Gallery Visit with a Side of Commentary

After her relaxing holiday vacation, Kate attended her first royal engagement of the year at the National Portrait Gallery last evening. The Duchess of Cambridge has stepped back into the public spotlight. Intentionally. And she looked more than breathtaking, she was exquisite in her navy chiffon Jenny Packham dress.

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In true Kate Middleton fashion, the dress was recycled from a more recent engagement. The long flowing dress was last seen the Duchess just after she gave birth to Prince George. Then it was the 100 Women in Hedge Funds Dinner; now it was for the NPG’s Gala Dinner.

The Gallery is one of the many charities for which Kate is a patron. As you know, she just celebrated her 1,000th day as the Duchess of Cambridge; it’s been a joy to see which charities Kate gravitates towards over the years. She seems to be partial to the arts and a healthy lifestyle.

Following a wave of introductions and a short speech, the Duchess was welcomed to a lavish dinner focused exclusively on fundraising for her charity.

As always, I was slightly hesitant to google the words “Kate Middleton.” I knew the search would generate about a bazillion articles. As Kate’s role in the royal family continues to expand, the searches always pull up more and more information.

This particular search pulled up a few videos, snapshots of the Duchess’s evening at the Gallery.

In the two minute clip I watched, the camera followed Kate from her car, where thousands of cameras flash at an alarming rate. It’s amazing that she can even get from her car to the front door without tripping, squinting or having a seizures. I know it’s customary of international celebrities to garner media attention, but the opening five seconds of the video I watched looked truly horrifying. I’m not sure I would have the stomach for that type of attention.

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From the red carpet, the viewers see the Duchess being introduced to an exhausting line of artists, photographers, other patrons and high profile individuals, all of whom play a vital role in the success of the Gallery. I know royal engagement is a key descriptor in the job title, but again, being paraded in front of so many people would become both tedious and draining.

And finally, the speech. I think Kate has a long way to go in terms of public speaking. Her inflection and quick glances aren’t especially engaging as they are distracting; however, were I in her shoes I would be a train wreck compared to her. Considering she’s shared a majority of her life’s milestones with the public, including her love life and family life, I think she’s come a long way. There was a brief moment where she stumbled over some words and her charm shone through as she mouthed I’m sorry to the public. That’s what she needs to tap into: her natural charm and bubbly personality.

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And so, the year begins with a black tie affair for the Duchess of Cambridge. I would say it was a splendid success. She looked stunning, mingled with a myriad of influential people, and spoke a few kind words about her charity. As always, I look forward to Kate’s other royal duties, such as the one coming up this Friday, which by the way is Valentine’s Day.

Do you have any special plans for Valentine’s?

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