Nov 282013

NOTE: Please accept my apology to those who may have seen a “non-post post” earlier. Yours truly tried to multitask and failed miserably: it was sweet potatoes vs. the blog, the potatoes clearly won yesterday’s round.

The Duchess chose another piece by Temperley London for tonight’s annual SportsBall, wearing the label’s Templeton dress.

Sean Dempsey/PA Wire

Sean Dempsey/PA Wire

The SportsBall recognizes and benefits SportsAid; the Duchess is the organization’s Patron. SportsAid “helps talented young disabled and non-disabled athletes to achieve their ambitions. Since 1976, the charity has distributed more than £50 million to aspiring young athletes throughout the UK…”.

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Jan 172013

We are back with a few more of our 2012 polls, Our first poll looks at Kate’s “old,” or previously seen footwear. We’re doing this one because I think favorites may change or differ from last year’s choices after having an additional year of seeing Kate wear the shoes in different settings with different outfits.

We begin with the Jimmy Choo “Cosmic,” part of the brand’s 24:7 capsule collection of handbags, shoes and boots. It features a towering 5″ heel atop a 1″ closed-toe platform. Kate’s version is black suede, selling for $695 at Jimmy Choo, as well as Net-a-Porter. (There are many other finishes available, including patent and glitter.)  Here is an example of Kate wearing the Cosmic with a shorter dress, providing a good look at the shoe.

Jimmy Choos Cosmic

Kate’s grey Rupert Sanderson “Malone” shoes were back this year, the Duchess paired them with her blue M Missoni coat when visiting Fortnum & Mason with HM and Camilla in March. The grey suede heels feature a rounded toe and heel, they were previously seen in 2011 for Order of the Garter.  The shoe is shown in stock at the company’s website, but only in black patent, it is £375 (about $600).

Rupert Sanderson “Malone”

LK Bennett’s “Art” pump was seen again on multiple occasions in 2012, including Kate’s visit to Olympic Park in March, and the Jubilee trip to Nottingham with the Queen and Prince William. The navy leather pump is an older style, it features a broader heel and rounded toe.

LK Bennett “Art”

The blue suede pumps by Prada were back, paired with Rebecca Taylor separates in April when Kate and William attended a reception honoring the Scott-Amundsen Centenary Race to the South Pole. The pump is a medium blue suede, it features a pointed toe and squared footbed. It is no longer available for purchase.

Splash News

We saw Kate wear the Jimmy Choo Vamp several times in 2012. Below we show it paired with a Roland Mouret gown in May for a dinner with William at Claridge’s. This style is part of the CHOO 24:7 collection mentioned above, the platform sandal is done in metallic leather with 4.7″ heel and 1″ platform (comparable to a 3 1/2″ heel). The Vamp remains available for $750 at Jimmy Choo online in Kate’s “champagne glitter” color, Nordstrom also offers the shoe for $750 in multiple colors.

Splash News/Jimmy Choo

Kate accessorized a pink Emilia Wickstead dress at the Sovereigns’ Luncheon in May with Prada pumps in a blush/rose satin. I am sorry we don’t have a better photo of them or product shot.

John Stilwell/Press Association

Not to be overlooked, the much loved Sledge by LK Bennett, seen many times in 2012. (If ever I thought an inanimate object deserved its own parody Twitter account, the Sledge would be it.) The patent leather shoe has a 4.5″ heel, 1″ platform and rounded toe. The color worn by Kate is Taupe, the shoe comes in many other colors. The Sledge is available at LK Bennett for £195/$345 and also $345 at Nordstrom.

Paul Edwards/The Sun/PA Wire – LK Bennett

Kate’s black Prada pumps were seen several times last year, the distinctive ‘curved’ heel distinguishes them from other styles, as does the black Prada heel and gold logo.

PA Wire/Splash

At the announcement of a charitable initiative in June we saw Kate’s Pied a Terre ‘Imperia’ The espadrille-style wedge has a canvas upper and buckle slingback, the shoe is available in many colors, including the natural worn by Kate (£80, $160).

PA Wire/Pied a Terre

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We have separated out boots from other footwear, the styles and purposes are so different it didn’t make sense to have them grouped together. In the boot category we begin with Kate’s “Charge It” boots from Russell and Bromley, shown most recently when Kate was discharged from the hospital in December. Unfortunately this style is no longer available.

Jeff Moore/

Aqutalalia’s high-heeled “Rhumba” boots were seen on many occasions. The boots have a stacked heel, rubber sole, half zipper and weatherproofed suede with a bit of stretch to it, one reason they are so comfortable. (And popular.) The Rhumba is available for $698 at Aquatalia, in *very* limited sizes at half-price at Neiman Marcus.

