For today’s National Service of Commemoration honoring those who served in Afghanistan the Duchess opted for Beulah London.
For today’s National Service of Commemoration honoring those who served in Afghanistan the Duchess opted for Beulah London.
Kate joined the Queen and Prince Philip today for a visit to London’s famous Underground.
The occasion was part of the events celebrating the Underground’s 150th Anniversary.
The anniversary was officially marked on January 9, but events commemorating the milestone will go on all year.
It was good to see HM out and about, although most accounts noted that she looked pale. It was the first time she carried out public engagement in almost ten days, she continues to recover from “symptoms of gastroenteritis”.
The Queen was wearing a Karl Ludwig tweed dress with an Angela Kelly hat. As one might anticipate, everyday Tube riders were surprised to encounter members of the Royal family at an Underground station.
They were given a tour of Baker Street station, below we see Kate being welcomed with some lovely flowers.
Richard Palmer of the Express explains how Kate came to be involved in today’s function.
She and Philip were joined by Kate, who had scheduled a series of official engagements this week and asked if she could be part of the visit to the historic Tube station after their two offices compared diaries and the Queen formally invited her. “She just fancied it. She asked if she could come along,” a senior royal aide said.
Kate was given a new ‘accessory’ during the visit, one of the famous Baby on Board buttons.
For those unfamiliar with the buttons, here is more from the Daily Mail:
The lapel badges are available free to expectant mothers using public transport as a gentle hint to fellow travellers to offer them their seat and behave, well, in a slightly more courteous manner.
The Duchess did not put the button on but instead commented she would wear it at home. The group also toured a new train and HM unveiled a plaque naming that train ‘Queen Elizabeth II’.
Kate wore a teal blue By Malene Birger coat for today’s engagement.
The piece is 100% wool with elaborate trim at the neckline and down the front. There are large tabs at the cuffs and on the outer front pockets, accented by oversized buttons. The piece is closed with concealed hook & eye fastenings, if you look closely at the image of the coat back above you will see the additional fabric gathered at the waist.
When our friends at Grazia asked a Malene Birger representative about Kate’s coat they were told it was not one of their designs. But looking at details closely reveals the piece is identical (except for color) as the Malene Birger.
The soutache style trim is topped with black beads, those beads are set on individual sequins.
The dual signatures on the inside of the garment confirm the listed piece is by Ms. Birger. You can see the interior pockets and polka dot fabric referenced on the Vide Dressing listing.
One FYI, if reading the VideDressing description (which is in French), it may appear the coat style or name was ‘manteau,’ that is merely because manteau is French for coat.
Denmark’s Princess Mary has also worn this piece, it dates back to at least November of 2006. Coincidentally, Princess Mary was also pregnant when seen in the coat. Many thanks to the WKW Facebook friends who shared this information, as well as those messaging and emailing.
This is not the first time we have seen the Duchess in a coat with the Birger name on it, she wore a piece by Day Birger et Mikkelsen several times, although Ms. Birger left this company to start her eponymous label. We show Kate wearing it to the 2006 wedding of Laura Parker Bowles to Harry Lopes (below left), then again in 2010 for another wedding (Mel Nicholson and Oli Baker at St. Andrews) and once more for the wedding of Zara Phillips (below center) and then July of 2012 for the London Paralympics Opening Ceremonies.
We also saw Kate’s Episode ‘Angel’ pumps again, along with her Cornelia James Wool Gloves with Bow, and sapphire earrings.
The teal was perfect for Kate’s coloring and the accessories worked well. She truly looks happy and very centered these last few weeks. Today’s coat looked a trifle short though, hopefully the Duchess isn’t planning to stick with the shorter lengths.
I apologize for the tardy post, we’ve encountered significant technical issues throughout the day. We’ll see you Friday for coverage of Kate’s time with the Scouts.
As we wrap up this lull between appearances I thought it would be fun to do another “What Kate Might Wear” post, looking at the new spring merchandise arriving in stores. Selecting possible styles is very much a challenge as we’re in between seasons, but also because of Kate’s pregnancy. She has long shown a talent for finding garments that look “blah” on the hangar and somehow transforming them into solid ensembles, several of our picks very much fit that profile.
