Kate kicked off her solo engagements with a trip to the National Portrait Gallery's Lucien Freud exhibition. The Duchess of Cambridge, formerly Kate Middleton, had previously stepped in a short notice to take the place of Prince Charles at a dinner for charity In Kind Direct in October, more on that here, but officially this is Kate's first, and the first to a charity of which she is patron. And in the fashion stakes, it's safe to say I think Kate knocked it out the park wearing wearing a grey herringbone or tweed double breasted coat dress with oversized collar by now defunct UK high street brand, Jesiré. This used to be available in the UK via department stores such as House of Frasers and Peter Jones. The Duchess accesssorised with a black belt and some seriously killer black heels which I've since seen as being identified as Jimmy Choos thanks to the power of the zoom lens which picked up the designer's name on the sole of Kate's shoe and specifically the Jimmy Choo Cosmic heels which are available via net-a-porter for $695/ £435.
She carried a black clutch and finished her outfit with the beautiful diamond bracelet, previously and first seen on the Royal Tour (I think it was the BAFTA event) and the Asprey Button Pendant, here on official website.
Due to the fact that the Jesiré brand, which I seem to remember as being a branch of high end womeswear brand Episode, is no longer trading, finding the original item has been nigh on impossible - for now. But perhaps in the future a Kate fashion fan will unearth it and share. As a whole, the outfit was the perfect choice I thought for the occasion, the right blend of chic and stylish.
Kate, who studied history of art at St Andrews University, became patron of the National Portrait Gallery last month and this was a private viewing of what looks set to be a popular exhitibion of Lucien Freud's work. Also attending were Camilla Duchess of Cornwall's ex-husband Andrew Parker-Bowles, fashion designer Bella Freud (Lucien Freud's daughter) and photographer Mary McCartney, daughter of Sir Paul as well as other big names in the art world.
The exhibition features over 100 paintings and work of Lucien Fruend from the 1940s right through to the one he was painting shortly before his death in July 2011. It even includes one of the Queen but Kate reportedly didn't see the paiting of her grandmother-in-law.
Kate next official visit will be on Valentine's Day when she will be visiting an alcohol-free bar in Liverpool as parto f her work for charity Action on Addiction, another of the charity patronages. But here's a video of Kate's arrival at the National Portrait Gallery and boy, there's a lot of flashbulbs and shouting.