Jul 172017

The Duchess went fashion forward this evening, wearing a dress with an edgier design (no pun intended) than normal for an evening cocktail party in Warsaw.

UK in Poland Flckr

UK in Poland Flckr

We say ‘daring’ because the bespoke piece by Polish designer Gosia Baczyńska is a bit beyond Kate’s working wardrobe ‘comfort zone.’ Below, the Duke and Duchess on their way to the function.

Duchess Cambridge Kate Middleton Gosia Baczyńska Dress

©Splash News

The party was hosted by the British Ambassador to Poland, Jonathan Knott, seen below left. He is next to Mrs. Kornhauser-Duda in red, Poland’s first lady. Poland’s president, Andrzej Duda, is on Kate’s immediate right.


@prezydentpl Twitter

The occasion was a party honoring HM’s birthday.

Polish Emabssy UK


The Duke and the Duchess in the receiving line.

UK in Poland Flckr

UK in Poland Flckr (Click photo to visit Flckr feed)

Another view.

UK in Poland (Click photo to visit feed)

UK in Poland (Click photo to visit feed)

The event was at the picturesque Orangery at Lazienki Park.

UK in Poland Flckr (Click photo  to visit page)

UK in Poland Flckr (Click photo to visit page)

It looked like an elegant affair.

UK in Poland Flickr (Click photo to visit gallery)

UK in Poland Flickr (Click photo to visit gallery)

Prince William addressing the guests; he started and ended his speech in Polish.

Poland Tour Day 1 Warsaw HM Queen's Birthday Party via UKp Flc 777 x 580


From The Daily Mail’s story:

During tonight’s event, the Duke made a speech on behalf of his grandmother, who turned 91 earlier this year and has started officially delegating public duties to younger royals like Kate, William and Harry.

UK in Poland Flickr (Click photo to visit gallery)

UK in Poland Flickr (Click photo to visit gallery)

And from The Express

He said: “The links between Britain and Poland go back centuries, and are steeped in a rich history of cultural exchange and close commercial relations.

William also noted that “Polish is now the second most spoken language in the United Kingdom.”

It looked like an ideal evening for a sleeveless frock.

Kate Middleton Duchess Cambridge white party dress Poland Gosia Baczynska

UK in Poland Flickr

As noted above, Kate wore a dress by a local designer, Gosia Baczyńska; Ms. Baczyńska shared a peek at her invitation to the big do on her Facebook page

Basia Facebook page

Basia Baczyńska Facebook page (Click photo to visit page)

We move now to our look at what Kate wore this evening.

UK in Poland Flickr

UK in Poland Flickr

The Duchess was in a white midi-length dress that featured multi-dimensional detailing.

UK in Poland Flickr (Click photo to visit gallery)

The UK in Poland Flickr (Click photo to visit gallery)

A closer view of the waist shows some of the seam and embellishment detail.

©Zak Hussein

©Zak Hussein

From The Telegraph’s Bethan Holt:

Kate selected a white midi-length cocktail dress with architectural black detailing by one of Poland’s best-known designers, Gosia Baczynska…

Louisa James of ITV shared this photo providing a view of the front of the frock.

Louisa James ITV

Louisa James ITV

More from Bethan Holt’s Daily Telegraph column:

…the dress is a bold choice from the Duchess who has shown greater willingness to experiment with her style over the past year. The jagged, black-edge pleats on the bottom part of the dress offer a playful contrast to the delicate floral black applique at the waist while the deep v-neckline frames her pearl necklace…

©Zak Hussein/UK in Poland/UK in Poland

©Zak Hussein/UK in Poland/UK in Poland

A side view.

UK  in Poland Flickr (Click photo to visit site)

UK in Poland Flickr (Click photo to visit site)

This gives you a sense of the dimensional elements of the piece.

UK in Poland

The UK in Poland

There is a dress available on the Gosia Baczyńska website featuring some of the same detailing as Kate’s frock.

Gosia Baczyńska

Gosia Baczyńska (Click photo to visit site)

The Duchess accessorized with her black Prada clutch.

UK in Poland/Prada

UK in Poland/Prada

And the Gianvito Rossi Suede Ankle Strap d’Orsay heels first seen in Paris. (The center shot is not from tonight, it is from the Paris trip.) The style is available in a few large sizes at Barneys ($775); offered in a few sizes at Net-a-Porter; and Bergdorf has the style discounted 50% (now $397) in the navy colorway, in limited sizing.



Kate’s hair was up; I will look for additional photos to show the back of the style.

UK in Poland

The UK in Poland

You may recognize the necklace and earrings.

©Splash News

©Splash News

They were both worn when Kate and William were in Paris. Below, the necklace with its asymmetric design.

Duchess Cambridge Kate Middleton Poland Faux Pearl Necklace Pictures

©Zak Hussein / Splash News

And the Balenciaga ‘Eugenia’ faux pearl and silvertone clips

Kate Poland Warsaw Queen's Birthday Party July 17 2017 Balenciaga Earrings and Product

Polaris/Net-a-Porter/UK in Poland

It was a delight to see Kate try something new and different.

Here is your graphic showing tomorrow’s events.

Graphic Tour Events Tuesday July 18 Poland Germany

It is likely to be a challenging day with the morning’s first engagement at Stutthof.

Tuesday, July 18:

  • The Duke and Duchess visit Stutthof Concentration Camp, the first Nazi camp set up outside German borders; while at the camp TRH will meet five Holocaust survivors.
  • The couple then travels to Gdansk (about 20 miles from Stutthof) where their first event is a street party at the city’s famous Old Market Square. The couple will watch “amber craftsmen at work, and listen to local musicians and artists.”
  • Kate and William’s next engagement is at the Gdansk Shakespeare Theatre, opened in 2014.  Williams father, the Prince of Wales, is the Theatre’s Patron. The couple will watch a special performance and “…attend a small reception inside the theatre for Poles from the world of arts, culture and media.”
  • The final stop is the European Solidarity Centre, located in the Gdansk shipyards, where the Solidarity movement was founded. The Duke and Duchess will tour the Centre’s Museum, meet founding members of the Solidarity movement and lay a wreath at the organization’s iconic Monument.
  •  The duo will then join George and Charlotte for another night at Belvedere Palace.

