Wednesday, 17 December 2014

UPDATED: The Royal Family Gathers for the Queen's Pre-Christmas Luncheon

The British Royal family gathered at Buckingham Palace today for the Queen's annual pre-Christmas luncheon.

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge looked relaxed upon arrival following a busy couple of days. Yesterday, Kate surprised the scouts in Bow, East London by turning up for a meeting, much to the delight of the unsuspecting children. They enjoyed a great evening of activities before badges were presented. Meanwhile, Prince William was fresh from an early-morning visit to homeless charity Centrepoint in Soho.

The Queen hosts the 50-strong luncheon every year for the entire extended family, many of who will be spending Christmas with their own children and grandchildren rather than joining the annual gathering at Sandringham. Her Majesty and Prince Philip are expected to make the journey to the Norfolk estate within the next couple of days, where they will settle in before welcoming their children, grandchildren and other relatives on Christmas Eve.

Today's gathering is one of the few occasions where so many immediate and extended members of the Royal family assemble together and Her Majesty is said to take attendance very seriously. Below we Prince Harry arriving.

Attendees include Princess Anne's family, the Yorks, the Wessexes, the Wales and the Linleys, and also Lady Helen Taylor and her family and the Gloucesters and Kents. Peter Phillips' wife Autumn looked very cheery and smiled for the cameras.

The royals are expected to stay for a couple of hours before departing. It is the fifth consecutive year Kate has attended the event.

Last year Prince George joined his parents with nanny Jessie Webb and although they arrived without him, the little prince was there with his nanny Maria today.

The Mail Online story shows a glimpse of George in the back of a land rover.

Mail Online

Her Royal Highness looked festive in a red dress.

Unfortunately it's practically impossible to definitively determine the designer of the dress, there are a number of strong possibilities we know of including the Katherine Hooker 'Ascot' dress the Duchess wore for a visit to East Anglia's Children's Hospices last month.

The Beulah London Elsa dress was also suggested, however, at this point in Kate's pregnancy I'm unsure if the garment would still be a comfortable fit.

Beulah Elsa

The Duchess wore a pair of statement earrings she's had in her collection since her pre-engagement days. The dazzling pair have never been identified, Kate has a penchant for bringing back pieces of jewellery she hasn't publicly worn in years and giving them a second life.

Kate also wore her Mappin and Webb Fortune Pendant.

She wore her hair in a pretty partially-up style.

We expect to see the Cambridges next on Christmas Day!

Tuesday, 16 December 2014

Kate Surprises The Scouts in East London!

The Duchess of Cambridge attended a Beaver Scout meeting in Bow, East London this evening.

The engagement was announced just yesterday and marks an unexpected public appearance for Kate following the Cambridges successful trip to New York last week which saw the couple undertake a variety of fundraising and charitable engagements whilst meeting with the political elite and stars Beyonce and Jay Z.

Kate's appearance was a surprise for the young scouts. When she arrived one child exclaimed "Oh my God, it's Princess Kate".

Scouts Twitter Feed

And their parents who were told the news when they dropped their kids off.

Reprobatemum Twitter Feed

Kate's visit to the newly formed 23rd Poplar Beaver Scout Colony (the Beavers are the youngest group of scouts), was in support of The Scout Association's "Better Prepared" campaign, which aims to support communities to deliver Scouting to two hundred locations across the UK where scouting can have the biggest impact.


The aim is to ensure that even more children have the chance to experience fun and adventure through scouting,  while developing skills that will help change their lives. Scouting is present and sustainable in seventy of the hundred most deprived areas in the UK. Evidence of the positive impact of these groups on young people, often in very tough conditions, has increased The Scout Association’s determination to extend its reach.

UK Scouting

In order to achieve this, The Scout Association needs help, with funding, venues to host meetings and in particular to find more volunteers. For Better Prepared alone, UK Scouting needs at least another 1,000 adult volunteers. Across the country, Scouting needs 16,000 more adults to ensure the 40,000 young people on the waiting lists get a place, to aim for 500,000 youth members by 2018. If you wish to volunteer or donate please click here.

UK Scouting

The Duchess has become one of a growing number of flexible volunteers who help when they can rather than every season. Kate's plans to volunteer with the scouts were announced in January 2013, when she privately spent time with a local group in Anglelsey and hosted a BBQ on the beach for them.


Since moving to London, Kate has continued to volunteer with different groups and  in terms of PR it has been wonderful for the organisation with nearly 3,000 adults signing up between 2012 and 2013. Below we see the Duchess at Great Tower Scout Camp last year.

UK Scouting

Simon Carter shared this adorable photo of the Beavers Kate met.

Simon Carter Twitter Feed

Kate chatted with the children.

And appeared to be thoroughly enjoying herself throughout the engagement.

Kate wore a boxing glove to handle a fork.

The Duchess met with the group's volunteer leader and helped the Beavers with activities including learning sign language as they worked towards their Disability Awareness Badge.


Teaching a little girl how to use chopsticks.

Looking at these photos it's quite clear to see Kate excels and shines when working with children. It's a joy for all involved and the images show the Duchess in her element.

The eager beavers navigated through activities requiring co-ordination while blindfolded.


Below we see the Duchess helping seven-year-old Fynley Gooch to ice a cake with her assistance.

No peeking :)

When Kate tried to eat a piece of chocolate with chopsticks she muttered "no pressure" as cameras zoomed in.


