Jul 302017

The Duchess wore a coat by Alexander McQueen for today’s ceremonies in Belgium commemorating the centenary of the Battle of Passchendaele. The coat was first worn for the christening of Princess Charlotte.

©Stephen Lock/i-Images

©Stephen Lock/i-Images

The Battle, also called the 3rd Battle of Ypres, was one of the bloodiest of the first World War. The conditions were horrific. The worst rains in thirty years turned the battlefields into a sea of mud. From a Telegraph story:

Because of the torrential rain, the British and Canadian troops found themselves fighting not only the Germans but a quagmire of stinking mud that swallowed up men, horses and tanks.



From the BBC:

Half a million Allied and German soldiers were killed, wounded or went missing in three months of fighting.

Many drowned in the thick mud, caused by weeks of relentless rain.

Via Paul Reed Twitter @SommeCourt (Click Tweet to go to Mr. Reed's feed.)

Via Paul Reed Twitter @SommeCourt (Click Tweet to go to Mr. Reed’s feed.)

One more quote from The Telegraph’s coverage sums up the battle’s results:

After three months, one week and three days  of brutal trench warfare, the Allies finally recaptured the village of Passchendaele – but by then around a third of a million British and Allied soldiers had been killed or wounded in some of the most horrific trench warfare of the conflict.

Below, the UK ambassador to Belgium, Alison Rose, accompanies Kate and William as they walk to the Menin Gate Memorial to the Missing. 

UK in Belgium

UK in Belgium

Also representing the UK at tonight’s service, Prime Minister Theresa May (l) and Sir Timothy Laurence (r), he is vice-chair of the War Graves Commission.

Commonwealth War Graves Commission @CWGC

Commonwealth War Graves Commission @CWGC

The Duchess with Queen Mathilde.

Kate Middleton Duchess Cambridge Queen Mathilde Passchendaele Battle

The Belgian Monarchy Facebook

In this photo from journalist Peter Decroubele, you see Kate and William greeting military personnel attending the event.

Peter Decroubele @PeterDecroubele (Click ohoto to visit Mr. Decroubele's Twitter feed.)

Peter Decroubele @PeterDecroubele (Click photo to visit Mr. Decroubele’s Twitter feed.)

Everyone gathered as the ceremony gets underway.

UK Prime Minister

UK Prime Minister

Prince William delivering remarks.

Commonwealth War Graves Commission Facebook (Click photo to visit FB page)

Commonwealth War Graves Commission Facebook (Click photo to visit FB page)

From The Daily Mirror:

Flanked by the Duchess of Cambridge and Philippe and Mathilde, the King and Queen of the Belgians, he said Britain and Belgium “stand together” to remember those killed during weeks of heavy fighting in the summer and autumn of 1917.

“Today, the Menin Gate records almost 54,000 names of the men who did not return home; the missing with no known grave.

“Members of our families; our regiments; our nations; all sacrificed everything for the lives we live today.”

Below, King Philippe speaking at the service.

Commonwealth War Graves Commission Facebook (Click photo to visit FB page)

Commonwealth War Graves Commission Facebook (Click photo to visit FB page)

The Prime Minister and the Duchess.

The BBC via Theresa May Style (@TheresaMayStyle)

The BBC via Theresa May Style (@TheresaMayStyle)

As part of the ceremony, more than 54000 poppies fell from the top of the Memorial, one for every name on the Menin Gate.

Commonwealth War Graves Commission @CWGC

Commonwealth War Graves Commission @CWGC

Here you see the dignitaries as the poppies rain down.

Kensington Palace

Kensington Palace

As a choir sings in the background, this video from The Sun’s Jack Royston shows the movement of the poppies as they float through the Memorial.

The Duchess speaking with Queen Mathilde. 

©James Whatling

©James Whatling

Kate meeting with descendants of those who served during the War.

Kensington Palace

Kensington Palace

Following the Last Post ceremony, everyone walked to the Ypres market square for a dramatic presentation commemorating the Battle. 

Herts at War @Herts_at_War Twitter (Click photo to visit Twitter feed.)

