Does Duchess Kate’s family use sweatshops to produce ‘Party Pieces’ trinkets?

One of my new favorite things is lining up Duchess Kate and Kim Kardashian and doing a side-by-side comparison. They’re the same age. They both love to shop. They both had “royal weddings” (LOL). They’re both pregnant, they’re both due in July. They both have pushy, famewhore families. They both did very little to become famous (you could even argue that Kim “works” more than Kate). And now here’s another similarity: both the Kardashian and the Middleton families profit from sweatshops! A few years ago, legit and tabloid media widely reported that many of the Kardashian-branded items were actually being made in Chinese sweatshops, often by child laborers. And now this incredible piece of news: the Middleton family’s business, Party Pieces, might be using Mexican sweatshop labor too.

Party Pieces, the website owned by Carole and Michael Middleton, has been accused of selling items which were made in Mexican ghettos by families on meagre incomes. The company, estimated to be worth more than £30 million, sells a range of party goods, including more than 40 types of pinatas. The colourful cardboard figures filled with sweets which cascade out when the casing is broken have become increasingly popular at children’s parties.

An investigation by The Daily Mail reported that the same goods were being produced in hillside ghettoes surrounding the Mexican border city of Tijuana, by families who say they are providing “slave labour” to produce items sold in Britain for around £12.99. The items are among thousands shipped to Britain via a chain of distributors and sold to retailers including Party Pieces, which stocks the products in a range of designs, including lions and castles to Minnie Mouse. A spokesman for the company said that as a responsible retailer, it took the allegations “very seriously and we will work with our suppliers to carry out investigations into these claims”.

Party Pieces was founded in 1987 by Carole Middleton, after she gave up work as a British Airways stewardess. She built up the firm with her husband, Michael, and it now employs more than 30 people, including their daughter Pippa. Families in Mexico who work in their own homes are not subject to minimum wage laws, which would require pay of at least 49 pence an hour. Earnings are further reduced because they pay for the craft materials themselves.

The operation in Tijuana is run by Javier Perez Quintero, who said he is an Amscan executive and uses the company’s email address — but the hundreds of craftsmen and women are supplied with materials by a firm he runs, called Baja Pacific Paper. It is not clear whether this is an Amscan subsidiary or an independent company. Maria Villegas, who lives with eight family members in Tijuana, said she and relatives worked for 12 hours a day last week to make pinata rockets, receiving less than 19 pence an hour between them.

While the Middletons’ firm sells their pinatas for £12.99 each, other workers in the same city said they earn as little as 10p an hour for producing some of the items. The craft workers said they took the work because there was little else available. There have been increasing concerns in recent years that complex supply chains mean that customers do not know where the the products they buy come from.

In 2011 police files disclosed that Swedish retail giant Ikea had used political prisoners in East Germany as “slave labour” to make furniture. Many of the items sold by Party Pieces were supplied by the giant American party goods company Amscan, which also produces goods made cheaply in China.

The pinatas are also sold to other British firms, including supermarkets such as Tesco, and arrive via the American company’s depot in Milton Keynes. Joseph Zepf, Amscan vice-president, said the company “endeavours to comply with all laws and regulations, especially those relating to wage requirements and working conditions, and categorically denies any inference or allegation to the contrary”.

In its annual report in 2011, the company acknowledged that many of its products were made outside America, “which may increase the risk that the labour, manufacturing, safety and other practices followed by the manufacturers of these products may differ from those generally accepted in the U.S.”

[From The Telegraph]

Yeah, the paper trail is sketchy and it will be difficult to really make anything stick legally, but the point is that people are starting to dig up some dirt about the Middletons, and rumors are as good as facts. Would it surprise any of you if most of the items sold in the Party Pieces catalog were made in Chinese or Mexican sweatshops? It wouldn’t surprise me. The Middletons are just employing the same kind of business sense used by WalMart. And THAT is the problem. The Middletons don’t want to be compared to WalMart. They want to be seen as upwardly mobile middle-class-turned-aristocratic-by-marriage. Comparisons to WalMart damage the Middleton brand.

Incidentally, I would love it the UK tabloids would do more digging into the Middleton financials. I seriously doubt Party Pieces is worth £30 million (puh-lease), and I’ve always believed the rumor that Kate’s dodgy uncle Gary Goldsmith (a cocaine-and-hooker-loving bon vivant who may be some kind of “enabler/fixer/pimp” to the rich and powerful) has significantly helped the Middletons financially, and that (conspiracy theory alert!) Party Pieces might even be some kind of money-laundering scheme for Uncle Gary.

Photos courtesy of WENN.

 

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183 Responses to “Does Duchess Kate’s family use sweatshops to produce ‘Party Pieces’ trinkets?”

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  1. Brittany says:

    Wouldn’t be surprised.
    The brother is so weird looking…

  2. carol says:

    well don’t most large companies use slave labour? Not that it makes it ok.

    Also her brother is truly ugly

  3. Downton fan says:

    Of course they don’t care if their land fill trinkets come from sweat shops! They’re horrible people! Honestly I think that I their cash cow wouldn’t have been able to get William, they’d be the English version of the Kardashians

  4. Meerkat says:

    Kaiser, I think you’ve hit the nail on the head regarding Party Pieces and the Middleton finances. A few people have started asking questions about how they could afford to send three children to expensive schools etc. Wonder if we’ll ever find out? The uncle is gross. And the brother…

    • Alexandra Bananarama says:

      They could afford the expensive schools from an inheritance on Michael Middleton’s side. It was turned into a trust to send all the kids to private schools. The suspicions really started to roll in after they kept spending more and more money on Kate’s apartment, new house, tons of vacations… You just don’t make that amount of money from cheap plastic.

      Plus, The uncle is very rich and sketchy. It’s not an unreasonable jump from PP to Uncle Gary.

      • Thinker says:

        Right. And despite his admitted drug use and his public boasts of royal connections, Uncle Gary has always been kept tightly in the family fold. Compare Fergie, William’s aunt, who was even snubbed from attending the wedding. You bet Uncle Gary was there. I bet he even made a “contribution” to Kate’s dowry.

      • Snooze says:

        You know what, that’s an easy assumption to jump too, that you couldn’t possibly make so much money from plastic, or something that “easy”. Well I know a guy whose family is insanely wealthy. Wealthier by far than the Middletons. Do you know what they do? They make cardboard boxes. That’s it. Party Pieces could legitimately make a lot of money.

      • bluhare says:

        Making cardboard boxes and having a children’s party supply eshop are two different things. Companies buy boxes to ship their products (maybe Party Pieces buys from your friend’s company). Unless your friend’s company sells the boxes to individuals on the internet, they aren’t the same. I can totally see how your friend’s family made a ton of money.

