Apr 252012

Kate chose UK designer Matthew Williamson for the London premiere of African Cats.

Weir Photos/Splash News

It was another soggy day in London, definitely umbrella weather.

Disney Movies UK Twitter Feed (@DisneyMoviesUK)

The event was a fundraiser for the Tusk Trust, the film is a documentary about lions and cheetahs on the African savannah, focusing on the Masai Mara nature reserve in Kenya.

The dress is from Mr. Williamson’s pre-fall 2012 collection, it features ornate beading, an exposed zipper in the back and that peplum detailing Kate is so fond of.

Splash News/Matthew Williamson Courtesy Photo

As you can see from the photos, additional beading at the neck was added to Kate’s frock. I concur with the suggestion made by Kate Middleton Style blog that the embellishment is a nod to the film’s theme and location.

Press Association

Mr. Williamson’s label is now 15 years old, he is a graduate of the renowned Central Saint Martins school, and is also known for his line of bridal gowns and accessories.

Matthew Williamson via FabSugar

He is also engaged in charity work, below we see him mentoring a child at the Kid’s Company, an organization helping impoverished children in London.

Matthew Williamson

The designer launched a more moderately priced collection last year, MW Matthew Williamson.

MW Matthew Williamson via Mama’s a Rolling Stone

And he also has a collection at UK retailer Debenhams, Butterfly by Matthew Williamson.

Debenhams via Trafford Centre UK

The Debenhams’ line includes jewelry.

Butterfly by Matthew Williamson Debenhams

Kate’s jewelry today included her engagement ring and a new pair of Kiki McDonough earrings, the ‘Kiki Classic’ Blue Topaz and Diamond Earrings.

Press Association/Kiki McDonough

The earrings are “runaway best sellers”, they are priced at £1200, about $1940 at today’s exchange rates. Our thanks to My Small Obsessions for identifying these sparklers.

Splash News Online

The dark grey shoes and bag are by Emmy Shoes, many thanks to WKW FB friend Elizabeth for spotting this and Anna for her assistance as well!  Kate’s shoes and bag are very similar to these shown on the Emmy Shoes blog if they were done in grey.

Emmy Shoes Blog

Most recently we saw Kate wearing Emmys on St. Patrick’s Day.

Others attending the benefit included Jacqui Ainsley and Guy Ritchie.

Disney Movies UK Twitter Feed (@DisneyMoviesUK)

Kate and William met with Tusk Trust supporters and others at the function.

Paul Harrison, Sky News Twitter Feed (@SkyNewsRoyal)

More than 100 children were on hand from charities Kate and William support, you can see more in The Telegraph’s video about the event, click here.

The London Telegraph

The BBC’s story may be seen here.


I liked the dress and accessories, they seemed appropriate to the occasion, although the beading looked very heavy. Mr. Williams has a deft hand with color, cut and embellishment, we have long hoped the Duchess would wear his designs.

Press Association


Kate fans will be pleased with the enormous number of anniversary-themed publications being released around the couple’s one year anniversary. The Telegraph is devoting eight pages to the couple on Saturday, and Sunday’s paper will have a special supplement, Kate One Year On: The Making of a Fashion Icon.

The London Telegraph

More on the glossy insert from the paper:

“The booklet includes features on Kate’s high street style and the impact she has on the industry, as well as showcasing the best of her designer outfits, including of course that Alexander McQueen wedding dress.”

Here is a look at an interior spread.

The London Telegraph

OK! offers an ‘Anniversary Special,‘ including a free DVD; Hello! has also published a ‘Special Collector’s Edition,‘ while Majesty has the couple on its cover and carries additional anniversary coverage.

OK! / Hello!/ Majesty


We have a quick update to the royal calendar, in addition to William and Kate’s appearances tomorrow (receptions honoring the Scott-Amundsen Centenary Race to the South Pole, and another at the Imperial War Museum), the couple will be attending the Badminton Horse Trials on Monday, May 7. Here is more on that function from the UK Press Association’s story:

Zara Phillips will be cheered on by the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge as she tries to earn an Olympic place at the Badminton Horse Trials.

