We are back with some newsbytes and a few retail updates.
We begin with multiple reports about a state visit next spring by Spain’s King Felipe and Queen Letizia. While there’s no guarantee whatsoever that the Duke & Duchess will be at functions with the King & Queen, several news stories are portraying an element of the visit as some sort of fashion face-off between the Duchess and Queen Letizia. More from The Times, in a story titled ‘Watch out Kate, it’s the competition.”
They are the couple who saved the reputation of the royal family by injecting some much-needed glamour, style and modern attitudes into an institution often seen as outdated and saddled by the errors of the past.
No, not the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge but King Felipe VI and Queen Letizia of Spain… Now there are plans for the couple to come on a state visit to Britain in the spring — the first by a Spanish monarch for 30 years.
To be fair, the story carries no reference to any sort of fashion competition, nor would the reporters be responsible for the headline; at most large newspapers reporters write their stories and the headlines are created by entirely different staff. At Elle UK the headline downplays that element: “This Spanish Style Queen Could Be Kate’s New Best Friend,” while the topic is raised in the body of the story.
And while no one can send shoppers into a frenzy quite like Kate – her latest outfits regularly causing palpitations throughout the highstreet; following Queen Leticia’s hairstyle has become a national pastime in Spain, where she goes from rocking the bob to wavy, golden tresses with careless abandon.
So welcome Letizia, we think this could be the start of a beautiful friendship.
I’m just guessing here, but I think it unlikely we will see a style story about suits and ties should William and Felipe meet. (Harrumph.)
In a piece from Fashionista there is a terrific interview with June Kenton, the woman at the helm of lingerie Royal Warrant holder Rigby and Peller. From a portion of Alison Syrett’s interview where Ms. Kenton is explaining how the royal warrant process worked when she purchased Rigby and Peller:
…the royal warrant is given to a person, and not to a company. That meant I had to go to Buckingham Palace to meet the Queen in her bedroom to see if she would allow it to transfer to me. To put it mildly, it was very nerve-racking — most people who meet the Queen meet her dressed!
It turned out brilliantly, and the Queen agreed I could have the royal warrant. But it was intimidating. You have to be there dead on time. She’s very formal, although lovely, just the loveliest person. I get on with her extremely well, and I hope that I do a good job.
Following the acquisition of Intimacy brand’s stores, Rigby and Peller now have 14 stores in the US, including shops in Atlanta, Chicago, New York, New Jersey and Florida. Back to the Fashionista piece:
Have you helped Kate Middleton?
Yes we have, and she’s lovely. She’s very nice.
So she wears Rigby & Peller bras?
Sometimes. I’m not saying anything! [laughs] I think people assume so much about Kate. When she goes out everyone’s like, “The dress was a hundred and something, the shoes were so and so and the coat was two thousand something.” Everything she wears is priced. I think it’s really sad for her.
Ms. Kenton notes that 85% of women are wearing an incorrectly sized bra, a sentiment many lingerie brands echo, although I have seen the percentage vary anywhere from 60% to the 85% quoted by Ms. Kenton. Rigby and Peller carries a number of upscale brands, offering some lovely styles.
The entire interview was fascinating, click here to read the entire piece.
Kate-favored jeweler Mappin and Webb is the proud owner of two new royal warrants. Below, Kate wearing the firm’s ‘Empress’ earrings.
From The Telegraph’s story:
Jewellery chain Mappin & Webb, official silversmith to the Queen, has had its royal warrant extended, cementing its royal relationship. The company celebrates its 240th anniversary this month, and has held a royal warrant as a silversmith since 1897.
“We are privileged to confirm that Mappin & Webb has been appointed Jewellers, Goldsmiths & Silversmiths to Her Majesty The Queen,” said chief executive Brian Duffy.
