The Emperor and Empressvisited the National Rehabilitation Center for People with Disabilities in Tokorozawa, Saitama Prefecture. This is an important place in the life of the Japanese. It is the only facility in the country that provides medical care and employment training to people with disabilities on a consistent basis.
I am enjoying this hat departure on Masako, and the deep wine color. I would love to see her default to a brim more often, and the lapel and hatband coordination is a wonderful touch. I also detect a hint of spousal coordination.
Royal watching got even more complicated this week. We’ll go over the extraordinary first, and then head into the mundane (which is still pretty exciting).
Changes and Controversy
First up, the Sussexes. Yes, even though they won’t be working royals we will still feature them occasionally. We aren’t currently covering each new release of information because, frankly, it is controversial, and it has the potential to take us far from our drama-free mission. Going forward, we will treat the Sussexes like the other British non-working royals. We’ll cover the clothes at their individual events – Invictus, etc., – and definitely give their ensembles a once-over when they appear with the rest of the Windsors at family events.
A hat tip to Lesleyc for this next bit of intriguing royal news. The erstwhile Italian royals (the monarchy was abolished in Italy in 1946) are battling the question of absolute primogeniture between two branches of the family. My writing skills are not nearly good enough to describe the various branches of the House of Savoy and their positions on the matter, but this article in The Telegraph details it in all its colorful glory. If anyone can clarify further in the comments, please do!
Manners from Marie-Chantal
Marie-Chantal has carved a bit of a career for herself out of high-end child rearing. She started by selling classic kid clothes and now she is dipping her toe into publishing. She has a book out on manners, and I have a bit of curiousity about how the really rich approach this topic. If it happens to cross your path, let us know what you think of it!
Princess Marie-Chantal of Greece has announced that on March 2020 her first book titled “MANNERS START AT BREAKFAST” will be published! Written in a lively, conversational style, it is certain to become a perennial and parental must-have resource. Read: https://t.co/ZPiYMay5q6pic.twitter.com/qnjgnbnXS9
The theme for the January 16th poetry reading was hope, and I think we can all get behind that message. I was particularly touched by the Empress’ poem, and my sartorial side was intrigued by her single lapel dress. You can read all the poems here.
Empress Masako’s poem
The power of youth Brings hope To those who strive To rise up from the calamity they suffer.
The circus came to Monaco, as it does yearly, and we have COLOR IN THE ROOM. On day one, I liked Stephanie’s coat and one shoulder orange-red dress very much, and her daughter Pauline Ducruet wore a flowing dress I would classify as interesting on anyone else, but she looks chic.
On day two, mother and both daughters (Camille Gotlieb joined the fray, in lavender and BIG sleeves) appeared as a trio. I like the black on Stephanie, and the girls are looking pretty snazzy without being ridiculous. Ok, maybe the big sleeves are a tad…..absurd.
Day three! I think this is among the best ever of Stephco’s ensembles. The chic black and white works with her own high contrast coloring, and I am seeing something Char-like in Pauline’s ensemble, in a good way.
I wanted to end with Benedikte, but I couldn’t find anything recent for her, so we’ll end with her great nephew instead. Prince Nikolai of Denmark continues his modeling career, and I thought his runway appearance might send you off to your week in a good mood.
I am slowly coming out of the fog of my New Year’s Eve celebrations – although I didn’t even make it to midnight! – but a Happy New Year and a happy new decade of royal watching to the entire community. Photos have started coming in from Japan and we’ll get them up asap, but I am searching for a live link for Denmark (found, see below for times and links).
In the meantime, the usual drill applies here. It’s open for both the Japanese and Danish celebrations, and if the thread doesn’t get too long we’ll keep it open for the next two nights in Denmark, too. We’ll play that by ear.
The family appeared for the New Year’s greetings in photos and a video released earlier today. The Sparkle Sisters, Mako and Kako, stepped away from the pastels and into some more satured color suits, and just look at Aiko beaming in the middle.
2020 New Year: Princess Mako and Princess Aiko Prince Hisahito and Princess Kako
For today’s reception, the Empress in the Meiji Scroll tiara. I just re-read the entry at OoS and now wish to see this someday in the star incarnation. Her earrings are no slouches, either. A video of the reception can be found here.
Prisma on Twitter has been finding early photos of the Japanese receptions. As is typical, the women are representing in the light cream and white shades, but all that gentle sparkle on their heads is working well for my tired, early morning eyes.
First up, the Queen, as it should be. Ah, Margrethe. As I mentioned in the comments, I can see the Yeti pelt a mile away. That dress underneath is a lovely, sparkly, liquid green, and I like the slim silhouette. It’s a nice change-up from the ballgowns, and the Emerald and Diamond crown jewels fancy it all up to proper levels. I was a bit worred about her back, because she seemed hesitant while walking in the videos.
Both Mary and Marie wore repeats, and both are re-worked maternity gowns. Mary wore her oft-repeated (by my count, this is the fourth wearing) Birgit Hallstein gown. It’s a workhorse for a reason. Look how it stands up to the orders and gew gaws and the Ruby parure. Marie is wearing her re-worked Henrik Hviid gown, which we were just discussing – so we must be clairvoyant or something.
Speaking of Marie, why yes, the Order chain can touch skin. Let’s add that to our “royal myths busted” folder. Also, you can’t see it here but both women wore hair bling WITH tiaras, which makes them heroes in my eyes.
Lest you think I overlooked someone, here is my big, big win for the night. Benedikte has not been to this even recently and boy, oh boy, did we miss her. She simply slayed it tonight. She didn’t just enter the event, she knocked it down and walked right over it. Regal purple in velvet? Sign me up! A big “pearly” necklace and the Order of the Elephant? The Star and Pearl tiara? Bow down everyone, this woman is simply the most consistently royal royal in action today.
Princesses Mako and Kako made dual appearance at the Shinhama Kamoba Imperial Wild Duck Preserve. There is an annual “duck netting” event held at the location, and many foreign delegates, including ambassadors, were in attendance. Duck netting is somewhat exclusive to Japan, and I profess not to understand it even after reading the Wiki entry. It seems that the ducks aren’t harmed, so we can all go on in relief and admire the ensembles of the Sparkle Sisters below.
Here is a video of the event, for those who want to parse out what it entails.
TV Tokyo's 13-minute video of Princess Mako and Princess Kako at duck netting on December 17https://t.co/HUTfttp8Dw
Finally, here is a bit more information on how the data that is captured is used for research.
It's Princess Kako's 1st attendance at duck netting & Princess Mako's 6th. The Imperial family hosts duck netting 5 times as entertainment for diplomatic corps between November and February. Ducks are captured, tagged for research purposes & released. 📸 https://t.co/8OIiTIpzaRpic.twitter.com/UyVCygIOqM
Princess Hisako made one of her usual lively appearances at the Ikebana International Fair, to support victims of the recent rains in Japan. Love the kimono, of course, but I love her general cheeriness even more. Thanks to Prisma, on Twitter, for the updates on this event.