Sep 122012

Kate made two more changes of clothing today, changing out of her McQueen suit into separates by Singapore’s Raoul.

James Whatling/Splash News

After this morning’s activities the Duke and Duchess visited Queenstown, the first government housing estate built in Singapore, it is named after Her Majesty.

Rebecca English/The Daily Mail Twitter

Kate again acknowledged the Jubilee Tour host country by wearing a brand based in Singapore.

Rebecca English/The Daily Mail Twitter

Raoul is a label we predicted/hoped Kate would wear, it embodies so many design elements she favors: clean, classic lines, minimal “frou-frou” or distractions, timeless styles. Kate wore pieces made exclusively for Matches Fashion, the silk “Tara” top and matching skirt.

Raoul Exclusively at Matches.Fashion

The top sold for $221, it is described this way:

“a red and black cube heart print is reminiscent of vintage 70s styling…”

The skirt was $300, here is that description:

“…ivory silk print pleated skirt by Raoul puts a retro-cool slant on ladylike new-season dressing. This ivory silk knee-length pleated skirt has a mid-rise, a red and black cube print and a black waistband with a hidden side zip fastening.

Raoul at

As one would expect, both pieces are now sold out and unavailable.

The brand is a good one for Kate, this is a simple, refined look that worked well for the afternoon events. More about the label from Refinery 29‘s story “Singaporean Label Raoul is About To Take Over The World“:

Singaporean label RAOUL might not be a household name just yet, but it definitely deserves to be. Nearly 10 years old, RAOUL is the beautiful child of Douglas and Odile Benjamin, and grew from a menswear shirting company to two full ready-to-wear labels for men and women.

With a bit more information about the afternoon’s events, the Daily Mail:

And, as the pair made their way through an upmarket housing estate in Queenstown, a thousand camera phones emerged from handbags and pockets to capture the historic moment.

Despite it being a steamy 36 degrees, both Kate and William looked unflustered as they shook hands and posed for pictures with the crowd who were waving Union flags and carrying ‘Kate is great’ banners.

Rebecca English, whose story we quote from above, shared this picture of Kate meeting a young admirer.

Rebecca English/The Daily Mail Twitter

Kate and William seemed to be in their element, enjoying their duties despite the heat, described as “searing” by several UK journalists.

Rebecca English/The Daily Mail Twitter

Another photo by Rebecca English.

Rebecca English/The Daily Mail Twitter Feed

Kate brought back her trusty LK Bennett Sledges, and reprised the Annoushka pearl drop earrings.

Splash News

Kate and William proceeded to their next engagement, a visit to Rainbow Center, a school and community center for children with special needs. The Center is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year, students were eager to see the Duke and Duchess.

xinmsn News Twitter Feed

Kate took part in an art class with children, while William did physical educational activities with the kids.

UK in Singapore Facebook

We leave this segment of the day’s coverage a lovely photo by Emma Branch.

Emma Branch Twitter (@EmmaBranch)


Kate and William returned to their hotel before heading out for tonight’s reception at Eden Hall, the British High Commissioner’s residence.  Kate changed again, this time donning Erdem, a modified version of a piece from the designer’s spring collection.

James Whatling/Corbis

Tonight’s event included prominent Singaporeans, as well as members of the British and international expatriate communities. Kate has demonstrated her fondness for Erdem, wearing two dresses by the designer on last year’s Royal Tour of North America. Below, the Cecile.

Canadian Heritage/Erdem

And the Jacquinta from that Tour.

Candian Heritage/Erdem/Canadian Heritage

Kate also wore bespoke Erdem for this year’s Trooping the Colour ceremonies.

James Whatling / Splash

There were several Team Singapore Paralympians just back from London at the gala, below we see Prince William greeting Laurentia Tan, a Paralympic equestrienne.

UK in Singapore Twitter

Richard Palmer of the Daily Express shared details on Twitter about the dress, as provided by St. James’s Palace:

“… chiffon Erdem outift as blue and white with red detail, Oriental styling… a pleated skirt, exposed back and loose-fitting sleeves. She is also wearing four-inch beige (does he mean nude?) heels.”

It is an altered version of a piece from the spring/summer 2012 collection.

Splash News/Erdem

The bodice is lined, and sheer, flyaway sleeves have been added in deference to local custom and protocol.

Ian Vogler/Daily Mirror/WPA-Rota/Press Association Images

Kate accessorized with a pair of suede heels, the LK Bennett Harper in light taupe.