The royals will watch the showjumping on May 7, the last element of the trials held in Gloucestershire, which include a dressage element and a gruelling cross-country course.

Competitors will receive their prizes from William and Kate, who are expected to be rooting for the duke’s cousin Ms Phillips, a former equestrian world champion.

Images from last year’s events.

Via Mitsubishi Badminton Horse Trials

Here you see work being done last month on the course, prepping for the upcoming Trials.

Badminton Horse Trials Facebook

That seating for spectators? Not so fast.

Badminton Horse Trials Facebook

You can learn more at the Mitsubishi Motors Badminton Horse trials site, or the group’s Facebook page.

Other dates on the calendar you can pencil in:

  • Saturday, June 2, Epsom Derby: The annual event takes on special significance this year, the Queen has reportedly said she would like a full house for the event
  • Sunday, June 3, Thames Diamond Jubilee Pageant on June 3: while there has not yet been a formal announcement of William and Kate’s participation in this function, I would be surprised if they are not in attendance.
  • Monday, June 4, Diamond Jubilee Concert: Again, no formal announcement, but I am sure we will see the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge at some point in the day.
  • Tuesday, June 5, Diamond Jubilee Events: Her Majesty, Prince Philip and all of the royals are expected for the National Service of Thanksgiving at St. Paul’s, official luncheon, carriage procession and balcony appearance for a flyover on the 5th.
  • Saturday, June 16: Trooping the Colour (thank you to WKW Facebook friend Trisha for reminding me about this function)
  • Thursday, July 26: Olympic Flame at Buckingham Palace. Kate, William, and Harry will watch three torchbearers carry the torch through the Palace grounds. The Olympic Games officially launch the next day, I imagine we’ll also see the couple at other Olympic events, probably those Opening Ceremonies as well as the Closing Ceremonies.


Finally today, InStyle has a fun poll on Kate’s best looks from the last year.


InStyle asked four Kate style bloggers to submit their choice of Kate’s best look during the last year, we are ever-so-flattered to be included with our friends Carly from Kate Middleton Style Blog, Sarah of Kate’s Wardrobe and Charlotte from HRH Duchess Kate.


Our thanks to Sharon for putting together such a fun piece, click here to see the styles and cast your vote.

  39 Responses to “Kate in Matthew Williamson for Tusk Trust Benefit”

  1. I think she looks great here! I don’t think we will ever see the Duchess in allover bright, flashy colurs- it just isn’t her style so I think this has the best of both worlds. Love the beading and the brighter makeup
    My only complaint is the bag and shoes- the black dulls the dress. Nude or grey would have worked better imo

  2. I think this should become one of her iconic looks, she looks absolutely gorgeous!

  3. Kate’s continuing to play it safe, I see. A lovely princessy dress. The additional bead trim at the neck is a nice touch to make the dress a bit more evening/glam and it underscores, perhaps a bit obviously, the theme of the evening. Well done, Kate, and all that, but I do wish for something a little less predictable.

    Onto particulars, I’ve never been a huge fan of this shade of grey, perhaps because I cannot wear it, but it suits Kate. The more modern take on a peplum and the exposed larger zipper keeps the look from being too old. I do love Kate’s new earrings. I think it is wise for her to go with semi-precious stones: they are younger than fresher than precious gems but still regal and “real”.

    Now, perhaps it wear the waist line falls, but Kate does strike me as just a little thicker through the waist…

    • I agree, its really safe. I know she can’t go too overboard, but I was also hoping for a bit more variety in shoes and bags. I feel like its always the same nowadays… perhaps there are people above her telling her to play it safe? The dress is nice though, something about it makes her look like more of a normal weight rather than super thin…

  4. I know this is a board about Kate’s clothes, not her husband. But, the prince looks hot! I think he has grown some hair.

  5. Again in gray? Kate is so fresh and young, so why does she chose these dark colours. Gray does not suit her at all. It makes her look a bit old. She used to dress in such great colours. I don’t get it! Is it beacuase of the Queen and Jubilee, that she has to let the Queen be the main character? I am a bit disappointed of her, I would have expected to see her more glamorous!

