The Duchess of Cambridge revealed her daughter Princess Charlotte is “very keen” on ballet during a tour of the Royal Opera House where she discussed her passion for textiles and costume design.
Kate made a special mention of her daughter as she thanked a member of the ROH team and told how three-year-old Charlotte had enjoyed the “little introduction” and “been very keen ever since”.
It is understood Kate was referring to her mother and daughter trip to the Royal Ballet’s production of The Nutcracker at the Royal Opera House last year.
Ballet fan Kate brought her little girl along to watch a rehearsal ahead of the opening night in December.
The Duchess today wore a magenta Oscar De La Renta skirt suit, believed to be worth £2,736, with opaque tights and black heels complete with a gold buckle detail thought to be by Rupert Sanderson.
She previously wore the suit, from the Autumn 2015 collection, for a mental health conference in February 2017.
Her small black leather handbag by Aspinal of London is understood to have cost £495.
Kate was greeted by ROH chief executive Alex Beard on her arrival at 10.45am, who then accompanied the Duchess throughout her two hour tour of the organisation’s Covent Garden base.
The visit was billed as an opportunity for Kate to discover more about the huge scale of the Costume Department’s work and how different textiles influence various costumes.
The Duchess has a “very specific interest” in the use and manufacture of textiles and her visit to the ROH marked the beginning of a personal project to “explore the industry and through lots of learning opportunities”.
A palace aide said: “The Duchess has a very specific interest with all the work done at the Royal Opera House and her visit is a perfect opportunity for her moving forward to explore the industry at large.
“Over the next few months she will be developing her interest in this industry, through learning opportunities and meeting industry experts and obviously her patronage with the Victoria and Albert museum, which holds the national collection of textiles is very dear to her.
“Much as she values this and her passion for photography, for example, this is the start of an area that she is going to focus on.
“Part of the learning that she is going to be doing in this area and she’s very interested in.”
Kate’s passion is understood to stem from her discovery that her great-great-grandfather, Francis Martineau Lupton, was a mill owner who ran the family’s successful textile manufacturing business, William Lupton & Company, with his three brothers.
During her two hour tour through the corridors of the ROH, Kate met head of costume Fay Fullerton MBE in the Pattern Room.
Ms Fullerton showed the Duchess a display of materials, illustrations and designs from the ballet Swan Lake.
The department is responsible for creating, refurbishing and conserving thousands of opera and ballet costumes per season, with up to 600 costumes per production.
Up to 10,000 costumes are used each year by artists from The Royal Ballet and The Royal Opera House.
It has also built up a historic costume collection of more than 5,000 items, including some dating back to 1861.
Many of the costumes are used time and time again thanks to good maintenance and repair.
It takes the entire revival workroom around 1,500 hours to refurbish the costumes.
Ms Fullerton said: “Just to give you an indication of how specialised we are here, we have 108 full time staff but we are supported by 40 to 60 casual staff and work experience.
“We also do apprenticeships at every department.
Sitting in front of the board an listening attentively, Kate asked: “And are they coming from the fashion school?”
Ms Fullerton replied: “They are coming from everywhere. It’s a big team but for the size of what we have to do it is about right.
“We do nearly 42 shows a year for the main stage and then we also work with Linbury Theatre.”
The Linbury is the smaller more intimate stage at the ROH which opens with its first live performance tomorrow (THURSDAY).
It has been extensively redesigned and refurbished as part of the ROH’s Open Up project.
Kate was then shown some of the finely crafted costumes from Swan Lake with Ms Fullerton revealing some of the costumes “will survive at least 30 years, it’s such an investment”.
The Duchess asked: “Do they have to have constant touching up and repairs?”
Ms Fullerton said: “Well they are so well made there might be the odd repair due to the dancers handling them, but overall they are incredible creations that stand the test of time.”