And weather forecast, which doesn’t look too bad with a high of 69℉ (about 21℃).




  135 Responses to “The Duchess is Daring in Gosia Baczyńska Party Frock”

  1. I love that she stepped outside of her comfort zone, but the bust of this dress is horrific. I keep visualizing Madonna’s cone bra. Yikes.

  2. Beautiful. I’m betting that the movement of those jagged-edge pleats is stunning, and that this dress looks incredible in person. Wish we had a glimpse of a video.

    The darts are a design element; they are expertly-tailored, intentional and look fine. This is an edgy, avant garde piece, and the Duchess “balanced” that edginess for this official event with safe, conservative accessories and hair…and she pulled it off! Hair down would’ve competed with the pleats; a high ponytail, on the other hand, would’ve been the perfect finishing touch.

  3. Overall I think Kate looked great and elegant as always and I think it was great she went with a Polish designer……I just do not like the dress. I think it fit her superbly and the general silhouette of the dress is perfect for her, I am just not a fan of the actual dress. I always applaud her for going down the edgy route, but this is a little avant-garde for me.

  4. There’s much I don’t like about this look, but all of that is outweighed by my respect for Kate’s constant effort toward sartorial diplomacy. Great move to choose a dress from a Polish designer, and not a “toned down” one at that. She decided to wear the best of what the designer represents, tailoring oddities and all, and pull out all the stops. For that, she earns my respect and I’m sure her hosts appreciated it. (On the same note I love that she had Charlotte in a red and white dress coming off the plane — this woman has a lot of class.)

  5. Love this look greatly. Everything is mindblowingly cute! And these shoes suit this dress ideally. Total beauty and originality.

  6. The pointy bust darts are horrible, very distracting !

  7. I love this look for the Duchess. I think it is age appropriate, refined and has an overall look of streamlined elegance.It suits her figure and has detail with very clean lines which adds to the crispness of her dress. It was refreshing and I was glad to see her wear a lower neckline and a complete set of jewelry as she has lovely shoulders and often just needs to finish the total look with jewels. She oozed confidence and said in an understated manner , I have arrived.Well done esp after a somber start to her day.

  8. what a bizarre dress. Kudos to Kate for trying something new and honoring a local Polish designer, but yikes. The weird jagged pleats contrasted with the leafy stuff at the waist with a traditional silhouette?! Nothing gels about this look and Kate isn’t helping it with the bubbly jewelry.

  9. These dang darts…so distracting…and ill placed..The dress itself sans darts, would have been a master piece on Kate!

  10. The second photo in the story leads me to believe that neither Kate nor Will was crazy about this look. I can imagine that since it is bespoke, she met with the designer to come up with a dress for this event since said designer was going to be at the event. Then given the above, she had no choice but to wear the dress to the party. The idea of the dress is very cool – but the execution is poor. Those bust darts are horribly placed and they pucker. The armholes are wrong. The fabric on her one hip is just wonky and the back of the dress doesn’t lay smooth – from pics on another site. Again, the second photo down – their faces are actually kind of humorous – making the best of it.

    • I don’t think William cares about what she is wearing and never has!

    • I also laughed at that second photo. I think he cares. There was a yellow dress she wore in Australia (?) and I think someone complimented her on it and she responded that William told her she looked like a banana. Maybe this was a more tactful exchange?

      I like the jewelry and I think it works with the style of the outfit (modern, fun). I do think the dress was terribly executed. The darts are terrible. It’s not like she’s an A cup and can’t fill out a bust in an off the rack dress. I would have been so embarrassed as the designer. I would be very proud of her for wearing it and not making a fuss about it though, when she must know it’s not well done.

  11. Absolutely LOVED this dress. Reminded me of the dress Melania Trump wore in France last week. Loved the black belt details.

  12. I thought Kate looked incredible in this dress. It was very flattering on her. I would love to see her expand her wardrobe more along these lines.

  13. FINALLY ! FASHION ! I love it!
    The darts and the bust are part of the design. The necklace is perfect in matching the dress style. The earrings are too big and her hair should have been edgy somehow. This round bun is so old fashioned.
    Overall, a fantastic look!

  14. I so love this look! My impression of the overall look is that every detail works. The dress is stunning and looks wonderful on her. Her hair is perfect, the shoes – love them! I’m happy to see the Duchess is branching out and wearing more than the pumps we usually see her in! I wasn’t crazy about the necklace with the black dress in Paris but it is the perfect accessory with the white. Really lovely.

  15. I LOVE this! What a stunning dress and so very different from what we usually see Kate wear! The whole ensemble looks very put together. I didn’t like the necklace in Paris, but I think it works perfectly here. She looks terrific, and stands out from everyone else around her, while not being showy or outlandish.

  16. Well my goodness gracious!! What a surprise!! A nice surprise to see something so ‘experimental’ (trying to avoid using edgy :) ) A very interesting design, nice to see Kate wear a Polish designer–of course that’s all part of the diplomacy. Great hair style, jewelry, shoes and clutch. But 2 quibbles: the darts for one. We were taught in Fab and Dress class to make sure that the small end of the dart blended softly and did not come to a point. I think the heaviness of the fabric contributed to some of the problem, and also the way the light catches the dress in some photos makes it look more pronounced. Second quibble: All the detail on the skirt makes it very bottom heavy, and with the bodice being sleeveless and having no decorative details, the skirt part overwhelms the dress and Kate’s frame. She is slender and the skirt drags her down as it were. Maybe short sleeves, some detailing on top, fewer jagged edges on the skirt, may have helped to balance the look. But she looks stunning and certainly provides a real talking piece for all!!

  17. From the waist down, this is a home run. From the waist up…maybe not so much. I think if the darts on the bust were minimized, and the black piping on the bodice was allowed to shine, or the designer had continued the embellishment on the waist up to the bust, it would have improved the design, at least from a “what Kate normally wears” standpoint. That being said, I think this was a great choice for the occasion. A really great way to honor Poland, and the designer.