LK Bennett ‘Harper’ Shoe

The shoe has a concealed platform, its heel height is almost 4-1/2″, it retails at £195, about $315 at today’s exchange rates.

The Duchess also carried a grey clutch we’ve not previously seen.

James Whatling/Splash News

And we saw a new pair of earrings as well, My Small Obsessions thinks they are a different version of these Kiki McDonough gemstone and Diamond Earrings , I tend to agree with her.

Kiki McDonough/Press Association

All three of today’s looks were excellent, I enjoy seeing Kate wearing local designers along with safer, more familiar labels. Hopefully we’ll see more new names, possibilities in Malaysia include Zang Toi, my friend Wendy Brandes introduced me to his work years ago, or perhaps we’ll see something by Bernard Chandran.

Here is a look ahead at tomorrow’s schedule (tonight’s actually, it is already the 13th in Singapore.)

  • 9:30AM (9:30PM EDT): The day begins with a visit to Kranji Commonwealth War Cemetery, there is a wreath laying at the War Memorial in the Cemetery and the couple will meet veterans and active military from Singapore, Britain, Australia and New Zealand armed forces
  • William and Kate leave Singapore, boarding a scheduled flight to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, where they will be met at the International airport
  • The pair’s first engagement is a lunch hosted by the Prime Minister Dato Sri Najib Tun Razak at Seri Perdanaat, his official residence. The lunch will include a musical performance by young people
  • Following lunch Kate and William visit Hospis Malaysia, this is where the Duchess will give a short speech to patients and staff, ‘drawing on her own growing experience of the hospice movement in the United Kingdom.’
  • Thursday evening the Duke & Duchess attend an official dinner given by His Majesty The Agong at his official residence, the Istana Negara


  51 Responses to “It’s Singapore’s Raoul For Kate’s Afternoon & Erdem For Evening Reception”

  1. Jimmy Choo is a Malaysian, not a Singaporean!

  2. I absolutely love these pieces! They are so different, yet so similar (if that makes sense haha). I am really surprised she hasn’t pulled her hair back considering the heat, then again, I have long hair myself and often if you are in extreme heat with humidity you can tell even more with your hair up. I am sure Kate did not want tons of pictures of her with a sweaty neck and wet curly hair around her face. It’s strange seeing her dresses with such long hemlines, but I am sure that is due to the local custom of dress. Again, I think she really did a great job with her choices, especially with the first outfit being a local designer :) (Its nice to see a different pair of Sledges)

  3. I wish that she would wear her hair up more often. I’m sick of seeing those fat sausage curls hanging in her face all the time. She’s 30 years old and in an official position now, they need to make her look more sophisticated and put it up more. Plus it’s boiling hot there and I can’t imagine that she’s comfortable with all the hair.

  4. Two solid choices here. Someone mentioned that her style seems rather drab and bland, not exciting or daring enough. I think people really need to consider first of all that she never dressed excessively daring BEFORE she became the wife of the heir to the heir to the throne. Her style was and is of the upper-class young woman of great wealth, conservative, classy and understated. Now that she’s married into the royal family and is a member of the “inner circle,” that style is expected to be even more conservative. These two ensembles are among the best, so far, of the trip in my opinion. It would be interesting to know if she is using or does have a stylist (I remember reports that Princess Diana received wardrobe advice from British Vogue early on in her marriage) now. I can’t put my finger on it but there’s something about so many of her outfits these days that seems to be the work of a stylist. It just seemed like she did better with the outfits before the marriage and in the early days of the marriage. The clothes she wore on the Canada/US trip were outstanding.

  5. I love these gowns on the Duchess – they are so lovely and light. I would like to see them attend more functions in support of the elderly – I often think they are a neglected demographic with unmet needs. The attention from a young Royal couple could be very helpful.

  6. I would love to see her wearing Zang Toi!

  7. I thought William’s blue suit really set off Kate’s Erdem. I love Erdem generally but confess to liking the original design of the dress with no sleeves and the nude lining better than Kate’s version, although I appreciate the changes were necessary for Kate. the Raoul heart print was cute and appropriate for a visit involving children.

    • Agreed. Kate’s version is much less interesting and just a tad matronly, BUT entirely appropriate. Which is the point, I suppose! She looks lovely as always.

  8. She needs to ditch her new hair stylest and try again! I miss James Pryce! Although I’m sure the humidity isn’t helping…

    • I agree! I can’t believe she’s not wearing her hair up, given the heat and humidity!!