We begin with items from Zara, the retailer’s Short Military Coat ($189) is a good transitional piece.
Next, a forgiving silhouette that is also ideal for warmer temps is seen in Zara’s Draped Linen T-Shirt ($49.90). It is 100% linen, making the dress a very breathable piece. It is an example of something that on the surface looks overly casual without much to it, but I imagine the Duchess could really make it sing.
Below left, Zara’s Crossover Dress in a very Kate-like blue ($59.90) has several elements Kate appreciates, like the deeply veed neckline, pleating at the neck and self belt at the elasticized waist. Unfortunately it is also 100% polyester, that could feel quite warm if worn on one of those rare hot and humid days in the UK. On the right we show Zara’s Crossover Dress with Pockets in black ($79.90), a very generous silhouette, but it too is all poly. I could see either one of these peeking out from a jacket or coat Kate is wearing.
I have to say that while grazing online at Zara this week I felt like there had been a decree issued this was the season of the sack, there were many (many) dresses and other pieces that were shapeless, simply hanging in baggy folds and looking not at all enticing. So if the Duchess wants pieces with absolutely no waistline or other definition then Zara would be worth a stop, but fair warning– a lot of these items looked utterly dreary online.
A style that reminded me of Kate’s propensity for basic pieces with a twist, Zara’s Sweater with Zip at Back ($25.90) in 100% acrylic fibers.
The next two pieces are strictly for those desirous of repli-Kating the McQueen Black Watch look. First, the Tartan Blazer at Zara ($99), it looks fairly well put together, the pattern matches at critical seams, a must for a design like this.
The matching Tartan Cropped Trousers ($59.90), are not as appealing, even at a $59.90 price point. They are too shrunken, with pulling and gapping at some points, nasty gathers at other parts of the anatomy, not a flattering look on anyone.
That is it for our Zara look-see, we move on to Reiss, beginning with the Finlee Gathered Back coat ($420) in a weighty cotton. Not only does the coat offer many design elements Kate likes (epaulets at shoulder, welt pockets, a fabric with texture, asymmetric fastening), the ruching at the back waist will provide a touch of comfort.
Another non-maternity style that could work for several more months, the Lunata Dress ($320) in a silk poppy print at Reiss, it also has that elastic at the waist, making the frock more forgiving than most. As a rule I would consider this a summer dress, but Kate has shown she’ll wear lighter chiffon weights throughout the year, it will obviously need a sweater or jacket.
The Danica in stone ($320) by Reiss is another dress with a forgiving silhouette. Kate likes this rounded neckline, she also favors three-quarter sleeves and self belt. This item is reminiscent of Kate’s ‘Maja’ dress by Diane von Furstenberg.
When it comes to separates the Duchess still has plenty of time to wear tops in standard sizes, non-maternity pieces like the Mimi Blouse in slate, white, lilac ($160). The ruffles are a touch precious, but Kate has demonstrated a fondness for pieces with details at the neckline and sleeve.
A more sophisticated blouse by Reiss is its Penny style ($180), the pin tucks and pleating provide a different look, as do the dropped shoulders. The piece is 100% silk, and *very* sheer, perfect under a jacket but in need of proper undergarments if worn on its own.
We now move to Max Mara. The firm offered a number of coats in its Resort collection that hold some possibility, although they don’t all have a definite “Kate look” to them, particularly the one on the far left. (But it is one elegant piece.)
The jackets shown below left also have forgiving lines, as do the dresses on the right, they are all by Max Mara.
These next items are all part of a special ‘S Max Mara spring collection.
Glamorous? Not terribly. Clean lines that might work well for someone entering their third trimester? Very much so.
A reminder about this week’s engagement, Kate is slated to be at Hope House on Tuesday, the 19th. Hope House is a women’s treatment centre, and part of Action on Addiction, of which Kate is Patron. More from the news release:
During her visit, the Duchess will hear first-hand our female clients’s experiences of their addiction and recovery journeys. She will also have the opportunity to experience what a typical day at Hope House is like and find out why a range of treatments, such as art therapy and information on nutrition, are effective in helping women start to re-build their lives
As many as 23 women can be treated at Hope House, it is a residential-based program.
