Today in London, Queen Elizabeth hosted the first garden party of the summer season at Buckingham Palace. At least three of these events taks place every year with tea, cakes and a relaxed atmosphere inviting guests to mingle and walk the historic grounds.
According to the British Monarchy’s site, garden parties have taken place at the palace since 1860. They are the monarch’s way of thanking those who have made public contributions in their communities. About 8,000 guests are invited to each party.
Last year, the Duchess of Cambridgewore a pink Emilia Wickstead dress to greet guests at her very first garden party. Although HRH stuck with Wickstead this year, things have changed a bit in the last twelve months.
Catherine wore a yellow silk coat by the English designer with a Jane Corbett fascinator, the same one worn to 2012’s Order of the Garter service. Despite being almost eight months pregnant, the Duchess put on her LK Bennett “Sledge” heels for a spin around the glorious outdoor setting.
While the Duchess mingled with guests, feminist writer Joan Smithtook a swipe at the 31-year-old royal.
In her new book, The Public Woman, Smith dedicated an entire chapter to Catherine. “By the age of 30, the new Duchess of Cambridge had done little since leaving university except play a supporting role to her boyfriend, marry him with great pomp and ceremony and get pregnant,” Smith wrote.
“She had never really enjoyed an independent identity or income — even her clothes were paid for by her father-in-law — and didn’t seem to aspire to either.”
Smith went on to call the Duchess a Wag (an acronym for wives and girlfriends of British footballers).
“Unambitious, uncontroversial and bland, Kate Middleton was Queen Wag in everything but name. It’s all the more telling that the prime candidate, the woman who arguably deserved the title more than anyone, never appeared on lists of the country’s leading contenders.”
This comes just a few months after author Hilary Mantel criticized Catherine and other female members of the royal family.