Saturday, September 22, 2018

Adding to my royal postcard collection

Princess Marie Gabrielle and Count Knud of Holstein Ledreborg and their eldest daughter, Monica

Princess Marie Gabrielle, Countess Knud of Holstein-Ledreborg and her first two daughters, Monica & Lydia

Princess Alix de Ligne

The Prince and Princess de Ligne and their first daughter, Anne (1954)

Princess Margaretha of Luxembourg - first Communion

Princess Anne and Prince Wauthier de Ligne

Princess Elisabeth,  Princess Marie Adelaide and Hereditary Grand Duke Jean of Luxembourg

The Princess de Ligne with Princesses Anne and Sophie de Ligne

New additions to my royal postcard collection 

Mail Call

Recently arrived here -- yesterday and today

The first card commemorates the 7th wedding anniversary of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, which was on April 29th.   I think we can assume that Clarence House has been rather busy in responding to cards for anniversaries, births, baptisms, birthdays and weddings.

The second response is from the King and Queen of the Belgians for their son, Prince Gabriel's birthday.

Thursday, September 20, 2018

Meghan glows during first "solo" engagement

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The Duchess of Sussex's first solo engagement went off without a hitch although her husband, the Duke of Sussex, may have tried to sneak a Samosa without anyone looking.

Earlier today on the grounds of Kensington Palace, the Duchess hosted a luncheon to celebrate the publication of Together: Our Community Cookbook, which features the recipes from the women of the Hubb Community Kitchen.  The women are among the survivors of the Grenfell Fire in June 2017.

Hubb means love in Arabic -- and a lot of  love was in the dishes that were made and served at the luncheon.

The Duchess of Sussex was accompanied by her husband and her mom, Doria Ragland, who flew from Los Angeles to see her daughter's project come to fruition.

In the last few hours I have read a plethora of criticism directed toward Meghan and her mother from message boards hags and nags and racist bitches on Twitter.

Oh dear, Doria was in a tax-payer funded car with the Duke and Duchess of Sussex.  'Cuse me, but the seat she sat in would have been empty if she were not in the car.  No extra gas (petrol) was used.  The car came from Nottingham Cottage.   I doubt people would have gotten their knickers in a twist if Doria had been a foreign royal or the Duchess of Ragland.

I also think that Doria's presence had the ERII seal of approval.


 So many are also offended or upset because the majority of the guests were (GASP!) Muslims and black people ...  Oh dear ... so many must have suffered the vapors and headed for their fainting couches to recover.

The majority of the residents of the Grenfell Towers, including those who were killed in the fire, are not white.  So what?  Britain is a multi-cultural society, and that is something that is not going to change.   Celebrate it.

The Queen is the sovereign of 16 countries, where not all the residents are white or Christian.   If the Queen can be queen of countries where the majority of residents are black and accept it ... so can you.

The Duchess of Sussex hit a home run with this project, which has been in the works since before the wedding.  She made numerous private visits to the kitchen to meet with the women, learn about their struggles - and how she could help.

The cookbook is already a bestseller. 

Well done, darling Duchess,  Well done.

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Nicholas and Alina de Roumanie's wedding schedule

Here is the official wedding schedule for the religious wedding of Nicholas and Alina-Maria de Roumanie, which will take place on September 30.

Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Lady Gabriella Windsor to marry Tom Kingston

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@ Alexandra Diez de Rivera
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Lady Gabriella Windsor is to marry Tom Kingston in the spring of 2019, according to an announcement released by Buckingham Palace:

"Prince and Princess Michael of Kent are delighted to announce the engagement of their daughter Lady Gabriella Windsor to Mr Thomas Kingston.

"The engagement took place in August; Mr Kingston proposed on the Isle of Sark."

Lady Ella, 37, is "senior director at Branding Latin America. a brand-positioning platform that specialises in the region."

A director of Devonport Capital,  headquartered in Plymouth,  Tom  specializes in frontier market investment. 

Thomas Henry Robin Kingston was born at Evesham on June 22, 1978 at Evesham.  He is the son of William. Martin Kingston and Jill Mary Bache.  They were married on September  13, 1972 at Himbleton, Droitwich.   Jill Kingston runs the Nadezhda Charitable Trust, which supports "a wide range of projects but with a particular emphasis on Zimbabwe, a country where there are significant needs appropriate to the Trusts objectives."  Martin Kingston is also a trustee of the charity.

Tom's father is a QC and one of the UK's top lawyers in Planning and the Environment.

Mr. and Mrs. Kingston live at Kemble House in Kemble, near Circencester.  The house was built in the 17th century.