  5. Hope says:

    Yes!!! So true. I don’t know where I read it, but I recall reading an article where Uncle Gary sold some kind of tech company he founded for 250+ million dollars and that’s when the Middletons started living the high life. I don’t know if it’s necessarily money-laundering, but I definitely believe that they at least got the start up cash from Gary, and probably were “bailed-out” by him more than a few times. I’m sure he also contributed to the Middleton children’s education. But the financials for Party Pieces will never be made public, so we’ll never know for certain.

    • bluhare says:

      Yep. He sold his firm in 2005 for 250 million. He also just got married (again). Bet he’s got the prenup to end all prenups. And, actually, for a middle aged bald guy, he’s not bad looking.

      But the rumours of him financing Carole have been around for years. Given Carole’s alleged social climbing ways, I was a bit surprised that he was allowed to go to the wedding after that tape the News of The World had aired. But financing the kids’ education and seed moneying Carole could explain that.

      It’s all conjecture, though, and there’s probably no paper trail.

  6. GoodCapon says:

    Unfortunately this important news has already been overshadowed by Pippa’s appointment as new columnist for Waitrose…

    • Mary says:

      I was wondering about the Pippa deal. Isn’t Waitrose the store Kate has been photographed shopping at? Also, It has been reported a few times when kate was out shopping at Topshop and Starbucks, she was paying with gift cards. I though the RF could not accept gifts!?! I am wondering how much Carol is accepting under the table.
      Sorry I went off topic.

    • bluhare says:

      Those columns should be epic, though.

      When one is in a hurry with just a few things, one should try the express line. #pippatips

    • Sachi says:

      Don’t know how she’ll last, though.

      The DM comments are full of people saying they’ll boycott the store since Pippa was made the new columnist. If you look at the green arrows, more than 1000 people approve of such comments and I doubt anyone would spend their time trying to green-arrow everything and do it repeatedly just to increase the ratings of the “anti-Pippa” comments.

      And did you see Pippa’s ‘sample recipes’ for stew and Easter trifle? Yuck. Her Easter trifle recipe reminds me of Sandra Lee’s bizarre Kwanzaa cake.

      • Christina says:

        I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: when Daily Wail readers have it in for the ‘royals’ (or their hangers on) you know things are getting serious. The Middletons have been really bad PR news for The Firm. They just don’t know when enough is enough, do they? Kind of like a pseudo-royal version of the Beckhams. And every bit as tacky.

  7. lower-case deb says:

    speaking of princesses, can we discuss Princess Estelle of Sweden? i think it’s been exactly a year since you posted baby pictures. (‘pologies for the column-jacking.)

    • GoodCapon says:

      Estelle is a darling!!! She looks so much like her mother :D

      I meant to add – I think the Swedish RF are doing a fab job of introducing Estelle to the press. Give them a new photo every now and then to quench the thirst for new baby pics.

      It’d be interesting to see how the British RF will handle the PR of the Second Coming.

  8. juicyjackie says:

    Yes, she travelled the globe and said “oh yes, that’s the sweatshop I want! The children look just the young ripe age and the perfect level of undernourishment”

    If I was rolling my eyes any more I would be getting exorcised right now.

  9. LadyMTL says:

    “Rumours are as good as facts”…? Uh no, facts are as good as facts. I’m no Middleton apologist by any means and I really wouldn’t be surprised if they did farm out labour to sweatshops, but a rumour is just that.

    Also, sweatshops are nothing new – anyone remember the Kathie Lee clothing line scandal? Using child labour is reprehensible no matter who does it.

    • GoodCapon says:

      Where’s there’s smoke there’s fire. I think the media knows something shady is going on with the family’s finances but they just can’t divulge it because William (and the RF?) are protecting them.

      Instead they release somewhat passive-aggressive articles like this.

    • inthekitchen says:

      I read the “rumors are as good as facts” to mean: as good at ruining a reputation. I.e. their reputation will suffer whether or not this turns out to be accurate.

      I don’t doubt it’s true for a moment…I also think that WillyBoy thinks he’s untouchable and really doesn’t care what anyone thinks but himself, and is so stupid that he wouldn’t even know why it was a bad thing anyway. So, I wouldn’t expect anything to change.

      • bluhare says:

        I agree with you, inthekitchen. Whether it’s true or not, they could get dogged by child labour charges forever and ever.

        And I saw something, but confess I didn’t read it, about how the Middletons are “investigating”. Which probably means investigating who leaked.

    • bluhare says:

      Everybody does it. Have you shopped in Walmart, Target, etc? Their suppliers use those shops. Upper end stuff isn’t exempt either. We want cheap stuff and we’re willing to forget who made it and what they got paid when we buy.

      • Angelic 20 says:

        Just because everyone does it doesn’t mean it is right or okay to do this. Zara used these kind of means of production and yet this stupid vapid woman continues to wear them . You might not be in a position to buy more expensive things or be selective in your shopping but she can and yet she chooses to buy clothes from a company using sweatshops and this reflects the kind of person she is, completely aint unaffected by the plight of poor or her unique position.

      • bluhare says:

        Wasn’t disagreeing with you, Angelic. It would be the height of hypocrisy for me to bang my drum against unfair labour practices because I know I’ve bought stuff that was made that way.

        You, however, can, and should!

    • SISI says:

      “Rumours are as good as facts” (!?) – What a Ridiculous and very Hypocritical thing to say!!! IMO

      • Belle says:

        As someone has already posted above, I think this statement was regarding how rumors and/or facts can affect someone’s image. Rumors can ruin people… and dog them forever, even if they turn out to be untrue. Not only is it just bad PR, but plenty of busy people out there will remember the ‘rumors’, not knowing if the rumors turned out to be true. Not to mention how people start repeating rumors AS IF they are fact, and people just eat it right up! You see it here on CB all of the time. Someone says… ‘oh it’s widely known that XX cheats on his wife all of the time’, and it never fails, someone will reply… ‘really? I didn’t know that! I really don’t like XX now!!’ LOL Does it matter that, other than a few rumors, it is NOT widely known that XX has cheated? No. So it goes.

  10. CC says:

    Wouldn’t be surprised. And £30M? Also doubt it, you don’t see that huge market, in this economy. And they run it out of mail order? Or whatever is the 2013 equivalent? Seems shifty, most people like to see what they’re buying and imagine in their heads and making sure they have their stuff on time. And pinatas are tacky and messy….lol

    • Belle says:

      … and some kid always gets whacked in the head with a stick when there is a piñata at a party! I despise them, and am always surprised when my youngest goes to a birthday party and they have one of these things. Yes, MY child is the one who has to say she isn’t allowed to play ‘blindfold a kid, give him a stick… and let a group of children move closer and closer while the kid swings the stick, in anticipation of scrounging on the ground for candy’. Nope. I know, I’m a mean mom. :)

  11. Ellie66 says:

    The brother looks a bit horsey. Pippa looks like something the cat dragged it.

