On Thursday (March 9th), Kate Middleton visited the Hayes Muslim Centre in west London with her husband, Prince William. The royal couple met communities involved in fundraising for the earthquakes in Turkey and Syria last month.
The Princess dressed in an elegant black ensemble and wore an embroidered headscarf to cover her hair—a respectful and appropriate outfit for visiting the muslim community centre on such a solemn occasion.
The Hayes Muslim Centre has raised an incredible £25,000 for the appeal through their bucket collections—most of this was collected in just two hours after Friday prayers.
During the visit, William and Kate also met with representatives from the Disasters Emergency Committee member charities, including volunteers who have recently returned from the crisis zone in Turkey. The pair spoke with representatives from Save The Children, Islamic Relief, Action Against Hunger, Age International, and the British Red Cross. The charities gave updates on the situation on the ground and shared how incoming aid is helping those in need.
The Disasters Emergency Committee (DEC) is a charity organisation that brings together 15 leading UK aid charities to provide humanitarian assistance during times of crisis overseas. Prince William is patron (since 2020).
William and Kate also spoke with other communities who have made considerable efforts to fundraise for the appeal, including the Turkish Women’s Association who raised raise over £10,000 with a school event last month.
During the visit, the royal couple learned how to fold paper cranes—a symbol of hope—with two school children. The girls have made hundreds of origami cranes to raise cash for the DEC appeal. Watch the pair take part in the activity at around 1m:28s in the video below:
Let’s look at the Princess’s outfit now.
Kate Middleton’s Outfit at the Muslim Centre:
As I mentioned in the opening paragraph of this blog post, Kate carefully considered her outfit—the dark colours, modest long coat and dress, plus headscarf were all respectful choices given the location, purpose and the nature of the visit.
If the outfit feels familiar it’s because she wore the entire look in Sandringham last year—even down to the handbag and shoes—during the mourning period following the passing of Queen Elizabeth II.
You’ll noticed he’s swapped her tights for a darker pair, presumably due to the colder weather.
Of course, the ensemble features one notable addition, a cream and black headscarf. The Princess wore the scarf over her hair for modesty reasons—a respectful gesture as the community centre doubles as a mosque.
It is a dupatta which originally came with the kurta (tunic) that Kate wore in Pakistan in 2019 (below). Both items are embroidered with the same design.
It’s from Pakistani design house Élan. You can see it draped across the model’s shoulder in the pictures below:
Élan refer to the style as ‘Royal Garden‘. The kurta is crafted from traditional handspun ivory silk and embroidered with delicate floral and tribal motifs using ebony silk thread. The dupatta is made from chiffon. Both items could be purchased together from Élan’s website for Rs. 33,950, around £345 / $413 at today’s exchange rate. Sadly, they’re no longer available to buy.
The Princess didn’t actually wear the black and white dupatta during her visit to Pakistan in 2019, she actually draped a different design over her kurta—
Élan is a luxury brand with outlets across Pakistan. Their company is headquartered in Lahore.
Let’s look at the Princess’s black pleated dress now. We think it’s a bespoke dress from Alexander McQueen.
Last year, the clever sleuths over at UFO No More found a pink dress in the company’s ready-to-wear offering that looked very similar to the design worn by the Princess in Sandringham. I’d guess Kate had a bespoke version manufactured in black, and I’d guess she probably had sleeves added too. The waistlines are different on both garments, Kate’s dress doesn’t feature the wrap around detail. However, the rib knit top, waistband, length and pleated overlay skirt are otherwise identical, see below:
Kate Middleton has worn Alexander McQueen on many occasions throughout the past twelve years, making it one of her signature labels for special occasions and royal engagements.
Over the dress, Kate wore a long black coat, confirmed to be a bespoke Catherine Walker piece by the Royal Fashion Police. The ankle-length black coat features a peak lapel and three buttons at the cuff.
The coat is not listed on the Catherine Walker website, though I’m sure you could schedule an appointment with the atelier if you wanted to have a similar design created for yourself. For those who cannot travel to London, Catherine Walker has launched an e-couture service. You have an online consultation with the brand and they’ll supply a piece using the measurements you provide. They recommend you work with a local dressmaker to ensure the garment is adjusted to fit perfectly.
Kate carried her Grace Han Love Letter bag to the community centre. I believe she carries the small size.
Grace Han describes the black bag’s “distinctive envelope closure” as an “ode to Love Letters of the past, present and future.” The elegant, compact bag is finished with a handle and gold hardware.
The bag can be purchased though Grace Han’s website, gracehan.shop.
This is the sixth time we’ve spotted the Princess with the bag.
Grace Han is a relatively new brand, based in Knightsbridge, London. The company only launched in February 2019. The eponymous founder and designer grew up in Taiwan but has spent most of her life in London, where her parents met as students.
In one image that I’m unfortunately unable to licence (click to see it in a new tab), you can see a glimpse of a pearl earring under Kate’s dupatta. Susan from What Kate Wore suggests the Princess is wearing her
In2Design Baroque Pearls she’s changed her mind now and thinks they’re the Shyla Chunky Knot Baroque Pearls. Kate debuted the earrings in Boston last year (pictured below). She wore them in public recently, in January, so it’s a good bet.
Finally, Kate completed her look with a pair of Gianvito Rossi 105 Pumps in Black Suede.
The sophisticated shoes are made from goat leather and feature a pointed toe and 105mm stiletto heel. They’re finished with a leather insole for added comfort.
Kate clearly loves the shoe, she’s worn them nearly 30 times in public and she owns the same style in another seven colours!
Gianvito Rossi is an Italian shoe designer renowned for his craftsmanship. He’s known for designing shoes with sleek and elegant silhouettes. Kate’s pretty loyal to the brand, we’ve spotted her wearing 19 different pairs of shoes by Rossi to date (14 pairs of heels, two pairs of sandals and three pairs of boots).