    I also think if Kate had worn her hair stick straight (a la Kim Kardashian of late), it would have complimented the dress better. Something like this architectural dress she’s wearing calls for fashion-forward hair, and stick straight is what we’ve seen on the runways. Kate loves her curls though, so I think I’ll have to see a pig fly past my window before I see straight hair on Kate!

    Was it my favorite? No, but it wasn’t my least favorite thing she’s worn either! Can’t wait to see everything else she chosen for this tour!

  18. This dress looks almost like a cartoon illustration or animation. it would fit in well in this restaurant onboard a Disney cruise ship! http://disneycruiselineblog.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/04/Disney-Magic-Refurb-Animators-Palate.jpg

    I really like this daring choice she made tonight, the bust darts are a little distracting, but only in certain lights and photos, in others you don’t notice. I also love the modern jewelry she teamed with it. Can’t wait to see more styles from Catherine as she branches out and tries new looks.

  19. This COULD have been an amazingly new and modern look for the Duchess if it weren’t for the bust darts and that horrible necklace. The pointy-ness of those darts on the chest at her bust and her sides are just NOT flattering at all. Period. Sometimes I wonder if it’s a situation of “the emperor has no clothes” where everyone tells her it looks great, when in actuality it just makes her look boxy and weird. Second, I hate that necklace, especially when it’s paired with the matching earrings, it looks like some cheap-o box set of costume jewelry you pick up on sale at JCPenny. Blech.
    Aside from that, I think she looked lovely, as usual. The rest of the dress was good on her, and I think so far her outfits in Poland have been very appropriate and well-fitted. Still loving the shorter hair. Can’t wait to see it blown out straight-ish. Cmon blowout!!!

  20. The more I look at this, the more I like it. In both the dress she chose and the other examples shown, there’s a kind of sketch-book vibe — the dark lines outlining the panels look almost like heavy pencil lines. The belt is really interesting. It’s made of leaves, so there’s a kind of organic feeling, but the leaves are black and spiky, so that feeling is negated. Just fascinating.

    I do not think the darts are an error or dressmaker’s mistake. I think they’re part of the angularity of the whole design.

    The jewelry really works with this. I remember looking at this necklace before and thinking it would work with nothing! With this it works beautifully. It has a kind of futuristic, science-fiction feeling that to me goes really well with the dress.

    • I couldn’t agree with you more. Everything you wrote echoed my thoughts. The dress has so many interesting and clever ideas yet it still manages to look flattering on the Duchess, and for that also includes the bust darts!

  21. I really love the look

  22. I thought the belt had a bit of the barbed wire look about it. Did anyone else think that? In this context and environment, it seemed askew, but I doubt the Duchess or members of her team thought it.

  23. She looks great. I love to see her try out new looks. My only issues are with the very pointy breasts (which the eye is drawn to) and her severe hair. Yes, I agree that wearing it down wouldn’t do, but perhaps something off the nape of the neck and higher on the head, ala Audrey Hepburn.

  24. This dress is the most exciting/ edgy/ fun/ fashion forward one she’s worn for a long time. This effect, however, is spoilt by the costume jewellery and the hair which belong to a different fairy tale. I’m prepared to forgive her, though – she always looks great.

  25. I rarely drool.
    Now I will.
    Elegant, dramatic, original, edgy, just drop dead gorgeous. Everything: dress, shoes, hair, and that wonderful necklace she wore in Paris. Everything: even the bust darts.
    Project Runway? Come on. Get real.
    It’s not lace, it’s not “matronly”, it’s not “mumsy-soccer mom”, nor does the dress look like your “grandmother’s curtains.”
    Nor did Madonna ever don anything so lovely.
    While I like, or love, most of her clothes (not all) rarely do I wish I could buy one of her outfits, except for the Jackie Kennedy suit, and the Missoni coat and pillbox hat she wore to France.
    But this one — wish I could buy it for my 5″10″ 30 year old daughter.
    I haven’t had as much fun admiring a dress since Betsy Johnson first burst on the scene in the 60s.
    Rock on, Kate.

    • Great comment – I agree!!
      Have been reading and enjoying the blog since its inception, though this is my first comment.
      Jenny, which is the Jackie Kennedy suit you are referring to? I’m not remembering it……….

      • Hi Kirsten,
        Sorry to take so long to reply. It’s the Eponine London checked suit. She’s worn it twice. It’s gorgeous.
        You know, Jackie was only 31 years old when she became First Lady, and she’d given birth to John Jr. only two months before. She and Kate have age and young children in common, along with great style/fashion, and intense public interest in them.

  26. Thrilled to see such a fresh, edgy design on Kate! She definitely has studied up on sartorial diplomacy, and it shows. For the most part, the look is a win for me. I just really wish, as someone else commented previously, that she had fully committed to this kind of dress with her hair and accessories. I think a ponytail with a bit of a poof in the front would’ve worked perfectly, and would’ve kept in line with the sheer youthfulness of this design. The big low bun here just kind of drags the whole design down, IMO, and doesn’t match the outfit very well. I also would’ve loved a bit of a smoky eye here, but that’s a personal preference and can totally understand why she would rather be on the “less is more” side of makeup considering the million cameras she faced last night. I also would’ve ditched the costume necklace and worn small studs in order to really let the dress take center stage, but that’s also just personal preference. The jewelry pairs fine with the dress.

    I don’t mind the darts in the bust.

    Overall, great look for Kate and just so excited to see her trying new things :)

  27. This dress is absolutely lovely!! I love the design, the color, the V neck . . . everything about it. It’s different but not too over the top. She looks wonderful and appropriate for the occasion.

    However, some people will complain no matter what Catherine wears. That’s why I don’t read the comments too often. Negativity is exhausting!!

    P.S.: It’s always fun to see invitations. This one said “no hats” and I’m glad because we might have gotten some ridiculous garden party hats here and it would have been comical.

