The Queen’s Address to Nation, Poll Results and Your Favorite 2019 Evening Gown

Hello-Hello, we’re back with another post that hopefully offers a tiny boost to anyone whose spirits may be sagging as we continue moving through these uncharted waters. 

In the latest royal news, there is word today that HM will do an address to the nation on Sunday. 

This will be the fifth time The Queen has done a special broadcast. Except for a 2012 Diamond Jubilee address, all have come during times of mourning and crisis; in 2002 before the Queen Mother’s funeral; in 1997 on the eve of Princess Diana’s funeral; a 1991 Gulf War address.  The pre-recorded message was taped at Windsor Castle. 

Prince Charles has recovered from his bout with the virus. Today, via a video link, he officially opened the NHS Nightingale Hospital at the ExCel Convention Centre, a 4000-bed facility for patients with the coronavirus built in the last nine days.  The BBC reports it was “built with the help of up to 200 soldiers a day from the Royal Anglian Regiment and Royal Gurkha Rifles, working long shifts alongside NHS staff and contractors.” 

Yesterday Kensington Palace released transcripts of conversations the Duke and Duchess have been having with NHS hospital staff. More from the Evening Standard’s coverage:  

During calls to Queen’s Hospital Burton in Staffordshire and the University Hospital Monklands in North Lanarkshire on Wednesday, William and Kate heard about the impact of the spread of the virus on the personal and professional lives of staff.

KP also posted a portion of one of the conversations on Twitter. 

The Palace released a photo of Queen’s Hospital Burton taken while they were speaking with Kate and William. As Simon Perry reports, “It was there that Amged El-Hawrani, a senior doctor in the National Health Service, worked. He was among the first medics to die in the U.K. during the COVID-19 outbreak.”

More from Victoria Murphy’s piece for Town and Country, quoting Kate’s call with staff at University Hospital Monklands:

“You’re stretched in all sorts of ways looking after the patients in your care under such extreme circumstances. But you also need to be able to make sure you support yourselves, and each other.

Last week the Palace posted photos of both the Duke and Duchess on the phone while speaking with some of their patronages. The picture of Kate appears to have been taken the same day the couple visited a London Ambulance call center; she is wearing the same Marks and Spencer suit seen at that engagement.  (For anyone interested, the Autograph Wool Blend Blazer ($140) is still available in some sizes, but the Wool Blend Slim Leg Cropped Trouser ($105) is sold out with the exception of a size 20.) 

The Cambridge family remains at Anmer Hall, their country home in Norfolk. 


Now for results from our previous polls, starting with your favorite tiara.

I don’t think anyone is surprised to see the Cartier Halo in first place. It is followed by the Lover’s Knot as worn to last year’s diplomatic reception, and the Lotus Flower worn for the October 2015 China state dinner.

Keeping to accessories, we move to your favorite St Patrick’s Day hat. Here are the numbers.

The Gina Foster ‘Meribel’ was a favorite, taking first and third place, with the Sylvia Fletcher for Lock and Co. style in second.

Next, your favorite overall St. Patrick’s Day look. 

Last year’s Alexander McQueen was the big favorite,  with the 2014 ‘Persephone’ by Hobbs coming in next and the velvet-trimmed Catherine Walker worn in 2017 placing third.


Now for our look at last year’s evening gowns. We begin with February’s BAFTA Awards, when we saw a stunning one-shoulder piece by Alexander McQueen.  

The design showcased a draped, fitted bodice with a full, flowing skirt and floral embellishment at the shoulder. Kate accessorized with a pair of glittering diamond and pearl earrings that belonged to Diana, Princess of Wales.  Additionally, she wore the Queen’s Diamond Quatrefoil Bracelet and carried a McQueen bag, the Mini Crystal-Embellished Clutch. The Duchess also wore a pair of Jimmy Choo heels, the label’s Romy 100  style with “Silver and Dusk Blue Fireball Glitter Dégradé” embellishment.  

Just a few days later, we were treated to another gown, this one by Gucci, worn for the annual 100 Women in Finance gala.

The off-the-shoulder design featured an intricately ruched bodice and flowing skirt in layers of pleated tulle accented at the waist with a velvet band. She accessorized with her Cabrina pumps by Oscar de la Renta and carried the Prada clutch we first saw at Princess Eugenie’s wedding. Kate also wore the morganite and diamond earrings by Kiki McDonough that were first noted at sister Pippa’s wedding.

In March, we saw something familiar when the Duchess attended a National Portrait Gallery gala. 

The much-discussed dress was by Alexander McQueen, featuring a print used for Kate’s gown at the 2017 BAFTA Awards.  Whether this was a new dress altogether or a reworked version of the BAFTA frock, it featured a fitted bodice, short sleeves, and full, tiered skirt. The Duchess carried her Prada clutch, and her  ‘Cosmic’ pumps by Jimmy Choo made a return engagement.  Once again, we saw the Kiki McDonough morganite and diamond earrings. 

It was June before there was another formal engagement requiring a gown. At the June state dinner honoring President and Mrs. Trump, the Duchess wore Alexander McQueen. 

The white lace gown had a deep vee-neckline, cap sleeves, and a full skirt, all topped with row upon row of lace.  It was the first white-tie event of the year, and Kate wore the Lover’s Knot tiara as well as the Royal Victorian Order (Maltese cross on the blue ribbon affixed to her gown by her acorn brooch) and her Royal Family Order (on left shoulder). She also had on the Queen Mother’s sapphire and diamond fringe earrings and a four-strand pearl bracelet. She carried an Alexander McQueen evening bag.

While on tour in Pakistan, the Duchess wore a deep green evening gown by Jenny Packham. 

The design appeared to be based on the ‘Georgia’ gown from Jenny Packham’s a/w 2019 runway collection. It featured sequined fabric in a tailored design with a row of crystal embellishment accenting the waist, neckline, and cuffs, and an intricately beaded matching scarf. Kate accessorized with the ‘Mimi 100’ style sandals by Jimmy Choo. For jewelry, the Duchess sported a new pair of earrings from O’Nitaa, the Chelsea boutique where several of her tour outfits were sourced. 

For October’s Royal Variety Performance, we saw another gown by Alexander McQueen. 

The dress showcased a black lace floral overlay atop a nude underskirt; a band of velvet trim defined the fitted bodice and waist, and the back had a deep scoop; the sleeves were sheer.  Kate carried her Jimmy Choo Celeste velvet clutch and wore her Romy 100 Velvet Pumps, also by Jimmy Choo. She had on Erdem ‘Floral Hoop Drop’ earrings first seen at an October 2018 V&A event.  

The final time we saw an evening gown in 2019 was at the annual diplomatic reception; it was another Alexander McQueen design. 

The velvet gown was deep navy in color; it showcased a sweetheart neckline, fitted bodice, and long sleeves puffed at the shoulder. The Duchess wore the Lover’s Knot tiara and the dazzling Nizam of Hyderabad necklace, diamond earrings believed to be on loan from HM, and a diamond ring. The Duchess had on the sash and badge associated with her status as a Dame Grand Cross of the (GCVO) Royal Victorian Order and her Royal Family Order. 

And now it’s time to vote! 

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  • The Daily Mirror story about the Queen’s address is here; a Daily Mail piece about the address is here; the BBC’s story on the address is here 
  • Victoria Murphy’s Town and Country article about the calls made to hospital staff is here; Robert Jobson’s story on the calls for the Evening Standard is here; Simon Perry’s piece for People is here; The Daily Express article is here 

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