We are back with our next poll, but first, news about the Duke and Duchess visiting the tiny kingdom of Bhutan. This morning Kensington Palace announced William and Kate will visit the country. We learn more from Victoria Murphy’s story in The Mirror:
The couple will be welcomed by the country’s Dragon King Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck and Queen Jetsun Pema, dubbed the “William and Kate” of the Himalayas.
The trip will coincide with the previously announced tour of India. Gordon Rayner notes in his story for The Telegraph that the Duchess and Queen Jetsun Pema have a number of things in common:
- both studied art history in college
- the Queen enjoyed sports in school and was captain of her basketball team, while Kate very much enjoyed athletics, especially hockey
- both are known for their fashion sense and considered fashion trendsetters
The Queen is expecting her first child in the spring.
More about the country from The Mirror story:
Bhutan is a tiny and remote Kingdom nestled between India and China and only began to open itself to insiders in the 1970s. It has been ranked as the happiest country in all of Asia and the eighth happiest country in the world.
Back to The Telegraph article:
It was almost completely cut off from the outside world for centuries, and refused to allow outside influences such as television, fearing they would undermine the monarchy and national culture.
Television was finally allowed in 1999, the same year, as the internet, following the successful introduction of radio broadcasting in 1973.
The country sits on the eastern edge of Himalayas and is roughly the size of Switzerland. Its location offers dramatic scenery and stunning vistas. As noted in our initial post about the spring tour, George and Charlotte are not expected to travel on this tour. We will keep you posted on all of the information relating to this portion of the spring tour, in addition to the trip to India.
On to our next polls, these ask for your vote on your favorite daytime look worn by the Duchess.
We begin with the introduction of a new label for the Duchess, Madderson London, worn mid-January for an Art Room opening. The brand offers womenswear in both standard and maternity styles. Kate wore the Naomi dress in Madderson’s standard size, not the maternity design the brand offered. (BTW, Madderson is bringing the Naomi back for s/s 2016, in a white and yellow color combination.)
Mid-January Kate carried out a number of engagements in Kensington, wearing Seraphine Maternity’s ‘Florrie’ dress. She wore the frock again February 18 when at Emma Bridgewater for an EACH engagement. (If fond of the dress, it is on sale, discounted from $159 to $111.)
The Duchess visited Ben Ainslie Racing in Portsmouth in February, wearing the thematically appropriate ‘Boat Print Dress’ dress from Alice Temperley’s diffusion line for John Lewis.
Also in February, Kate’s recorded message for Children’s Mental Health Week. The Duchess wore Jaeger’s Tile Print Dress in the video. The shirtdress style frock is silk with a contrast placket and cuffs and placed print at the hem and hip area. (If fond of the dress it is reduced to £99 at Jaeger.)
At the beginning of March, we saw the Duchess in a pretty floral print from Erdem, worn for a private function at the Goring Hotel. The ‘Darla’ dress features a cutout back, round neckline, three-quarter length sleeves, and a fitted bodice with a flare at the hem. The piece is from Erdem’s Resort 2013 collection.
Kate wore a new dress from ASOS Maternity when visiting Brookhill Children’s Centre mid-March, the retailer’s ‘Wrap Skater Dress’ in Polka Dot. Made of a stretchy viscose/elastane blend, the dress has a wrap front, deep vee-neckline, and three-quarter or bracelet length sleeves. (It remains available in most sizes, priced at $60.)
July means Wimbledon, and this year the Duchess wore a new dress at Centre Court. Kate was in the ‘Cayla’ dress from LK Bennett, a below knee-length style featuring a fitted bodice, very full skirt, and elbow-length sleeves. (It is still available in limited sizes, discounted to $297 from its original $425 price.)
For her first solo engagement following the birth of Princess Charlotte Kate opted for a dress by Ralph Lauren, wearing the ‘Austin’ silk shirtdress in a black/ivory houndstooth design. The dress is crafted of a silk houndstooth in a shirtdress design, with long sleeves, hidden front closure, and slightly relaxed fit. (This frock is still available in limited sizes at Neiman Marcus, discounted from $1595 to $638.)
When visiting a women’s prison in September Kate wore the Eaton Dress from The Fold, another new label for her. The dress is fitted with a slight v-neck, long sleeves, and peplum detailing at the waist. (It remains available in all sizes, it is £365.)
