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Kate's tour-drobe diary 2014: The Duchess of Cambridge's royal tour dresses, casual wear and accessories

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Kate gets out on the water

Kate also whipped out her Ray Ban sunglasses to keep the sun and the wind out of her eyes.

It was serious when it came to racing though, with her hair up in a ponytail through a New Zealand cap as she helmed the yacht to two victories over her husband. 

Hannah Peters/Getty

Kate takes the helm

Kate also switched her shoes, ditching the wedges in favour of the Sebago Balas boatshoes she also wore on the royal tour of Canada in 2011. 

And she pulled on a Team New Zealand anorak too.

Jason Oxenham/Getty

Prince William and Kate on the yacht Imagine in Auckland

The earrings she wore for her day out were her Kiki McDonough diamond Grace studs and her sunglasses made a handy headband.

Phil Walter/Getty

Duchess of Cambridge Kate Middleton  


Outfit 6 – visiting a RNZAF base in Auckland

Day five of the tour was a more dressed down day for the royal couple as they visited Air Force personnel then had a go on Americas Cup yachts in Auckland.

Kate went for a tried and trusted formula in the form of her Stuart Weitzman Corkswoon wedges, skinny navy jeans, a nautical striped top and a blazer. 


Prince William and Kate Middleton in Auckland

It was another example of Kate choosing a military style look on this visit, with the navy Zara blazer double breasted with brassy buttons.

This time her hair was fully down, with stud ears hiding underneath it.


Duchess of Cambridge Kate Middleton in a Zara blazer


Outfit 5 – state reception in Wellington

After giving McQueen a debut on this tour in the morning, Kate went to another style staple of her wardrobe for the day’s evening event.

Jenny Packham has been behind some of Kate’s most memorable dresses, and this bespoke number was another to add to the list.

While Kate wore the Queen’s silver fern brooch for her arrival in New Zealand, this time she had the silver fern embroidered on her dress in a statement shoulder embellishment.


Duchess of Cambridge Kate Middleton wears Jenny Packham for unveiling of portrait of the Queen on New Zealand tour

She and William were at a state reception in Wellington for the unveiling of a portrait of the Queen – wearing a blue not a million miles away from the coat dress Kate had worn earlier in the day.

Wearing black ticked a couple of boxes for Kate: it allowed a respectful nod to New Zealand’s country colours, and wasn’t so showy it upstaged the Queen. (It also did a favour to headline writers, who were able to make All Black references to the Kiwi rugby team.)

Close-ups of the silver fern detailing showed the workmanship which had gone into the one-off design.


Duchess of Cambridge Kate Middleton in Jenny Packham with silver fern detailing

After wearing her Jimmy Choo Vikki shoes for the playdate the previous day, Kate appeared to go for a slightly bigger platform with her Jimmy Choo Cosmic heels – also in black suede.

The Duchess accessorised with her diamond bracelet, believed to have been part of a wedding present from her father-in-law Prince Charles, and matching earrings.

She carried a black clutch – and this close up also shows the detailing on the waist of the dress.


Kate Middleton wears a diamond bracelet and carries a black clutch


Outfit 4 – wreath-laying and aviation centre visit in Blenheim

Kate was soberly dressed for a sombre occasion on day four of the tour as she and William laid a wreath at a war memorial in Blenheim.

The coat dress was a bespoke version of the McQueen Utility Coat Dress.

And while it is (or was) available in powder blue and black for £2,435, Kate’s is in a military style blue reminiscent of an RAF uniform. She teamed it with navy suede accessories in the form of her Stuart Weitzman Muse clutch and heels.


Prince William and Kate Middleton lay a wreath in Blenheim

She wore a poppy pin on her chest in memory of those who died.

The dress coat, with its oversize pockets, concealed buttons and buckle belt, was a classic style for Kate.

To add to the sober, military smart effect her hair was pulled back into a ponytail – although there was unmilitary style embellishment in the way her hair was woven around it and pinned in place.

And we suspect her diamond and sapphire earrings, reset from a pair worn by Princess Diana, would not be allowed in the officers’ mess either.