Pointing to an incredibly detailed long black dress from the ballet, Kate gestured to the seemingly heavy garment, asking: “How do you move and dance in it? Is it all based on a corset or a strong corset?
Ms Fullerton replied: “No, because it’s a ballet dancer that will wear this.
“It’s quite light, it’s lighter than it looks.
“There’s lots of little secrets that you can’t see, like stretch panels somewhere that you can’t see.
“It’s really important that you can move, maybe 20 or 30 years ago it was heavy, it’s not any more, we really take it into consideration.”
Next the Duchess met with Morag Beaton in the stock room of the ROH who showed Kate the shelves of hundreds of fabrics that can be dyed to suit the needs to the costume department.
Ms Beaton explained how the different departments “work closely every day with each other” to achieve the best results.
Kate was then taken to the dye department where staff showed her how they employed different techniques including dyeing, hand-painting, staining garments and digital printing.
Parveen Banga, head of the department, showed her a digital printed which allows the team to reproduce historic fabrics no longer available.
Kate said: “It’s just amazing the intensity about it.”
The Duchess was also introduced to Catriona Paterson, head of ladies workroom, and Jane Dalgarno, head of mens workroom
Kate said: “I saw in here earlier, it amazing seeing everyone with the fashion cuttings.”
Looking at a period costume that was partially constructed, the Duchess added: “When you are seeing and designing from images, what I’m always fascinated by how to cut a pattern that’s got pleats, it that from experience?”
Ms Paterson replied: “A little bit of training and lots and lots of experience.”
Before departing, The Duchess spent half an hour meeting Royal Ballet Principal Dancers Lauren Cuthbertson, Laura Morera and Vadim Muntagirov who will were said to have explained how various factors such as lighting, interaction and movement influence the designs of their costumes.
Before watching the dancers rehearsing the romantic Ballet The Two Pigeons, director of the Royal Ballet Kevin O’Hare explained the context of the performance.
He said: “This ballet, it’s Frederick Ashton so it’s very sweet, it’s a very simple story.
“It’s these two are in love and then the gypsies come to town and then he decides the he might like a bit of that sort of gypsy (laughing) so then he goes off with the gypsy and then he realises that his heart really lies with this one here (laughing).
“It sort of harks back to similar times and it’s very sweet and it’s lovely and it’s everything Ashton is about, sort of lovely romantic stories.
“But the worst thing about it is we actually have two pigeons in it as well, live pigeons.”
Kate said: “Oh amazing. Are you find with birds? Well that’s good”, to which dancer Laura Morera replied jokingly and gesturing at Vadim Muntagirov: “He’s like a pigeon whisperer.”
At the end of the five minute performance Kate exclaimed: “Just incredible, thank you so very much.”
Meghan Markle has got a great sense of humor! The mom-to-be showed it off when someone referred to her as ‘a fat lady.’ See her reaction here!
Just when we thought we couldn’t love Meghan Markle, 37, any more, the new royal proved that she can take a joke! She visited the animal charity Mayhew on Jan. 15, showing off her budding belly in a nude H&M dress, a matching Armani coat and pumps, when one of the women who’d been helped by a therapy animal shook her hand and said something quite unexpected. “Lovely lady, you are! May the good Lord always bless you,” she said. And with a gesture to Meghan’s baby bump, the woman added, “And you’re a fat lady!”
Meghan may have had her back to the camera at the time, but her reaction was still spot on. The mom-to-be laughed, said, “I’ll take it,” and moved on to the next woman in line for a handshake. LOL! While she definitely isn’t “fat,” she is super pregnant and flaunting quite the baby bump these days! With spring coming up — and her April due date fast approaching — Meghan has really began to pop! The dress she wore to the charity hugged her pregnancy curves, just like all of the other adorable maternity outfits she’s been sporting recently.
Recall that just one day before this, she drew all attention to her baby bump in a purple dress and bright red coat. Now that Meghan isn’t hiding her belly anymore, it’s amazing to see her showing off her first pregnancy with bold colors.
