28 February 2018

Royal Outfit of the Day: Charlene Brings the Bling

Maaaaaaaajor earring alert!

Prince Albert and Princess Charlene attended the 2018 Laureus World Sports Awards in Monaco yesterday.
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Big diamonds (Charlene did a bracelet, too) and a crisp white dress? That's like my kryptonite. One of many, many things that could qualify as my kryptonite, at least.

This dress also comes with a surprise sleeve, which - because I can't let it go without one teensy gripe - might be even better if reduced in volume just a hair.
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And this couple's ensemble comes with surprise sneakers! Your eyes do not deceive you, that is a pair of bright white sneakers and a tux. No, Albert hasn't suddenly decided to shake up his red carpet style; he's participating in the #SneakersforGood campaign that encouraged many attendees to throw a little comfort into their outfits for a good cause.

27 February 2018

Royal Hats of the Day: Queen Mathilde's Recent Chapeaux

Catching up with some of Queen Mathilde's happenings, one hat at a time:

The Belgian royal family attended an annual mass in remembrance of deceased family members last week.
Royal Palace
A lovely black coat with clean lines, a brooch that always manages to trick me into thinking Mathilde's taken a page out of her spider-friendly friend Máxima's book...

Royal Palace
...and a little texture on the hat get the job done in elegant fashion for Mathilde this year. The family is not always so black-clad for this event, though somber colors are the norm; Mathilde often chooses gray and in fact she recently repeated one of her past outfits from the remembrance mass:

The King and the Queen attend the Krakelingenstoet procession in Geraardsbergen on the occasion of the 950th anniversary of the liberty of the city.
Royal Palace
That's a little hard to see, but this hat is cute and should be observed, so here it is when she wore it to the annual remembrance mass in 2015:

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Worn in 2015
See? Cute. I'm always game for something a little different from her usual go-to shapes. Also: bring back cloche hats!

And finally, Belgium has already made their contribution to the coziest of hat categories, the Family Ski Photocall.
Royal Palace
Smiling while trying not to get a snowflake in the eye is an underrated royal skill.

26 February 2018

Monday Tidbits for February 26: Birthdays Everywhere

New babies, new portraits, new selfies, etc.:

--Princess Estelle turned 6 last week! New birthday pictures, of course. [Photos: Erika Gerdemark, Kungahuset.se]

--Mini baby boom: Hereditary Prince Ernst August and Hereditary Princess Ekaterina of Hanover welcomed a daughter, Elisabeth, on February 22. In Serbia, Prince Philip and Princess Danica welcomed a son, Stefan, on February 25. Both couples married last year (Germany covered here, Serbia covered here). [NDR]

--Back to Sweden: Princess Leonore turned 4! And speaking of baby booms, Princess Madeleine and family have returned to Sweden from London to await the birth of her third child. [Photos: Erika Gerdemark, Kungahuset.se]

--Royal milliner John Boyd, who outfitted multiple members of the royal family over multiple decades, passed away last week at the age of 92. Royal Hats posted a wonderful collection of his royal work in tribute. [Royal Hats Blog]

--And finally, a few royals have been in South Korea for the Winter Olympics these past couple weeks. The Swedish royal court's Instagram is all over King Carl Gustaf's time hanging out with Swedish athletes and his trip to watch a Swedish figure skater even made it into the hilarious running commentary of Leslie Jones. The Dutch royal house posted a few of their favorite moments on Instagram too, including a selfie from King Willem-Alexander and Queen Máxima - one they were spotted taking in the stands. [Instagram, Twitter]
Koninklijk Huis

Tidbits is your spot for royal topics we haven't covered separately on the blog, all week long. Please mind the comment policy, and enjoy!

23 February 2018

Royal Outfit of the Day: Letizia in Red (So Much Red)

Oh, Letizia. I know red's your color and all, but...

The King and Queen of Spain attended the opening of the ARCO contemporary art fair in Madrid yesterday.
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DAS TOO MUCH. Two boots too far.

