For today’s visit to the Great Bear Rainforest we saw the Duchess dressed very casually, ready to cope with the strong winds and heavy rains in the area. According to The Mirror, “William and Kate had a rocky flight with strong turbulence on route to the tiny one strip airport.”
We learn more from The Province:
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge touched down in Bella Bella Monday morning under grey, wet skies, the weather spoiling many of the couple’s plans for the day. But the wild weather on B.C.’s central coast meant that most of the outdoor activities planned for the day, including an aerial tour of the Great Bear Rainforest and a boat trip around McLoughlin Bay, had to be cancelled.
The weather didn’t appear to keep the Heiltsuk First Nations community members away.
The Community Hall was filled with people eager to see Kate and William, shown as they arrived at the Hall.
More from The Canadian Press via The Vancouver Sun:
William and Kate were greeted by a rousing cheer when they arrived at the Wawiskas Community Hall, where they met community members and about two dozen hereditary chiefs who were part of the official welcoming party.
The visitors then watched traditional dances.
The Duke and Duchess were greeted by each in turn before a welcoming dance was performed and musicians played drums.
A spokesman for the community said: “The welcoming dance performed was for royalty and is seen on very special occasions.
The children’s dance was wonderful to watch.
— Heiltsuk Council (@HeiltsukCouncil) September 26, 2016
In this Instagram photo from Heiltsuk Council you can see how vibrant today’s event was.
Kate and William really seemed to like the dances.
The royals were given traditional First Nations blankets, each with an image of a Grizzly Bear.
Later in the afternoon Kate and William were given traditional ‘dancing vests’. More on the gifts from The Daily Mail:
Chief Marilyn Slett told them: ‘On behalf our nation we welcome you and we thank you for being here as part of the healing that we are undertaking. As part of our….feasting system we would like to give our guests a gift.’
First the blankets and then the ‘dancing vests’ – worn by men, women and children during traditional celebrations – were placed over the couple’ shoulders.
— Rebecca English (@RE_DailyMail) September 26, 2016
We learn more about the art seen on the blankets from Richard Palmer’s story in The Express:
The garments had a large design of a grizzly bear in the centre, surrounded by trees, flora, fauna and a rope depicting the ocean to which they are “inextricably bound”.
Back to Mr. Palmer’s piece:
Prince George and Princess Charlotte were not forgotten either. The couple were given presents of a small black dancing vest and doll for their children, who had stayed back in Victoria, the family base, with their nanny.The elders urged the couple to return with their three-year-old son so that he could be taught “how to release the spirit of the drum”.
After the events at the Community Hall concluded there was a short walk to the Elders Lodge.
On the left you see Chief Marilyn Slett with Kate, and you get a glimpse of the art on the inside of the Duchess’s vest.
A big part of the day’s focus was officially adding the Great Bear Rainforest to the Queen’s Commonwealth Canopy, an initiative creating a network of conservation programs throughout all 53 Commonwealth countries. Below, William speaking about the initiative this afternoon at the Elders Lodge:
Back to The Express story for more:
In a speech, William praised the Heiltsuk people for helping save one of the worlds most important rainforests. He said his grandmother had asked him to thank them being part of The Queen’s Commonwealth Canopy.
The weather improved enough the visitors were able to enjoy a walk to the site of a new plaque about the Rainforest’s status.
The plaque was unveiled marking the occasion.
Now for our look at what Kate wore, beginning with a jacket by Holland and Holland, the brand’s Lightweight Multipocket Safari Jacket.
The jacket was introduced 2014, and is no longer available at Holland and Holland. We did find information about it online at Kevins Catalog, another retailer that offered the jacket.
this jacket features four patch pockets on the front, with a center back vent opening into a split at the bottom. Cinched in at the waist with a full top-stitched Sahara cotton belt. Features Holland & Holland engraved horn buttons. Made In England.
Originally priced at $780, it most recently sold at $624. The Duchess was in a new shirt from Topshop, the brand’s Gingham Print Shirt in Navy. The piece is from the a/w collection and described as a lightweight chiffon, and 100% polyester. It was $65, but (this will be no surprise) the shirt is no longer available.
UPDATE OCT 12: An enormous ‘thank you’ to Sarah K for her tip on the sweater, as well as Sue B Style for her work finding the piece Kate was in a Jigsaw sweater, the “Katherine” style. (It is no longer available.)
Many readers will have picked up on Kate’s boots immediately, the Penelope Chilvers Long Tassel Boot in the ‘conker’ color (£475).
These are probably Kate’s most iconic footwear, dating back to 2004, when she was seen wearing them at a game fair at Blenheim Palace (below left); most recently the Duchess wore the boots for a hike in Bhutan during the April tour.
Kate’s earrings were by a new designer, Pippa Small.
UPDATED: Kate wore a pair of earrings by Pippa Small, the designer’s Large Kite style.
Here is the genesis of the design:
An ode to the kites that fly throughout South Asia for the annual kite festivals, the kite is such a simple joy of childhood. The triumph of that thin paper taking off in a gust of breeze up into the sky, the ducking and twirling up there in the sky with the birds. The 18 kt Gold kites flutter on these beautiful double drop earrings.
They are 18K yellow gold, and are now available on the Pippa Small website (£850).
Additionally, Kate was wearing Zara jeans, but I’ve not yet had time to look for them, nor have I searched for an ID on the jumper/sweater Kate wore today. After our next post is up from tonight’s reception I will look at these two items.