Monday, June 25, 2012

Kate Wears Stella McCartney to 'Aiming High Exhibition'

Duchess Kate attended an opening event for The Road to 2012: Aiming High Exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery this morning.

Kate arrived in a chauffeur driven car at 9 a.m. and was greeted by dignitaries.

Kate was the guest of honour at the Olympic photography exhibition which documents three years of preparation for the London games. The engagement combines Kate's roles as patron of the National Portrait Gallery and Olympic ambassador.The London Games begin in just over a week and we can expect to see William, Kate and Harry attend many events supporting Team GB from the sidelines.

The newly commissioned photographs of the athletes were taken by renowned photographers Anderson & Low, Nadav Kander and Jillian Edelstein. 

National Portrait Gallery
From The Telegraph's review

'Road to 2012 is the biggest photographic commission the NPG has ever undertaken, a three year project reaching its culmination this month to celebrate the festival of running, jumping and diving about to take place seven miles to the east. These are not quick snaps or candid behind the scenes revelations. Anderson and Low shot rowers, swimmers and gymnasts in their training environments to create the formality and feel of a fine art portrait'.

Jim White's review ends with a powerful description of the athletes comparing them to gladiators and warriors:

'Here are the heroes of our time, modern gladiators, serious - minded, determined, unflinching; photographed with a reverence in which, in previous times, warriors might have been recorded ahead of going into battle'.

The women's hockey squad posed for the photo below in November 2011.

National Portrait Gallery
Kate viewed footage of a naked David Beckham sleeping shot by Sam Taylor Wood. A difficult job but someone has to do it :) She also viewed the NPG'S Diamond Jubilee Exhibition on The Queen, Art and Image.

Rebecca English Twitter
Kate also featured in the exhibition herself in a photograph taken at the Team GB hockey event the Duchess attended earlier this year.

Paul Harrison Twitter

Sky News reporter Paul Harrison noted the Duchess was embarrassed when she saw the photo.

Paul Harrison Twitter

Below we see the Duchess looking at it.

Paul Harrison Twitter
Kate meeting guest Diana Gould who turns 100 later this year.

Paul Harrison Twitter

The exhibition runs until 23 September and is free daily from 10.00 until 18.00. If you are a lover of the arts and wish to support the gallery you can find information on donating here or take a look at the online shop which sells books, posters, exhibition catalogues, jewellery and portraits. Below we take a look at the Kings & Queens Tablecloth, the Elizabeth II Canvas Tote Bag and the Necklace Camera.

National Portrait Gallery Online Shop

It is Kate's second visit to the gallery this year. The Duchess made her solo debut at the Lucien Freud Exhibition last February where she met guests and staff.

The British Monarchy Flickr

Royal aides have said the Duchess has been looking forward to viewing the exhibition 'immensely' as she is a keen photographer herself. She wrote her history of art degree dissertation on the photography of author, Lewis Carroll. There has been talk of her staging an exhibition in aid of her charities in the future.

Kate looked lovely in the electric blue crepe  Stella McCartney Ridley Stretch Cady Dress from the Fall 2012 collection. The £515 dress is described as:

'A vibrant crepe dress. This simple shift  embodies easy luxury with it's minimalist silhouette  and eye catching bold hue. Concealed zip fastening at back. Round neck, short sleeves, darts at waist'.

I personally love the dress. It's vibrant and youthful yet conservative and elegant. I had thought we would see Kate wear Stella McCartney for some of her engagements as Olympic ambassador (Stella designed Team GB's uniforms) and this dress was an excellent choice. What do you think?

Rebecca English Twitter
Kate wore her Prada pumps.

The Duchess accessorized with the stunning Cartier Trinity Necklace (With many thanks to Karen from WKW FB) Royal aides said it is from her own wardrobe and she thought it appropriate to wear it today given the Olympic theme. 

The 18 caeat gold necklace, with paved diamond is 80 cm long and retails for a staggering £49,000. Given the huge price tag I expect it may have been a gift. Perhaps to celebrate Kate's role as Olympic ambassador? It's one of the most beautiful pieces of jewellery we've ever seen Kate wear. 

Kate completed the look with a pair of gold Swaroski earrings, quite possibly an older version of the $85  Heloise Pierced Earrings. Pippa has been spotted wearing the same earrings in silver. (I must say a huge thank you to Anna from My Small Obsessions who works tirelessly to ID Kate pieces and is always kind enough to let me and the other bloggers know about her discoveries)

The engagement went incredibly well and (for once this summer :)) the sun was shining. Kate was all smiles leaving the gallery....

You can watch an excellent video from the exhibition at The Telegraph.


In other news the Foundation of Prince William and Prince Harry has been renamed The Royal Foundation of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry. The royal trio are aiming to make the armed forces, young people and conservation their primary areas of focus for the time being. The website is well worth a look with large photos from recent engagements and information on the foundation. The following message from William, Kate and Harry appears on the website

'For reasons that never cease to amaze us, we do seem to be able to bring a spotlight to bear on wonderful initiatives created by other people to help those in need'.

The new website and renaming of the foundation is confirmation William, Kate and Harry will continue to work together as a team. If/When Harry marries his wife will be included in the foundation also.

Richard Palmer Twitter

Judging by the figures I anticipate the royal foundation will be a great success.

Max Foster Twitter


We'll finish today's post with a look at another artists impression of Kate from Marie Claire South Africa. There is currently an ongoing debate as to whether the photos are art or using Kate as a clothes horse. The fact she is wearing designers (who stand to profit from the magazine cover) clothes in the mock ups makes me question whether it is appropriate or not. What do you all think?

Grazia/Marie Claire South Africa
Thank you for reading.


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