Also tonight, word that Kate will also be announcing additional Patronages, more from the Daily Mail:
Kate, who will announce she is taking on three new charities next month. A Palace spokesman confirmed: The Duchess is already patron of four charities and will add a small number to that list.
That is the bracelet she created and makes for another of Kate’s patronages, EACH (East Anglia Children’s Hospices), they are sold as a fundraiser for the group. Only today did yours truly realize Mrs. Sheeran was good enough to mention WKW on her page about the bracelets, I am woefully behind in expressing my gratitude. (Thanks to Trisha for mentioning this to me!)
Perhaps the best thing I can do is simply go purchase another bracelet! They are just £10 (roughly $15 USD), and best of all, that price covers shipping and handling! For a review of an Ed Sheeran concert by, pop in and say “hey” to A Petite Princess, she was lucky enough to attend one of his concerts last weekend and posted a review on her site.
We’ll be back on Tuesday, if not before.
As many readers are already aware, there is good news to share today, Kate has been released from the hospital.
As many readers have no doubt heard, there was news from St. James’s Palace this afternoon (London time):
If unable to read the text on the graphic, it says “The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are expecting a baby.”
As is the case these days, the announcement was released via several means, including the Clarence House Twitter account:
While the it is lovely news, there is a downside: Kate is hospitalized with a severe form of morning sickness, and will remain in King Edward VII Hospital for several days. More from the Clarence House statement:
“The Duchess was admitted this afternoon to King Edward VII Hospital in Central London with Hyperemesis Gravidarum. As the pregnancy is in its very early stages, Her Royal Highness is expected to stay in hospital for several days and will require a period of rest thereafter.”
In fact, that is why the announcement was made so early in the pregnancy, the Palace felt they had little choice as word of Kate’s hospitalization would have been leaked to the news media.Â The Queen is Patron of the hospital, it is a private facility in London.
Hyperemesis Gravidarum is a serious condition that far transcends morning sickness (misery enough on its own), more from the Hyperemesis Education & Research Foundation:
“HG is a debilitating and potentially life-threatening pregnancy disease marked by rapid weight loss, malnutrition, and dehydration due to unrelenting nausea and/or vomiting with potential adverse consequences for the newborn(s).”
Among other things the site has a list of the Top 10 Things Not to Say to a woman dealing with HG.
The Palace is not announcing a due date because Kate isn’t past the first trimester. Kate and William’s child will be third in line to the throne and a great-grandchild to the Queen. For the first time, if the baby is a girl she can inherit the throne, this as a result of changes to the rules of succession approved by Commonwealth countries last summer. From the BBC:
He or she will one day be head of the armed forces, supreme governor of the Church of England and subsequently head of state of the UK and, subject to approval by the Commonwealth, 15 other countries.
We share a very few possibilities for maternity wear should things progress well for Kate and the baby. (Omitting obvious considerations, like custom pieces from Kate’s favorite labels, McQueen, Temperley, etc..) This is merely a less-than-cursory glance at a few brands Kate might consider, almost all British labels. One is 9 London.
Isabella Oliver makes perfect sense. Among other things, the company received a Queen’s Award for Enterprise in the International Trade category in 2010. Additional styles from the brand: the Urban Ruched dress is seen on the left, Lulu Lace maternity dress in the center, we show the Olivia dress on the right.
A final three from this brand, all in a jersey knit not unlike Kate’s multiple Issa London frocks: the Florence Maternity Dress in a very royal blue, Tie Knot dress in the center, on the right we show the Willow frock.
A final British brand for the day, Tiffany Rose. The satin ribbon is a bit twee, but Kate could easily replace that with a grosgrain ribbon or other embellishment that is more her style. From left to right: the Twilight in black, Amelia in a lacy style, Anastasia in deep blue, and Chloe in vintage rose lace.
As fun as it might be to contemplate maternity wear it seems a little frivolous at this juncture with Kate hospitalized.
A note about Kate’s calendar, there are reports she won’t be making her next three scheduled appearances, Wednesday’s ICAP Charity Day, Saturday’s Winter Whites Gala and the British Military Tournament on Sunday. (For details on these three events, as well as future engagements, just click the tab above titled “Kate’s Calendar“.)