House of HM the King
Now, Letizia sometimes likes to get a little experimental at this particular event and that's all well and good; this is nothing compared to the Leather Culotte Incident. It's still two boots too far, though, if you ask me.

22 February 2018

Tiara Thursday: The Strathmore Rose Tiara, Revisited

A regular topic of conversation as the royal wedding machine rolls along deserves a bit of a revisit:

 The Strathmore Rose Tiara
The Strathmore Rose Tiara, or Queen Elizabeth’s Strathmore Tiara, was a gift to Lady Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon from her father, the Earl of Strathmore, for her 1923 wedding to the Duke of York, the future King George VI. The tiara features a garland of wild roses in diamonds mounted in silver and gold and was purchased for the future Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother at a London jeweler; it dates from the late nineteenth century. The pavé-set diamond roses could be used as individual brooches, and – at least originally – could be swapped out for five single-collet sapphires, according to The Queen’s Diamonds.

Queen Elizabeth, as Duchess of York
The tiara also came with two different frames, one to wear the tiara across the forehead in the bandeau style so popular at the time, and another to wear the tiara on top of the head in the more traditional style. Elizabeth wore the tiara across her forehead in its best-known portrait sitting, but she did also wear it on top of her head.

Worn on across the forehead or atop the head
Examples of the Strathmore Rose Tiara in use are sparse. Elizabeth seems to have used it primarily (perhaps only) in her years as Duchess of York, moving along to other pieces in the years after she became Queen Elizabeth. It’s possible that the Strathmore Rose hasn’t been seen in use since the 1920s or early 1930s. Other tiaras in her collection were similarly discarded in favor of others after she became queen, like the Lotus Flower Tiara; most of those other tiaras, however, eventually found new wearers and continued to be in use. The Strathmore Rose, on the other hand, is still waiting. Queen Elizabeth kept the tiara until her death in 2002; it then passed to her daughter, Queen Elizabeth II, in whose collection it now resides.

When a tiara disappears into the vault for so long, rumors and speculation tend to arise. In particular, there’s a rumor that the Strathmore Rose is in such poor condition or so fragile that it can’t be worn. I do not know the source of that suggestion and it may simply be speculation taken as fact; what we do know is that the tiara has been photographed alone a few times in recent decades and, obviously, the Queen has jewelers to fix things if that’s really what is needed or desired. (The Grand Duchess Vladimir Tiara, for example, had its frame repaired multiple times during the Queen’s reign and was eventually remade in the 1980s.) Personally, I hope the Strathmore Rose Tiara will reappear someday – if for no other reason than to satisfy our curiosity.

Are you hoping for a reappearance?

21 February 2018

Royal Outfits of the Day: Commonwealth Fashion at the Palace

A royal team up focused on fashion? It's like this event was tailor-made for us.

The Duchess of Cambridge and Countess of Wessex hosted a reception for the Commonwealth Fashion Exchange at Buckingham Palace on Monday. Princess Beatrice was also present.
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While Kate debuted yet another new Erdem, Sophie opted for a new Burberry dress. I'm pretty much always tempted to say Sophie's preferred midi skirt length could use a shortening, but in this case, I think it works. It's a sleek look for her.

Royal Family
Princess Beatrice wore a repeated Erdem dress. One of my favorite royal Erdems, as a matter of fact.

On the whole, though, all three royal women left the fashion heavy lifting to the professionals on this evening.
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Naomi Campbell arriving for the event
...because somebody had to bring the FASHION, after all.

Anna Wintour was present for the Buck Pal reception and it wasn't her only brush with royalty this week.
ITN screencap
Front rowing it with the Queen and Vogue's own queen, how 'bout that? Full details of this event - Her Maj dropped by London Fashion Week to present an award in her name - are up at the Jewel Vault, of course!