      • I’ve kind of felt the same way, but in an earlier post I was saying how sometimes having your hair up in such a humid environment can actually look worse. It shows a sweaty neck and you end up with extra hairs dripping with sweat on the back of your head and sometimes around your face. That’s the only reason I can think that she hasn’t worn it up because she must be sweltering!!

  9. I’m really loving her tour choices so far (shoes this morning notwithstanding)! These light, floaty looks (love the shot of the Erdem with the hem floating in the wind) are a perfect foil to the heavier coatdresses that she was wearing to the the Trooping, ect earlier in the year. And as someone who is learning to love prints in my own wardrobe, I’m really enjoying seeing such a variety of prints and fabrics in familiar, figure flattering silhouettes. I like both pairs of LK Bennetts from today too, though similar enough that either one likely would have worked with either outfit (likely the 2nd). And her hair returns to its usual loveliness for the indoor evening event. Still rooting for a tiara and gown tomorrow night, though!

  10. I’m curious about what Kate’s critics want her to wear. If she wears solid colors she’s criticized and with these prints, she’s still criticized. What brands would be acceptable?

  11. how biased am I ?! I now know I think the Duchess looks absolutely lovely EVEN IF I don’t like her dresses–

    I agree with the general feeling that all of them are floaty, feminine, well-fit, certainly temperature-appropriate.. but they leave me blah- bland? neutral.

    however.. I predict the young Kate is pregnant (in these pictures). I don’t remember her chest being this size in either her wedding dress or the famed Canada tour dresses.. and, for me, that was the first, telltale sign- long before the tummy.

    and in that case.. the floaty, feminine fabrics and almost exaggerated A-lines will make alotta sense!

    • I agree- she doesn’t seem to have a “bump”, but her body language (her hands constantly in front of her stomach” and the flowy fabrics lead me to believe an announcement could be coming soon!

  12. Well, these outfits are pretty, floaty, feminine — and unexciting. There’s nothing specifically wrong with them; I simply think they’re rather boring.

    Of course, I’ve never been a big fan of Erdem’s fussy prints. I do like the small geometric print on the Raoul dress but think the design as a whole would have worked much better if entirely sleeveless. There’s something awkward and unattractive about the way those sleeves are set into the top and the way they drape.

    Don’t mistake me: I think she’s dressing quite appropriately for the location, situations, and climate. Pretty, floaty, and feminine are just what the trip has called for so far, and she does need to be careful about not offending local sensibilities, so these conservative choices can’t be faulted on most grounds. They are simply not very interesting in my opinion. My favorite dress so far, then, has to be the Gurung, for the Baroque edginess of its print and its sleek silhouette.

    There are the pale-taupe shoes I wished she’d worn with the pink Packham dress at the Botanic Gardens. I still think they would have worked better than the off-white LK Bennett shoes.

  13. So this will be my last comment on this site because it really pains me to write this.. but I really did not like anything she has worn so far on this tour. I find her style to be non-existent, her clothes to be drab, cut strangely, lacking in sophistication when she wears them, and frankly I am puzzled as to why people think she dresses well. Her hair and her choice in shoes reflect what I think is her very vanilla palate – it is hard to believe that she ever studied art because I find her to have no flair for fashion whatsoever. Her clothes display a lack of personality and character – they are safe, boring and just.. dull.
    Clearly I am in a very small minority, and it probably reflects on myself rather than anything else. But it is what it is, and since this is a fan-site, it’s obviously inappropriate for me to come and say the same things about why I don’t like her clothes.
    In any case I think that I will go back to following CP Mary’s fashion, which I find way more exciting and having greater personality. Ciao people.

    • I’m sorry to hear you’re going as I think it’s good to get all sides of the argument on the site. I can quite see you might be ploughing a lonely furrow, though, and British royalty is probably no place to be looking out for fashion-forward. One thing I’ve always like about WKW is that all the comments, negative or positive, are laid out in a reasonably civilised fashion. The worst is when message boards descend to personal insults, both to the wearer of the clothes and to others taking part. WKW seems mercifully free of most of that. See you around, maybe?

  14. I am not so fussy about her first outfit but I love her erdem dress and her fuller beautiful/healthier figure.

  15. Loved both outfits. I found the Raoul so effortlessly summer-in-the-city chic and looked so-oo comfortable to wear. I was fascinated by the sleeves, I couldn’t quite see how they worked. It was clear she had some sound linings in place — especially when the wind puffed up her full skirt — but I wondered if the sleeves might not give an alarming peep show about the underneath in general. A fine piece of tailoring if it preserved her modesty throughout.