  12. Garvels says:

    Ha ha ha…I love the comparison with Kim Kardashian…how true and I have always thought that there was something sketchy about party pieces financials.

    Party pieces was supposedly making big bucks as an Internet marketing company in the 90s when Internet marketing and sales weren’t even popular.

    • LAK says:

      That’s the first piece of dodgy information that makes everyone’s spidey senses tingle about the Middleton business because internet shopping wasn’t really a thing until the mid 00s.

      There was that dot.com crash of the late 90s but at that point mostly telecom companies were using the internet as a marketing tool, barely any companies used it as a shopping window.

      There is no way a mom n pop business like PP would have risked using the internet as a shop window any earlier than 2003/4 because it was seen very much as a risky venture. A proposition that seems strange now. Lastminute.com was the internet pioneer in Britain, and they were seen as extremely lucky to have made a success of an internet based company. ditto Net-a-porter which also struggled in those early years.

  13. AmyR says:

    Are piñatas uncommon in the UK? The Telegraph’s description of them sounds like a Pippatip

    • LeBarron says:

      I wondered the same thing. I actually LOLed at the article’s description of how a piñata works:

      “The colourful cardboard figures filled with sweets which cascade out when the casing is broken have become increasingly popular at children’s parties.”

      It just sounds kind of hilariously faux-poetic.

    • Lucrezia says:

      I think pinatas are only common in the Americas.

      I’ve never seen one here in Oz. I knew what they were, courtesy of American TV, but explaining it seemed justified, not something #Pippa-tips worthy.

  14. Suze says:

    The Party Pieces story always seemed somewhat dodgy to me – can you really make that much money selling party supplies online? And the MIddletons were always throwing seious money around – private schools for all three kids, vacations to sunny locals on private boats, a house in Bucklebury (berry?) and a flat in London – none of that comes cheap.

    It doesn’t surprise me that inexpensive party favors are made by cheap labor – not at all.

    None of it is Kate’s fault, but the story of her coming from a middle class background, with parents who made lots of money through sheer grit and hard work, has some holes.

    • Angelic 20 says:

      None of Kate’s fault? I absolutely disagree, I don’t think even for a second that they didn’t know where exactly these cheap products come from and they still choose to use them, hence participating in child labour, unfair wage etc and that is their fault including Kate and every other person that runs this business . before every one tells me that every one else does it,I know that but I never bye products from these other stores using sweatshops because I refuse to but products made by children. I didn’t think I could dislike her and her family more but there you go. Just imagine while they are sunning on their 9th vacations at 19 000 pounds villa this family and children are rooting in poverty, disgusting the whole lot including Kate. Anyone who says Diana would have loved her is wrong, she would have been disgusted by this family who use child labour to finance their life style.

      • Suze says:

        Kate neither started nor ran this company.

        I’ll blame Kate for a lot but I don’t think she is accountable for Party Pieces business practices.

        I put the responsibility for Party Pieces squarely on the company’s owners – Ma and Pa Middleton.

      • Merritt says:

        She doesn’t run the company. Ans since people here are so keen to point out that she hasn’t worked much, it is unlikely she had any control of the operations.

        She could be faulted for using the money, and not questioning the ethics around it.

      • Angelic 20 says:

        Merritt
        Yes that’s exactly what I blame her for. I never ever buy things from a company whose source of production I am not sure of much to my husband’s annoyance. I am from a developing country and I work with human rights organisations so I don’t like when people participate in these kind of practises in any form. Also now she knows where exactly their income comes from, will she stop going on vacations paid by this kind of income? No and this is not the first time she didn’t care what goes behind the source of her life style or clothes, right after the royal wedding we found out zara uses these sweatshops in Brazil., what did she do? Did she stop wearing zara? Did she make any announcement against such practices? especially since she or her PR makes a thousand excuses/statements when it comes to her vacations or time with Mummy DVD Daddy but of course who cares what goes on in Brazil or India or other poor countries . No she did nothing and continued to wear that brand, so I don’t really think she gives a tiny rats ass how many children are labouring 18 hours a day so get mother can take her and William to another vacation.

      • bluhare says:

        I don’t think Kate’s accountable either, unless she’s a stockholder or has some sort of ownership in the company. But accountable and knowing are two different things.

        Angelic, good for you if you work with human rights organizations. You’ve got the props to talk about this. I don’t. I’ve bought stuff from Target.

      • Alexandra Bananarama says:

        Angelic 20 I also can’t blame Kate for this. To put it simply… She’s an idiot. Maybe, at 1 point she was intelligent, but now she’s regressed so much. All she knows and bothers to learn is whatever she needs to stay in William’s good graces.

        She would have to have skills that deal with logic and reasoning to think. I just can’t give her that much credit because she’s never shown any. The parents knew. I’m sure on that. If Kate even knew the country of 1 of th factories her families business got their inventory from I would be shocked.

      • Angelic 20 says:

        Also Kate and her family knows exactly what Gary uncle does but they still use his house, boats and other things so no I don’t think she cares what goes on behind the scenes as long as she can keep on doing nothing. Committing a crime and seeing, accepting, using money generated from that crime and not protesting or speaking against that crime is not that different for me. Its like choosing between a corrupt politician and someone who knew a corrupt politician and did nothing about it.

      • Suze says:

        I’ll agree that Kate turned a blind eye to where that lovely flow of cash came from.

        But you know that she has traded sh*t for manure in that department. The royal family has been merrily living off of their ill-gotten gains from robbing the empire for many, many years.

        There’s a straight line running from Henry VIII seizing the monasteries and Wolsey’s castle to that lovely little pile of cash that constitutes the queen’s “personal” fortune.

        And I say this as someone who actually admires Elizabeth II.

        There is no clean money among these folks.

      • Alexandra Bananarama says:

        Angelic 20
        I think I see where you’re coming from.
        Kate’s 3 major faults (imo) are sloth, vanity, and apathy. Sloth doubles as ignorance in terms that she is so lazy she won’t even educate herself.

        All can be applied to why most of us dislike Kate.

        I’m in a harsh mood today.

    • garvels says:

      I know…..I am sure there was a high mark-up for these party favors, but still they would have to have done a massive volume in order to make that kind of money. I do not recall internet marketing/sales companies taking off in the 90′s. I never even heard of Party Pieces until the late 2000′s when Will and Kate’s relationship took off. It also appears that England was their main target market for these party favors in the 90′s and even today. Who in the US would spend the money on this stuff when they can go to paper warehouse??? It just doesn’t add up.

  15. WendyNerd says:

    I stopped reading at “an investigation by the Daily Mail.”

  16. Sachi says:

    It’s most likely that Uncle Gary gave the Middletons the money for the business and also the children’s schooling.

    Party Pieces was Carole’s idea. Sending the kids to posh schools and sending Kate to chase after William were also Carole’s ideas. Michael Middleton must be nothing but a passenger in that family and Gary was the one who helped financed a lot of the Midds’ ventures.