20 February 2018

Tuesday Tidbits for February 20: Blue Velvet Moments and More

Other stuff:

--Tributes to the late Prince Henrik continue, including a service and reception for patronages and close friends hosted by Crown Prince Frederik and Prince Joachim, with Henrik's three dogs among the mourners. The funeral is held today. [Twitter]

--Crown Princess Victoria and Prince Daniel traveled to Lithuania to help mark the country's 100th anniversary of independence last week. (Crown Princess Mary was also supposed to travel to the country, but her trip was cancelled due to Prince Henrik's death.) I'm liking Victoria's blue velvet dress more than her choice of hat for the outside portion, although I'm sure she was nice and toasty. [ParisMatch]

--A little coronet brooch for the Duchess of Cornwall while visiting Yorkshire! Cute. Also, she looks good in this pink. [ITV]
ITV screencap

--Birthday = new portrait, you know the drill! Luxembourg joins in this week with a new picture of Hereditary Grand Duchess Stéphanie for her 34th birthday. (Princess Marie also owns this Paule Ka coat.) Stéphanie also appears to have had her own blue velvet moment recently. [Pinterest, Twitter]
© 2017 Cour grand-ducale/Lola Velasco Tous droits réservés

--And finally, over at the Jewel Vault: A double brooch day, yay!

Coming up this week: Fashion comes to Buck Pal, and more...

Tidbits is your spot for royal topics we haven't covered separately on the blog, all week long. Please mind the comment policy, and enjoy!

19 February 2018

Royal Jewels of the Day: Kate's Emerald Display

The Duchess of Cambridge decided to show off a little more from her jewel vault last night.

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge attended the BAFTA Awards.
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Emerald and diamond earrings with a matching necklace and bracelet! This is not an entirely new jewel debut. Recall, if you will, her visit to New York in 2014:

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At the St. Andrews 600th Anniversary Dinner
The earrings she wore to the BAFTAs appear to be the bottom portion of the earrings she wore in 2014. She also wore the bracelet back in 2014. The provenance of this set is not officially known, but a gift from a Middle Eastern royal - based on the style and size of the jewels - is my strongest guess. A wedding present, maybe, since that would have been her biggest opportunity to pick up a Middle East gift thus far in her royal life.

If I just leave it at the emeralds and don't talk about the dress color, can we call that good?
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Thing is, I found the notion that there should be any "controversy" should she choose to wear black in support of Time's Up in the first place to be a fairly infuriating thing. And I find myself unwilling to devote any more words to it than that. (But I'll end this back on a purely superficial note to say that, while the shape of this Jenny Packham dress is stunning, I'm not a fan of the dullness of this color with the vibrant emeralds. Funnily enough, they'd have looked amazing with black.)

16 February 2018

Royal Flashback of the Day: Margrethe and Henrik's Wedding

The Danish royal family are this week continuing to mourn the loss of Prince Henrik and prepare for his funeral. They have emerged to view the flowers left outside the palace by the crowds and to accompany Prince Henrik's coffin from Fredensborg Palace to Amalienborg Palace. Queen Margrethe has declared court mourning until March 14th, during which time the royal family and court will wear dark clothing for public appearances and will not take part in any social or entertainment events. The funeral will be held on February 20th. It will be a private family event in accordance with Prince Henrik's wishes, not a state occasion (no foreign royals in attendance).

As they say goodbye, let's take a video look back to when they said hello: Margrethe's wedding to Henrik on June 10, 1967. The future queen wore the Khedive of Egypt Tiara and a Jørgen Bender gown that incorporated antique family lace; her groom could have passed for a French James Bond in his dapper white tie. Theirs may not have been the easiest match all the way through, but it certainly seemed to be a wonderful artistic and intellectual pairing, and they were clearly head over heels on this happy wedding day.

15 February 2018

Tiara Thursday: The Cartier "Lusitania" Tiara

Some tiaras are set apart by their extraordinary materials or craftsmanship, some become known for their ownership, and some simply have a story you can't forget.