Herts at War @Herts_at_War Twitter (Click photo to visit Twitter feed.)

The Duke, Duchess, King and Queen arrive for the second portion of the commemoration.

The Queen and the Duchess.

©Zak Hussein

©Zak Hussein

For tonight’s presentation images were projected on the Cloth Hall building, destroyed in the war.

Ministry of Defence

Ministry of Defence

The view of the stage the dignitaries had.

Belgian Monarchy Facebook (Click photo to visit FB page.)

Belgian Monarchy Facebook (Click photo to visit FB page.)

Among those performing this evening, Dame Helen Mirren.

UK Prime Minister

UK Prime Minister

This is the second time the Duke and Duchess have gone to Belgium. You may remember their visit in August of 2014 when they took part in ceremonies for the centenary of World War I.

The Province of Liège Facebook Page

The Province of Liège Facebook Page

Now to what Kate wore. Many recognized the Alexander McQueen coat immediately, remembering it from Charlotte’s christening in 2015, as well as Trooping the Colour last year.



We have excellent input on Kate’s choice of a light color today via a comment from K that notes “the Queen herself wore white at the 90th Anniversary of the Battle of Vimy Ridge.” K’s comment also lists other light-color ensembles HM has worn to commemorative events for military battles.

Kate’s hat was first worn for Trooping the Colour 2015.

Kate Middleton John Lock White Hat Trooping 2014 Belgium July 2017

©James Whatling/Polaris Images

It is the Marisabell style from John Lock and Company. Designed by Sylvia Fletcher, the piece is crafted of sinamay, a straw frequently used for hats.


©Stephen Lock, i-Images/Lock & Company

The pearl brooch worn today was also seen at Trooping the Colour in 2014.


©i-Images/James Whatling

Here is a better view.

©James Whatling

©James Whatling

To show the hat and brooch in context, here are photos from Trooping the Colour 2015 (l) and 2014 (r).

©Splash News / Polaris Images

©Splash News / Polaris Images

Many also recognized Kate’s Balenciaga earrings, they were first noted at Trooping the Colour 2016. The pair is one of the Eugenia styles, crafted of silvertone brass, faux pearls and crystals.

Balenciaga / James Whatling

Balenciaga / James Whatling

Kate carried the Anne Grand-Clément clutch first seen in Berlin a little more than a week ago.

Kate Middleton Anne Grand-Clément Clutch Passchendaele Belgium July 30 2017

©James Whatling / Anne Grand-Clément

Kate’s shoes remain something of a TBA. Several savvy Kate IDers (UFO No More & Christin/PackhamGown & Evangelina) think the Duchess is wearing the Emmy London Rebecca style in the ‘cinder’ colorway. UPDATE: Emmy has confirmed the shoes is their Rebecca style in ‘steel’ grey.

Emmy London/

Emmy London/James Whatling

We’ll see you again tomorrow for the second day of events commemorating the battle. More from the BBC:

“The Tyne Cot Cemetery commemorations will follow a traditional military ceremony of remembrance. Music, readings and veteran testimony will be delivered in the Cemetery. This event will be attended by HRH the Prince of Wales together with TRH The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, TM the King and Queen of the Belgians, dignitaries, Belgium and British military and descendants.

If interested in learning more about the battle, the Ministry of Defence has a two-minute backgrounder.


  • Passchendaele 2017 website - home page for comprehensive site on Battle, commemorations & more
  • Passchendaele 2017 events – this offers a detailed description of the events Sunday & Monday
  • Tyne Cot Cemetery - Commonwealth War Graves page for Tyne Cot Cemetery
  • Tyne Cot Memorial – CWGC page for the Memorial to the missing
  • BBC – this offers details on the events as well as the BBC schedule of live broadcasts and taped programming
  • This blog post from the War Graves Commission offers background and lots of links; The Telegraph’s background piece on the battle is here

  100 Responses to “Kate Repeats McQueen Christening Coat for Passchendaele Anniversary in Belgium”

  1. I love the dress, but not the hat (it is too round and saucer-like). I am shocked at how much she looked like a little girl in the photos from her first trip to Belgium! (due to the long hair and the Peter Pan collar) I love her look now–very sophisticated and elegant.

