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Tag Archives: Orla Kiely

Uniting a Kingdom of Isles

The Irish and the English have been fighting for centuries, which has led to violence, oppression, terrorism and death.  In the short year that Kate Middleton and Prince William have been married, it seems the royal couple have been attempting to take small steps to uniting the two countries through… fashion?  It might sound shallow at first, but it seems the prince and princess have been honoring the Emerald Isle all year!  Today is St. Patrick’s Day, and in honor of March 17th, Kate Middleton handed out bouquets of shamrocks (the national flower of Ireland) to the Irish Guard (pictured, above).  The princess sported a gorgeous belted green Emilia Wickstead coat with chocolate suede pumps and a matching “Betty Boop” hat by Lock and Co.  She topped off her look with a gold shamrock brooch, previously used by the Queen Mother and Princess Anne, a bouquet of shamrocks in her lapel, and amethyst and diamond earrings by Kiki McDonough (hmm, a jeweler with an Irish surname).  For their enormous wedding last April, Prince William donned the traditional red dress uniform of the Irish Guard.  Considering one out of every three people on Earth watched the royal wedding, we have a feeling the prince was trying to make a statement about his respect for Ireland.  Last year, William was appointed to the honorary rank of of Colonel of the Irish Guard, and last June the couple handed out operational service medals to the Guards who fought in Afghanistan (pictured, below).  Princess Kate has also been sporting Irish designer Orla Kiely quite a bit, lately.  Earlier this week, she wore a lovely gray accordion dress while visiting the Dulwich Picture Gallery (pictured, above left).  In February, while visiting schools in Oxford, she wore a 1970s walnut-brown bird patterned dress coat by Kiely that sold out within minutes (pictured, above right).  While the British-Irish conflict isn’t exactly a problem that will be fixed with clothing, it’s nice to see the young royals making an effort to unite the two cultures with shared traditions and Irish fashion.  Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

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