But we don’t know what we love more, TBH — this adorable monochrome maternity look or Meghan’s perfect response to the “fat lady” comment. She’s got a sense of humor AND a sense of style, a.k.a. the best of both worlds. Prince Harry, 34, is a lucky guy.
Rights committee in Qatar receives complaint by Sheikh Abdullah Al Thani about his arbitrary detention in Abu Dhabi.
The family of a Qatari royal family member who says he is being held as “a prisoner” in the United Arab Emirates has confirmed his arbitrary detention, according to a Doha-based human rights group.
The National Human Rights Committee in Qatar (NHRC) said in a statement on Tuesday that it received a complaint from Sheikh Abdullah bin Ali Al Thani’s family about his restriction of movement by the Emirati authorities.
“The National Human Rights Committee in the State of Qatar affirms the illegality of this measure and its violation of all international and regional human rights conventions, instruments and understandings,” the statement said.
“It holds the Emirati authorities responsible for the safety and security of this Qatari citizen and demands his immediate release.”
The group also called on the international community and NGOs to intervene and ensure the safety and release of Sheikh Abdullah, as well as hold the Emirati authorities responsible for the violation.
The statement said that the NHRC had informed the United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights and several other international organisations about the incident.
A video released on Sunday showed Sheikh Abdullah saying that if anything happened to him, “Sheikh Mohammed” was responsible.
Though he did not explain who Sheikh Mohammed was, Sheikh Abdullah appeared to be referring to Abu Dhabi’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed.
“I am currently in Abu Dhabi. I was a guest of Sheikh Mohammed. I am no longer a guest; I am a prisoner,” he said.
“They told me not to leave. I am afraid that anything could happen to me, and the people of Qatar would be blamed. So I just wanted to inform you that if anything happens to me, the people of Qatar are innocent,” added Sheikh Abdullah.
“I am a guest of Sheikh Mohammed, and if anything happens to me after this, he is fully responsible.”
Cardi B gave fans a graphic lesson on vaginal health in the funniest video EVER! Her pants were so tight that she sat down with her bare butt during a car ride. She even described what could happen if you don’t take care of a ‘p—y wedgie,’ right away…
Ouch! If you were wondering what the effects of a severe vagina wedgie are, there’s no need to look any further. Cardi B, 26, suffered a painful “p—y wedgie” in tight blue jeans on January 16, and showed the reality (and struggle) of it all in a video on Instagram. After she was forced to unbutton her distressed denim jeans during a car ride, Cardi gave fans a lesson in vaginal health.
“This how I gotta ride in the car son because these pants is too mother–king tight. S–t was giving my p—y a wedgie,” she said of her denim pants by NAMILIA. “I hate having p—y wedgies, bro. My p—y be screaming at me like, ‘Bitch! You got me f–ked up! You want a yeast infection, bitch? You want a f–king yeast infection?’ So, you nam’ sayin’? Y’all I ride around this ho like this. P—y breathin’, though. P—y breathin’!”
Cardi’s denim look also came with a matching jean bra top, which was also courtesy of NAMILIA. She paired her ensemble with pointed stilettos by Dolce & Gabbana. The “Money” rapper committed to her blue look, wearing matching eyeshadow with a winged cat eye. Before her p—y debacle, Cardi posed for a sexy photo on Instagram, which showed off her OOTD.
This isn’t the first time Cardi’s complained about having a wedgie. Earlier this month, she actually stopped mid-performance in New Zealand to adjust her outfit for the same issue. “I need a little break! I’ll be right back. I gotta take this wedgie out my ass,” she told fans of her sultry red bodysuit during the Bay Dreams concert in Mount Maunganui.
The Fashion Nova designer continues to impress in a few different areas — fashion, music (of course) and health. After giving birth to her first child, Kulture Kiari Cephus, in July, Cardi bounced back after baby in a matter of weeks. The rapper has been showing off her incredibly toned tummy, having showcased her abs in the above photo from January 15.