  28. I love this look – except I hate where the darts are on her chest. Argh! They make her nipples look super pointy. Reminds me of Madonna’s corset look from her Blond Ambition tour. I LOVE that pearl necklace tho. It’s SO different and interesting, and perfect for this dress. The detailing on the dress (black piping, flowers, etc) with the black strappy shoes are just AMAZING. I was really getting sick of her all in white, but this dress, this look, knocks it out of the park!

  29. Love the whole look. The dress is stunning, young, fresh, classy and elegant all in one. Love all the detail and the “leaves belt”. The jewellery is a perfect fit with this dress. Love the hair out of her face.

    Fantastic. !!!!!

  30. BEST LOOK EVER! Kate looks stunning in this amazing dress. It is just gorgeous. She accessorized beautifully. So glad she didn’t wear another lace dress! She looks sophisticated and confident. Brava!

    • I love the way the dress is owned by DOC . Yes she can wear it! Really great shoe and bag as well. Necklace softens the dress a bit.

  31. I applaud the Duchess for dressing with diplomacy and for taking a fashion risk. However, I can’t say that I like the dress that much. (For what it’s worth, I’m not one generally to complain about the Duchess’s choices being boring; I *like* the lace dresses and nude heels.)

    The fabric is beautiful and I find neckline flattering and the irregular piping interesting, but I don’t like the jagged panels on the skirt (Project Runway, I agree),and the vine detail on the waist, IMO, looks tacked-on and very fashion-student.

    But I don’t particularly condemn the Duchess for that; it looks as though she had many diplomatic reasons to choose this designer specifically (she was present at the event) and was therefore compelled to go outside her usual comfort zone.

    I really love the necklace and I *DO* feel like it looks well with this dress–the neckline shows it off beautifully, and the pearlized white is a perfect match. I also feel like the Duchess’s accessories and styling (ladylike updo, classic shoes) elevated the dress.

    In short, I doubt that anyone but the Duchess of Cambridge could have carried this dress off with such aplomb.

    • Jessica, you took the words right out of my mouth! This is probably one of my least favorite dresses the DoC has ever worn, but I appreciate the reasons that she would choose to wear it.

    • Totally agree, though we liked different aspects of the dress ;) I preferred the skirt and the belt, but didn’t like anything from the waist up. The neckline did make for a great opportunity to wear that necklace though, and I think the round bubbles contrast very nicely with the jagged skirt details.

      I’m not really crazy about the Polish fashion I’ve seen, and I think for the most part it is far from Kate’s usual classic pieces, so I don’t think we can expect to see many (if any) repeats of Polish dresses on this tour back in the UK. However, I appreciate that she always wears at least one outfit from a local designer, so it would seem out of place if she only stuck to her Etui bags on this tour as a nod to the host country. Looking forward to see who she’ll be wearing in Germany!

  32. I’m happy to see her step outside her comfort zone. The upper part of the dress could be improved upon, but the rest of it is cleverly designed. I love her pearl necklace. The earrings would have gone better with the outfit and hairstyle if they had been drop earrings of some sort, but I don’t truly detest them and I understand why she went for them.

  33. Does it seem that the Princess has been wearing a great deal of white lately?

  34. I really don’t like this look, the dress is too different for my taste, I don’t like the black details and the pointy bust seems. I’m also not a fan of the pearl jewellery. Her hair lookednice though.

  35. I’m trying and trying to like this dress, but the awful tailoring is putting me off. Besides for the dreadful darts, the tailoring under the arms is also not impressive. (You can’t see it in any of the pictures here, but Daily Mail has a picture of Kate raising her arm and it doesn’t look as good as it should.)

    Furthermore, I can’t see any relationship between the belt and the dress – they seem to come from two different styles. I happen to like the belt, but not with the dress.

    But kudos to Kate for trying something new and different from a local designer.

    I liked Kate’s choice in jewelry this time. The necklace matches this dress much better than the Paris one. The sandals were also great. She does look very tired – hardly surprising after an entire day spent travelling and eventing. I don’t know how she was still on her feet by the evening.

    • I think the arm tailoring might not to poorly executed, but rather it is intentional, to go with the edgy theme. It appears to go straight across in the armpit area, rather than being rounded. I could be wrong of course. Another feature many of us find distracting is the pointed darts at the bust. The arm and bust features are likely intentional, to create interest in the design. But I am with you, Sara F. These are two areas where traditional sewing techniques would have been preferred.

    • If the detail at the waist had been a rounded, rolling floral pattern, I would agree on the disconnect. But the spiky, edgy vine is complementary to the angular black piping and sharp geometric edges of the skirt. No, it doesn’t match; but to my eyes, it does fit in the overall look.

  36. Would also love to see the back of the dress…

  37. I’m surprised to see so many negative comments on this dress, especially when everyone usually cries about how the Duchess always plays it safe! Personally, I like the dress. It’s different and cool and the “darts” around the bust don’t bother me at all – a lot of dresses are like that! I’m glad to see her in a V neck line, it’s universally flattering and the shoes work really well here. What I am struggling with however is the jewelry. The necklace and earrings just look so cheap (and I’m sure they’re not). I have noticed that she tends to lean toward “costume” jewelry but for an event like this, I think you need to step it up with the real thing – like perhaps and the diamonds and rubies she wore earlier in the day?

    • I’m not sure why everyone is agitating for major jewelry at this event. It was just a garden party, not a state dinner, not even a plain dinner. They don’t usually pull out all the stops for garden parties.

      (Comment not directed at you personally, just a general response to similar posts.)

      • It’s not so much about wanting major jewelry as it is wanting a departure from jewelry that (in my opinion) just looks cheap

  38. WOW, BRAVO!

    Thoughtfully put together, a very complex look from a visual and material perspective. This is something that gets one thinking about choices. The dress is an amazing find and to me the key element here is the juxtaposition of edges (dress, shoes) and curves (her hair, necklace). The color play is also brilliant – with hair out of the way, the color palette is black and white throughout, almost as if the peraon is being drawn on the dress.