Also in late October, Kate wore the Tabitha Webb ‘Meg’ dress for a more relaxed event, a Charities Forum meeting followed by the premiere of Shaun the Sheep: The Farmer’s Llamas. The piece is all silk, with a fitted bodice, a-line skirt, and three-quarter sleeves.
For a Fostering Network awards dinner in mid-November Kate debuted another new brand, Saloni, London. She wore the Martine dress; it features a fit and flare silhouette, elbow-length sleeves, a vee-back, and inverted pleats at the waist, made in a polyester/polyamide blend. (The dress is still available online at Saloni, it is £555.)
The Sunday after Christmas we saw Kate wearing a new suit from Michael Kors Collection. The Duchess wore the Virgin Wool Plaid Blazer and Guncheck Wool Trumpet Skirt in ‘slate and claret’. The fitted jacket is 100% virgin wool with notched lapels, slanted flap pockets, and a four-button front closure. The Guncheck Wool Trumpet Skirt in slate and claret is a classic a-line silhouette, fitted through the waist and hips before gradually flowing into a full skirt. This particular skirt has multiple gores and darts, with a hidden zipper and flat waistband.
On now to our collection of repeated styles. In January, Kate wore her Hobbs animal print dress for a Fostering Network event. The silk jacquard dress was worn for Christmas services at Sandringham last year, initially debuting on a visit to Wales in January of 2014.
For an engagement marking World Mental Health Day in October Kate brought back her Paulina dress from Tory Burch. The frock was originally seen in 2014 during the New Zealand/Australia tour. The jewel neck style has inverted pleats, short sleeves and fringed trim at the hem and sleeve cuffs.
At the end of October Kate repeated an Orla Kiely dress for an engagement with Chance UK, a mentoring program. The piece is from the designer’s a/w 2011 collection, it features a floral motif at the front neck and back neckline, a full pleated skirt, three-quarter sleeves, and a self-belt. Previously it was worn in March 2012 when for a joint engagement with Prince Charles at the Dulwich Picture Gallery.
The teal Emilia Wickstead ‘Alice’ dress worn for an Action on Addiction engagement in December was first worn on Palm Sunday of 2014 when Kate and William were on tour in New Zealand. The knee-length dress is crafted of double wool crepe, with a fitted bodice, inset waistband, full pleated skirt and concealed front closure.
In mid-November the Duke and Duchess made a somber call to the French Embassy in London, signing the official book of condolence following the Paris attacks. Kate was in her UFO (Unidentified Fashion Object) black and white pin-dot suit she has worn multiple times, as early as 2007 and most recently in 2013 when Kate and William visited South Africa House in London to sign the Nelson Mandela book of condolence.
In November the Duchess attended a Place2Be Headteachers Conference wearing a dress from designer Matthew Williamson’s pre-fall 2012 collection. First seen at a Tusk Trust benefit in 2012, the dress showcases ornate beading at the collar and cuffs, peplum detail at the waist, and an exposed zipper in the back.
One of the most lighthearted events on the Cambridge calendar was December’s Annual ICAP Charity Day. The Duchess opted for LK Bennett separates she has worn before, the Jude jacket and Davina dress, pieces that were first worn for a series of engagements with HM and the Duke of Edinburgh in 2012.
Mid-December Kate was festive for a Christmas party at the Anna Freud Centre, sporting a previously worn bespoke dress from Alexander McQueen for the event. This was first worn for the Jubilee River Pageant in June 2012, and then again to a function at Buckingham Palace in February 2014.
The Duchess was in a rich red hue the very next day, repeating her Luisa Spagnoli suit for the Queen’s annual pre-Christmas luncheon at Buckingham Palace. Shortly after the lunch, it was announced Kate was being made Honorary Air Commandant of the RAF Air Cadets. The photos below are from the official ceremony welcoming Kate to that role.
Does anyone remember the looks receiving the most votes last year? I didn’t, and had to look up the info. We distinguished between dresses worn on the 2014 Tour of New Zealand and Australia and those worn when not on tour. Winners from the Tour poll were the LK Bennett ‘Lasa Poppy’ Dress, Roksanda Ilincic ‘Ryedale’ Dress, Zimmermann ‘Roamer’ Dress, and Alexander McQueen ‘Peplum Dress’.
Favorite dresses worn when not on tour: LK Bennett’s ‘Detroit’ dress, Suzannah ‘Budding Hearts’ Tea Dress, Jaeger Ivory/Navy Crepe Dress, and the Alexander McQueen Coat Dress.
Don’t forget to cast your vote for your favorite special occasion look from last year!