Duchess’ Marilyn moment: Duchess Of Cornwall Dress
Published: July 6, 2015
Duchess’ Marilyn moment: Duchess Of Cornwall Dress, Resplendent in a pale blue coat and matching hat, the Duchess of Cornwall looked every inch the stylish grandmother as she arrived for Princess Charlotte’s christening today.
But as she made her way up the path to St. Mary Magdalene Church, Camilla almost fell victim to a wardrobe malfunction after a stray gust of wind blew her skirt up.
Luckily, the Duchess was able to keep her dignity intact with the help of her beige handbag and laughed the moment off as she was greeted by Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby at the door.
Stylish though the 67-year-old was, she had competition in the shape of the equally fashionable Carole Middleton, 60, who was elegant in beige.
The two were accompanied by their husbands, the Prince of Wales and Michael Middleton, as they made their way into St. Mary Magdalene Church ahead of the christening.
Earlier this week, the two were seen enjoying a chat in the Royal Box at Wimbledon after of Andy Murray’s second round win against Robin Haase of the Netherlands.
Joined by Camilla’s younger sister Annabel Eliot, the two appeared animated and were seen laughing as they talked.
Such obviously friendly relations are a marked change from the situation of just a few months ago, when Prince Charles reportedly hit out at ‘the March of the Middletons’.
He also complained to friends that ‘they never let me see my grandson’ – a reference to the amount of time Prince George spends with his Middleton relations.
But since Princess Charlotte’s birth in May, the relationship between the royal grandparents has undergone something of a renaissance.
That the former Mrs Camilla Parker Bowles used to refer jokily to Carole and Mike Middleton as ‘Meet The Fockers’ – after the comedy film in which an engaged couple introduce their respective parents, with disastrous results – has been all but forgotten.
The credit for the thaw is thought to be due to the Duchess of Cambridge who has reportedly begun confiding in the Duchess of Cornwall once more.
‘Katherine knew that her parents weren’t happy being seen as the more involved of the two sets of grandparents. Frankly, she felt it embarrassed them,’ a source told the Daily Mail’s Richard Kay.
‘William saw it, too. Everyone knew the Prince of Wales was quite hurt, not only on his own behalf but on Camilla’s as well. He’s as protective as ever of her role in the Royal Family.’
George and Charlotte have now begun to spend more time with Charles and visited him at Highgrove a few weeks ago where the family joined forces to plant a lime sapling in the grounds.
Camilla and Kate have also begun spending more time together, something they have done only infrequently since the Royal Wedding in 2011.
According to sources, the reason for the rapprochement was the birth of Princess Charlotte, with Camilla seen as an invaluable source of advice by Kate.
‘Camilla has been very comforting for Kate – and amusing, just as she used to be,’ a friend confided to the Daily Mail.
‘There’s no one better at girl-talk – and since Charlotte was born there has been plenty of that.’
But while the Duchess of Cambridge is enjoying an extended period of maternity leave after the birth of her daughter, Camilla and Charles have an increasingly busy schedule to contend with.
Next week will see them tour Wales, with five packed days of events and visits in a number of different towns to manage.
After their annual summer break at Birkhall on the Balmoral Estate, autumn looks set to be equally busy and a tour of Australia and New Zealand has been inked in for November.
For her part, Mrs Middleton is likely to remain a constant in her grandchildren’s lives and regularly makes the journey from Berkshire to Norfolk to see them – something that looks set to continue.
The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh might have been among the most notable arrivals but Princess Charlotte’s christening was remarkably light on royal relations.
As at Prince George’s 2013 baptism, Princess Anne, Prince Andrew and Prince Edward were all absent, as was Edward’s wife, Sophie Wessex.
Also missing were Princesses Beatrice and Eugenie, both of whom had been heavily backed to become godparents, and Peter and Autumn Phillips.
Most notable of all the absentees was Prince Harry, although in his case, the omission is a result of him being abroad – the fifth in line is currently in Africa working on conservation projects.
Prince Andrew is also out of the country and is touring Papua New Guinea, one of the 16 Commonwealth realms, on behalf of the Queen.
Yesterday, he opened the Pacific Games in the capital Port Moresby and was back in action at the Games, which sees 30,000 athletes from the region compete, today.
Zara Tindall, the godmother of Prince George, was also notable by her absence as was her husband Mike – another thought likely to get the job of godparent.
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