Shocking: Kate Wears Lace for Gala at Kensington Palace

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You know, I had a feeling we were going to see this Diane von Furstenberg gown tonight. Part of that is because the Duchess of Cambridge has what appears to be a slight obsession with lace formal wear and part of that is because she wore the exact same gown when she was pregnant with Princess Charlotte in December 2014. So, you know she’s going to don lace and here you have a tried and true pregnancy-safe option. Checkmate.

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Tonight’s event was on behalf of the Anna Freud National Centre for Children and Families, an organization on whose behalf Kate has undertaken a number of engagements in recent years. Most notably perhaps was in January, which marked her first public appearance in the new year.

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The gala was held at the Orangery within Kensington Palace, which today serves as a popular cafe and restaurant with patio space overlooking Kensington Gardens. (I can personally attest that they do a very nice brunch if you are so inclined.) And for those that keep up with their celebrity gossip, you might recall the venue from when American socialite Nicky Hilton married James Rothschild in 2015.

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Anyway, tonight was in honor of the organization’s £39 million Centre of Excellence in development in Islington. Kate, as patron, attended to not only highlight the initiative, but also meet staff and participants. Journalist Kate Silverton, who served as the evening’s compère, said:

“The Heads Together campaign has done an enormous amount to raise awareness around mental health as a whole. It has got people talking, it’s de-stigmatised it, so I think what they’ve done has been absolutely wonderful.”

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The centre’s CEO touched upon Kate’s investment into maternal mental health:

“One of the things that we are interested in is intervening as early as possible in children’s lives to improve their chances of good mental health throughout life. She’s particularly concerned that mothers’ mental health plays a major role in this and that we are able to support mothers to support their children.”

As noted, Kate wore a long black lace DVF gown that she first debuted during a 2014 mini-tour in New York City. At the time she was about five months pregnant with Charlotte; while she is certainly under that in her current pregnancy, she does appear to be showing much earlier thus making the dress a good fit for tonight.

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Kate in NYC in 2014

While I can’t help but make fun of how many times Kate busts out lace for these formal events, it is still a beautiful gown and well-worth a recycle. Unlike last time, she wore her hair down and curled and changed up her accessories. All told, I think I slightly preferred its 2014 showing thanks to a combination of the up-do and the striking earrings, but tonight is still a solid win and she looked gorgeous.

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This marks Kate’s second solo engagement since her third pregnancy was announced and she’s due to make another appearance tomorrow at Place2Be. But thanks to some rogue photos, we actually have a glimpse into how William and Kate have been spending their off-time. The two were photographed with their children and nanny boarding a train in Chester back to London over the weekend.

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According to the Chester Chronicle:

“The Chronicle understands the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, accompanied by royal protection officers, missed their original train at 2.33pm so had to get on an ‘empty’ train to Crewe about 10 minutes later. It isn’t known why the family were in the area but there was speculation on social media they may have been visiting Eaton Hall where the Grosvenors held their annual bonfire and fireworks display on Saturday evening.”

The Grosvenors are family friends of the Waleses with whom William and Harry grew up. The Duke of Westminster (aka Hugh Grosvenor) is actually one of Prince George’s godfather.

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In other Cambridge news, it was announced that Kate would join the Duchess of Cornwall and the Countess of Wessex on the balcony for  Remembrance Day on Saturday, however William and Harry will be skipping it to attend rugby games. Now, to be clear, their attendance at these games are meant to be public engagements due to their roles as patrons of the Welsh Rugby Union and England Rugby. That said, it’s a strange choice given the high-profile nature of the day and both men’s involvement with the military and armed service members. We can get into that more over the weekend…

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