    Also, I think it is ridiculous to think the bust is not intentional. If you look at it from the side, the chest area also gives ‘edges’. One can not really find a true curve in this dress, down to the armhole. I am curious though, how the Duchess arrives to favoring this sharp nipple style element. Her wedding dress and this.

    • I too was reminded of the wedding dress with its sharpened nipples. I really hope this isn’t a growing trend. It looks like bullet bras from the 1950s, and doesn’t seem like it would go well with Kate’s more casual and understated tastes.

  39. Below is all the information on the new jewellery that HRH, The Duchess of Cambridge is wearing:

    Kate was sporting a new ruby and diamond pendant necklace in the same style as her engagement ring, with matching earrings. Royal-watchers claimed the cluster pendant was from G Collins & Sons, a Tunbridge Wells-based jeweller. Similar styles on their site cost around £1,525, while the earrings cost £1,880.

    • Hello, and thanks so much for sharing the info! The post has been updated; I don’t believe Kate is wearing the pieces suggested in the media and perhaps on other sites, although I could be wrong. :)

  40. It is my first comment and I could not be more proud that Kate has chosen Gosia Baczynska for that engagement.
    Gosia Baczynska has designed my wedding dress and she is extremely talented and interesting person.
    If you want to see more, check out my wedding trailer !!


    The only things I would have changed are the hair- sleek ponytail would be so much better and that jewellery which is too much…

    Very proud

    • Aggie, there is beauty all round…your wedding, your dress and YOU. Thank you for sharing.

    • Oh, Aggie. Thank you so much for commenting. Gosia Baczynska did an incredible job – that is one stunning gown. You were more than just a beautiful bride, you were radiant. I am lucky; when I was able to watch the video it was right after I finished the Stutthof post. Thank you for sharing the loveliness with all of us. :)

    • Beautiful video. I love wedding traditions from other cultures. Weddings in America have become so over-the-top and expensive. This looks like a small, tasteful celebration. I love the wink your groom gave as you came down the aisle. Wishing you many, many years of happiness.

    • Wow. That is one beautiful wedding day, from the outstanding dress, to flowers, groom, bride, family – just fantastic! Congratulations and very best wishes to you and your husband.

  41. The more I look at this look, the more I like it. This is probably how you – should- dress when you have a variety of resources at hand. Sophisticated, with a little edge. Everything about this dress is thought and planned, the fabric, the jagged pleats with black details and the pointy darts at the bodice. She is wearing a piece of art, and it looks devine.

  42. I don’t think her dress is daring unless we’re referring to décolletage she doesn’t normally do. She is very elegant. Love her shoes have her shoes. I do like her latest evolvement away from older stiffer garments and into clothing befitting her age and beauty.

  43. I quite like this dress, it’s classy with a modern edgy twist, the darts don’t even bother me, again it keeps it a modern (although I do see Madonna when I see conical boobs!). I think it’s just lacking because the execution’s not quite right. To echo previous comments, Kate needed a funkier hairstyle to match the dress (ponytail?), and some strappy black sandals to show off some racy red toe nails? The accessories need a little modernising and perhaps colour. I also think this dress would look better in someone with a fuller bust, this dress makes her look small on top with some very muscular arms!

    Overall I do really like the dress, I just think the execution isn’t right.

  44. Oh my gosh everyone seems to love this look, I don’t wanna be terribly grinchy here but I think her hair isn’t flattering at all, sometimes duchess’ updos are out of this world and sometimes they are terribly aging. Comparing both of her looks on this tour I was amazed by the difference her hair style made.for me the hair style took the oomph out it doesn’t even compliment or do any justice to her beautiful features.

  45. Nice to see the Duchess try something different, but its a bit of a disaster. Very badly tailored, esp those terrible bodice darts. Did something think this was a flattering look? I do think this time its the fault of the design rather than the undergarment. At the V&A opening, the bra was completely wrong for the fabric of that dress. One of the most important elements in looking good is getting the right bra for the cut and fabric of the top – something Kate has problems with before. I really don’t like this hair style – its way too severe, esp with this dress. Hair down and soft counterpoints the dress’s hard lines. And with a dress that cuts the leg at mid calf, the ankle straps aren’t the best choice because they cut the line of the leg too soon and make the leg look shorter and fatter. Ankle straps work best with shorter dress length. The V&A Prada sandals would have been perfect – they were wrong for the Preen dress. If you are going to channel the 50s, a stacked heel peep toe in a bright colour would have been fun and helped pop the rather dull colour and cut of that dress.

    Kate seems to be going with a lot of white and pale colours (the blush gown, the pale blue/grey Preen) which I don’t think do her any favours. She looks much better in bright colours. She looks completely washed out here – too much white – the pearls don’t help either. This outfit needed more colourful and interesting jewellery. I think Kate has difficulty accessorizing, or at least doesn’t give them enough thought. Proportion is incredibly important in determining what works best, and the only way to judge that is in a full length mirror trying out accessories. That was one of the problems with the necklace at the state dinner – way too heavy for the weight and colour of that dress and way too much with the other jewellery.

    On the arrival outfit, I’ve come to the conclusion that something is seriously amiss at McQueen. Another very badly tailored bodice that doesn’t fit or close properly. Yikes. And there is nothing about this design that says McQueen. McQueen used to combine edginess with impeccable design and tailoring but not in any of the outfits that Kate has chosen so far.

    Last, but not least, I’ve got reservations about the new hair length. Don’t know who cut it, but it looks chopped – literally. I find this length a bit meh – the longer length gave Kate more presence and drama. And centre parts are not usually the most flattering. Looking at some pictures of Kate around the time of the wedding, I thought I had more of a sense of who she was by the way she dressed – her “style”. Not sure I feel that anymore.

  46. I love love love the skirt of this dress. Fromthe pictures, the dart points look too prominent, but I’m not sure they were irl. The darts appear to be sewn halfway and the ends are just folded? If that’s the caseI’d say great. If not, then they were badly pressed and that would be a shame. Anyway, I like that she’s stepping out of her comfort zone.

  47. Interesting to see so many blushing critiques of this dress when people have found Kate too buttoned up and boring in so many other ensembles. There may be more of the Victorian in WKW followers than one might have thought.