  2. Kate looks really lovely, but that hat is so dramatic. I’m surprised she would wear such an attention-getter for a solemn remembrance. Her hair looks so elegant with the hat – much better than the earlier photo where her hair was loose.

  3. I love her new big pearl jewelry. The new acorn brooch, the modern drop necklace she recently wore and this 5 pearl brooch. Any idea who gifted them to her?

  4. Kate looks lovely and elegant – her confidence and poise seem to grow year by year. Beautifully styled re-wear of this gorgeous white coat.

    Loving the grey as a neutral for shoes and clutch. So quietly stylish. (And of course, a nice change of pace from the ever-nude accessories)

  5. I like it when Kate reworks her outfits and this is no exception. This style of tailoring is her signature look for formal occasions and never looks wrong. It’s quietly elegant and with perfect accessories. Her grey shoes pick up the background to her brooch and pearls making the whole look well thought out. Her hat adds to the formality.

    White is the colour of peace and quiet elegance is always appropriate. I think Kate looks respectful and totally suitable for this occasion.

  6. I’ve always loved this coat. And I feel that white and cream are perfectly acceptable, and respectful, colors for commemorations of this type. Kate looks wonderful.

  7. This coat was for a joyous occasion – Charlotte’s christening – and Catherine looked stunning that day but this is far from being the right outfit for such a somber venue in Belgium.
    White is NOT a mourning colour in Europe. It is in India – and only there.

    • Interesting …I did not know that about India. In Victorian England and in the South(USA) white was considered an acceptable mourning color for dresses after you were out of deep mourning. It is 100 years later. I actually give Kate applause for sharing a garment she wore on a special occasion as a measure of the respect she has for the lives lost during these horrific battles.

    • There is a time-honored tradition in the English monarchy of wearing white for mourning during royal tours. http://theenchantedmanor.com/hartnells-famous-white-wardrobe/

    • You might the Wikipedia article about “white mourning” interesting. There’s a Belgian connection.


      “The color of deepest mourning among medieval European queens was white. In 1393, Parisians were treated to the unusual spectacle of a royal funeral carried out in white, for Leo V, King of Armenia, who died in exile.[4] This royal tradition survived in Spain until the end of the fifteenth century. In 1934, Queen Wilhelmina of the Netherlands reintroduced white mourning after the death of her husband prince Henry. It has remained a tradition in the Dutch royal family.

      Queen Wilhelmina of the Netherlands wearing white mourning after the death of husband in 1934.
      In 2004, the four daughters of Queen Juliana of the Netherlands all wore white to their mother’s funeral. In 1993, the Spanish-born Queen Fabiola introduced it in Belgium for the funeral of her husband, King Baudouin I of Belgium. The custom for the Queens of France to wear deuil blanc [white mourning] was the origin of the White Wardrobe created in 1938 by Norman Hartnell for Queen Elizabeth (later called Queen Mother). She was required to make a State visit to France while in mourning for her mother.”

      The larger article also cites several other nationalities–not just India–in which white is a traditional color of mourning.

    • What is or isn’t customary dress for a funeral isn’t relevant. This isn’t a funeral; it’s a war remembrance ceremony. Business attire (or a military uniform if one has served) is appropriate at such an event. There are no colors that are required or off limits.

  8. I really like this overall look. I’ve been a fan of this McQueen ensemble since Princess Charlotte’s Christening. And I love her up-do. I think the entire look is so well put together.

  9. Personally I think this hat is the best accessory to this coat dress among the 3 appearances.

  10. What a smart, snappy hat! I wish she would have worn this hat with the lace dress at Royal Ascot.

  11. I actually think Queen Mathilde’s dress is less appropriate for the occasion than Catherine’s is. The color is right, but it veers a bit too far into cocktail/evening wear to me, with the lace overlay and the sheer sleeves. It’s a lovely dress, just maybe not quite right for the occasion.