Courtesy Alyssa Phillips/Aquatalia/Newbury Today Twitter Feed

Kate’s other Aquatalia footwear was also seen with some frequency, her “Royal” booties (called the “Regal” at Aquatalia) were worn several times. The shoe has a cushioned footbed, elastic stretch panels, and a 3.5″ heel with a 1/2″ platform. Nordstrom offers the bootie it in many sizes and colors for $398, although Kate’s ‘Espresso’ suede seems to be sold out. Aquatalia has the bootie in several colors as well, it is $425.

Splash News/Aquatalia by Marvin K.

Our next pair of boots is more practical, Kate’s Le Chameau wellies appeared again in 2012, shown below on a “roughing it” camping program in June.  She wears the Vierzonord, a style designed to protect against cold temperatures that is also “100% waterproof”. The boots remain available in many sizes at Philip Morris UK, the US version of these are the Ladies Vierzon Nord, we show them at Orvis, they seem to have most sizes in stock.

David Parker/Daily Mail/PA Wire

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Finally today, our hat poll.When visiting De Montfort University with Her Majesty in March Kate wore a hat by James Lock, the ‘Fairy Tale’. Available in 8 different colors, this hat retailed at £285, roughly $450 USD at today’s exchange rates.

De Montfort University Twitter Feed/Lock & Co.

Kate wore another piece by Lock and Co. for another March engagement, the annual St. Patrick’s Day ceremony with the Irish Guards. This piece was the firm’s ‘Betty Boop’ style, it is no longer available for sale.

Anwar Hussein/Lock & Company

At the April wedding of Kate’s friend Hannah Gillingham she wore a hat attributed to Madeleine Millinery by the Daily Mail. Unfortunately we have no photos of the event, neither of the picture services I use have images. You can see pictures from the Mail here, or visit Pop Sugar for 60+ photos. (It will be included in our poll.)

The Duchess spruced up a previously seen Emilia Wickstead dress with a new pink hat for the Buckingham Palace Garden party in May. The hat is by Jane Corbett, featuring a broad brim, lace trim on the underside and a bow detail atop and below the brim.

PA Wire/Jane Corbett

When the big Diamond Jubilee celebrations got underway the first event was a Jubilee River Pageant. Kate chose a piece by Sylvia Fletcher for James Lock and Company, similar to the company’s ‘My Fair Lady’ style. This piece is no longer available.

PA Wire

Kate selected a piece by Jane Taylor Millinery, for the Jubilee Service of Thanksgiving at St. Paul’s Cathedral. The Beaded Cocktail Hat features silk tulle and organza discs, it is embellished with smoked quarts and veiling. The hat appears to still be available, priced at £790, approximately $1260.

Tim Hales/Pool/PA Wire, Jane Taylor

Kate also brought back her Whiteley Cappucino hat for the June 9th wedding of Prince William’s cousin Emily McCorquodale, pairing it with the grey silk of a Katherine Hooker coat. (Seen below left.) The third time we saw Kate wearing the piece was in July of last year at Order of the Thistle ceremonies in Scotland, worn with a yellow Emilia Wickstead coat. (It was first worn to the Epsom Derby in 2011.)

Splash News

When visiting Nottingham in June Kate repeated a fascinator we’ve seen before, a navy confection by Rachel Trevor-Morgan. This piece was first seen when Kate and William visited the Irish Guards in 2011, shown in the image below on the right.

Splash News

Another new chapeau for Kate was by Jane Corbett, worn for the June 16th Trooping the Colour events.

Splash News/PA Wire

June brought a panoply of hats, we saw yet another during Garter Day events. The piece by milliner Jane Corbett showcased a creamy sisal base topped by an elaborate bow. I believe Kate wore the same hat to the June 30th wedding of her friend Alice St. John Webster, our limited photos of that event are here.

Splash News/Rachel Trevor-Morgan Milliners

Kate wore a Jane Taylor hat when arriving in the Solomon Islands during the Royal Tour. The bespoke piece featured aquamarine colored stones to match her Jonathan Saunders dress, it was pinned to the back of her head.

Jane Taylor Millinery/Rebecca English, The Daily Mail-Mail Online

When attending the wedding of longtime friend Thierry Kelaart in late September Kate sported a new hat once again I don’t have photos, and suggest you visit this story in the Mail. It was a soft grey straw trimmed with organdie, embroidered to match the embroidery on Kate’s silvery gray Erdem dress worn for Trooping the Colour.

Our final hat from 2012 is a repeated item, seen during Remembrance Sunday ceremonies in November. Kate brought back the distinctive black Philip Treacy style worn for William’s passing out ceremony at Sandhurst in 2006.