    This dress is so cool – to me it’s beyond edgy and straight into avant garde territory. I almost called it an Eastern European influence, but it’s even more specific than that – it communicates an absolutely Polish vibe, so striking, and certainly not conservative, despite the demure length. I’m impressed that she chose a designer who didn’t blend in with the rest of Kate’s designers.

    I’m at a loss to think how anyone could find this necklace juvenile, but also in trying to imagine what the Queen would have in the vault that would successfully complement this dress. “Traditional” diamond anything would be a non-starter, colored anything would compete with the elements of the dress, Art Deco would never work either, and “vault pearls”, for lack of a better term, just wouldn’t be the right shape for this creation. People may sniff at costume jewelry, but this necklace is a perfect accompaniment here.

    As dramatic as the dress is, the hair has to be styled to complement – unstructured, loose, casual waves or curls would detract. I’ll even drop the “j-word” here – ponytail would be juvenile with this oh-so-grownup dress.

    The only element that might have stood a little more drama would have been makeup, perhaps a smidge darker lipstick or smokier eye, but even that would have been tricky, too easy to look costume-y.

    Kate really did a stellar job in shining the spotlight on the dress, designer, and host country tonight. This is sartorial diplomacy done very, very right.

    • Totally agree with your comments. Kate looked superb.

    • Totally agree. I think you really captured what the Duchess was looking to achieve.

    • Whenever I’m not perfectly happy with something in an ensemble, I try to find an example of what I would have chosen instead – not a generic description but an actual product available in the market. I think it helps illustrate the change better. So for this dress, I would have chosen a necklace like the one from Cartier’s Etourdissant collection, picture 12 in the slideshow in Vogue’s article linked below. It’s described as white gold, moon quartz, moonstone, onyx, mother of pearl and diamonds. She still could have kept the earrings with this necklace.

      I completely agree with you about the “nearing” avant garde territory, and it’s a fantastic choice and look for her. All around, one of my favorite looks that distinctly falls outside her normal range.

      • Oh wow – that collection is fantastic! I see what you mean about the necklace, though it would probably hang too long, and as thin as the onyx beads are, they would still be considerably thicker than the delicate etched-like detailing on the dress. And again – the amazing necklace would detract from the focal point of the dress. But thank you for linking this awesome collection!

    • Your comments on the jewelry are spot on IMO.

  48. Like the dress and shoes. Agree that a ponytail would be more fun with this avant gard look but hair is ok, I really don’t like the necklace with this however. Loved it with the black. The dress has lots of straight lines. A black straight lined necklace would be great. ( not even sure what I mean..) something without curves. This necklace for me doesn’t work with the waist details.

  49. Gorgeous! Just gorgeous.

  50. I actually like this dress, especially the embellishment at the waist. I even like the necklace, even though it’s sort of costume jewelry. It’s just very interesting and fun.

    Like others have said, the darts on the bust are a problem. I do a bit of sewing myself, and you have to place the dart correctly to avoid that pointy look. The person must wear the same lingerie during the fitting as they’ll wear in real life, and then the end of the dart should be just below the apex of the bust. That way it will be filled out smoothly instead of poking out. It just baffles me that this was ignored. Surely it’s not a conscience design decision? I don’t think the “nipple look” is considered proper at nice parties, but no one during this whole process pointed this out and requested it be fixed?

  51. The hairstyle is all wrong for this edgy look. Please being back her long hair. I think her jewels could have been a different color altogether. Reds or Yellows.

  52. This is the most exciting and interesting thing she has worn in a long time. Love everything about it. She looks fantastic.

  53. One word – stunning! It’s nice to see the Duchess in something different!. And of course a polite nod to Poland for her choice of designer. I love the dress, her hair, necklace, earrings, shoes and bag! The Duchess looks beautiful!

  54. I think this is a young, fun outfit that could have been improved with her hair in a ponytail. I don’t mind her wearing costume jewelry, but I think something to add a touch of color — perhaps red or even black beads of some sort — would have worked even better.

  55. I like parts of this dress, but dislike others.

    I love the applique belt. It’s different and interesting.

    I don’t like the black edging on the skirt. It makes the skirt look ripped/shredded, and not in a fashionable way.
    I do agree with others that the darts at the bust weren’t sewn probably and look pointy. I work in a bridal shop and this is a common problem since many busts are formed over a wooden form, but a seamstress can fix this problem so I don’t know why Kate didn’t have that done.

  56. Big no to the bust darts. Her wedding dress sort of had them, but they weren’t nearly as, um, nipple-like as this dress.

    It’s probably the most avant-garde thing she’s ever worn and very interesting from a visual standpoint.

  57. I wasn’t bothered by the darts- maybe because I thought finally she was wearing a proper lifting bra & the dress was where it was supposed to be?

  58. This is a fascinating dress, and I have to applaud her to stepping out of her comfort job, but I can’t decide if I like it or now. Shoulders up–beautiful! Skirt detail of black leavesl–lovely! Shoes–fab! Pointy bust darts–I’ve always really disliked those. It doesn’t seem like “her” dress somehow, and she sort of looks like she knows it. Major props for the choice, though

    • Second your comments Amanda! She somehow doesn’t look like she likes the dress herself!
      Good to see her try something ‘ fashion-y’ and ‘cutting edge’ but im not keen on the look myself….

  59. I’m gonna go out on a limb here and suggest that Kate was drawn to this design specifically because of the exaggerated darts at the bust. Because it reminded her of her wedding dress which had a very similar detail.

    I love it when she takes a risk with an edgier and this one doesn’t disappoint. I do wish she’d brought back the black sandals she wore to the museum the other day, but other than that I wouldn’t change a thing. Her hair looks beautiful. Good start to the trip.

  60. She looks amazing in anything, but I don’t think she looked comfortable in this dress. It’s almost as if the dress “wore her” and we usually don’t see that.

  61. She look outstanding in every detail. What an honour for Polish designer the Duchess wear one of her creation. And the arrival ensemble also beautiful. Would have love to see the wool/silk weave up close. Photos often don’t give justice to the clothes.

