Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, is considered by many to be the most stylish, and well-behaved woman to come into the royal fold. However, before Kate became the Duchess we know and fawn over today, she had her own hills and valleys to deal with in life; from university and breakups to leaked images and paparazzi stalkers. Over the years her style evolved, her future’s path changed and her life took a turn for the crown. Her career may have been sidetracked, but her style only got vamped up. We have these images to show how Kate went through life before marrying into the English throne.
In the royal world of pant suits, gowns and jewels, there is little tolerance for t shirts and jeans. So this photo, clearly taken before Kate married Will, makes us jump for denim joy! Here we see Kate walking down the street, carrying a large bag while wearing skinny jeans and cardigan sweater, as if she is just another random person on the street, and not then the future Duchess of Cambridge. So down to earth. We love it!
The Art of Seduction
In 2002, Kate was a part of ‘The Art of Seduction’ charity fashion show. This was the remarkable occasion when Will paid 200 pounds to sit in the front row; we’re assuming to make sure he had a perfect view of barely-dressed Kate. It was soon after this show that Will and Kate were seen kissing for the first time. Interesting timeline to the subsequent events, if you ask us.
Here Kate is seen covered in foam and loving it! This photo was taken on ‘Raisin Monday’, a 600 year old tradition for all Freshman at St. Andrews University. Then 2001, the tradition is basically a giant foam fight between all of the incoming Freshman at the university. Sounds so much better than the American version of water balloon fights! Surely foam fights are less painful than the balloon popping action.
Prior to Kate’s transition into the royal family, she and her business chic self worked for her parents mail order party supply company, Party Pieces. The company was founded in 1987 by Middleton’s parents, Michael and Carole. Kate also worked for the retailer, Jigsaw. It seems as though style and fun are two themes in Kate’s life, even now as a wife and mother of two. Things like that don’t change.
Somehow even as she’s eating a sandwich in what seems like a cafeteria looks good on her! We’re sure not going to get anymore images such as this now that she is royalty, it just isn’t proper, but we will always have this selfie of Kate about to chow down on a sammy. We just love her playful spirit! Maybe the kids are allowed to joke around with their meals like their mom used to.
Taxi Cab Confidential
Smile! Kate is seemingly glowing in this photo. We aren’t sure the reason behind her gorgeous grin, but we aren’t complaining. This is obviously before she got engaged to Will, as after the proposal, Kate no longer took taxi cabs but had a car and driver to herself. We are sure the reason behind that rule is to make sure no more revealing under garment photos pop up, as this one is oh-so-near to a disaster.
Row Row Row Your Boat
Kate was always an athletic girl. She loved running, tennis, swimming and rowing. Her rowing continued into adulthood in her participation in the Sisterhood cross Channel rowing team. Here we see Kate practicing her rowing skills (that gave her those arms we all envy) alongside her teammates on the river Thames. The sad end to her rowing career was due to the paparazzi’s constant interference, due to safety concerns, she dropped out of the rowing team that she trained for months with.
Before Kate and Will were a thing, she dated the guy here on the left, also known as Willis. Stories say that she didn’t go out for long, but long enough for this sweet snap to be taken. Hard to imagine her by anyone other than Will’s side. Lucky for us (and her) she met Will later that year. And the rest is (mostly) history.
Here we can tell Kate is coming into her own. Her signature put together style is unmistakable. This photo was taken in 2007 in Cheltenham. She is already showing us her ability to put on an outfit fit for royalty, even though it’s casual. The Duchess has a few favorite designers these days, and back then she and her mother and sister had a few of their own, like this Katherine Hooker design.
Now 34 years old, Kate was raised in a small village called, Chapel Row. However, early on in her life, her father was relocated to Amman, Jordan in his position with British Airways. So Kate, and sister Pippa, spent a few years in Amman before going back home for school. Her brother, James, was born after their return from Jordan, in 1987. This photo was taken way after her stint in Jordan, but you can see that even from a young age, Kate was a happy go lucky young lady.
Legs For Days
Kate used to be mocked for being too thin and gangly. We bet those who used to make fun of her are eating their words these days. Anyway, here’s a photo of (at the time, single) Kate, heading somewhere looking effortlessly chic and important. She really knew how to rock a minidress back in those days. Guess we won’t see her in the likes of these anymore. We are collectively sighing over the royal dress code.
The early 2000s were a trying time for fashion. Even Kate managed to fail a few times in the department. So when this photo was taken then with her messy hair and outdated chandelier earrings, were felt that we shouldn’t hold this against the now-epically-stylish Duchess. Everyone is entitled to a flop now and then. Perhaps it’s her caught off guard look that we are favoring more than anything in this scenario.
Dorm Room Confessions
Here we see Kate being a normal college student. Who would have thought? It seems there is a party going on and Kate is a part of it. Jeans and sweaters, from the seemingly always perfectly dressed Kate is somewhat humbling (and comforting) to see. She seems like the social butterfly we were sure she was. Wonder where Will is when this photo was taken? Perhaps the one taking it…
You can say many things about Kate, but the girl definitely has a type when it comes to guys. Here we see Kate’s former boyfriend, Willem Marx (even the name is similar!), seated left, looking quite similar to her now-husband, Will. The two dated when they were attending Marlborough college together. Even the other guy has us thinking he looks a little like Will. Ah the elite and their upkeep.
Soothing The Breakup Blues
If you recall, 2011 was a dark year in the Kate and Will relationship. Will decided to break up with Kate, as he wasn’t ready to settle down. So what did brilliant Kate do? She put on her dancing shoes and hit the town. Probably the smartest thing any girl could do, but for Kate, who was followed by paparazzi all the time, who were sure to take a photo of her that will would later see, she knew to dress it up and play her cards as if no breakup blues were upon her. Smart cookie!
Kate and William both graduated from St. Andrews University in Scotland in 2005. Other than being the place where they both met, and got together in, Kate got her degree in Art History, and Will got his in Geography. Here’s a photo of her in her graduation gown, taken by her father. She seems very happy and proud to be done with her schooling. We’re sure that going into university she never imagined who she’d meet and later marry.
Three Sheets To The Wind
During the couple of months that Kate was a single gal again, she took advantage of her newly found freedom from Will and the press, and went out as much as she liked. Unfortunately, the photographers still hounded her as they, like us, were sure the two would get back together and she would remain relevant to the British public, so they managed to snap this unflattering photo of the young woman.
Speaking of photographers, during the early years of Will and Kate’s relationship, there was a media block on all photos of him while attending university. As a result, the two managed to go pretty much under the radar. What Kate didn’t plan for was graduating and having the media block lifted so as to allow any paparazzi to come a snap away as she walked in public. Kate was not pleased in the least, and that’s an understatement.
Kate’s always been a natural beauty. Here you see her innocent grin show you just how adorable she was as a Freshman in college. She even won ‘prettiest girl’ in St. Salvators Hall, the dorm building she stayed in then. We love to see that Kate didn’t always have perfectly blown-out hair and pristinely fit outfits. She looks like a regular college student here.
Kate and Will met in 2001 at St. Andrews University. It wasn’t until 2003 though that the two were a confirmed item. Since he was a prince and she a commoner, the couple would go on to make waves with their union. Luckily, England is more modern these days, and doesn’t make their monarchs marry within the royal family alone. That would have changed the course of history for these two – and we couldn’t have that!