The Cartier "Lusitania" Tiara
This tiara was commissioned from Cartier Paris in 1909 by Sir Hugh Montagu Allan for his wife, Marguerite (1873-1957). It features a classic Greek key or meander motif created with circular-cut diamonds in a millegrain setting, with a border of seed pearls and a large detachable old-mine cut diamond at the center. Sir Montagu, as he was known, was a prominent Canadian banker and ship owner and the family were fixtures of Montreal society.

Lady Allan wearing her Cartier tiara
In 1915, the family was packing up their life in Canada and heading to England, where they intended to stay for the duration of World War I to assist in the war efforts. Lady Allan was to help open a hospital in England for Canadian serviceman. Sir Montagu was still in Canada closing up the family's mansion when his wife and two of the couple's four children, 16-year-old Anna and 15-year-old Gwendolyn, set out to sail from New York to Liverpool on the RMS Lusitania. Joining the Allans on their fateful journey were two of Marguerite's maids, Emily Davis and Annie Walker, plus a load of luggage that included Lady Allan's jewels - and her diamond and pearl Cartier tiara. The ship left New York on May 1, 1915.

The Lusitania was one of the largest and fastest ships on the sea, and it continued to ferry civilian passengers across the Atlantic even as submarine warfare intensified. Germany had declared the seas around the United Kingdom a war zone and had warned that allied ships were in those waters were risking attack. The German embassy in the United States even warned specifically of the threat to the Lusitania on its May 1915 voyage. Many, however, thought that the ship's speed would keep it safe from attack. They were wrong.

On the afternoon of May 7, 1915, the Lusitania was torpedoed by a German U-boat off the southern coast of Ireland. It sank in just 18 minutes. Of the nearly 2,000 passengers and crew on board, 1,198 died. Among the fatalities were both of the Allan's teenage daughters. (Heartbreakingly, Sir Montagu and Marguerite would later endure the losses of their remaining two children: son Hugh was killed on his first service flight as a member of the Royal Naval Air Service in 1917, and eldest daughter Martha died at the age of 47.) Though she was severely injured, Lady Allan survived the sinking of the Lusitania. Her two maids survived the shipwreck as well. Unbelievably, one of them also managed to save Lady Allan's Cartier tiara, concealing it in her clothes throughout the tragedy.

Marguerite Allan kept her shipwrecked tiara for the rest of her life and bequeathed it to a cousin, Elspeth Paterson Dawes. Ms. Dawes' granddaughter placed the tiara up for auction in 2015, telling The Globe and Mail that while she was sad to see it leave the family, the 100th anniversary of the war was the right time to let it go. The tiara sold for $799,265, well over its estimate of $293,994 - $443,483 (USD). It was reacquired by Cartier and is now part of the Cartier Collection.

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On display at the V&A
Cartier's reserve of historical tiaras are regularly loaned for museum exhibitions, and if you happen to be in London in the first half of 2018, you have an opportunity to see the Lusitania tiara in person at the Victoria & Albert Museum. The tiara joins furnishings, ship fittings, clothing of wealthy passengers, and other items from the age of the great ocean liners in the Ocean Liners: Speed and Style exhibition, which runs now through June 17, 2018.

14 February 2018

Royal Outfit of the Day: Meghan and Harry in Scotland

{A note before we carry on with our usual fare: Very sadly, Prince Henrik passed away on the 13th. Tidbits has been updated and continues to be open, as always, for discussion.} 


Prince Harry and Meghan Markle visited Edinburgh yesterday.
MOD/Crown Copyright 2018
You'll never guess what Meghan wore for her first trip to Scotland: a long coat and trousers, okay, yeah, and also TARTAN, because what else. A Burberry coat this time around with some Veronica Beard trousers that proved a little too long for a stroll outdoors.

MOD/Crown Copyright 2018
When in doubt, match yourself to the regimental mascot. (This is Cruachan IV, the Shetland pony that spends more time hobnobbing with royalty than the royals themselves do, or so it seems. Cruachan met the Queen twice last year alone, once attempting to turn her bouquet of flowers into a tasty snack. Cheeky Cruachan tried to make a snack out of Harry this time, but who among us can blame him for that.)