Lady Gabriella was born at St. Mary's, Lindo Wing, on April 23, 1981.  At the time of her birth, she was 17th in line to the throne after her brother, Lord Frederick, who was born on April 6, 1979.

Her baptism took place at the Chapel Royal, St. James's Palace, on June 8, 1981.  She was given the names Gabriella Marina Alexandra Ophelia and her godparents were the King of the Hellenes,  Prince Mariano Hugo of Windisch-Graetz, Miss Marina Ogilvy, the Marchioness of Douro and Lady Elizabeth Shakerley.

Her  fourth Christian  name was an acknowledgment of her date of  birth, which was William Shakespeare's birthday.

King Constantine II of the Hellenes is a second cousin of Prince Michael, as his late father King Paul, and Michael's mother, Marina, were first cousins.   The Prince of Windisch-Graetz is married to Archduchess Sophie of Austria, whose mother, Countess Helen of Toerring-Jettenach, is a first cousin of Prince Michael.  Her mother, Princess Elisabeth of Greece and Denmark, was the middle of  the three daughters of Prince Nicholas of Greece and Denmark and Grand Duchess Helen Wladimirovna of Russia.   Prince Mariano-Hugo also acted as a witness at the marriage of Lady Ella's first cousin, Lord Nicholas  Windsor, when he married Paola Frankopan in 2006. 

Marina Ogilvy, now 52, is the younger daughter of Princess Alexandra of Kent and the late Hon. Sir. Angus Ogilvy.  She is a first cousin of Lady Ella. 

The Marchioness of Douro (HRH Princess Antonia of Prussia) is a descendant of Queen Victoria.  She married Lord Douro, eldest son of the 8th Duke of Wellington.  He succeeded his father in 2014 as the 9th Duke of Wellington.  Princess Antonia is now styled as Her Grace The Duchess of Wellington.

Lady Elizabeth Shakerley is the daughter of the late Thomas, Viscount Anson, and Anne Bowes-Lyon, a niece of the late Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother.   She is the sister of the late the 5th Earl of Lichfield (the photographer Patrick Lichfield) and was the second wife of the late Sir Geoffret Shakerley, BT, also a noted society photographer.  Lady Elizabeth runs a very successful party planning business.

Lady Ella is a member of the board of Playing for Change and Toucan Ventures

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Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Ashley Hicks' new love is wife's friend

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Interior designer Ashley Hicks left his pregnant wife, Kata, for a friend of hers, Martina Mondadori Sartogo, publisher of Cabana magazine, according to a Page Six report in the New York Post.

Mondari Sartogo lives in London with her husband and three children.

The affair began in June when, Ashley, a grandson of the late Earl Mountbatten of Burma, and Martina traveled together to Genoa, Italy, for a business trip.

A month later, Kata learned that she was pregnant with a second child.   The couple's first child, Caspian William Donald Sebastian, was born on January 21, 2018 in Oxford.   Martina is one of Caspian's godparents.

Ashley "confessed" to Kata about the affair in mid-August.  On August 28, he sent an email to a friend:   "You’ll think me a perfect monster, I’m sure, but I’ve actually left my poor pregnant wife in order to be with my lovely friend Martina . . . Oh, dear.”

Sunday, September 16, 2018

Wedding preparations for Nicholas & Alina

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Just two weeks to go before Nicholas and Alina Maria de Roumanie will marry in a religious ceremony in Sinaia on September 30.

Nicholas, the grandson of the late King Michael, is in Sinaia making the final preparations.  The reception will be held at the Sinaia Casino.

More than 200 invitations have been sent out.   Nicholas' sister, Karina Medforth-Mills will be attending the wedding.  However, their mother, Princess Helen will not be attending, nor will Nicholas' aunt, Margarita, who is the head of the house.

According to the Romania news organization,  Mediafax,  Helen informed her son in a phone call that she would not be attending the wedding.  However, the information that HM Margarita returned the invitation unopened is incorrect.   The Royal House has not responded to the invitation.

Nicholas said the wedding will be a traditional one and reception in the evening "more formal."

Saturday, September 15, 2018

Princess Helene of Yugoslavia and Stanislas Fougeron: religious wedding

Princess Helene of Yugoslavia and Stanislas Fougeron exchanged vows earlier today at the Saint Etienne de Janville church in Janville, France.   The couple was married in a civil ceremony in Paris on March 12, which was the Princess' 55th birthday.

