Friday, 16 January 2015

Thrifty Kate strikes again! Six months pregnant Duchess of Cambridge steps out in £50 high street dress (no need for maternity wear)

She was almost upstaged by colourful artist Grayson Perry during a visit to a London school yesterday, but this morning, all eyes were back on the Duchess of Cambridge as she met foster carers in Islington.
The 33-year-old opted for a more fashionable look than yesterday's pared-back smock dress by maternity label Madderson, teaming her brown silk Hobbs dress, which is not part of a maternity line, with opaque black tights and court shoes.

High street brand Hobbs is one of the Duchess' favourite labels and a frequent choice for engagements. In November, she was seen in a polka dot top by the same label during a reception she hosted at Kensington Palace.

Thrifty choice: The Duchess of Cambridge arrived at the event in London's Islington wearing a Hobbs dress that is currently reduced to £50

Royal welcome: An excited group of well-wishers, including a number of children, were on hand to greet her as she arrived

Kate, who was undertaking her second engagement of 2015, looked in good spirits as she arrived at the London event, beaming broadly as well-wishers approached clutching bunches of flowers.
Although not patron of The Fostering Network which organised the event, the charity does sit well with the Duchess' own interests, most of which concern the wellbeing of children.
At the event, which took place in the North London borough of Islington, the Duchess was introduced to a group of foster carers as well as young people who have recently left care homes.
She also sat down to a mid morning snack of cupcakes and chocolate brownies with energetic group of younger children and their foster carers, while being told more about their work.
Before the tea party began she joined a discussion with carers, young adults who had been fostered and senior staff from the Fostering Network during which she took the opportunity to tell of her happiness at being there:
'I've heard a huge amount about fostering,' she told the delighted group. 'It's really great for me to have an opportunity to speak to you.'

Pleased: A smiling Kate stopped to wave to the crowds before being whisked inside for a reception with foster carers

Chilly: The Duchess' brown silk dress was considerably lighter than the thick puffa jackets chosen by the crowd

Particularly in need are teenagers, disabled children and groups of siblings, although currently, 63,000 children have found homes with one of the UK's 52,500 foster families. 
'These children have often experienced neglect and abuse, or have witnessed domestic violence or substance misuse,' explains a spokesman from Kensington Palace.
'Whatever their experiences, all of them will be suffering the trauma of being separated from their own families, and need love, support and stability. 
'Foster carers can provide these children with what they need, and often give them their first positive experience of family life. This event will help to shine a spotlight on fostering and raise awareness about the role of foster carers.'
Speaking after the Duchess had left, Jim Bond, president of The Fostering Network, told MailOnline that the Duchess had a 'great deal of empathy' and a 'clear understanding' of the issues involved.
'She said how impressed she was with the work and the event and said it was "eye-opening",' he continued. 'She did say, "I guess it must be a bit scary when you first get somebody in placement".
'And I said yes, as a mum yourself the first time you have a baby it's scary. So when you're having someone else's child who has already got all manner of baggage that you don't even know about it's even more scary.'
But, said Mr Bond, this shouldn't put people off. 'If you're an adult who is in touch with yourself and what you can offer and you take advantage of the support in your network then it's not a doddle but it's a straightforward piece of work,' he said, adding: '[Foster caring] is the most rewarding thing I've ever done in my life.'
The Duchess of Cambridge, who will become a mother for the second time in April, has long taken an interest in child welfare and supports a number of charities aimed at promoting it.
One such is the organiser of yesterday's event, The Art Room, of which she has been patron since January 2012. That uses art therapy to help troubled children and has a network of dedicated art studios throughout the UK.
Other children's charities to work with the Duchess include East Anglia Children's Hospices, which is based close to her new home at Anmer Hall in Norfolk, and the Scout Association with which the Duchess volunteers. 

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