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She's still doing an excellent job of matching her outfit to Harry's, formality-wise, and I can't complain that I'd like to see her in something more formal (as I know many of you would) when the occasion doesn't call for it. It does, however, make me look forward to a more expanded program somewhere out there in the future - if for no other reason than putting an end to grand pronouncements on her style based on only a few appearances.

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P.S.: Who am I to deny you a ring close up?

13 February 2018

Royal Outfits of the Day: Letizia in Lace

The King and Queen of Spain attended the Innovation and Design awards yesterday.
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The latest update from the world of fussy lace comes to us by way of Letizia (in a Zara shirt), surprisingly enough. She's not the first one to reach for the voluminous sleeves, but she might be the only one that could make the voluminous sleeves and voluminous top work.

House of HM the King
It's really an awful lot of volume, though, isn't it? Yeah.

Queen Letizia attended the Princess Of Girona Foundation Prize in Arts and Literature last week.
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There's a touch of lace in this gem from last week, too, on the top underneath her sharp jacket. It was my only minor quibble on this an otherwise sleek combo of Carolina Herrera and Hugo Boss. Although I was entirely distracted from the lace - and all the other things - once I realized that she went full animal print on arrival.

House of HM the King
A cheetah print coat! Oh yeah.

12 February 2018

Monday Tidbits for February 12: Wedding Updates, Health Updates

Update: Prince Henrik of Denmark passed away peacefully in his sleep on February 13th, at Fredensborg Palace with Queen Margrethe and the couple's two sons at his side. 

It's a mix of good news and bad news this time around:

--New details have been released regarding Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's wedding on May 19th. The ceremony will take place at noon at St. George's Chapel and will be conducted by the Dean of Windsor with the Archbishop of Canterbury officiating the vows. At 1 pm, the couple will embark on a carriage procession through Windsor. There will be one reception right after the service in St. George's Hall at Windsor Castle (where state banquets are held when at Windsor) and a private reception hosted by Prince Charles for close friends and family later on.
St. George's Hall, Windsor Castle
By Joshua Barnett - CC BY 2.0

--Sadly, the Danish royal household announced last week that Prince Henrik's health has "greatly worsened", enough so that Crown Prince Frederik cut short his trip to the Winter Olympics in South Korea and returned home. Henrik's brother, Etienne de Montpezat, was quoted by BT as saying "it seems to be a matter of weeks." Prince Henrik has been hospitalized since January, when he was transferred home to Denmark after falling ill during a trip to Egypt; he's been through months of health issues over the past year, including surgery last summer, a dementia diagnosis, and now a benign tumor and infection in his lung. The whole royal family visited the hospital over the weekend and Queen Margrethe has cancelled immediate engagements.

--Princess Mako made her first official public appearance since the imperial household announced that her wedding to Kei Komuro, which was intended to happen in November, will be postponed until 2020. (The official reason of “lack of preparation” has only caused more speculation, including about a reported financial dispute in the groom's family.) Mako carried on, attending a calligraphy exhibition. [Japan Times, Japan Today]

--Over at the Jewel Vault, an orange-clad Queen came back to London and is back to work in purple one day and in a brooch we haven't seen in a few years another day.

--And finally, since we're doing the 2018 royal wedding rounds, here's one for those of you that have posed this very question in the past couple weeks: Have you been pronouncing Princess Eugenie's name wrong all this time? [Hello]

Tidbits is your spot for royal topics we haven't covered separately on the blog, all week long. Please mind the comment policy, and enjoy!

07 February 2018

Royal Outfits of the Day: Letizia, Rania, Mary, and Suits

Quick note: The blog returns on Monday!

A trio of updates from royal ladies and the suits that love them. Or suit separates. Or not really suits but just go with it because. 

King Felipe and Queen Letizia presented the Gold Medals of Merit in Fine Arts yesterday.
House of HM the King
I'm sorry, royal men, did you think you had a monopoly in the blue suit department? Step aside. Letizia's contribution accomplishes the same thing as all the blue suits on the gents, really: gets the job done and not much more. Thank goodness for a polka dot blouse.