    Didn’t Gary sell an IT software for a lot of money. Gary must have been supporting and propping them up since the 1980s and helped finance Carole’s Party Pieces business.

    There’s a reason why the Middletons have never cut off ties with him even when he was exposed as offering to set up clients with prostitutes, he’s been videotaped bragging about his own wing at the Buckingham Palace when Kate marries William, and he’s been caught on video doing cocaine.

    William and Kate also used his house in Ibiza aptly named “Casa de Bang Bang” and thought nothing of Gary’s businesses and shady lifestyle.

    The entire family is shady as heck. The Middleton children must have known where the money is coming from and where the Party Pieces supplies were being made. I don’t really think they cared whether it was from sweatshops or not. They all benefited from that money one way or another.

    Gary is also writing a book. I wonder if he’ll tell some stories about the Middletons?

    • bluhare says:

      Gary’s writing a book? Too bad it won’t tell the real story.

      • Sachi says:

        Yes, reports say he’s planning on jumping on that bandwagon since, you know, Pippa had a massive success with hers. :D

        I don’t know what he’ll talk about, though. I doubt anybody is actually interested unless he’ll be talking about some really juicy stuff.

      • bluhare says:

        Exactly, Sachi. Unless he’s going to dish the dirt on how he funded Carole, gave her the cash for the London apartment, and dealt drugs to William and his pals, who wants to read it?

        He won’t be able to say any of those things, so it will probably be the classic Working Class Boy Made Good story. Blah.

    • Suze says:

      I just read some stories on Uncle Gary, and yes, he is quite the piece of work. He is rolling in dough, though, so I bet that’s the foundation Party Pieces rests upon.

      The Middletons must work overtime keeping their distance.

      • Sachi says:

        Uncle Gary has been mostly absent from the media since Kate’s wedding, so I wonder if the Middletons asked him to lay low for now?

        They’ve never cut off ties with him completely. They continued associating with him even when he was being exposed for all those issues years ago. I think Gary has a hold on them and they also need more from him.

    • Suze says:

      Sachi, every time I read one of your comments, or LAKs, or a couple of other people’s, my contempt for the royal family, and in particular Will and Kate, grows.

      I used to find them almost harmless, and a source of amusement to read about from my safe distance across the pond.

      But there is such an ugly underbelly of sloth and disdain for their subjects (if that term should even be used!) that some of the younger royals show that I find it hard to find them amusing any more.

      I respect the Queen and Princess Anne. It drops off hard after there.

    • Another K says:

      And the readers here know your comments are based on actual FACTS, that’s so great! Could you let us know how you came upon this information? Because I am sure that unless you had the actual facts at hand you would never want to harm anyone’s reputation the way you have.

  17. squirrelbait says:

    who knew there was such a demand for pinatas in the uk?

  18. Alexandra Bananarama says:

    What this article adds up to is amazing!
    People are sniffing around the Mids and they’re sure to find some skeletons. I wonder if this is the push from the press after William tried controlling them to an unreasonable degree?

    At this point it’s just rumors, but they’ll continue to toss out theories and eventually one will stick.

    Side thought: I think W&K will eventually live separate lives, but remain married. If the Mids are exposed and the RF & William’s reputation is damaged by their association to the Midd family There will be a divorce. It will be epicly scandalous.

    • Mary says:

      I just saw on the us weekly website that Will Middleton saved two hikers. I love how he always manages to save lives when they get bad press. So predictable!

    • LAK says:

      As i keep boring my friends, Heather Mills MaCartney is the tester canary for what will happen to Kate and The Middletons.

      There is no way that this investigation or this information was acquired recently. Piers Morgan [once a very successful tabloid Editor in UK] has said that the papers find out stuff, and sit on it for a very long time, even years, until they decide to use it or they threaten to use it.

      Given William’s recent push to the media, i don’t think it was an accident that this report came out or that it was framed in such a way as to blame the Middletons for a practice that many companies use.

      • boredsuburbanhousewife says:

        @LAK — Fascinated about Heather Mills tidbit — can you elaborate?

        Also, it is quite possible that the Middletons invested seed money with Gary to get his company started. I know many family members who have done this to help out a sibling launching a new business, and some have reaped very very large rewards if the company takes off & they are original investors.

        Party pieces may have been, at least initially, more of a hobby small time thing, at least initially.

        While I am sure they all love to use Casa de Bang Bang, I do find it hard to believe Gary just gives his sister and her children money for the heck of it. I just don’t think that’s likely — parents give their kids money, large sums if they have it, but not typically adult brothers and sisters in the developed world. Also rich people are often some of the cheapest in the world — that’s how they got to be rich!

      • LAK says:

        Boredsurburbanhousewife – Paul MaCartney is a national treasure. Nothing bad can ever be written about him, and if it is, it’s given a positive spin.

        Heather Mills was given the same treatment when she married Paul.

        However, when cracks appreared in the marriage, negative stories about Heather started to appear in the press, and when the separation was confirmed, the media went to town on Heather. Every dirty secret and then some were published, including digging up people she probably hadn’t spoken to in decades to denounce her. She went from saint to screeching harridan who was also a gold digger after the saintly Paul.

        She tried to leak negative stories about Paul, but everyone glossed over them.

        The way the media went after her was truly shocking. Many Editors like Piers said they had held back on publishing it out of respect for Paul, but since he was divorcing her, no qualms anymore.

        Her reputation was destroyed completely.

        Paul,meanwhile,goes on living in a land of honey and rainbows with his new wife.

        ps:- i like your hypothesis that they invested in him rather than the other way around. The time line makes sense because he sold his company for mega Millions in 2005, and The Middletons didn’t really start showing signs of serious wealth until around that time frame.

      • Bored suburbanhousewife says:

        I guess I am too cynical but when Paul and Heather first got together I thought she was a gold digger. I was especially suspicious when the media portrayed her as the second coming of Princess Di at her most saintly. It is shocking however that at the same time the media was holding back what they knew until things went awry.

        I knew his kids did not like or trust her from the start.

      • LAK says:

        I think because everyone vaguely remembered her past, no one really bought the saintly image. The 180 the press did, and the vitriol and spite during the divorce was the shocker.

        I see a parallel with Kate and The Middletons. Kate may be lucky that as the mother [fingers crossed] of the future Monarch, it won’t be as bad as that, but her family won’t escape.

        If [big IF]William steps aside, She’ll be crucified like Wallis. It won’t matter that he is not suited/committed to the job, she’ll be the scapegoat, As she already is.

      • Alexandra Bananarama says:

        BoredSB in Heather Mill’s defence Stella hated her right off because heather wouldn’t wear her designs. Stella designed a custom wedding dress for heather and she refused to wear it. In Paul’s latest marriage the bride wore Stella and I kinda looved the dress. It was one of the reasons they didn’t get along anyway. And come on. Who willingly wears a Stella!?