    Granted, I love this coat, but Catherine’s look here strikes all the right notes.

  12. She looks beautiful in this coat dress.

  13. I’m not a big fan of the hat, but extensive scanning of the crowd photo showed me that I didn’t like any of the hats the women wore. Not a one! So the Duchess’s hat is in a crowded field!

  14. Thank you for your detailed coverage today. I myself have been to Ypres and to Menin Gate and it is just overwhelming to see the sheer volume of names on the walls. As a Canadian, it’s very moving to see the sacrifice our soldiers made so many years ago.

    As for Kate’s look, I am not fond of coat dresses in general however this one is just perfect and have always loved this look on her. The shoes and hate are also ok with this look as well.

    I’m not a fan of the brooch or earrings. The clutch…well, to me, it looks like a pencil case. I think a more structured clutch would have been more appropriate given the precise tailoring of the garment.

    Queen Mathilde looked lovely.

  15. While I think the coat/dress is perfect for the occasion, that hat is just too big for her head. From different angles, it’s distracting.

  16. First, I love this dress and hat. Have always loved the dress since Charlotte’s christening. However, I think it does look a bit out of place here. Not that it isn’t an appropriate style, or dressy enough, I just think the white looks out of place when everyone else is in black, or darker colors. I think she kind of “pops”, among the mourners, and not in a good way. I know that white is a traditional color for mourning, but I still think she looks very out of place. Again – love this dress, but I just think it pops in a bad way.

    Excited to see the post about the Catherine Walker dress from today!

  17. I confess to loving the earrings and the brooch, especially with the poppy accentuating it. Not one of those who scorns “costume” jewelry, or thinks Kate always has to wear real jewels.
    Realized that while I appreciate repeat wears, and think they send an important message, I am tired of this outfit and wish she had repeated something else. Perhaps I didn’t have much feeling for it the first time she wore it? It’s nice, but lacks something I can’t define.
    The best I can muster is that it looks fatigued.
    Love the clutch and the shoes.
    Wish Kate would dispose of fascinators and move to hats. Perhaps because I’m American and we don’t have much of a tradition of hat wearing, I think hats are very elegant, while most fascinators look like a wicked joke played by designers on a unsuspecting public. They overwhelm and distract, rather than blend and enhance.

    NOTE: Quick admin edit

    • Kate isn’t wearing a fascinator here, it is most definitely a hat. I’m trying to remember the last time she did wear a fascinator, actually – seems as if it’s been a while.

  18. Beautfiul re-wear of this coat. Simple, elegant, appropriate. She looks lovely. Everything about this look is right and I agree with others how wonderful it is to see her mature, polished look compared to other years. For those saying she stands out to much in white, if you look at the group photos you’ll see a number of other special guests in white — she fits in quite well while also standing out in terms of elegance and poise in just the right way. I’m in love with the grey shoes — perfect with this outfit, perfect for the occasion, perfect with the clutch.

    • I thought the same thing in terms of looking to others in photos wearing white as well. It occurred to me that in most of the photos she stands out because she is surrounded mostly by men, and many of those in military uniforms. And of course, men rarely ever wear white or light-colored suits.

  19. Absolutely lovely! Kate does so well in minimalist pieces (although I admit, sometimes too conservative and predictable)…but she is the future Queen, and has seemed to really come into her own with her confidence. I agree, so much different than previous years. She exudes confidence! I think the solid colours help Kate stand out, much how the Queen does with her bright colours and solids. We don’t often see royals in prints on the more formal occasions, I think there is a purpose to that!

  20. The Duchess looked lovely and appropriate, and the grey shoes are most welcome! McQueen suits her so well. Interesting to see the photo of the previous visit–while she looked attractive, her overall look was girlish with the long loose hair over the shoulder and the skirt just a skosh too short and looking unevenly hemmed. Today she looks sophisticated and professional and comfortable in her role.