Press Association/Splash

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We’ll have our final surveys (on Kate’s dresses) within the week.

Nov 272012

Kate elected to bring back another frock for today’s opening of a new Gallery at the Natural History Museum.

Stefan Reimschuessel/

Kate joined other guests, museum officials and curators at this evening’s event commemorating the new Treasures Gallery. Below we see Kate between Doctor Paul Barrett (left) and the Museum Director, Doctor Michael Dixon (right).

Via Paul Harrison, Sky News (@SkyNewsRoyal)

The Gallery will be a permanent exhibit at the museum, housing 22 of the Museum’s most precious and unusual artifacts. CNN’s David Wilkinson shared this image on Twitter, giving a sense of the atmosphere inside the Museum for tonight’s party.

David Wilkinson, CNN Twitter Feed (@Wilkinson_David)

This story in the Express offers insight on items in the Collection:

  • John James Audubon’s The Birds Of America: The world’s most expensive book (a copy sold in 2012 for £7,321,250) was published between 1827 and 1838 and is famous for its life-size illustrations.

Natural History Museum via The Guardian

  • Barbary lion skull: The skull of a north African lion that lived in the Tower of London in the 13th or 14th century.
  • Joseph Banks’s herbarium sheet: Samples from Captain Cook’s first voyage to Australia in 1770.
  • Neanderthal skull: The first Neanderthal skull discovered is of an adult female and about 50,000 years old

    Natural History Museum via The Guardian

Sir David Attenborough, the renowned naturalist and broadcaster, was also supposed to be on hand for tonight’s festivities, but he was under the weather and unable to attend. His absence resulted in Kate being asked to step up and speak about the new Gallery, Paul Harrison of Sky News shared this image of Kate awaiting her turn at the podium.

Via Paul Harrison, Sky News (@SkyNewsPaul)

More from the Daily Mail on Kate’s remarks:

The Natural History Museum has a very special place in the heart of this nation. William and I are just two of millions of people who have passed through these doors, and marvelled at the spectacular wonders of the natural world, housed in this beautiful gallery.

I care passionately about what this museum stands for. Being here tonight, seeing some of nature’s finest treasures, reminds me just how precious and awe inspiring the natural world is.

Here is a quick refresher on the Full Pleated Shirt Dress: it features a Peter Pan collar, pleats just about everywhere, and long sleeves gathered at the cuff. The 100% silk material has Mulberry’s Peace and Love pattern woven into it, the color is officially called cabbage and the frock originally sold at $2200/£1400. (The dress is no longer in stock at any retailers we surveyed.)

Kate accessorized with her Jimmy Choo ‘Cosmic’ pumps. While the dress may be long gone, the shoes remain available at Net-a-Porter, they are priced at $695.

Jimmy Choo/Net-a-Porter

It appears that Kate was sporting a new pair of earrings, more on that if we are able to dig up proper photos and/or more information.

It was a fine appearance for the Duchess, especially when considering she had to assume a speaking role at the last moment. Despite being an enormous Mulberry fan I never was very fond of this particular frock, that remains the case. But then, last time I checked “dress to make WKW happy” wasn’t in Kate’s job description, I need to remind myself of this fact occasionally.


Also today, two more appointments have been added to Kate’s calendar, the first is this Friday, November 30th, when the Duchess returns to her old prep school, St. Andrew’s in Pangbourne, Berkshire. Kate will meet the girls Hockey Team, watch games indoors, and she will also open a new Astroturf pitch outside. Below, images from St. Andrews Pangbourne, I imagine the pitch being replaced could be the one shown below with the girls playing hockey.

Via St. Andrews

Additionally, Wednesday December 5th Kate takes part in the annual ICAP Charity Day, put on by the ICAP brokerage house.  On this day the company donates 100% of its revenue and commissions to charities, notables like Kate “help” the traders by closing deals with customers, generally via phone. Just some of the celebrities who took part in last year’s Charity Day:

Via ICAP Charity Day

Ms. Streep was in the firm’s New York offices.

Via ICAP Charity Day

Last year £12.75/US$20 million was raised, that’s no small amount of money going to charity. Two of the charities being supported this year are The Art Room, of which Kate is Royal Patron and Tusk, William is Patron of this organization.

Kate should be able to get some fairly good advice on how things work at ICAP’s Charity Day from several family members.


Prince Charles, Camilla, and Prince William have all participated in previous Charity Days.

We’ll be back tomorrow, Kate and William have a full slate of activities in Cambridge and Peterborough, starting at 10:20am. (That’s 5:20am ET/2:20am PT.)