Kate was in Scotland today for her first solo engagements in that country. Her first appointment was at St. Catherine’s Primary School in Edinburgh.
The Countess of Strathearn, as she is titled in Scotland, was at the school in her role as patron of Place2Be. The school’s Headteacher, Paul Hunter, has said that “kids can’t be educationally literate without first being emotionally literate.” Kate took part in a singalong of “It’s Good to See You Here” as shared by the BBC Scotland. (The link will take you to a brief video of the singing.)
The singing exercise.
After the enthusiastic singing… She said: “Good morning everyone.
“Everyone should start the day like that!
More from The Mirror’s coverage:
Place2Be had worked in Scotland since 2001 and now works in 28 schools in some of the most challenging areas of Glasgow and Edinburgh.
Luke Alexander, 12, presented her with a Quaich cup – a special Scottish two-handled drinking bowl – to signify friendship.
A video showing the presentation.
Place2Be notes that Kate “…met children and parents. She also heard from health professionals who have trained with Place2Be to develop child counselling expertise.”
Kate leaving St. Catherine’s Primary.
Kate arriving at Wester Hailes Education Centre (WHEC) for a function with The Art Room; the school is also in Edinburgh. Kate was welcomed with flowers from Kelsey Evans and Scott Cunningham, both are WHEC students.
Wester Hailes students have been working on a project involving artist Frida Kahlo, something that probably resonates with Kate, she has a degree in art history. (It is also of interest to your trusty scribe; last year I was lucky enough to see the Frida Kahlo/Diego Rivera exhibit in Detroit.)
Another look at the classroom project.
The Countess clearly enjoyed her time at Wester Hailes.
Kate also spent some time chatting with Mitchell and Adam, two BBC School Report roving reporters covering today’s events. Mitchell looked very professional. I think he has a future at the network.
Then it was time for a change of pace as the Countess connected with Judy Murray for some tennis. Many will be familiar with Ms. Murray, among other things she is the mother of Olympic gold medalist and Wimbledon champion Andy Murray, as well as Jamie, also a Wimbledon champion.
Kate is helping shine the light on a program started by Ms. Murray, Tennis on the Road. More about the project from its website:
Judy and her coaching team will aim to give parents, coaches, teachers and volunteers the tools needed to get kids active and to help further kick-start and develop tennis in Scotland.
Kate joined dozens of school pupils and teachers as they were taught how to coach and pass on the basics of tennis to children, at a clinic hosted by Andy Murray’s mother in Edinburgh.
Often seen in the royal box at Wimbledon and described as a “keen” tennis player, Kate showed off her skills as those taking part were challenged to balance and spin a racket at Craigmount High School.
The class was part of the Tennis on the Road project created by Judy in 2014, with the aim of capitalising on the success of her sons Andy and Jamie by increasing coaching capacity and growing the game at a grassroots level across Scotland.
Back to balloon tennis exercises.
A poster from Tennis on the Road program.
Kate chatting with Judy Murray in a photo shared by The Scotsman’s Courtney Cameron, and taking part in one of the exercises in a picture tweeted by Tennis on the Road. The Sun’s Emily Andrews says Judy Murray shared why Kate is fond of tennis:
Kate practicing her racket spinning skills.
Tennis on the Road welcomed The Duchess of Cambridge to Craigmount High School, Edinburgh, to experience a taster of the grassroots programme developed by Judy Murray. The activity coincides with the announcement that the initiative is now supported by the LTA.
Hello! magazine’s Emy Nash posted a video of Kate in one of the sessions.
Some of the exercises required intense focus.
One more tennis photo.
And now to what Kate wore for today’s events. We start with the morning ensemble. Many will recognize the Max Mara Sportmax piece, the label’s ‘Long Belted Coat’ in green virgin wool coat, initially seen on Christmas Day.
This is the piece that prompted quite a bit of discussion, primarily because of the fit, the placement of the belt, and the pocket flaps.
The label is based in Scotland, and its products are manufactured there as well, a very good fit in terms of sartorial diplomacy.
The piece is 100% British wool with a flat-fronted apron, black leather side buckles at the waist, and a traditional kilt pin.
It is available directly from Le Kilt, priced at £470, about $650 at today’s exchange rates. It is part of the brand’s classic collection, so it is restocked throughout the year. Harvey Nichols carries the brand and will have the style back in stock. Dover Street Market in New York is the US retailer for Le Kilt.
Emma Spedding of The Telegraph spoke with Le Kilt’s founder about the Duchess wearing one of her company’s skirts.
Le Kilt was only founded in 2014 by Samantha McCoach, whose grandmother was a traditional kilt maker in Scotland for over 40 years. The London fashion Week brand gives traditional kilts a modern update, bringing a punky attitude to heritage tartan. The name comes from the popular 1980s Soho nightclub, Le Kilt.
Below, some of Le Kilt’s other styles.
Emma Spedding reports that Le Kilt’s founder is also a Max Mara fan:
Samantha says she has had lots of texts and calls: “My grandmother is over the moon.” She is a fan of how Kate styled her kilt with a Max Mara coat, adding: “I love Max Mara, I still have an amazing camel Max Mara coat I brought from a charity shop in London whilst studying at the RCA.”
A few more pieces.
Kate was wearing the same black turtleneck/polo neck seen with the Michael Kors suit at Sandringham.
Kate also wore her Kiki McDonough Lauren earrings.
We proceed to the afternoon wardrobe. For the tennis workout Kate wore another new brand, her trackpants/sweatpants are by Monreal London.
The ‘Tuxedo Track Pant‘ is $345 and described this way by Monreal: “Inspired by the timeless glamour of the tuxedo, our slim-fit Tuxedo pants have inbuilt shorts for lift, support and to add layer of opacity.” They have side zips at the hems, an elastic waist, concealed pockets, and made from a luxury performance jersey material. They are on sale in limited sizing at Saks Fifth Avenue ($146),and offered in other colors at YOOX ($409).
Kate wore the Nike Baseline Half-Zip Tennis Top ($70), made of wicking fabric with contoured seams for enhanced ease of movement.
We saw the Countess in a new pair of Asics, the brand’s Gel Solution Speed 3 in white/blue steel/crystal blue We show it at Athleta, where it is $130 and available in most sizes.
We have additional photos that will be posted as they are edited.Loads of thanks to everyone who IDed pieces today, including Kate Middleton Style, What Would Kate Do, A Petite Princess, Middleton Maven, From Berkshire to Buckingham, Kate’s Closet.
We wrap up with a look at some of Kate’s other houndstooth styles, from left to right: the Rubik coat by Reiss first seen last December for an Action on Addiction event, bespoke Christopher Kane pieces worn when visiting Scotland last October, and the Austin shirtdress by Ralph Lauren seen at the Anna Freud Centre in September of last year.
- Visit Place2Be’s website here to learn more about the charity, its Scotland-centric information is here, follow the organization on Facebook here, and on Twitter here. The St. Catherine’s Place2Be page is here
- Visit the Art Room UK website here, the charity’s Facebook page is here and its Twitter feed here
- Visit Tennis on the Road’s website here, follow the organization on Facebook here, or view its Twitter stream here
- The Daily Mail’s photo-laden story is here, The Mirror’s rolling coverage is here & Victoria Murphy’s Mirror story about the morning’s events is here, The Daily Express coverage is here, Simon Perry’s People magazine story is here, HuffPo UK has a story about Kate continuing the Young Minds Matter message
- Emma Spedding’s story in The Telegraph about Le Kilt is here, PopSugar’s gallery is here