  21. I loved that outfit for a spring event, but it feels heavy, warm, and out of place in July.

  22. I mean, this is spot on. Impossible to really find fault with it. I do adore the new clutch, and I appreciate that the gray shoes are picking up on its color. That said, I have always thought she looks wonderful in a nude shoe, and I especially love the Rossi praline, so by complimenting these I don’t in any way criticize others.

    White with touches of red is such a classic, striking look for the Duchess, and so very appropriate for the occasion today.

    This McQueen christening outfit will always be one of her iconic looks for me. That hat at Trooping the Color! And those are some of my favorite pictures of her with the kiddos.

  23. Kate looks nice -boring, but nice. As far as her collection of white coatdresses go, this one is my favorite and I always like seeing it again. Shoes are boring, but that’s to be expected by this point.

    I don’t like that hat – I think my favorite hat with these dress so far has been the first one, from Charlotte’s christening.

  24. Another one chiming in to say that Queen Mathilde looked absolutely fab, while Kate…Better to leave it at that, I think.

  25. What did Kate have on under the coat? I can see a lace dress or something in other pictures I have seen.
    Nothing special today, but I spose that’s the idea. She looked nice though.

  26. I think she looks striking. She cuts a striking silhouette.
    I enjoy seeing her looking so beautiful and well put together!

  27. Kate looks amazing – a stronger look than any we saw during the tour in my opinion. I am struck by how much more polished she looks in Belgium today than she did a few years ago. She is leaps and bounds more sophisticated in this coat (coat dress?) and hat. This is one of my favorite of her coats and with these shoes it’s perfection.

    • I came down here to comment exactly this. When people describe some of Kate’s looks as too juvenile, this before-and-after illustrates exactly what they mean! This ensemble is tailored, sophisticated, and womanly, but not staid or aging.

    • That was my first thought too upon seeing the 2014 picture again. I never thought Kate looked bad then, and I disagreed with a lot of comments at the time that said the Peter Pan collar was childish. But this year, with the polished bun and clean lines of the white coat, she looks so much more put together.

      I like Kate’s choice of white, it’s very pure. I also prefer the hat now to its first outing, and I’m glad we got to see the clutch again so soon with more of a blank canvas that makes the pattern stand out. I could do without the broche as I think it distracts from the poppy. Other than that, a very nice clean look and well-suited to the occasion. The ceremony itself was beautiful with those falling poppies.

    • Completely agree!!!!! And it’s funny to me….she wore cream and the other wore blue….just like this time! :)

  28. The verdict seems to be: Queen Mathilde’s sheer lace coat and silky dress with bracelet-length sleeves, décolletage, and puckered/rippled hemline is gorgeous and wonderfully appropriate. Good to know – personally, I found the look nearing peignoir territory, and I had a little giggle when I saw the watch she was wearing – oh, the comments had they switched ensembles…

    Kate looks lovely here, a minimalist look really suits her. Many of the other commenters covered all of the pluses for me, so I’ll just say that the visual presentation at the Gate and market square were simply beautiful, and heartbreaking.

    • Exactly! Well said. My first thought was “Thank goodness she didn’t wear lace,” but I hadn’t even thought about what the reaction would have been if she had worn Queen Mathilde’s outfit (I love your description of it). I have seen photos of today, and bless Queen Mathilde’s heart for wearing cream.

    • Oh, I agree so much!! Had Kate worn an outfit like Mathilde’s the cries would have gone up – ‘Not more lace!’ But Mathilde is seen less often than Kate so her pictures are charming and fresh. With Kate on the other hand, I think we have seen so many pics of her by now that the inevitable judgement of ‘boring’ gets trotted out though no human being could be expected to keep up an endless stream of Vogue-cover perfect outfits and every one original. I think Kate’s progress and variety of outfits are astonishing and I don’t think any other royal lady has adapted any quicker than she has.

      • Agreed – she’s really coming into her own, especially with the clean-lined, beautifully tailored ensembles, definitely her forte!

        I also loved Queen Mathilde’s updo here, very flattering to her face, and works great with the hat – I’d like to get a peek at the back.