  62. Well this dress is most certainly unique and edgy in its design. It is most interesting the way the black piping stops and goes on the dress. The skirt detail is almost sculptural. Like others, I am baffled by the pointed darts on the bust. They are a bit of a distraction, but maybe that is their purpose.

    Kate got the accessories exactly right. I like the shoes and clutch and I think the pearl jewellery breaks with the traditional, which is what this outfit seems to be striving to achieve.

    I’m sure Kate was in favour of the red, lace dress worn by Poland’s First Lady.

  63. The bodice doesn’t bother me, although the band on the dress seems to have an oddly organic design compared to the rest of the garment. That said, I love it and I think she looks great.

    Anyone think that the first lady of Poland tried to do a Kate Middleton herself with the colored lace and then Kate veered in another direction unexpectedly? Haha.

    • The First Lady of Poland is actually quite stylish herself as demonstrated by both of her choices today. During the recent visit of the Trumps to Poland, this beautiful Polish lady quite held her own with Melania Trump who has impeccable taste.

  64. I don’t like it all, too low & too pointy where it counts; I have never liked asymmetry & even less with those stick-out flaps. The jewelllery is a great match for it though, a far better pairing than with a lace dress – there is a ‘futuristic’ element to the overall look especially with the sheen of the silk. The wall-art belt doesn’t look very comfy though but that also adds to the general look, I may not like it but I give full marks for not mixing up eras.
    Didn’t like the coat much either, another cream one, too much like all the others, maybe different weights though I wonder about the weather there – a coat to arrive & worn all day but sleeveless in the evening. I I did like the heavenly jewellery though. I feel the set would have gone better with the pink gown at the state dinner as people wondered about rubies then.
    A lot of people wonder why Catherine wears so much faux/costume jewellery (especially with high-ticket dresses), I find it baffling too. The Queen loans things usually when she is present or being represented & I doubt they are to Catherine’s tastes, but I don’t mean the Royal Vault items. I’m sure that her family & later William have given Catherine jewellery as gifts over the years (and I don’t mean Kiki) – but we rarely see them, she may even have bought some herself. I can understand that fine jewellery is not appropriate for many of her engagements but when with politicians and/or wealthier people, it is indeed a puzzlement.

  65. I think the accessories are perfect, and admire the design and edginess of the dress, but the bust is just bad tailoring. The conical shape combined with the little light catching pucker on the very tips is distracting and unflattering. I cannot see this as an actual design choice… Just amateur sewing.

  66. I love the dress with the exception of the darts at the bust, those are horrible!!!!

  67. I have to get my courage up to be so negative about an outfit others seem to love, but here goes:

    Thought dressy pearls/faux diamonds, period, and then in a major statement necklace were ALL WRONG with this edgy dress. Plus jewels too matchy, matchy.

    Love the dress, but not as Kate styled it. Her hair down, a la Wimbledon, would have been better but I think this architectural dress was a miss with an updo and a clutch. It felt to me like she just couldn’t commit to the dress.

    Also, make-up wise thought Kate looked a little wan – and who can blame her?! With more lip and cheek color and her hair down in beachy waves, I think the outfit could have been a winner.

  68. I like the dress a lot. I do not like the hair. It’s way too old-school. She would have looked so fresh with a high ponytail. Also, Kate just should not be wearing fake jewelry at this stage, not when she has so many fantastic choices.

  69. Absolutely love, love this dress on the Duchess. The design is unique, edgy and distinct from the usual collection.. always nice to see the Duchess in a different ensemble. Personally I prefer if she let down her hair but still, this look is fabulous on her, perhaps more appropriate for the nature of the occasion.
    Quite apart, I think that Prince William looks dapper and George & Charlotte are just adorable..

  70. I like this look. It is appropriate while still being kind of funky. And it is proof that being less buttoned-up can still be appropriate. Like she is showing skin but she doesn’t look tacky…she looks elegant and proper. Love the shoes. My only quibbles are 1. with the designer who put those darts in the bodice in a most unfortunate place and 2. with the earrings. I actually quite like the necklace but the huge pearl earrings are so 80s and retro in a bad way. But overall I heartily approve her shoe choice and her willingness to go outside of her boring comfort zone (the First Lady apparently caught her lace dress bug) to honor her host country.

  71. Not a big fan of the overall look. I am surprised but I think she looks quite washed out in this shade of white…

  72. Terrific. All of it. Hair up shows off the pearls, and their roundness juxtaposes well with the edgy black random lines of the dress. Love the shoes, perfect for the length of the dress. I especially like the embellished waist. Kate’s waist is so long and trim that any kind of belt or waist detailing helps define her figure. The whole look works.

  73. Flawless. I’d love to see this full length and without such strong points in the bodice but all-in-all a big win on every level.

  74. Not a huge fan of the darts. Very reminiscent of Anne Hathaway’s 2013 Oscar dress. But I’m glad to see her experimenting with her looks.

  75. Those darts are not nice at all, and with so much going on in the dress I would lose the necklace. I love her hair and her shoes, and the dress’s skirt is fab.

  76. She definitely took a risk with that dress, and the designer had to be thrilled. The bust darts are too much IMO, and there’s something off with the cut of the armscye. The front angle of the armscye is terribly unflattering, and the back of the armscye scoops too low and doesn’t lie flat.

  77. I think she looks fabulous. I don’t mind the darts she is small enough to carry this retro detail off successfully. I love the shoes! Great look!!

    • I agree. I think the “darts” are part of the edgy-ness of the dress, along with the cuts/edges of the skirt. I love the shoes and clutch. At first, I liked the necklace but after reading some responses I changed my mind. It’s too costume-y for this look. A smaller black necklace (if she wanted to stick to costume jewellery) would have been a good choice.

      Overall though, I loved the look!

  78. I absolutely LOVE this, from head to toe. One of my all time favorite looks!
    Also loved the arrival McQueen – hoping to hear more about the jewelry there, including the ring.

  79. I like the dress, yes the cups are weird but I’ll just overlook it because the rest of the dress is interesting. If anything she could’ve done something a bit edgier with her hair.