Queen Rania attended a meeting with King Abdullah in mid-January.
You want a sharp take on a trouser, Rania's your queen. In this case, it's maybe...90% sharp.

Crown Princess Mary presented the Designers' Nest awards at Copenhagen Fashion Week last week.
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The least suit-like thing here (she had a matching coat on arrival, sort of, still not suit-ish, hey) is also the most interesting. An interesting color combination accessorized by leopard print shoes, which I love. Leopard as a neutral is nearly as excellent as a purple neutral in my book.

06 February 2018

Tuesday Tidbits for February 6: Birthdays and Wedding Days

Loads of new portraits and more:

--The date is set for the second British royal wedding of the year: Princess Eugenie will marry Jack Brooksbank on October 12th, it was announced last week. The wedding will take place at St. George's Chapel, Windsor Castle, as previously announced. [BBC]

--Princess Beatrix turned 80 last week! The Dutch royal household released some photos taken last autumn of the former queen at her home, Drakensteyn Castle, with her dog and with all the kids and grandkids. (She lives in an octagonal castle surrounded by a moat, by the way. Possibly the cutest royal residence around.) [Photos: RVD/Jeroen van der Meyde]

--The Swedish royal family is celebrating the 200th birthday of the Bernadotte dynasty, so naturally there are new official portraits (one with and one without Princess Estelle were released). As you can tell by Victoria's outfit, the new photos were taken on the day of the Nobel ceremony last year.
Thron Ullberg/Kungahuset.se

--If you're in Stockholm in the next several weeks, you have an opportunity to see some royal fashion up close and personal: "Secrets of Couture" at Sven-Harry’s Art Museum features dresses from Queen Margrethe, Queen Silvia, Crown Princess Victoria, Princess Madeleine, and Princess Sofia. See how many you can spot in the video below. The exhibition runs through April 2. [GALA Magazine]

--And finally, over at the Jewel Vault: I'm loving this rich red on the Queen, but opinions seem divided on the hat.

Tidbits is your spot for royal topics we haven't covered separately on the blog, all week long. Please mind the comment policy, and enjoy!

05 February 2018

Royal Outfits of the Day: Ceremonies in Spain

Two formal events went down in Spain last week (among the usual assortment of engagements), while we were occupied in Scandinavia.

House of HM the King
Event #1: King Felipe celebrated his 50th birthday by formally presenting the Princess of Asturias with the collar of the Order of the Golden Fleece. Twelve-year-old Leonor was awarded the prestigious honor in 2015, for her tenth birthday.

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The actual golden collar was on display while Leonor was bestowed with the smaller insignia, worn on a bow for women.

It's a formal event and an historical one, a landmark in the life of this future queen, but watch the video if you didn't last week. It's mostly just a very proud family moment. (Complete with little curtseys from the princess of the hour for her parents and paternal grandparents!) Very sweet indeed.

House of HM the King
As for the fashion and such, Queen Letizia chose not to debut anything on her daughter's big day, opting for a repeated Felipe Varela ensemble. Sartorially it all checks out, because of course it does. The Spains know how to do these sorts of events.

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Event #2: King Felipe and Queen Letizia hosted a diplomatic reception, an event with the same long skirt dress code we see at the Pascua Militar. This Varela combo was worn to that event in 2016, in fact; the top underneath was changed a bit (for the better, I'd say), but on the whole it was serviceable then and it is serviceable now. And that's that.

02 February 2018

Royal Trip of the Day: The Cambridges in Norway, Day 1

The splendor that many of us had hoped this trip would bring finally arrived. It just took a trip to Norway and a dinner hosted by a king and queen to make it happen.

On the first day of their trip to Norway, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge attended a dinner at the Royal Palace hosted in their honor by King Harald and Queen Sonja. Crown Prince Haakon, Crown Princess Mette-Marit, Princess Märtha Louise, and Princess Astrid were also present.
Kensington Palace
Ah, gowns! Good ones! A print for Märtha Louise, a favored shiny purple repeat for Sonja, and a bright coral for Astrid flanked the evening's two standout pale dresses for Kate and Mette-Marit (and, of course, the gentlemen in their tuxes).