In addition to now being jewelers and goldsmiths to the Queen, the company has an enormous responsibility as custodian of the crown jewels, an honor they have had since 2012. More from Royal Central:
The Crown Jeweller is the custodian of the Crown Jewels and handles preparing them for the State Opening of Parliament and other state occasions. The appointment of Mappin & Webb’s craftsman to the role of Crown Jeweller is a great honour for this truly English brand.
There is good news for US-based shoppers, Saks now carries select Goat styles online and in a few stores. The retailer has Kate’s Vreeland dress available in this fall’s color, ‘fern’, priced at $740 (use code FREESHIP for free shipping). Matches Fashion also has the Vreeland in stock, the dress is $655 (and this includes import duty charges; for free USA shipping use code USAFREE).
What does being a British brand mean to you?
It means an awful lot. I’m proud to manufacture the majority of the collection in Britain and support the terrific skills and expertise we have here.
The full interview is here.
We have news on LK Bennett’s Cayla dress, currently available in UK stores and on the UK website: the retailer tells me the frock will be offered in US shops and on the US website. However, only in the red colorway, not the new (and very pretty) Sloane Blue. That remains a UK exclusive, but LK Bennett says it can certainly be ordered online/phone/etc. and shipped to the US.
Via Spiga created a lookalike years ago when the garment was first worn, the coat remains available today. It is known by different names, including the Kate coat, Mixed Media coat, Faux Fur Collar coat, and a few others.
For those interested in a repliKate, here are links to the pieces shown above:
PRICES UPDATED 10/13:
$199$179 – Saks Off Fifth ‘Kate’ Faux Fur Coat $192$192 – Amazon ‘Kate’ Wool Blend Faux Fur Collar $252$270 – Lord & Taylor Leatherette & Faux Fur-Trimmed Coat
- $354 – Bloomingdale’s Faux Leather and Faux Fur Collar Coat
Macy’s has a similar Via Spiga style, however that version has a hood ($269). If thinking about purchasing one of the coats, check our list of discounts below to ensure you get the best price possible on the garment.
We move on to Sales and Savings opportunities. Monday is Columbus Day in the US, that means discounts abound at most merchants. At Neiman Marcus Last Call the code GIMME10 results in an extra 10% off all merchandise, excluding clearance goods. For free shipping on purchases above $99 use promo code LCSHIP.
Saks is doing a 2-day ‘flash sale,’ with prices going back up at midnight on the 9th. At which point I’m sure other prices will go down for a Columbus Day promotion. (I’ll update here when that happens.) UPDATED: The latest promotional email from Saks is for discounts on dresses. For free shipping use promo code FREESHIP.
Bloomingdale’s is also doing a sale event with an additional percentage off . There is a sizable amount of Ralph Lauren discounted, a smattering of Tory Burch, and a fair number of Diane von Furstenberg styles included in the promotion.
And finally, LL Bean is offering 10% off one’s entire order, use promo code SAVE10 at checkout. We include this retailer because many have praised the company’s copyKate Breton-stripe top, the Women’s French Sailor’s Shirt ($29.95).
We’ll leave you with a quick list of several links that people seemed to enjoy on the WKW Facebook page. All are not directly clothing-related, nor do most offer any sort of intellectual contribution to a conversation about Kate’s clothing.
- 19 Pictures we Really Hope Kate Middleton and Prince William Have Framed from the folks at PopSugar
- Cosmopolitan shares Definitive Proof that Kate Middleton Only Ever Wears 11 Outfits (a tongue in cheek piece)
- 50 Times Will and Kate’s Romance Gave us Goosebumps by Good Housekeeping
- Also from Pop Sugar, 60 Style Lessons Kate Middleton Taught Us
We will see you Saturday for Kate and William’s engagement at Harrow College marking World Mental Health Day. In addition to that function, I wouldn’t be surprised if we also saw Kate at Saturday night’s Rugby World Cup match between Wales and Australia. (There’s been absolutely nothing said about this, it’s merely my instinct, nothing more.)