Aug 112013
 

We begin with a few updates, the first involving Prince William’s return to work in Angelsey…. or not.

There were multiple reports last week that William returned to work at RAF Valley in Wales, while at least one other story claims William remained with Kate and her family in Bucklebury.  Regardless, there seemed to be general agreement that the Prince spent this weekend at a bachelor party in honor of his friend James Meade, who will marry Lady Laura Marsham September 14. It is expected both Kate and William will attend the wedding.

William and friends visited Saunton Sands Beach in Devon (in southwestern England), known for its favorable surfing conditions.

Saunton Sands Beach

Saunton Sands Beach

William is definitely expected back in Wales for his Wednesday appearance at The Anglesey Show.  More from the Daily Post:

Excitement is building after it was announced that the Duke of Cambridge will attend the Anglesey Show on August 14 to say a big thank you to the community before he departs the island after more than three years.

On his visit Prince William will be presented with a gift by show organisers, and will also meet young farmers.

The event, which is the largest two-day agricultural show in North Wales, will feature a collection of livestock of up to 300 cattle and 800 sheep. There will also be 350 trade stands featuring agricultural products, clothing, crafts and vehicles.

And there are expectations Kate will join him at some point before his tour of duty at RAF Valley ends in September. More from the Express:

However, a royal source has said that the mother and child will join Prince William at the farmhouse that the couple rent very soon.

The Express story notes that Kate, William and Prince George are expected to join the Queen in Scotland at some point during HM’s annual visit to Balmoral:

The family are due to holiday in Balmoral in the next few weeks, where Prince George will meet his great-grandad Prince Philip for the very first time.

In Bucklebury reaction to the Prince’s arrival remains positive. A store where Kate and her family have shopped, L. Interiors, is offering these in honor of the newest Royal.

L. Interiors Twitter

L. Interiors Twitter

And Bucklebury Parish is offering a mug in honor of Prince George, this one created by Emma Bridgewater.

Bucklebury Parish

Bucklebury Parish

Our thanks to Bucklebury Farm Park for the tip on this item. The mug is also available for pre-ordering at Emma Bridgewater.

Emma Bridgewater UK

Emma Bridgewater UK

The company has also created Prince George Crown in the same motif.

Emma Bridgewater

Emma Bridgewater

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Next, the Banana Republic Issa collaboration, the collection launched online and in-store last week.

Banana Republic

Banana Republic

For many the most anticipated piece in the collection was the blue wrap dress modeled after Kate’s engagement dress. Unfortunately there was a bit of a hiccup, the dress color was mislabeled.

Banana Republic Facebook

Banana Republic Facebook

Above, a Banana Republic Facebook post about the dilemma. Below, the graphic accompanying that post.

Banana Republic Facebook

Banana Republic Facebook

The good folks at Racked put an image from the Lookbook next to the product listing on BR’s site, where the color was originally listed as “tulum turquoise”.

Racked.com

Racked.com

You can understand the confusion; comments on the company’s Facebook page reflected customers’ consternation, here is a small sampling:

  • “…just purchased the “blue” color at the downtown Seattle store this evening, but it looks nothing like the color in this picture. The actual color is more turquoise. I still love the style but would definitely prefer the dress in a true “Royal Blue!”"
  • “My store told me they got the turquoise but did not get the royal blue. Only select stores did.”
  • “The dark royal blue dress does exist! I purchased it at the San Francisco flagship store!”
  • “It’s quite lovely but it’s not the same or even similar to Kate’s engagement dress – not in design or in tailoring and not even in color, it’s really not “Royal blue| by any means.”
  • “I saw the wrap dress at my local BR yesterday. The color is a warmer blue than Kate’s dress and would great on neutral or warm skin tones.”

Several WKW friends tried on and/or purchased the dress, they were kind enough to share some of their photos with us. Below we see Jessica Reinis of CNN in the dress, she tried on the frock at the Lincoln Center store.

Courtesy Jessica Reinis

Courtesy Jessica Reinis

The dress is not silk like the original Issa, at $130 I wouldn’t expect it to be. It is a blend of 50% Rayon, 28% Lyocell, 19% Cotton, 5% Spandex. Below, WKW Facebook friend Veronica Aliaga in the frock.

Courtesy Veronica Aliaga

Courtesy Veronica Aliaga

As of this writing it appears the blue “Three-Quarter Sleeve Wrap-Tie Dress” (as the dress is named) remains available online in a Small only is sold out online. The availability online and in-store is better for the Merlot version.

Banana Republic Issa Collection

Banana Republic Issa Collection

‘The Lady and the Rose’ on Twitter tried on the dress in both the blue and merlot, posting these photos on twitter.