This is the second marriage for Princess Helene.  Her first marriage to Thierry Gaubert, a civil ceremony only, ended in divorce.  She has three children from this marriage:  Milena, Nastasia, and Leopold.   Since 2017, Milena has been married to Jonathan Namios.

The bride was escorted to the church by her twin brother, Prince Serge of Yugoslavia.   Other members of Princess Helene's family who attended the wedding including her son, Leopold Gaubert,  her half-brother, Prince Michel of Yugoslavia and her half-sister, Amelie de Bourbon-Parme,  her sister-in-law, Princess Eleonora of Yugoslavia, her mother, Princess Maria Pia of Bourbon-Parma (nee Savoy) and Emanuele Fililberto, Prince of Piedmont, her first cousin.

Helene and Stanislas will live at his home, Chateau de Villeprévost, in Tillay-le-Péneux, where the reception was held.

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Crown Princess Mary in Finland

Crown Princess Mary of Denmark visited Finland yesterday to honor the centenary of diplomatic relations between Denmark and Finland.

The Crown Princess replaced her husband, Crown Prince Frederik, as he is recovering from surgery and was unable to make the trip.

Thank you to  @timanttisalonki for allowing me the use of this superb photo.

Friday, September 14, 2018

Mail Call ... again

In the mailbox today ... so the only one that has not arrived in the wedding thank you card.  I mailed my card after I returned home on May 21st.

Ashley and Kata Hicks: separated

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It was on August 24 that Kata Hicks, the wife of  interior designer Ashley Hicks, a godson of Prince Philip, announced, naturally, on Instagram that she was expecting a second baby, only seven months after the birth of the couple's first son, Caspian.   Now two weeks later comes the news that couple have separated.

The Daily Mail's gossip columnist, Sebastian Shakespeare, broke the news of the separation yesterday.

Ashley Hicks, 55,  and  American Kata Sharkey de Solis, 36  were introduced on Instagram more than three years ago by illustrator Donald Robertson. They became engaged only a month after they were introduced.

Kata has moved out of the Ashley's Oxfordshire home, The Grove,  and, according to friends, she is "extremely stress at being deserted."

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One friend told Shakespeare:  "He's left her but he is hoping they will be able to have a good relationship."

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Ashley is the second of three children of the late designer David Hicks and the Lady Pamela Mountbatten, younger daughter of the late Earl Mountbatten of Burma.  He has two sisters, Edwina Brudenell, and India Hicks.

Kata is expecting a second boy later this year.

Ashley's first marriage to Italian Allegra Tondato ended in divorce in 2009.  They have two grown daughters, Angelica and Ambrosia.

More details on Princess Eugenie's wedding

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"Her Royal Highness Princess Eugenie and Mr. Jack Brooksbank have been touched by the many good wishes they have received in the run up to their Wedding on 12th October 2018. They are looking forward to celebrating with their family, friends, and members of the public within the Castle grounds and in Windsor. As the Wedding approaches the couple wish to share the following details of the day:

The Wedding Service will take place at St George’s Chapel at 1100hrs, with The Dean of Windsor, The Rt Revd. David Conner officiating. The Archbishop of York, The Most Revd. and Rt. Hon. John Sentamu, will lead the prayers.
The couple are delighted Her Majesty The Queen has agreed for the grounds of Windsor Castle to be opened to those wishing to join the celebrations. After receiving over 100,000 applications, invitations have now gone out to the 1,200 members of the public who will join them on the day.

Other guests in the Castle grounds will include representatives of charities and organisations supported by the couple, including the Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital, the Teenage Cancer Trust, the Salvation Army and the UN Trust Fund to End Violence Against Women. Children from two local schools, St George’s School and Coworth Flexlands School, both of which Princess Eugenie attended, will be present, alongside members of the Windsor community, residents of Windsor Castle and a number of Royal Household staff.

After the service, the newly married couple will undertake a short ride in a carriage from the Royal Mews, out of Windsor Castle and on to part of the High Street. Opportunities for members of the public wishing to view the couple are on Castle Hill, the High Street and Park Street, echoing the route taken by The Earl and Countess of Wessex following their wedding. The carriage will not travel along the Long Walk.

Following the carriage procession, The Queen will give a Reception at Windsor Castle for the couple and their wedding guests."

(This is the press release that was sent to the media for use ... which is the point of a press release.)

Thursday, September 13, 2018

The marriage of Princess Bianca of Savoy and Count Giberto Arrivabene

Marlene A Eilers Koenig Collection

The engagement between HRH Princess Bianca of Savoy-Aosta and Count Giberto Arrivabene-Valenti-Gonzaga was announced in February 1988.  The wedding date was set for September 12, 1988, at Il Borro.