    • I have zero desire to turn this into a “Kate vs Mathilde” discussion as I happen to think Mathilde is a lovely woman who seems genuine and who generally has great taste and style. This is also not a criticism of her outfit, but I do agree that if Kate had worn this exact same thing she would have been savaged online in tumblrs, blogs, social media and perhaps even in comments on this wonderful site.

      • Completely agree, katefanatic – Queen Mathilde has a lovely grace about her, and I consider this woman to be very fashionable – as do many others, including commenters here. Precisely the reason I highlighted the aspects of this fashionable woman – I loved that Queen Mathilde’s ensemble incorporated multiple elements that are go-to details for Kate, as well as slight imperfections like the lay of a hemline that don’t necessarily equate to an ill-made garment, poor choice, etc.

      • But Belgium is known for its lace, so although this is a whole lotta lace, it doesn’t seem inappropriate for the Queen of the Belgiums.

        • Not inappropriate for who she is, at all, but it does seem a somewhat curious choice for the event. She looks gorgeous, and the elements suit her every bit as well as they’ve suited Kate – including the wristwatch. She should definitely bring this back for a museum event, etc.

      • I agree. Its not a contest about X vs Y, I think both Kate and Mathilde dressed with a lot of thought and respect for the occasion.

        I’m also a fan of Theresa May’s dress sense. For a grown up politician, I think she dresses very well and her accessories could teach many of us a thing or two about how to put a look together and still do a big job. Its refreshing to see.

  29. I think she looks perfect apart from those earrings. I still reckon Pat Butcher (from Eastenders) would have worn them….

  30. Dear, thank you for the lovely blog, I have been following it for a while! Being a Belgian, it’s always lovely to see our Queen together with the Duchess. I think the Duchess wore a very suitable and lovely outfit this time in Ieper. I recognized the coat immediately, and was not surprised she decided for white.
    I do feel that our Queen (who I is very elegant, just like the Duchess), is also very well dressed! In their two meetings so far, I slightly prefer Mathilde’s outfits. Knowing Mathilde’s style, she did quite surprise me on both occasions (the first time with the style of the dress, in Zonnebeke, and this time with a bit of decolleté). I think Mathilde has a bit more boldness sometimes, while the Duchess -in Belgium- has always stayed close to her style. However, I do love the fact that Kate had her hair up this time. I am curious to see them later today in Zonnebeke. I also want to congratulate the performance artists and the crew of yesterday’s evocation. It was really touching, and being an architect, I felt they did the Lakenhalle proud as well! It was very, very well done. It is so important we continue to remember this. I am very proud of us Belgians, and the way we honor the ones who gave the ultimate sacrifice in our Flandres Fields!

    • The presentation last night looked incredible – I wish I could have seen it in person. In reading WWI history for a good while now, I have to say that the longsuffering and courage of the Belgians throughout more than four years of fighting is a credit to Belgium.

    • Thank you for your lovely comment. I am a big fan of Queen Mathilde and have followed her for some time. She does represent your country well, very much so.
      From just one US perspective, my own, I am forever astonished and humbled by the grace and dignity of those who have had such ghastly wars fought on their land. It is extraordinary. As you say, those who gave their lives must always be honored and remembered.

  31. Really interesting to see the photos of her wearing that hat earlier with long hair and also at the WW1 ceremony. She looks far more polished and professional today than in any of those earlier appearances. I think her outfit is perfect for the occasion and I infinitely prefer the way she is wearing her hair now.

  32. Thank you for posting the video of the poppies floating with the background music. How extraordinary! Catherine has certainly grown into her role.

  33. Kate looks perfect at this solemn event. The cream coat dress and hat, although both repeats, have not been worn together before. They are reserved but not boring. The jewellery complimented the outfit and gave it interest. We don’t often see Kate wearing a brooch and this one worked well, plus it anchored her poppy, which was both a gesture to show remembrance and a small splash of appropriate colour. The hair trim a few weeks back has allowed for a more compact chignon.

    And be still my heart, the shoes are not nude!!!!!!! With this outfit I was expecting the often worn praline pumps. The grey shoes and purse with similar tones, complimented the rest of the ensemble. Well done, Kate!