Martin Hunter/Getty

Kate leans over to get a closer look – and we get a closer look at the back of her McQueen coat

This was the first outing of this Royal Tour for a piece by McQueen, the fashion house behind Kate’s wedding dress and a regular ever since. We suspect it won’t be the last.


Outfit 3 – a playdate in Wellington

After a day relaxing at a luxury lodge to recover from their jet lag, the royals were back on duty at a specially arranged playgroup.

It was Prince George’s first official public engagement, and the eight-month-old future king stole the show.

He also showed his mum isn’t the only one who can get shoppers to get their wallets out, as the £75 smocked dungarees by Rachel Riley he was wearing quickly sold out in small sizes.

But Kate was very much dressed the part too.


Kate Middleton holds Prince George at the Plunket playdate in Wellington

She wore a black and white dress in a nod to New Zealand’s traditional colours, and the print on her knee-length frock had a hint of the Maori symbols seen in the tattoos at the official welcome on day one.

Kate’s outfit was by American designer Tory Burch – the Paulina dress from the Resort 2014 collection.

It has elegant detailing in the slightly frilled sleeves and skirt hem, front pleats – and that belt effect Kate is so fond of.


Duchess of Cambridge Kate Middleton plays with Prince George

Kate wore her hair down – giving Prince George plenty to play with when he was away from the toys.

Fortunately he didn’t grab onto her Annoushka drop pearl earrings.

And Kate was probably the most well-heeled mum there in more ways than one: her shoes were black suede Jimmy Choo Vikki pumps, which retail at £375.


Kate chats with another mum (wonder if they discussed shoes)  


Outfit 2 – arriving in Wellington

Kate’s first outfit for her first royal tour three years ago was a cracker.

She stepped off the plane in Canada wearing a navy lace Erdem dress looking elegant and acknowledging her hosts – Erdem Moralioglu was born in Montreal.

And her pink kimono-style orchid pattern Jenny Packham dress for her first engagement in Singapore was also an enviable look.

But stepping off the plane this time around we weren’t so sure about her choice.


Duchess of Cambridge Kate arrives in New Zealand with her family  

While the pillarbox red was a strong colour to enliven a grey day in New Zealand and one she has looked good in before, the overall look was a little too reminiscent of an air hostess.

The double-breasted coat is the Russian Great Coat by Catherine Walker – a designer she wore twice on her visit to Canada and the USA two years ago and also a favourite with the late Princess Diana.

Kate almost regretted wearing a flared dress under the flared coat as there was a bit of a breeze coming down the steps.


Kate wears red Catherine Walker coat dress

It is not the first time Kate has had a bit of a Marilyn Monroe moment.

Kate is no stranger to pillbox hats but we can’t help feeling in this case the Seaford style Gina Foster headpiece contributed to the air stewardess feel.

The Duchess of Cambridge would never have been allowed on the flight deck with her hair down though, and definitely shows the benefits of having your own hairdresser when you are flying halfway across the world.

Chris Jackson/Getty Images

Kate’s pillbox hat felt a little dated

Kate wore her Kiki McDonough Grace diamond stud earrings.

For the later Maori welcome Kate was carrying a brown suede Emmy clutch and matching heels.

Ian Vogler / Daily Mirror

Kate watches the Maori welcome

Her key piece of jewellery, though was the silver fern brooch loaned by the Queen.

The emblem of New Zealand, it was a Christmas present to the Queen during her 1953-54 tour of the Commonwealth.

It is one of a number of items loaned to Kate for this tour.

Ian Vogler/Daily Mirror

Kate has been loaned the Queen’s silver fern brooch


Outfit 1 – in transit in Australia

The first glimpse of the royal tour party was an unintended one – as William, Kate, Prince George and their entourage changed planes in Sydney.

Kate was wearing a smart grey Max Mara wrap dress as she carried her son through the airport’s transit area.

It was the same outfit she wore last year to show off her baby bump for the first time.


The Duchess of Cambridge going to Hope House last year

The stretchy jersey would have made it a comparatively comfortable travelling outfit while still allowing her to remain smart.

She teamed it with nude heels which meant she looked ready for business even after a long flight. She may not have needed to dress up to try to secure a first class upgrade, but with Australian TV cameras managing to get through to the transit area she will have been glad she looked ready to face the world.







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