More from Richard Palmer's story:

'After finishing Fynley's cake, Kate had a go at being blindfolded and he took his turn to guide her in decorating the cake.
 Fynley turned out to be not as patient as Kate, however, and at one stage walked off. Carlos, the Beavers' leader spotted him making a break for it. "It's OK, he's here," he said, returning Fynley to the Duchess. "Can you tell me please when he walks away," Kate said, giggling.'

Afterwards Her Royal Highness handed out badges to those who successfully completed the tasks.


Then Kate joined all the Beavers in using sign language to say the Scout's Promise - "I promise to do my best, to be kind and helpful and to love my world" - before singing along to their farewell song "Goodnight Beavers".

Steve Judge Facebook Page

Kate was suitably attired in the black I. Scout zip print hoodie.

The £28 comfortable and easy wearing hoodie is perfect for volunteering with the scouts and a welcome extra layer in the colder months. We wouldn't have anticipated seeing the Duchess in a hoodie for a royal engagement but this was a perfect choice for the nature of the evening.

Scouts Online Shop

More from the product description:

  • Zip fastening
  • Fabric hood and drawcord.
  • Front pouch pockets.
  • Ribbed cuffs/hems and waistband.
  • Scouts logo on reverse under hood.

The Duchess continued the theme with her Scouts scarf and woggle.

Below, a closer look at the scarf on Kate's head.

Kate wore black jeans and her favourite Russell and Bromley Charge It boots.

Kate accessorised with her Kiki McDonough 'Grace' white topaz stud earrings earrings. They are available at Neiman Marcus for $1190.

Kiki McDonough

Anna correctly noted Kate also wore her Mappin and Webb Fortune Pendant in white gold and diamonds. The £3,950 piece is described as a "contemporary classic; a celebration of good luck and fortune".

Mappin and Webb

We expect to see William and Kate at The Queen's pre-Christmas lunch later this week.

Monday, 15 December 2014

Kate in DVF Zarita Dress for Wedding; New Engagement; Winter Wonderland with George & More

Hello-Hello, we have a quick post tonight sharing several interesting stories!

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge attended the wedding of friends Tom Eaves and Libby Keir over the weekend. Several photos can be viewed in their entirety at the Express.

More from the Express story:

'The royal couple were flanked by seven metropolitan officers as they made their way to a waiting car. It was a weekend off from royal duties for Kate and William, who returned home after taking New York by storm during a three-day visit last week.'

The wedding took place at Chelsea Old Church - located on the same road where Kate previously lived at the former Middleton home in West London.


The dress code for the wedding was obviously black tie and Kate looked effortlessly stylish in her Diane von Furstenberg Zarita Gown. The Duchess debuted the stunning dress for the Royal Variety Performance last month.

The delicate gown, crafted from sheer lace features a v-back and is fitted with a slim band around the waist that flatters the silhouette. It is still available in limited sizes on the DVF website and in navy at Matches.

It's always nice to see Kate changing up a look or putting her own stamp on it and I thought her £135 Cashmere Mix Tartan Wrap in Claret by Really Wild Clothing worked very well with the dress and her loose hair, giving it a somewhat more informal feel compared to the first time she wore it. For those wishing to purchase the wrap, it will be restocked in February.

Really Wild Clothing

Kate completed the look with her black beaded vintage clutch by Magid and unidentified black suede pumps.

We'll update the post when/if more details about the wedding emerge!


Many readers have asked when we'll see the Duchess next. It turns out it's much sooner than we expected. Tomorrow, the Duchess of Cambridge will attend a meeting of the newly established 23rd Poplar Beaver Scout Colony in Bow, London. Kate will meet volunteers, leaders and help with activities before awarding badges to the Beavers.

UK Scouting

Kate has been volunteering publicly and privately with the scouts for some time now and it's nice to see the relationship continue.


What else has the Duchess been getting up to? Like most of us, Christmas preparations are more than likely demanding plenty of attention before the festivities get underway. Kate treated Prince George to a seasonal day out last Friday at London's Winter Wonderland in Hyde Park where the two enjoyed a spin on the traditional teacup amusement ride.

Winter Wonderland

More from People's story:

'George was smiling and laughing as they went 'round and round together' an onlooker tells People. "He was really enjoying the ride with his mom. You could see it in his little face - he looked so happy."'

The annual fair is a firm favourite on the festive calendar for families in London. It features a skating rink, Santa's workshop, a number of fairground rides and a Christmas market. It's very conveniently located within close proximity of Kensington Palace.

Winter Wonderland

George was dressed in an adorable white outfit while the Duchess donned a baseball cap.

Clarence House Twitter Feed

It's great to hear they were able to enjoy a family outing privately and it sounds like they had a splendid time.

The Duchess was also spotted Christmas shopping at Peter Jones in Sloane Square yesterday.

StrEAT Twitter Feed


Moving on to fashion updates concerning one of Kate's looks from New York.

The wonderful Anna from My Small Obsessions has identified Kate's gorgeous earrings as the Kenneth Jay Lane Silvertone Crystal Earrings. The striking earrings originally retailed for €262 before going on sale for €52 at The Outnet. It's interesting to see the Duchess selected another American designer for the tour, and what a superb choice they were.

Kenneth Jay Lane

Several readers got in touch with queries about Kate's Beulah London Amara Dress. I spoke with the lovely ladies at Beulah yesterday and they said a white version of the lace dress will be released in the summer, however, if anyone wishes to place a special order that can also be arranged. The black version of the dress can now be ordered with a 4-6 week delivery period.

Beulah London

Fans of the brand will be interested to know there's a flash Sale with significant discounts on selected items until midnight Wednesday.

Beulah London
We'll see you tomorrow! :)