        Ah Wallis. If William renounced the crown she would leave. William seems too impossible to deal with without the perks.

  19. Sachi says:

    In other news, William and Kate are in Switzerland for a friend’s wedding and another vacation not even a month after getting back from Mustique. They were photographed at the ski slopes.

    http://royaldish.com/index.php?action=dlattach;topic=12074.0;attach=42767;image
    http://royaldish.com/index.php?action=dlattach;topic=12074.0;attach=42771;image
    http://royaldish.com/index.php?action=dlattach;topic=12074.0;attach=42775;image

    That must be why Kate was at Topshop shopping 2 days ago. What a life. Kate’s HG has truly vanished now, hasn’t it? 2 vacations in one month, with ONE charity event lasting for 90 minutes. She’s on another “well-deserved” vacation and she’s healthy enough to try and go skiing!

    I’d like to hear how her sycophants will spin this one now. Kate needs the Swiss Alps to aid her recuperation, perhaps?!!

    William’s PR team puts out an article about him doing his job at the RAF and rescuing people, which is his responsibility anyway, and Kate went shopping…just in case the plebs say the two special snowflakes are not doing anything. ;)

    • Suze says:

      William must have used up all his vacation leave. That will make it tough for these two normal kids once the baby arrives and they need to care for him/her without nannies or other help.

      Plus, the mortgage on the new place in Kensington will be hanging over their heads.

      What will they do?

      • Sachi says:

        It’s simple, Suze. William Middleton will work for OT and extra hours just to provide for the new baby. He’ll sell the rooms in Kensington Palace and settle down at the big-little cottage/manor in Anglesey, where Kate also grows her own potatoes and garlic and makes homemade sausages and jams. What a domestic Goddess Kate has turned out to be! :D

        Carole Middleton will be the one raising that baby while William is at the RAF and Kate spends her time with the other army wives. ;)

    • bluhare says:

      They’re letting her ski???

      BTW, the site wouldn’t let me view your links.

    • SISI says:

      Thanks, Sachi – lovely pictures
      It’s good to see Kate out and about, enjoying her pregnancy.
      Chill out beautiful people, it’s a Wedding, it’s a Weekend, it’s their private time …Right?
      Also, as far as I know it’s not a crime to walk the dog in the park or to shop in TopShop (even if that hearsey-based story were true)?

      • Sachi says:

        Hearsay-based? It’s not only on Twitter, news reports have stated she was shopping in Topshop a few days ago.

        No crime there, sure, but there’s also no crime in seeing that her life is one big shopping spree and her laziness is now out in full force, pregnancy or not. I’d like to hear what spin her fans can put on this time, when Kate is on another vacation only 2 weeks after Mustique and has only done 1 day of charity work since then.

        I’d still like to hear about the progress of her HG. Is she totally cured now, or is she under some industrial-strength medications that allow her to be out and about whenever she wants to go shopping, but she’s too sick to do more than 2 hours of charity work in a month? Are the Swiss Alps curing her of her HG? Or is walking on a steep ski slope also safe and healthy for the baby?

      • bluhare says:

        Sachi, the fans think it doesn’t count as a holiday as they are attending a friend’s wedding for the weekend. I guess I don’t either.

  20. Thinker says:

    Kate is really such a disappointment, even if she started working very hard for her 4 charities, which we all know she will not do, but even if she did she just does not have a passion for public service, she lacks the ability to connect with people, she lacks the the articulation to speak eloquently on meaningful topics. All that would be okay, but she lacks gravity and is utterly without a sense of duty towards the position that she’s taken. It’s quite disturbing to see her held up as some sort of pedestal to womanhood. She’s a self involved rich girl. It does make me wonder if all that “protecting” William did ended up biting him in the ass. Heavens, she can’t possible be an interesting person to talk to, she’s ghastly at making conversation.

  21. Suze says:

    Unless you are an actress on the scale of Meryl Streep or Cate Blanchett “pretending to be interested” is going to be very obvious. If Kate is constantly pretending to be interested than no wonder she looks so uncomfortable in photos during her infrequent public charity outings.

    Say what you will about Diana, she was genuinely interested in her charities and the people around them. That was a huge part of her appeal.

    • bluhare says:

      And lucky for us, Harry inherited her touch with people.

      And also looks sort of devilish in a tuxedo (from photos I saw of the other night in Johannesburg).

    • shelley says:

      Absolutely!!! She seems so mechanical when she is meeting the public and people associated with her charities — can’t put my finger on any one particular thing — the hand gestures, the lack of warmth, etc….

      Diana was genuine and people sensed that about her — everyone from toddlers to the elderly. Good luck, Kate. You’re gonna need it.

  22. KellyinSeattle says:

    I don’t mind Katie herself; but that’s a problem here in the US, too….sweatshop labor and outsourcing for cheap overhead. That’s my political analysis for the day.

    • Alexandra Bananarama says:

      Kelly you’re very right.
      It’s unfortunately true that most people and businesses will look the other way if it saves them just a little money.

      If you’re a good business owner it’s your job to see exactly where your products are being made. It’s good for your company and ethics. To look the other way you’re directly and inadvertently supporting the people who make the children/adults work for small wages and in poor conditions. It’s sad this happens:(

  23. TalkyTina says:

    Can’t the Queen just skip everyone and let Harry have the throne!?
    If the farce of a monarchy has to continue, at least give it to someone who isn’t afraid of work and us peons. And seems to actually care about charity work.
    What a joke for Willy M and his glorified welfare mama WaityKatie to be given the throne.

    • Alexandra Bananarama says:

      I wish the queen had that veto power!
      Charles is not that bad and I do like Camilla. They’ve shown that they are a caring/charitable couple. I am not looking forward to Charles being king in regards to him wanting to cut out Andrew and his children from being working royals.

      Bea and & Eug are wonderfully sweet, hard working, and charitable. I want to see more of those girls on this site! Unfortunately/luckily, they’re scandal free so they don’t get much coverage on gossip sites.

      • TalkyTina says:

        Really?
        I didn’t know that.
        Why would he want to cut them out?

      • Alexandra Bananarama says:

        TalkyTina

        The animosity between Charles and Andrew goes way back. To hit some highlights Fergie was an embarrassment to the RF. Google “airmiles andy” to learn more about him. It’s all very petty family bs.

        So, Charles wants to cut out everyone except Himself, Camilla, Will, Harry, Kate, and any offspring later on. This of course, sounds terrible since Bea and Eug among other hardworking royals.

        This means if you’re not in the group Charles wants you also get no security and Your travel costs are on your own dime. So, if you’re actually working hard for a charity you get nothing while Kate can pull out 1 90minute meeting a month and get everything covered like she’s a full time royal.