The Lady and The Rose Twitter Feed (@ElegantRoyal)

The Lady and The Rose Twitter Feed (@ElegantRoyal)

Things that do remain available online include other frocks, like one that is a solid repliKate for the black dress Kate wore shopping just days before her wedding. The original style remains available at the Issa London site, we show it below.

Banana Republic/Issa London/SplashNews.com

Banana Republic/Issa London/SplashNews.com

Accessories also seem to be in healthy supply.

Banana Republic Issa Collection

Banana Republic Issa Collection

Good luck to all those hunting for pieces from the Banana Republic/Issa collaboration. (To see why I don’t believe we will ever see Kate wearing Issa again, click here.)

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We have very big news about our Baby Cambridge Fundraiser. And this one calls for a drum roll.

JustGiving.Net Baby Cambridge Fundraiser

JustGiving.Net Baby Cambridge Fundraiser

As you can see, we have met exceeded our goal!! Thanks to each and every one of you who donated, we are ever-so-excited about the news. The beneficiary of your generosity is EACH (East Anglia’s Children’s Hospices), one of Kate’s patronages. For newer readers, the Fundraiser is a joint effort of five online royal fashion and news bloggers (British Royals, Kate Middleton Style, HRH Duchess Kate, A Petite Princess and yours truly).

There have been a number of giveaways and promotions designed to help draw attention to the Fundraiser since our launch several months ago. Today we have an update on the lucky winner of our most recent giveaway here at WKW; some may recall that particular promotion was sponsored by the fabulous folks at Style Rocks.

Style Rocks

Style Rocks

Knowing Kate’s affinity for citrine, Style Rocks donated an enormous citrine cocktail ring for the giveaway. Alese T., the winner, was kind enough to share photos of the beautiful ring.

Courtesy Alese T.

Courtesy Alese T.

How beautiful is it on Alese?!

Courtesy Alese T.

Courtesy Alese T.

That isn’t the end of our promotional efforts, the Fundraising effort runs through the end of August, we would love to exceed our goal by as much as possible.  Stand by for a remarkable giveaway this week.

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We also have an update on our polls asking for your favorite maternity style worn by Kate. I don’t think too many readers will be surprised by the results.

©2013 What Kate Wore

©2013 What Kate Wore

With more than 2500 votes, the #1 choice among all of Kate’s maternity styles is the Polka Dot dress by Topshop, shown below when Kate first wore it to the Warner Brothers Studio Tour in late April of 2013.

Splash News/Warner Brothers Studio/Splash

Splash News/Warner Brothers Studio/Splash

Many thanks to everyone who took part in the voting!

We’ll see you in just a few days with that exciting giveaway we mentioned.

 

 

  27 Responses to “Bits & Bytes, Banana Republic Issa Update (Including the Blue Dress Kerfluffle)”

  1. Lili was very right about the blue Issa dress. The Issa blue dress was terrible material I returned it right away however the red print ceramic dress was gorgeous. I absolutely adore it and am keeping it. The material is gorgeous.

  2. I went to my local Banana Republic store the other day and I have to agree with some other reviews. I think the quality of the material used to make a version of the coveted original Issa dress worn for the engagement photo is cheap-felt like a cotton blend to me-not worth the price in my opinion. Also, the dress appears to be a teal blue, less of a cobalt or royal blue color.

    For what its worth, I did feel that the version of the short sleeved dress the duchess was photographed in when she went shopping felt like a much nicer, thicker, more expensive material. That might be worth a shot.

  3. That ring is gorgeous!

  4. I was so excited about the Issa for Banana Republic collection…then I actually went to my local store and saw the dresses…
    The material is cheap and not worth $130. The dresses could have been better looking in a different fabric. It is a super casual fabric for the price. I have bought many “Copy Kate” dresses, but they have been less expensive than this one and much more expensive LOOKING.
    On a positive note: The mugs and souvenirs of George’s birth are really cute!!!

  5. What’s the best way to send you a photo? I don’t see the email/contact link anymore.

  6. Four comments: (1) I love citrine because I can’t afford yellow diamonds so I am mixed they are popular with DOC – “hurray!” for more unique designs, “boo!” on rising prices; (2) I love how BR showed their Issa dress with the big, chunky pearls because the dress is kind of boring (even when the DOC wore the real one) and I was wondering how to give it some “umph!”; (3) I hope she doesn’t drop Issa because her figure and their cuts are a match made in heaven. As a member of the royal family, there will be times she will need to ‘princess it up’ with custom-made pieces from McQueen but it’s the affordable brands like Zara, Topshop and a little Issa that draw her fans in because owning her dress or blouse is like drawing in a little piece of her luck to create their own fairytale. :)

    EDITED BY ADMIN

    • There’s no reason to think that the Duchess is “friends” with Camilla Fayed, that she’s ever met the woman, since Fayed became involved with the company only relatively recently. Moreover, Daniella Helayel, who founded Issa and whom the Duchess did know, has left the company. She and Fayed did not, apparently, see eye to eye.