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The only thing wrong with this Alexander McQueen dress is that Kate doesn't have any state banquets coming up where she could pair it with a tiara. It's an elegant way to do a maternity gown and it has wonderful movement, because CAPE.

Kensington Palace
She didn't forget to bring along her diamonds, either: both the Diamond Pendant Earrings and the Wedding Gift Bracelet are on loan from the Queen.

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After a 2017 wardrobe that left many of us with a general feeling of sartorial ennui, Mette-Marit's coming out swinging for 2018. This metallic gem is fabulously detailed and a great spin on her usual fare. (Also: excellent deployment of a red lip.)

On arrival earlier in the day, the Duke and Duchess were greeted by the Crown Prince and Crown Princess and met with the royal family at the palace. They were then joined by Princess Ingrid Alexandra for a visit to the Princess Ingrid Alexandra Sculpture Park.
Kensington Palace
The family that blue coats together stays together, I guess. (With twin red scarves thrown in for good measure.) Kate's really loading up on her Catherine Walker for this trip - and she wouldn't miss an opportunity for another blue coat.

Kensington Palace
Nor an opportunity for another blue dress! This one's from Séraphine. Queen Sonja's looking sharp in white, as she always does.

Sven Gj. Gjeruldsen, Det kongelige hoff
 (The Norwegian royal court gives us photos of the gifts exchanged between the royals, because they know we're nosy like that, which is nice of them.)

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Outside, I have no applause for the added furry hat; I have several claps and an approving nod for Queen Sonja's splendidly bright coat and scarf combo; I have a standing ovation for the person that picked this rainbow sculpture for the park, because that's how you make a great photo op.

The trip ends Friday, phew!

01 February 2018

Royal Trip of the Day: The Cambridges in Sweden, Day 2

Here's how I've decided this whole thing played out: "How dare people call my mustard floral gown upholstery," the Duchess of Cambridge fumed. "That was not upholstery. I'll show you upholstery," she exclaimed.

On the evening of the second full day of their official visit to Sweden, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge joined Crown Princess Victoria and Prince Daniel for a reception in Stockholm.
Kensington Palace
Show us she sure did, in floral blue velvet from Erdem again. Definitely more upholstery-esque to this pair of eyes, but my definite favorite of the back-to-back Erdems.

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On arrival, the Duchess used her "diplomatic dressing" concept as a cover to add another black coat to her growing pile, opting for one from Swedish designer Ida Sjöstedt. Sjöstedt has been really popular with the Swedish princesses in the past few years, making all sorts of outfits from Princess Sofia's wedding gown to the dress Crown Princess Victoria wore the day before.

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For the evening event, Victoria also stuck to Swedish design and her designer from the evening before. A most unfortunate decision in this case, I'm afraid. It's just...oof.

The two couples also teamed up for engagements during the day.
Kensington Palace
Kensington Palace
Day two also repeated day one in that safer choices prevailed during the daytime and the coats were the best part of the deal for both ladies. In case you missed it the first 700 or so times I've said it, give me alllllll the houndstooth, including this snappy red version from Catherine Walker.

Raphael Stecksén/Kungahuset.se
Underneath those coats, Victoria's pantsuit begs you to debate the merits of pastel safari jackets, while Kate ordered up just about the most basic model you can get from Alexander McQueen. William was doing his part for diplomatic fashion too, by the way: his sweater is from Swedish brand Acne.

Also on day two, the Crown Princess couple hosted the Cambridges at their home, Haga Palace, and William and Kate had the biggest honor of the their trip (I'm sure): a private audience with Princess Estelle and Prince Oscar.
Raphael Stecksén/Kungahuset.se
Raphael Stecksén/Kungahuset.se
Next up for the traveling Cambridge circus: Norway!