Cardi has been open about her struggle to gain weight after her first pregnancy. She took to Instagram Live in November, where she revealed that she was “depressed” because she kept losing weight after giving birth. At one point, the rapper even admitted that she was trying to gain weight.
Here's all you need to know on the independent watchdog – and the different ratings they can be awarded.
What is Ofsted?
Ofsted is the Office for Standards in Education, Children’s Services and Skills.
It reports directly to Parliament and is independent and impartial.
By law it must inspect schools to give information to parents, to promote improvement and to hold staff to account.
How do the school inspection reports work?
After the inspection, Ofsted publishes a public report that contains information on the school’s performance, its pupils’ work, observation reports on lessons and views from staff, parents and pupils.
They can be valuable when your family are deciding which schools to apply to.
It was announced on 16th January that Ofsted inspections would be less narrowly focused on exam results.
Schools that teach a narrow curriculum designed solely to improve test results and gaming league table rankings will be punished.
What do the ratings mean?
Judgements are scored on a four-point scale:
One – outstanding
Two – good
Three – satisfactory
Four – inadequate
The report also makes suggestions for improvement and the school is expected to put the suggestions into practice.
Why is Ofsted in the news?
On September 7, 2018 a report by MPs found the organisation's budget cuts had seen the quality of their reports into schools' performance falling – meaning parents were not getting the assurances they needed to make important decisions about their children's education.
The Public Accounts Committee labelled it unacceptable that schools previously rated outstanding automatically became exempt from re-inspection.
The PAC report highlighted a number of concerns, including:
it is "unacceptable" that so many schools are exempt from being reinspected and so have not been inspected for six years or more
short inspections do not allow inspectors enough time to make a "meaningful assessment" of a school's performance or help schools improve
inspectors do not give parents enough opportunity to contribute their views about the school
the system for school accountability and improvement is muddled, leading to confusion for schools and parents
the watchdog has struggled to employ enough inspectors, so has failed to complete its inspection programme
Ofsted is not enough of a "force for school improvement"
She wants them perkier! Brie Bella discussed how she wants to lift up her chest in an upcoming ‘Total Bellas’ episode! See the clip inside!
In a hilarious new clip for Total Bellas, wrestler Brie Bella, 35, and her husband, Daniel Bryan, 37, talked about her possibly getting a boob job. Brie walked around wearing inserts to test out the size she liked when her husband wondered what was on her chest.
“Did you strap some pillows in there or what,” he asked his wife. “No, they’re inserts,” she responded. “You have to wear inserts and fill your boobs before you get a boob job just to make sure you like them.” It’s definitely smart to test out sizes to see preferences before you temporarily place something inside your body, that’s for sure! Her husband wasn’t sure why she even wanted to get surgery on her chest in the first place, though.
“So you’re seriously considering getting a boob job,” he asked. Brie said she would see how she liked the inserts. Daniel then turned to their one-year-old daughter Birdie Joe. “Bird, I just hope that you’re completely happy with your body when you grow up,” the father said. “Until you have babies and your babies suck your boobies dry,” Brie quipped back at him.
He continued to speak to his daughter and said he hopes she’s happy “with the body that God gave you.” The married couple then spoke in a confessional interview, airing out their different opinions on the cosmetic procedure. Daniel said he doesn’t “get” breast implants. Brie snapped back at him that “they make your saggy boobs look perky.”
Daniel replied that he thinks getting cosmetic surgery like breast implants is “weird.” He then said he has told his wife “multiple times” that he “[loves] how her body is.”
At the end of the day, we hope Daniel supports Brie in whatever decision she makes regarding her body, and that Brie is satisfied in any procedure she chooses to get. We’ll see on Total Bellas what Brie actually decided to do! Total Bellas airs on E! at 9 p.m. E.T.