    • Yes!! You wrote exactly what I was thinking!!! I love the clutch, as well, with the texture it provides.

    • Ah, yes, the mark of the true long-term Kate-watcher – suffering in the face of endless nude courts! I managed to make my peace with them once we finally lost those Sledges, but I know where you’re coming from.

      If Kate is now discovering that neutral can come in other colours then we are indeed on the verge of an epoch-making Kate fashion moment. Just like getting through a whole tour with all-new outfits including two from edgy local designers. The Duchess comes on by fashion leaps and bounds ;-)

  34. As my first comment, firstly, may I say, what a great blog, I just love it!

    What I find most interesting in this post (other than the fabulous clothes of course) is that these events are now commonly being attended by the Duke and Duchess. I would have thought (as HM is understandably reducing some of her commitments) that the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall ( aka Charles and Camilla) would be the obvious choices, in lieu of HM. He is after all, the heir to the throne.

    Keep up the stellar coverage!

  35. Just for a little historical perspective, in Regency England ladies’ proper colors for mourning were black, white, grey (even grey and white stripe) and pale lavender. White was only just coming in as a bridal color (typically brides wore the color most flattering to them for their wedding or their best gown, and the wedding gown was worn again and again for balls or formal affairs, until it wore out).

    Love the combination of the brooch with the traditional poppy. Really pops (#sorrynotsorry) on that capacious collar.

  36. Whistle’s pleated skirt underneath?

  37. Susan, the caption under the Helen Mirren photo says she’s the UK prime minister?

    I love the Queen’s shoes!

    • The caption is the photo source, in this case the U.K. Prime Minister’s. But thank you for checking, Alisa, it would be very much like me to mess that sort of thing up! :)

  38. As far as Kate’s look today…. I thought Queen Mathilde looked very elegant

  39. I think the shoes are the Gianvito Rossi Lapis shoe. Based on color and the bottom portion of the heel.

  40. I loathe that hat. Looks like a pasta plate.

  41. Oh those definitely look the Emmy Rebecca!

  42. Oh those definitely look the Emmy Rebecca! Forget my comment of them looking like the Choo

  43. Agonizing event to memorialize. What a nightmare.

    On Kate, she looked great meeting the King and Queen a few years ago, but more mature this time – the simplified coat and shorter hair worn up look sophisticated.

  44. Those shoes look like the Jimmy Choo she wore to visit the women’s prison, don’t they? Other than that, I must say that although I love the outfit on its own, I feel the hat is too big and cheerful for a solemn event.

  45. Being from the United States, where hats are seldom worn, I know little about the customs associated with them. I notice that both Queen Mathilda and the Duchess wore their hats tilted towards the right side of their heads. Is there significance in this?

    • That is a good question, Riley. I don’t believe there is any significance, but I will check tomorrow with one of the royal hat experts. :)

      • The model, with the brown version of Kate’s hat, is wearing it on the exact same angle…so as you say, likely no significance.

  46. The coat appears tighter than previous wearings, but she looks smaller. I usually like this coat so I hope the ‘tighten it up tailoring’ didn’t strike again and it’s just the pictures. She stands out in the crowd, which I’m not sure is entirely appropriate given the somber event.

    • I also thought the coat looked tighter than before. I thought it was a tad too tight in the shoulders/chest compared to her usual tailoring, but the overall look is so well put-together I think this is a minor point.

  47. This is such a canny re-wear as the constituent parts come across as fresh — I’m quite made up how much better that hat looks this time. The simplicity of its sculpture chimes neatly with a mood of restraint and an updo helps it no end.

    I don’t mind how many times Kate brings this coat out, it’s an all-time fave for me. I love the way the collar is designed as two simple flaps folded back from the neckline, it gives quiet edge to some classic tailoring. And it’s very welcome to have white reprised in its role as a mourning colour.

    I find it equally smart how a sobering tone of grey is subtly introduced via clutch and shoes. Ass for jewellery, I’m not a big fan of the Balenciaga set, but the earrings and brooch are simple and appropriate and add a further hint of modernity along with the unusual neckline. Overall, a win for me.