    Faux pearls…why? There are so many jewels in the vault, why does she have to resort to costume jewelry? Surely there are some pearls that would be available?

  80. Very uniquely designed dress!

  81. Absolutely stunning frock. Love the edgy look whilst still looking elegant and regal for the occasion. How coyld anyone find fault with the look.

  82. Well, just don’t anyone try to say Kate doesn’t do fashion-forward ever again. I think this is way the most exciting thing she has ever done.

    While still waiting for a pronunciation guide for the designer’s name, I can nonetheless salute her talent for creating such an original concept within a classic and highly wearable sheath. It’s sensational: I can’t get enough of these sculpted panels, and I’m in raptures at the contrast of the dark asymmetric lines with the naturalistic leaf embellishment at the waist. And don’t let start me on that perfectly judged deep V-neckline…

    For me the necklace and earrings are brilliant with this, the shoes divine, the pointy toes tie in so well with the sharp angles of those jagged dark lines in the dress. Kate’s hair is bliss in a neat bun thanks to its shorter length and must be miles easier to manage and more comfortable. Utterly stunning.

  83. Oh, those bust darts. As a sewist, I understand the demands of the design and fabric, but it looks like the darts are purposefully exaggerated and I just can’t be a fan of the torpedo-bra look. That said, I do like the deep neckline and leafy belt detail, and I agree that the necklace is better suited to this dress than the one in the Paris outing. Her shoes are to die for and I love the elegant updo. Can’t wait to see what else is in store for the tour!

  84. Love the look and her boldness in wearing it. She always looks lovely in V necks, and its wonderful to see her in something sleeveless, so appropriate for summer, even though Poland evenings tend to be fairly cool. It’s such an interesting dress — the skirt makes one thing of Miro or Picasso, and it’s been so appropriately called “architectural.” The shoes look lovely with it as does the clutch. I’m not quite getting the floral belt though — it seems a more traditional, realistic leaf rendition, in contrast to the modern skirt. I would have thought more modernistic rendition of leaves would have been used. But it is very interesting, as is the “syncopated” piping on the V-neck (my word, can’t think how else to describe it.) Her hair looks divine, and I think the necklace looks lovely with the outfit too. I’m with those who wonder why she has to wear faux anything, but the look of the jewelry seems perfect to me. My only other question is the pointiness in the bosom — I’ve never understood that. We first saw it in her wedding dress and I wondered why Alexander McQueen would draw such odd attention there, when it could easily have been made more rounded. Perhaps someone with more sartorial knowledge can explain. The sheen of the fabric is scrumptious. All in all, a beautiful look for the Duchess.

    • “Scrumptious” is a very good word. :)

    • I’d have thought the pointiness at the chest was part and parcel of the general angularity throughout the dress. I may not have been paying attention to the wedding dress having not been troubled by the same feature there. I suppose so much must depend on lighting and photography which could emphasise features not so visible when seen in the real, as it were!

    • I also wondered about the darts.

    • The bottom half of the dress is unique, edgy, lovely. The bodice is rather awful (pointed darts included) and washes out her lovely face. Since so little is pretty in the bodice it might have helped to keep her hair style of earlier in the day. Necklace is fine, accentuates the edginess of the skirt, but the earrings are a distraction.

  85. cool and fun! and a nice gesture picking a Polish designer. good for her.

  86. I love this dress! One thing I do not like though, the darts in the bodice. Otherwise, the pleats and black detailing is edgy and so different from Kate’s usual design choices. Her choice of jewelry and purse and shoes are spot on, IMHO. Adore her hairstyle too. :) Ahhh, to be so put together and stylish…. :)

    • I agree with everything you said—the only thing I don’t like are the darts on the front of the bust—otherwise everything else about the look is fantastic.

    • YES! That’s the only thing for me. The darts. They’re sort of Valkyrie like, right? Otherwise I adore this dress and it’s perfect for this event. So stylish and gorgeous. And those pearls!

  87. Absolutely great look! The dress is gorgeous in every way…cut, fabric, seaming and design are wonderful. The accessories are among my favorites. A win all the way round.

  88. I love this dress. I think the bodice is a little odd/off but otherwise I’m a big fan. It’s a familiar silhouette for Kate with some obviously edgy differences in the skirt. Good way for her to experiment with something different while maintaining her personal style.

    I think the jewelry works much better here than with the black McQueen in Paris.

  89. Ooooooof. This looks to me like a Project Runway look that would potentially receive a few burning remarks from the judges. The bust of the dress isn’t doing any favors with it’s conical shape, I’m afraid I just don’t ‘get’ the black detailing and the necklace strikes me as juvenile, but like Susan I applaud Kate for trying out something new. Those are beautiful timeless shoes.

    • The bust of her wedding gown was conical too. No one ever mentioned it!

      I like today’s look.

    • Yes – project runway was my first thought too. Probably for an Avant Garde challenge. It’s interesting but not what I would call beautiful or even pretty. Cone boobs are never my favorite. I much prefer her classic timeless fashions. But I guess everyone needs to experiment sometime and wearing a Polish designer while on tour in Poland is the place for this dress.

  90. I very much like the overall look. The balance of the dress, shoes, hair, and jewelry work so well together. That said, I am not a fan of the pronounced darts at the bust. I suppose it adds to the edgy appearance of the dress but I find it unbecoming of a royal.

  91. Loved the pearl necklace when worn in Paris. So glad to see this again. I think the Duchess made a bold and beautiful choice with the cocktail dress. I thought she might wear the red Preen dress from the Canada tour. So glad she had something new.
    But it did make me wonder if there is any coordination of outfits with the host. The Duchess’ white suit today went very well with the First Lady’s beige dress. And then tonight the contrast of the First Lady’s red dress with the Duchess black/white. I don’t think the Duchess has ever worn the same color as the host, so not sure how that works.

    • I have read several times in the past that the hosts are briefed on what she will be wearing, or at least what colours. It makes sense as you wouldn’t want them clashing or wearing the same thing!

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