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It’s the Suzannah ‘Budding Hearts’ Dress for Prince George Birthday Pictures, Kate to Represent the Queen At Overseas Engagement

With the happiest of Birthday Wishes to Prince George and his parents, here are the new photos of TRH, released just moments ago.

John Stillwell/PA Wire

John Stillwell/PA Wire

The photos were taken by John Stillwell of the UK Press Association.

John Stillwell/PA Wire

John Stillwell/PA Wire

Coinciding with the release of the photographs, a brief statement from the Duke and Duchess:

We would like to take this opportunity on George’s first birthday to thank everyone over the last year, wherever we have met them both at home and overseas, for their warm and generous good wishes to George and our family.’

The photos adorned the front pages of many British newspapers.

Via Neil Henderson's "Tomorrow's Papers Today" Twitter Feed (@Hendopolis on Twitter)

Via Neil Henderson’s “Tomorrow’s Papers Today” Twitter Feed (@Hendopolis on Twitter)

As noted in our previous post, Kate wore her Suzannah Budding Heart Tea Dress. The frock features a deep vee neck, smocking beneath the bustline and at the shoulder, as well as horizontal pleating sleeve tucks at the cuff (I’m sure that’s not the proper way to describe the design element, many thanks in advance to anyone who might be able to advise me of the correct terminology). With thanks to those leaving comments, here are the suggestions thus far: cummerbund pleats, tucks and sleeve tucks. Tucks it is!

The dress sells for £475 (about $800), and it is made in England.Suzannah 'Budding Heart Green Silk Tea Dress'

Previously we noted the Duchess was wearing this frock just a few weeks ago for the Tour de France race start (below left), and for several engagements in New Zealand during the royal tour.Splash News / Splash News

This is a signature style for the brand, offered in a variety of prints, but always in 100% silk. More from the product description:

The beautiful budding heart print has a beautiful retro vibe. Our expert printers in Como, Italy, translated this wonderful print onto beautiful Italian silk crepe de chine exclusively for Suzannah.

The smocking detailing at the shoulder and under the bust add a wonderful vintage charm, with the bias line of the skirt skimming to below the knee. Skirt part is lined in 100% silk habotai. The silhouette lifts the bust and flatters the body.

An all-season style, working well with bare legs and peep toes, or darker opaques in winter months.

Below left we show Kate’s Budding Heart motif in navy and soft pink; on the right, the red Pop Hibiscus pattern. Both dresses are also priced at £475.



Pippa Middleton wore a bespoke style by the designer for Prince George’s christening.

John Stillwell/Polaris Images

The Duchess’s sister is just one notable name wearing creations by this designer; others include opera singer Katherine Jenkins, Princesses Beatrice and Eugenie, singers Nelly Furtado and Paloma Faith, as well as many other entertainers, socialites, and celebrities.

Kate was also wearing her pearl drop earrings from Annoushka, suspended from her Kiki McDonough diamond hoops.

John Stillwell-PA Wire/Annoushka/Kiki McDonough

John Stillwell-PA Wire/Annoushka/Kiki McDonough

One quick note: as many of you have noticed, there is a dark spot on Kate’s left shoulder in the first photo. I concur with those who believe it is likely the dress did a temporary stint as the Royal Burp Cloth.


Also today, confirmation Kate will be traveling to Malta in September. She will represent Her Majesty at events commemorating the 50th anniversary of the country’s independence September 20th and 21st. Located in the Mediterranean Sea, Malta is where the Queen and Duke of Edinburgh lived there for two years (1949 – 1951) when Prince Philip was stationed there as a naval officer. It is the only time HM lived something of a ‘normal’ life, more from The Week:

Malta holds a special place in the royal couple’s memories… Philip was stationed on the island with the Mediterranean fleet in the period 1949-1951 and the then-Princess Elizabeth would visit from London whenever he had shore leave. It is considered the only time the couple enjoyed anything approaching a normal married life beyond the glare of public attention – normal, at least, for a serving officer and his wife.

William and Kate’s time in Anglesey, when the Prince served as a search and rescue pilot, is somewhat analogous to the experiences of Her Majesty and Prince Philip.




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Tuesday 22nd of July 2014

These are lovely family photos, especially the one they are all looking up, it's more interesting as it leaves more to the imagination. The photographer is obviously very good as it's not easy to get every member of the family to look interesting.

I'm so glad I own this dress, I got put as soon as she first wore it as I always wanted to have a well made version of a tea dress and it has turned out to be perhaps my favourite dress I've purchased for a while. I wrote before that it's so feminine and versatile: you can wear to all seasons and in many occasions as they write online. The colour and print are usual and very flattering.

I bought the annoushka pearls for my birthday last year and this year I'm buying the Kiki hoops. All this time I've been earring them with the incredibly similar heavenly necklaces hoops:

Needless to say, as with kate, the most classic earrings I own.


Tuesday 22nd of July 2014

I am utterly amazed by the fact that you seem to buy so many things the Duchess wears. Do you resemble her, I wonder? I'm just curious, because I've purchased only one item she's worn. Many of her choices wouldn't quite suit me, and I also feel some hesitation about appearing in anything she's worn, because I don't want people to claim I'm copying her. I'd find that a bit embarrassing. I know someone who doesn't copy her but is often accused of doing so, because she does rather resemble the Duchess and has similar tastes. She's quite annoyed by it.

You don't mind?


Tuesday 22nd of July 2014

These pictures are lovely. George is such a curious baby, which is so nice to see. Other sites have agreed that the wet spot on the Duchess' shoulder is from George drooling on her. It's nice it wasn't photoshopped out. Everybody knows babies drool.

I really love the dress because I love the retro look. In fact, about 20 years ago, I had a dress in the exact same print and color as that red one. The neck on mine was scoop but the sleeves, high waist and knee-length skirt were the exact same. I wore that thing for several years and then gave it to my sister who wore it for several more years. A really flattering style and Kate looks wonderful.


Tuesday 22nd of July 2014

I was curious about the dress pattern. Is it often that a dress of that expense does not line up the pattern across the back seam {like you would try to line up the pattern on a wallpaper seam is the only analogy I can think of!}. Wondering if that is usual or unusual! Thanks, fashion experts!


Wednesday 23rd of July 2014

I'd also agree that's a good point about the print match. While I realise that it's no longer a priority in general, I think at £475 for alight summer dress I might expect some extra care to be taken rather than rely on the folds of the skirt to hide the mis-match.


Tuesday 22nd of July 2014

Print placement is a very interesting topic! I work at a fashion brand that rarely places prints, unless there's something very specific and usually, the print is quite large scale. The other option is border prints (eg Kate's LK Bennett Poppy dress), where the fabric is printed at the top and bottom of the edges and then cut accordingly (if this makes any sense)

Most brands wouldn't print place with such a small scale floral. Print placement is quite costly as you use more fabric when perfectly aligning prints, than you would if you were just cutting the fabric in the most efficient way (ie having the least amount of wastage, to make the most money!)


Tuesday 22nd of July 2014

That's a very good point, Amy. When I was little, our French seamstress would make sure that the prints flowed smoothly, no matter the darts or seams. However, I've been told that it's no longer a priority and that in fact, designers worry more about cut now than whether patterns are artfully arranged.


Tuesday 22nd of July 2014

I have often seen those pleats on the sleeves called cummerbund or cumberbund pleats.


Tuesday 22nd of July 2014

I love the family portraits what a stunning family. I love kate's green dress too.

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