    • Agree with everything you said, including the fact that I don’t really like the Balenciaga earrings or that broach, but I think they were fine for this wearing.

    • Yes – the updo takes the hat to another level, and the clutch stands out so well here, instead of blending into the pattern and accessories in Germany.

      The Daily Mail had a “retrospective” of Diana’s gowns over the years, and one Catherine Walker gown (white top with peachy coral skirt) had buttons at the cuffs that were dead ringers for the Balenciaga earrings – if they weren’t already identified, I might have been persuaded that she converted those buttons into earrings, ha!

  48. Elegant and regal for such a solemn event.

  49. I don’t usually comment because I don’t approve of the promotion of the dailymail site on this site but I realize I’m in the minority on this so I respect that all of you do enjoy that site.

    I wanted to write before there are too many comments on the colour of her dress, that The Queen herself wore white at the 90th Anniversary of the Battle of Vimy Ridge; a yellow/cream outfit at the 75th anniversary of the Battle of Britain flypast (Sophie wore white); and PINK at the memorial service of the 75th anniversary of the Battle of Britain. If white, pink and yellow are good enough for Her Majesty, The Queen – who is ALWAYS appropriately dressed – then I think she will approve of the Duchess of Cambridge’s attire. I think Catherine represented The Queen, and therefore the UK people very well.

  50. I love that these historical moments are still being observed and remembered. Thank you for covering them with such poise.

    Kinda off topic, but I spy Rebecca Deacon in one of the photos. I thought she left as the Duchess’ assistant in March. Did I misunderstand?

  51. Do you know the identity of Queen Mathilde’s shoes? They are beautiful!

  52. Mathilde seems over dressed and Kate seems a bit out of place in ivory? Camilla gets away with white because that generally what she seems to wear, but I think perhaps navy or light blue would’ve been more appropriate? I’m not a fan of William’s school boy tie either. I guess Kate wears white when visiting Belgium?

    With the exception of the hat, this coat dress is one of my favorites.

    • Prince William’s tie is a regimental tie and I believe it is of the Combined Cavalry Old Comrades Association and so therefore highly appropriate.
      I’m sorry I can’t post a link, but a quick “google ” search will find related articles and explain both Prince William and Prince Harry’s relationship with this organisation.

    • In Europe white colour was mourning colour long before black. Thus it’s very appropriate.

  53. I loved this look on Catherine. Appropriate, elegant and stylish. Loved her accessories – her bag and shoes were a lovely match with her outfit. Well done.

  54. Flawless. I don’t believe there’s much more to say.

    I love that new clutch, and find it so intriguing that it is almost the same dimensions as the programme for the event. Cunning.

    Do we know why Queen Mathilde is wearing only 1 glove? I presume the hand-shaking necessitated leaving off the right-hand glove, but no one else seems to be wearing them at all.

  55. Shoes look like the ones she worn planting a tree in Canada in 2011

    • Thank you for the tip Sharon! That pair is actually the Tabitha Simmons style. Now I’m wondering if we ever saw Kate wear them again….? Hmmm. :)

  56. Terrific post, as usual. I like Kate in the slightly longer hemline, as opposed to August, 2014 picture. Thank-you so very much for including pictures and video of the battle itself. It’s not all about fashion, and I’m glad you recognize that.

  57. I think that shoes maybe are from Gianvito Rossi’s 105 : https://www.gianvitorossi.com/pl_en/woman/pumps/gianvito-105-9262.html
    or Emmy London “Rebecca Riviera” in grey : https://www.emmylondon.com/collections/court-shoes/products/rebecca-riviera
    I hope that I helped :)

  58. Love the coat dress, brooch, clutch, and shoes. She looked elegant and regal. The hat and earrings were a miss, but she certainly stood out in the crowd, amidst all the somber colors.

  59. Mathilde looks fantastic…appropriate but lovely. The less said about Kate’s outfit, the better. Snooze.

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