      • bluhare says:

        Plus, according to very reliable sources (Kitty Kelley in The Royals), Andrew is the Queen’s favourite, to it could also be a case of “mom always liked you best!”

      • Angela Johnson says:

        Loving this conversation
        just want to add that as a Brit, there is no clamour or enthusiasm for Beatrice and Eugenies to take on royal duties. This is because they are perceived as freeloaders like their parents (rightly or wrongly)
        The only time we see them, they are badly dressed coming out of a club with their mother Fergie. who was a disaster as a royal.

        Charles and Andrew also are seen very differently. it is obvious that charles works hard like his sister Anne. but Andrew has never realy established himself after being in the Navy as a hard worker. So Charles is supported by and large by the public is making the royal family smaller, we dont want to keep paying. our country is struggling and recetly lost its AAA rating. we are in debt. This is also why William and Kate irritate the public as they spend money on expensive holidays,contribute little to society and then complain. British people are tolerant(they accept Camilla cos she works) but not fools for long

      • Another K says:

        To Bluhare: So when did Kitty Kelley become a reliable source? She’s always been a sort of joke among the journalist community. Please enlighten me.

      • bluhare says:

        Kitty Kelley isn’t reliable in the Respectable Journalists club, that’s for sure. But her books would not be published if they weren’t fact checked first. She’d have got the pants sued off her. (Think: Frank Sinatra. He wanted to and didn’t because it would have brought a bunch of stuff out he didn’t want seen.) Not all crap is bad crap, just crap.

  24. kitkerenina says:

    Had no idea there were so many Duchess Kate, Deuchiest KK comparisons. That’s so weird, but somehow so right at the same time.

  25. Less is More says:

    Does the Queen dislike Kate?

    • LAK says:

      Difficult to know for sure, but we do know that she’s barely spent any private time with her, and is always strictly polite to her in public.

      At best i would speculate that they barely know each other.

      That said, i would also say that The Queen not making time for Kate is probably a big signifier as to her true feelings because she spends alot of time with Sophie and Autumn.

      • Less is More says:

        Thanks.
        The video of the Queen and Kate walking to Kate’s wedding dress exhibit, I noted a certain distance between them.

      • bluhare says:

        Less Is More: And the queen’s comment about the exhibit being horrid or horrible, can’t remember which word she used, and that she didn’t like it. To Kate, who helped curate it. Yikes!

      • LAK says:

        Baroness – do you remember how appalled we were that in the 4hrs of the Jubilee pageant boat, HM didn’t exchange a single word with Kate. Didn’t look at her, not even to acknowledge her curtsey. And she was talking to everyone else, including Camilla!!

      • bluhare says:

        I do remember, LAK. That was the one day that I really felt bad for all of them out there on that barge in that godawful weather. It must have been so bleak. I even felt sorry for Kate because no one was talking to her and she was reduced to grinning maniacally at Camilla. We’ve never seen that dress again, have we? :D

      • WendyNerd says:

        I personally always thought that the Queen sees Kate as more prop than person. Someone to look pretty and be the royal baby machine. Maybe add some pretty genes to offset the fug caused by generations of inbreeding. If I had to guess, she really doesn’t give two shits about Kate as long as she doesn’t embarrass The Firm too much. I think she felt that way towards Diana when she first married Charles as well, but later learned that wasn’t the case.

        In fact, i wouldn’t be surprised if that’s why it took so long for Will and Waity to get hitched. If I’m correct, not only was Diana insanely young when they married, but they got engaged almost instantly after they met, right? They just saw her as a sweet young decoration that would do as she was told. But, of course, they were completely blindsided as a result. I’m willing to bet they had Willy wait longer so they could judge/analyze Kate as much as possible and iron out any pesky personality to make sure she’d be the decorative uterus they’d need and make sure she wouldn’t be another Diana.

        I also wouldn’t be surprised if the Queen’s snubs are just to keep Waity in her place, like the whole “blood princess curtsey protocol” reiteration thing.

        As for Beatrice and Eugenie— well you know my feelings on them (Still TEAM YORK the way some people are Team Jacob. And yeah, they do work way harder than Waity has ever done in her entire life). But even if I wasn’t, I still think the whole “not paying for their security” thing is a dick move on Chuck’s part. I get the travel expenses, but security? I’m sorry, but “core royal” or not, they still have to be prime targets for would-be kidnappers just by virtue of being Princesses. I’d think paying for security would be the top priority for every royal, regardless of how minor, right? There’s budgeting and then there’s endangerment.

        I’ve heard about Andrew being the favorite, but tell me, how are the grandchildren ranked? I have heard that the Queen is extremely fond of Beatrice and Eugenie, but how does she feel about Will and Harry, especially in relation to their cousins? LAK and Baroness bluhare, don’t let me down!

      • bluhare says:

        WendyNerd: Apparently the Queen belongs to the Hilary Mantel School of Royal Consort Behavior. Your thinking makes sense to me, but I will let the Official Royal Historian of Celebitchy weigh in. LAK knows more than I do.

        As far as the grandchildren, I’ve read Zara’s the favourite. Probably because she’s into horses. Actually, I think it’s pretty bad form for the Queen to make her preferences in children/grandchildren known. How awful if you aren’t the golden one. But how could she not love Harry? Sigh. I’ve got a whole lot of Harry Skutches I need to use on some poor unsuspecting baby.

      • LAK says:

        Wendynerd, there is alot of shifting sands with HM.

        Her views about Kate are probably shaped by a lack of common ground. Not even William can bridge that gap. Kate’s preoccupation with style over substance is the quickest way to kill any regard HM may have for her even as she is grateful that she’s not a drama queen in the Diana mold.

        That said, I mischievously speculate that she may share Hilary Mantel’s views on Kate because she allowed a leak several years ago that sums up our frustration with Kate’s lack of a work ethic which included the alleged quote,’what does she do all day?’ The result? Kate got the jigsaw job [albight temporarily]

        Contrary to popular belief, she liked both Diana and Fergie at the beginning.

        Diana played along with the country pursuits thing that all the royals do to get the ring on her finger. HM/QM and all the royals were delighted with her. They were equally and mutually blindsided.

        Fergie is as horsey as the royals and is more a country woman than her escapades show. Plus she grew up with the royals as their playmates, so she was a known quantity. HM’s affection for her was much more solid than whatever she felt for Diana. And that affection remains, though not publicly shown.

        @Bluhare – All the grandkids were/are brought up horsey.

        The grandkids are harder to place because she spends time with all of them, even the little ones James and Louise. That’s why favoured grandchild keeps changing as each comes into their own with her.

  26. Lexi says:

    The harsh glare shed by the Middletons reveals the puppet strings attached to the naked, toothless corpse of a purely symbolic monarchy. It is farce! Mummers play for the masses.

  27. My2Pence says:

    This is what confuses me. Okay, a lot about Wills and Kate Middleton and the Middleton family confuses me!

