided to bring them along. Plus, given Meghan isn't all that warm and fuzzy with her in-laws, it was nice for her to have her own little man with her to cheer on Harry. 


It was announced at the end of the week that Meghan and Kate would attend Wimbledon together to watch the Women's Singles championship. Serena Williams was competing, and as you all know, Serena is a good friend of Meghan's, so it was natural that she would attend. Kate is the royal patron, so it was not only natural, but perhaps obligatory, for her to attend. After the decidedly unsuccessful debut of these two at Wimbledon last year, the Palace did not try to shoe-horn the two into a similar situation. 

As patron, Kate arrived early enough to greet her hosts and meet some junior players. To everyone's delight, she brought her sister Pippa, who has not attended with Kate since 2012. In usual Middleton mode, though, Pippa was still as discreet as ever. After getting out of the car, she disappeared into a side door, while Kate said hello to the Chairman of the AETLC and his wife Gill Brook (the woman in blue) and headed off to do some official meeting and greeting. There is lunch in the private club room before a match (it's described in the tennis special Kate appeared in), so that is where Pippa slipped off to, and where Kate joined her before the match. 

Meghan arrived just ten minutes before the start of play, and the three women made their way to their seats in order of precedence--Kate, Meghan, and Pippa. I frankly think that a sister-date to Wimbledon was long overdue, but it was also a very strategic move to bring Pippa. She made the party of two a party of three and immediately diffused some of the pressure to maintain conversation or smiling faces. Together, they were a more relaxed and jolly party, with Meghan able to turn to either lady. They all seemed to interact with a little more ease, and it looked like a lovely day.


After the match, Meghan left, and only Kate met the champion backstage to congratulate her, before rejoining Pippa in the Royal Box for the Men's Doubles finals.  All in all, an interesting week, which revealed a more natural rapport between Meghan and Kate, even if they aren't in fact besties. 

I'll just say briefly on the fashion--Kate repeated her D&G from Canada today. I loved it on the first wear and still love it today. That color is stunning on her, and the silhouette of this dress is just fabulous. I am a big fan of those oak leaf earrings she was wearing from Asprey London, as well as that D&G Sicily bag she was carrying. Pippa's more ruffled look was a win for me, too. Her dress was Anna Mason London and she wore wedges from Penelope Chilvers. Meghan went with Hugo Boss today. It wasn't my favorite look from her, but I did like the Wimbledon White and she looked lovely and glowing. 


Kate was wearing L.K. Bennett for polo, with a Mulberry belt and bag, and wearing her Catherine Zoraida Fern hoops and Castener wedges. That pink on her is fabulous. We haven't seen Kate in an LK Bennett midi in while (can you believe I just said that?), so it was interesting to see that the dress is now a polo choice. It was a great breezy piece for the field, and as I say, fabulous color on her and fabulous color for pictures against the green of the grass. Meghan was wearing an olive dress from Lisa Marie Fernandez. Olive definitely is one of her preferred colors (remember Louis's christening?), and although it isn't my preferred color, it looks great on her. I don't like the baggy look, but she looked very comfortable and chic. One of my absolute favorite bloggers, Being Bridget, loves tent-style dresses. I follow her religiously on Instagram, and doing so has definitely exposed me to so many ensembles with this silhouette. So again, while not my preference, wear what you love, or in Meghan's case, what felt comfortable for a day under the scrutiny of a long lens. 

Over and out kids. Kate and William will be at Wimbledon tomorrow!  See you soon...