  6. Dull dress. Ornamentation was out of keeping with the dress too. I feel bored by this one :(

  7. I love the dress, especially in its original styling as by the designer, with just the beaded cuffs. I like this peplum shape on Kate enormously, having very slim hips means she’s the one person on the planet who can get away with wearing it on a regular basis.

    I think the beading is gorgeous, and a handy reference to African theme, but for myself I think it’s too much to repeat the whole embellishment at the neck — I agree it looks too heavy for the dress fabric. I can see it makes sense to do something at the neckline as a way of dressing the outfit up for evening, and the colours frame her face wonderfully, but I think I’d have liked something more modest at neckline or cuffs, like maybe just a single row of the beading.

    No matter, she still looks gorgeous, love those earrings, likewise shoes and bag.

  8. I love the dress but I think some of her curls look a little limp of course the weather doesn’t help. Glad to know even Kate has bad hair days sometimes. I also think she’s got a little cat eye going on with the eyeliner…looks so good

  9. I really like this dress for the occasion, the beading really brings out her eyes. : )

    I realized this past week that I’ll be in London for the Diamond Jubilee festivities, can’t wait!

  10. This dress is so pretty I love the colour, its a also very similar style to the LK bennet outfit she wore with the queen :D

  11. Kate looks Radiant, she has a especial glow about her (!?). Excellent choice of dress, spot-on for the occassion. I like the ornate beading very much, especially on the neck – it makes her look regal but not overdone/showy. Great colour on her. Amazing make-up…. Just fab!!

  12. I think the embellishments really saved this dress. By itself (or with other jewelry), I think it would have looked horribly boring on her. But she pulls it off! I can’t say I like the shoes with the outfit, but whatever. She looks lovely as always. There are a lot of public appearances coming up for her and I’m sure she’ll bring out some really good stuff for us!

    • Totally agree, I’m underwhelmed as well. Why can’t Kate ever wear her hair up? As Laura said, the only interesting part of her dress today was the beaded neckline, and I think that could have been showcased even more if she had worn a chic chignon. And honestly, I’m getting a little tired of the grey. Hopefully we will see more colors/styles soon. For how expensive this dress is, I don’t think it really has any “wow” factor.

      • I agree! It s a dull dress, and I don’t know why. She really glammed it up for the War Horse movie, so why not go to a similar appearance for this outing?

  13. Had hoped for something more red-carpet, but like the dress. Great color on her.

    The model in the up-close picture looks AWFUL. Why would any designer want their clothing to be modeled by somebody who looks like she hasn’t brushed her hair in a week and looks completely miserable? I just don’t get it…

    • Hi MJ, I want to thank you for saying I look “AWFUL”. I was very excited to come on this site as a friend of mine told me that Kate had worn the look I was asked to model for MW Pre-fall 2012I thought I looked fine, and fit in with the look that MW was trying to achieve, but I was obviously mistaken, and I’m glad you pointed it out. I should have realized that my hair needs to be fakely glossy and thick and my makeup needs to be caked on my overly tanned skin for me to look good. I’ll keep this in mind from now on. Clearly pale skin and natural hair isn’t good enough. Oh, and clearly I need anti-depressants since your professional opinion is that I “look completely miserable”. Such kind words. I will get right on that. Glad to see that more than half of your comment is not about Kate but about how awful I look.

      • This was really unnecessary. If you really are a model, you must realize that people are going to comment on professional mannequins, and that tastes in looks, hairstyles, and so forth are different. As someone who used to model back in the dark ages, I’ve always known that. Models must expect to have their appearances dissected; it’s part of the profession. I really don’t think posting such a snarky comment here was appropriate.

    • I agree 100%.

    • I believe it is unfair to attack the model for the particular look she showed at that particular shoot. Blame the art director and designer. The model does what is required by the shoot coordinators. They are often at the mercy of the “creative” whims of someone else during the runway show or photo shoot. Plus, is it really the point of this site to attack fashion models?