    And the evening ensemble was pure princess, so floaty and gorgeous — the last royal to use these fabrics with floral patterns was surely the dear old Queen Mum herself. I’m geting a lot of retro twinges from Kate’s outfits — the broderie anglaise used to be an economical standby for former dressmakers among us, and now here it is served up as designer. I really love seeing a new generation getting a whole new take on these things.

    The cut of the Erdem is so flattering to Kate, and the wonderful concertina pleats guarantee beautiful movement from the fabric. And her glorious locks have regained thier sheen –personally I can stand a little frizz during the day, it can hardly be helped under these conditions and I can’t see an updo would fare much better.

    The Duchess looks wonderful, and given the pressure of their schedule I can’t believe the royal couple are still speaking to each other, much less still hugely enjoying each other’s company!

    Thanks so much for all your work putting this latest together — there must be plenty pressure at your end too!

  16. I just have to comment that I feel sorry for William and the other men wearing suits in the heat and humidity! Poor guys, they have it far worse than the women. Ugh. But no question, William has looked terrific throughout the trip.

  17. I don’t usually notice men’s fashion much, but I have to commend William’s impeccable styling at the Eden House reception (especially in that first photo of him and Kate holding the glasses).

  18. I like both dresses, though I really hate platform shoes, even when the platform is concealed. These 2 pairs by LK Bennett are less ridiculous than others, but I can’t wait for the trend to die. (Manolo Blahnik hates them and hasn’t released anything with a platform. His opinion is good enough for me, even if I can’t afford his stuff! And I say this a a 5-foot, 0-inches tall person.)

    Also, re: the question in the quote ‘does he mean nude?’ – this drives me crazy. Would those same shoes be considered ‘nude on say’, Naomi Campbell? Of course not. They ARE beige.

    • I totally agree with your comment regarding the recent adoption of the term ‘nude’ to describe the colour of shoes, and also pantyhose.

    • I’m not a huge fan of platforms except to say that they add height and they are more comfortable to walk in than non-platform stilettos since the platform raises the footbed a little to meet the heel height, your foot isn’t sitting at that impossible and uncomfortable angle as it is with just regular stiletto or very high non-platform heels.

    • There are “nude” pumps made in different shades now. I have a pair that’s almost taupe for when I am tan and I still call them nude…Oh well.

  19. I am LOVING these prints! It’s a nice refreshing change of pace, especially after the solid colors she wore during the Games.

    I absolutely need to know the back story behind the photo above, where she’s signing that book. Who is she looking at? What’s this look supposed to say? Very intriguing.

  20. Adore both of these looks!

  21. As much as I love seeing her in new dresses I don’t get the point to wear three dress in one day with the same function… I mean it’s ok to change if you go to hiking and then to the opera but it wasn’t like that for Kate.

    • Two words: Hot, and Humid.

    • Apart from anything else, it’s awful hot out there and I can imagine a fresh outfit sticking like glue to the skin after only a few minutes. A mere three changes seems quite economical to me!!

      • And another thing…how come they stayed out so long in such heat with wearing a hat, or am I showing my inner Old Maid here? Seems a sound enough reason for downing quarts of water later, rather than imminent arrival of addition to family.

        • Haha, great point about the water, ElizaMo! And now that you mention it, I also am intrigued by the fact that she isn’t wearing a hat in her walkabouts. I honestly don’t know how she manages to stand the sun sans hat or sunglasses… and she isn’t squinting in a single photograph!

          She is super-human, I tell you. Do not be fooled into thinking she is human by the slightly frizzy hair ;)

  22. I am so hoping for a tiara at tomorrow nights official dinner. I would so love to see the back of the Erdem dress. I have read in several places that it has a cut out back.

    • There will be no Tiara on Catherine untill she becomes princess of Wales or even queen. Diana was wearing the Spencer tiara of her own family most of the time. I theory, she is only a duchess despite her fame and her future.

  23. Hope she breaks out the sparkles tomorrow night – aka a TIARA!! =)

    Love her day time heart printed ensemble, really adorable!

    • Do you think a tiara likely? I’ve wondered about this prediction from the start — none of these places look to me to be quite in the league of,say, a Buckingham Palace, or even a White House, where much grander outfits would be the order of the day.

  24. Both looks are lovely for a hot 37 degree day – especially love that she has moved into prints. The Duke and Duchess are doing a great job in Singapore.

  25. Scratch my last response please. I just saw the patterned dress was indeed from this brand. LOL

  26. Kate definitely has intended to play up a lot with prints during this trip. This is very refreshing to see.

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