      EDITED BY ADMIN

      • Katie, I do not think you were being mocked by the commenter who replied to your original post. There are a lot of forthright people who choose to comment on the WKW blog, but the tone is never snarky or disrespectful. I for one welcome differing opinions, but don’t be surprised if your opinions spark healthy debate. :)

  7. Have you (or has anyone) read the article explaining that Kate no longer wears Issa because of it’s significant connection to the Al-Fayed family, who has basically accused the Royal Family of putting a hit on Diana (and thus, Dodi Al-Fayed, who died with her)?

    It adds an interesting layer to the Issa/BR collab, in which it seems clears that Issa is trying (successfully) to profit over a previous association with her.

  8. I wasn’t going to go out of my way to look at the Issa dress, but I happened to be shopping at a mall that tends to be the exclusive retailer for certain stores and brands. The Banana Republic store there actually had a big sign in the doorway for the Issa collection, which surprised me as I had my doubts it would be available in Canada. I found the dress but didn’t even bother to try it on. The material feels extremely cheap and I know that kind of material is unflattering on me. There is also a huge hole behind the wrap on the top layer of the dress. I didn’t notice it in the photos in this post until after I saw the dress in person, and it didn’t seem like there was an easy way to tie the wrap to cover the circle.

    The price is also $30 more in Canada, nice.

  9. My blue (or turquoise?) dress is coming in the mail as my closest Banana Republic store is 200 miles away. I guess I’ll be happy with either color.

    The style of the black dress reminds me more of the purple Issa Kate wore in Ottawa on her Canada tour.

    As I rarely comment I’d like to say thanks for the great blog!

    • My dress arrived today and it is definitely not turquoise, it is Royal Blue. I think it fits well and is a beautiful dress. Yes, the quality is less than if I had bought a “real” Issa, but this one fits my pocketbook much better! I will be keeping mine.

  10. Love the blue mugs. I was wondering what Royal watchers would think of the Issa collection, especially as it seems Catherine herself will not be wearing the brand again.

  11. The blue color wasn’t for me and I agree it’s not the same color as Kate’s. I did by the dress in merlot and also the black which for some reason has not been mentioned and it not posted online.

  12. Okay, so Banana Republic made it sound like there where only two colors, the merlot and the blue, which was mislabeled turquiose? So there was no turquiose then right? Only blue that was mislabeled. I don’t think only select stores would have the blue version. I remember seeing it online as labeled turquiose, but then it was changed to Royal blue but still had the picture that looked turquiose. So confusing. But I believe there were only the two colors not three.

  13. My local BR had it in true blue, but unfortunately it looked like a bathrobe on me, I’m just too short http://i.imgur.com/gciIcs6.jpg! Instead I bought the short sleeve pleated dress in green and I love it!

  14. The original engagement blue dress was stunning on Kate, but personally I wouldn’t want to buy a copy just because…It’s a dress with memory for Kate but not for me…The copy looks kinda “bleh”, IMHO…

    • I have to agree. I’m also dubious of the quality, since my opinion is that BR has declined in recent years.

      I might add that while I loved the black wrap dress, the BR version just doesn’t do it for me. Different styling, different drape.

      • That drape dress she wore while out shopping right before her wedding is the kind of style that would be unforgiving on anyone who is just a size or two up, I think.

        And TWWW, I agree about not wanting to wear a dress that’s so closely associated with Kate. It would be like wanting to replicate someone’s wedding dress, IMO.

  15. Those “Hooray for George!” mugs match my kitchen exactly. Tempting.

  16. I bought the blue dress and I am so glad it is royal blue if it is not to my liking I will be sending it back. I bought the red ceramic print dress as well. Yes we will never see Kate in Issa again. Great post as always.

  17. Royal blue dress being in select stores only makes more sense. I went to about 5 different Banana Republics in 3 different cities near where I live, and none of them had ever had it. *sigh*

    I enjoyed this post as always –and for the record, I still got the dress in turquoise, black, and merlot. *ahem, coupons* :P

  18. The blue dress is definitely not blue. More turquoise than blue. It does fit quite nicely though, and my local BR had plenty when I purchased the Merlot color. Look better in that color anyway.

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