    The Middletons seemed to do everything in their power to make this marriage happen; took 10 years to make that take place. So they’ve been on the scene for 12 years now? Nowhere along the line did they honestly think that this was going to be investigated? Yes, that is probably why the business is apparently hidden behind two shells, off-shored, still oddly-configured so cannot be investigated, etc.

    If they were as good at business as they’d like us to think, shouldn’t they have chosen to be industry leaders in things like 1) selling recycled and recyclable items 2) selling innovative things like sugar cane plastic utensils and bio-degradable styrofoam cups and most importantly 3) Proudly Made in the UK?

    The UK, particularly the man they were hoping to be in-laws with (Prince Charles) has tried hard to be engaged in going-local / environmentally-friendly activities for decades. Why weren’t the Middletons smart enough to think strategically and be ahead of the curve?

    Again, they had to know there would be a day/week/month/years of reckoning eventually. So why didn’t they figure all of this out sooner? They COULD have run their business in such a way that Prince Charles would have been proud to call them in-laws.

    • LAK says:

      They prove daily that they are not big picture people.

      It was a very narrowly focused ambition goal. One that focused solely on wealth and status.

      The fact that Kate is so unprepared for the royal life despite having a decade’s head start demonstrates that.

      Sophie had a 6yr lead in and apart from that fake Sheikh debacle, she was prepared and took to the role with no complaints from royals or public.

      Speaking of the environment, during the recent Afghanistan Harry interview, he makes a point about the styrofoam cups being a hazard and wanting or hoping to persuade them to change. It was such a tiny detail in the 45mins interview and not picked up by the wider media in rush to condemn him in other ways.

      If Harry was brought up green, why isn’t William influencing the Middletons the same way?

      • bluhare says:

        That TwoPence is making me think, LAK. Why, in your opinion, was Kate so woefully unprepared? She was billed as the most prepared royal bride ever! What happened???

      • LAK says:

        Bluhare – I’ve had alot of time to think about this question and i blame William mostly.

        Do you remember what his response to question about the long wait in the engagement interview? He said that he waited to propose because he wanted to give her a chance to know what she was letting herself in for and to back out of necessary or words to that effect.

        The problem is that during that same time frame, William wasn’t doing anything remotely royal except training in the military, partying, holidays. Kate was hounded outside nightclubs. She became used to the pap aspect of it, and probably thought that was the worst of it. And if she could bare to be hounded by paps, that is all she needed to know about royal life.

        She had a bad teacher in William because he never showed her the truth. How could he when he was avoiding it himself and was allowed to avoid it.

        Everything she does is a mimicry of what he does. The only difference is he plays at being a pilot every once in a while.

        With regards the Middletons’ part in all this, don’t forget the class divide. Aristos bring up their children with a sense of duty whilst Middleclass don’t. William was running away from his family and latched onto them. Neither family/class was going to understand or encourage the other’s expectations. And clearly William wasn’t sharing. We know he spends alot of time with the Middleton, so along the way, whatever sense of duty he had disappeared.

        This is the only time i see the Boleyn comparisons because Henry 8 wasn’t a true tyrant until he spent time with the Boleyns.

      • bluhare says:

        Good analysis as usual, Lady LAK. That’s a great point; it he wanted her to know, why didn’t he show her? Other than his Sandhurst ceremony and one other, she wasn’t allowed at any events was she.

        On a different topic, I just finished Josephine Tey’s A Daughter of Time. Really really good. (It’s the Scotland Yard detective investigating Richard III story.) I loved it.

    • bluhare says:

      Tuppence: Those are great questions, particularly championing Made in the UK. You would think that if anyone would do that, parents of a future Queen Consort and grandparents of a future King/Queen in their own right, would definitely be waving the Union Jack. Instead they’re in Mexico buying cheap crap with everyone else.

      You’re making me think. I hate it when that happens.

  28. WendyNerd says:

    Also, I’m curious. A lot of people talk about how the Middletons arranged to put Kate in Will’s path— but how does someone organize something like that? I can see it happening among an aristocratic family, but a “commoner” family like the Middletons, how do they do it? I mean you can send the girl to the same college, but it’s still got to be hard to make sure she not only meets Will but is able to get close enough to him. How exactly does something like this work? Wealthy or not, it’s got to be hard to get your daughter close to the future King of England. I mean, I’m an American, so I don’t really get this brand of social climbing. Where I’m from (DC), you basically just have to make enough money to be able to provide campaign funds/support for the right congressman and you’re in. But the royals aren’t elected and the aristocracy I imagine is a lot harder to penetrate than congress. How does something like this work? Any British society experts want to help me out? How would someone like Carole Middleton go about making her daughter the Duchess of Cambridge?

    Two other questions: 1) Do you see them making similar designs for Pippa and 2) Do Will and Kate make any money tac wise or whatever from the Cambridge Duchy? How does that work?

    • JulieM says:

      WendyNerd, I’m in Northern Virginia, we’re close. As far as orchestrating Kate into William’s path; first Carole reportedly pushed her daughter to attend St. Andrews. From there it was up to Kate to put herself in Willy’s field of vision. Remember the tacky see through thing she wore at a college fashion show? That supposedly was what caught Willy’s eye. She also had a lot more meat on her at that time. The rest was Kate insinuating herself into his life; becoming his dorm roommate; digging her hooks in; and becoming whatever he wanted her to be, including a doormat. Held on for 10 years; encouraged by and funded by her mother. It didn’t hurt that no one else really wanted him or the lifestyle he was offering.

      Your other questions: 1)Yes, I bet Carole does have ambition for Pippa. Pippa at least seems a little more resourceful than her sister. 2)I think only certain Royal Duchies have revenue making estates associated with them. Cornwall (Charles) and Lancaster (The Sovereign-The Queen is actually the Duke of Lancaster!) I don’t think Cambridge actually produces any revenue. I just recently read that Lancaster is very productive and accounts for a nice amount of income for the Queen every year.

      Any British posters here please correct me if I’m wrong or there are others profitable Duchies I’ve left off the list.

    • bluhare says:

      You ask some good questions, WendyNerd. First off, Carole made sure they went to excellent public schools (in Britain a public school is actually private . . . I know, I scratch my head on that too) so they could get into good universities. Pippa went to Edinburgh, which is another one that a lot of the upper class send their children to. Then during her gap year, apparently they knew people who were close enough to royal news that they knew William’s plans? I think that’s true. Anyway, Carole sent Kate on the same gap year plan as William, only he changed his mind and didn’t go to Florence, and Kate missed him by one trip in Chile. How she got in the same dorm at St. Andrews I don’t know, unless that same person told her and she requested it. I’ve always wondered about that.

      Pippa was tight with George Percy (can’t remember his title, but when his dad dies he’ll be Duke of Northumberland). Not many non-royal titles bigger than that. But apparently that didn’t go anywhere. I don’t know if Carole values money or position more. Probably position, but I don’t know.