      • I didn’t understand why MJ was talking about the model in the first place. Isn’t this a site about Kate fashion, not talking about random models? It was unnecessary to bring that up, and I’m not surprised the model reacted like that (if that really was her). Maybe not the most mature post, but I would probably be hurt too if someone was writing about me in that way, calling me “awful” or “completely miserable”. I think we should just keep it to discussions about Kate’s fashion from now on.

    • I think the idea behind the art direction on this was to juxtapose the ladylike lines to of the clothes with a youthful, undone, uncontrived look, picking up on the juxtaposiion between the style of the dress and the tribal inspired beating. MW’s stuff kind of mashes the tribal with the lady like and think that’s what’s going on with the natural, undone look of the model–something perhaps not that obvious when you see only one design and one model, so I appreciate why that may be clear from this one photo from the collection.

  14. I don’t care for the peridot and blue topaz stones paired together in her earrings, but they do emulate the color of the beading on the dress. Kate really does like gray, doesn’t she? So do I.

    • I agree, Kate seems to like gray a lot (lately)!? … Also white! … and blue! … and black! … and brown! … and pastels! … and all jewel colours!!! …and..!? … Let’s face it, she can wear them ALL, especially earthy colours & colours that go with her (hazel) eyes, and even the difficult ones: white, yellow, grey, teal & black!!!

    • In seeing other pictures of the dress it almost looks lavender. Any description as to what color it really is?

  15. Hmm. I have to say that I’m underwhelmed by this dress. The beading is interesting, though not really to my taste, and I did like the zipper treatment on the back, but fundamentally, I find the outfit rather boring. It’s very “Duchess of Cambridge,” of course, and perhaps I’m just feeling a bit tired of her usual silhouettes and colors.

    I took a look at the designer’s fall collection and saw only a few pieces I really liked. He does beautifully cut jackets, I notice, but his fabrics and designs don’t excite me.

    On the other hand, I like that white coat in the Debenham’s line. I hope to buy a white, cream, or ivory coat this fall, and that’s very much what I have in mind.

    Poor Duchess. She’s got a lot of appearances coming up, a lot of outfits to plan. We all might think that sounds wonderful, but I imagine it becomes tedious and draining after a while. She knows how closely the press and public will be watching her, and she wants to find items that suit her tastes while also looking fresh. That’s not easy.

    Speaking of interesting zipper treatments, I just bought this green Karina dress from Reiss, because I feared it might appear on the Duchess herself, and I thought I’d better grab it before it became totally unavailable:


    • I should add: we are not actually seeing the back of the dress, with its long, sleek gold zipper here, but it can be seen on some other sites.

    • As usual, Lili you are always detailed and informative when it comes to comments.:)
      That green reiss dress, made me have a urge to zip it up for her…Anyone else?

      I love today’s gray dress but would even love it better without all that bling bling embellishment. :)

      As for Matthew Williamson, I have learned he is more famous for his interesting and unique prints than anything else. At least he used to be…not sure of today what he is doing. I so regreted not having bought a rainbow skirt from his line a few years back when I saw it at our local Nordstrom Rack.

      • I agree totally with Lili. I think the dress feels dated and a little too obvious a reference to African exoticism. Disappointing, though of course she nevertheless looks lovely.

  16. I really love her earrings here! And her makeup looks fabulous. Does anyone know where that picture on the covers of both Ok! and Hello! magazine is from?

  17. Loved the dress – the trim at the neck I think was one of the most beautiful aspects of the outfit. The peplum detail made it dressy but not too – just right for the occasion. It will be interesting to see what she wears for the next several outings.

    Thank you again for this site.

  18. she looks fantastic

  19. Her make up looks amazing!

    • I got a chance to look at another close-up picture on her makeup, and I actually changed my mind. I love the glittery black liners she wore! I am all for sparkles! :)

  20. Am I the first one to comment? LOL
    I love this dress, but not feeling the same about her makeup…something was too much.
    I have to speculate…is she or isn’t she? She definitely looks fuller around the waist! :)
    I spent some time today and browsed the entire site. Really appreciate all the hard work to put together all the information. It requires lots of diligence and resources. Keep it up! I will always support you and this site.

  21. The beading that Kate added to the neck is the best part of the dress!

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