The bride, then 21 years old, was the eldest of three children of HRH Prince Amedeo, Duke of Aosta, and his first wife. HRH Princess Claude of France.   She is a descendant of Queen Victoria through her paternal grandmother, HRH Princess Irene of Greece and Denmark, second daughter of King Constantine I of the Hellenes and Princess Sophie of Prussia.

Princess Bianca and Count Giberto share a common ancestry to King Louis XIV of France through King Ferdinando IV of the Two Sicilies and his wife, Archduchess Maria Carolina of Austria.   Bianca is a descendant from their daughter, Marie-Amelie, who married Louis-Philippe, King of the French.  Giberto descends from Marie-Amelie's older brother, King Francisco I of the Two-Sicilies and Archduchess Klementine of Austria.

More than 1400 guests attended the wedding celebrations, which were held on the Duke of Aosta's estate, Il Borro, in Tuscany.

350 attended the church ceremony.

 It was the first marriage of a member of the Italian royal family since before 1946 when King Umberto II and his family went into exile after a failed referendum on the monarchy that led to the establishment of the Italian Republic.    King Umberto and his male-line descendants were barred from setting foot in Italy until 2002.  His consort,  Queen Marie-José was also barred from returning to Italy.

The law that exiled Umberto and his male descendants did not apply to collateral branches of the Italian royal family.  This included the Aosta branch.

Princess Bianca wore an Enrico Coveri designed gown that included an "exquisite hand-embroidered  white gown trailed by a 12-metre-long tulled veil."   The family Savoy-Aosta tiara remained in a bank in Switzerland so Giberto's mother,  Graziella (Brandolini d'Adda) lent the bride a small family tiara.  Bianca's hairdresser was the well-known Alexandre de Paris.
Queen Marie-José was granted permission by the Italian government to attend the wedding.  She was representing her son, Crown Prince Vittorio Emanuele, who was banned by the Italian constitution from setting foot on Italian soil.   Vittorio Emanuele's wife, Marina, also attended the wedding.

The guest list included members of European royal families and Italian noble houses:  Princess Caroline of Monaco and her husband, Stefano Casiraghi, King Michael and Queen Anne and Princess Margarita of Romania, Prince Michael of Greece  Princess Maria Beatrice and Princess Maria Pia of Italy, the latter with her children and her partner, Prince Michel of Bourbon-Parma, Archduke Robert and Archduchess Margherita (nee Savoy-Aosta, a first cousin of the Duke of Aosta), of Austria, an their sons, Archdukes Lorenz and Martin,  Ferdinando, Duke of Castro, and his son, Carlo, the Duke of Calabria,  the Duke of Cadiz,  and Fiammetta Frescobaldi, who had recently announced her engagement to Prince and Duke Charles-Louis of Arenberg.   The bride's maternal grandmother, the Countess of Paris, was also present.

The wedding culminated after several days of celebrations including a lavish party at the Duke's home at Mansi, followed by two more receptions, one hosted in Florence by Princess Claude.

The post-wedding reception took place at Il Borro and featured a two-metered cake that was designed by Princess Bianca.  The "gigantic creation" included  55 pounds of blackberries.

Princess Bianca and Count Giberto settled in his family home, Palazzo Papadopoli, in Venice, where they raised their five children, Viola, Vera, Mafalda, Maddalena, and Leonardo.

The upkeep of a crumbling Palazzo that has been in Giberto's family was proving difficult and costly.  In 2006, the Count made arrangements for the Aman hotel chain to open a luxury hotel. The Count maintains the freehold and the family live on the top floor.

In 1993,  the Duke of Aosta sold the Il Borro estate to Ferrucio Ferragamo.

Gente Mese, a 122 page magazine, commemorating Bianca and Giberto's wedding.

Today,  Princess Bianca heads Christie's Venice office, while Count Giberto is on the board of directors of Aon, an Italian insurance company and is a noted glass designer.   The two eldest daughters, Viola and Vera, run their own company, ViBi Venezia, specializing in handmade Furlane shoes.

Look what the mailman brought

The first two cards arrived today -- thank you for Prince Louis' birth and the Duchess of Cornwall's birthday.

The other two cards are from Princess Astrid of Belgium and the Duke of Bavaria.

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Lovely photos of Nicholas and Alina

 Nicholas and Alina Maria Medforth-Mills pose for a series of photos that were in early August at Bucharest and Sinaia.

The couple, who were married in a civil ceremony last year, will be wed in a Romanian Orthodox church in Sinaid on September 30.

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