      Anyone else have any ideas or better info than I do?

      • Mich says:

        I had the most interesting chat recently with someone who used to know the Middleton’s quite well. Was told that Kate was offered a place at Cambridge but chose St Andrews instead. Did she prefer the smaller campus or was the choice driven by the Great Carol Plot to Snare a Future King? Who knows…

        Personally, I think a lot of Carol’s early choices re the direction she pushed Kate had nothing to do with William and everything to do with social climbing into upper class circles. Of course, once the first date with the future King happened, the game was on.

      • bluhare says:

        Mich, I agree with you. I bet Carole was gobsmacked beyond her wildest dreams when the William thing actually happened.

      • GoodCapon says:

        Mich: Waity was offered a place at Cambridge? It’s a little bit early for April Fool’s don’t you think? ;)

        If your anecdote is true then I don’t know why anyone would choose St. A over Cambridge… unless of course, she’s after the upper-class social set and most of them prefer Scotland unis.

    • LAK says:

      Wendynerd, It is possible to social climb as opaque as the class system is. It takes motivation though and always best done by the next generation because first generation can only get so far.

      You start them young. Enroll them at the sorts of schools that are known for aristocratic credentials rather than academia [though that helps].

      It helps that Tatler magazine publishes an annual list of the best [according to them] schools.

      It’s well known that landed Aristos tend to send their kids to Scottish universities if they can’t get into Oxbridge. Edinburgh in particular.

      Kate went to Marlboough which has close sporting ties with Eton. It is rumoured that she befriended someone who knew William though they didn’t meet.

      William’s gap year plans and University plans and course were announced a year ahead of schedule. That would have given anyone time to organise. We know that Kate followed his gap year plans, but again they missed each other for various reasons.

      William chose to go to St Andrews. It was a news item that admissions applications to St Andrews spiked and remained high from the date of the announcement till his graduation.

      It is rumoured that Kate changed course from Edinburgh to St Andrews. All the Middleton kids were destined for Edinburgh.

      I think her Marlborough connections, particularly the rumoured friendship with someone who knew william, allowed her advance information to get into the right hall.

      The rest was upto her although there are more allegations about how she made sure it wasn’t pure chance that they met once she was at St Andrews. ditto how she worked to get into and stay in his circle.

      I firmly believe that Carole wants her children to marry well. Titles AND money. I think Kate’s path had some planning BUT it was for a chance at a title not necessarily THE title.

      And to be fair, despite following his gap year plans being made public, many kids of similar background from the same schools follow the same path so i am willing to give her the benefit of the doubt.

      • Suze says:

        Yeah, and once she got into the same dormitory she made the choice to model in her underwear – which, face it – is why she is princess today.

        I give Kate and her family all kinds of grief. Deserved, I think. But I will say it was impressive how well their plans worked out – it took a lot of determination and patience to get to the final goal.

        It could have all gone off the rails. Just look at Pippa and her nameless faceless brother. They are still striving.

        If Kate applied half that determination to being a good duchess she would have my admiration. Instead she seems to have dropped the game and is luxuriating in sloth.

    • kibbles says:

      WendyNerd, the Middletons weren’t the only social climbing family out there trying to get their daughters into the same gap programs and university as William. Kate has to be given some credit for attracting William on her own, most famously wearing that see-through lingerie at a university fashion show. However, her mother and probably many other wealthy British mothers with the money and resources, orchestrated ways to allow a meeting with William to occur. As LAK pointed out, the admissions applications spiked during the time William entered St. Andrews. Kate might be a commoner, and there was a PR push during the engagement to make her look like a middle-class commoner; the classic Cinderella story. In actuality, as this post and comments have pointed out, her family had a large inheritance and a very rich and corrupt uncle to pay for all the opportunities that would allow the children to mingle with the aristocracy. I don’t think any commoner attending St. Andrews would have been able to enter the same circles William was in. Her family’s money and the connections she made prior to entering St. Andrews paved her way to meeting the prince. It might have just been a dream of Carole’s to have her daughter marry the prince, but when it became reality, the Middletons funded Kate’s leisurely lifestyle for 9 years after her college graduation just to be with William. They bought her an apartment in London and there was no expense the Middletons didn’t take care of for her to vacation with William on a regular basis and not have to work for her keep. Most families would have never been able to afford to keep up this type of lifestyle for nearly a decade even if they wanted to. Kate is not an ordinary middle-class commoner. By the time she started school, her family were millionaires. For the Middletons, the millions they spent was an investment they won. Not to say they aren’t one of probably hundreds of millionaire “commoner” families in the UK wishing the same things to happen for their daughter, but the Middletons were clearly the most successful and determined to have their daughter marry into the Royal family.

  29. Baskingshark says:

    There has been at least one article about Party Pieces and how much money the Middletons have which, if I recall, concluded that based on the Alexa internet traffic rankings, there is no possible way it could make a turnover in the tens of millions. Also, it is not run as a limited company, but as a registered partnership. In the UK, limited companies have to file accounts which are freely available to any member of the public to scrutinise, but partnerships do not.

    There is no logical explanation for why it is not a limited company rather than a partnership EXCEPT for not having to file public accounts; if a partnership goes bankrupt, the directors can be pursued personally for any debts even if there is no mismanagement, whereas a limited company protects the directors with limited liability, hence anyone operating a company like this is strongly advised to do so as a limited company. Again, I’m going from memory, but the article added that PP’s biggest competitor, which has higher amounts of traffic than PP gets and IS a limited company showed profits of much less than the Middletons would need to live their lifestyle.

    If I remember right, the article also delved into the Middletons’ past finances and found that there were no inheritances that could have made them as rich as they seem to be and the timing of what Michael Middleton did inherit didn’t match up with the changes in their lifestyle; they were initially not well-off at all and lived in a small apartment and regular houses which they continued to do after the inheritances came in, only starting to go “up in the world” later on.

    I have very little doubt that Uncle Gary bankrolled the whole operation. And yes, it should be blown wide open given that this vapid creature now expects to live in luxury for the rest of her life at public expense. I suspect support for the UK becoming a republic would increase even more if it were revealed that the future queen only got to where she is thanks to Uncle’s shady cash! The backlash against Waity and William in the UK is building nicely already…

    Also, Waity K has plenty of other similarities to Kimmie K. To wit, both have mothers who are hard-nosed pushy bitches, determined to advance their daughters no matter what and who are married to men who pale into the background; both have useless, goofy-looking brothers who try to trade on their more famous sisters’ names; both have less attractive sisters who also try to get in on the act and last but not least, both have gotten naked on the internet thanks to leaks!

    • bluhare says:

      You are not a basking shark, baskingshark. You are real live shark. I see a google search in my future.

      • Baskingshark says:

        lol, thanks! I went back to refresh my memory after commenting and found the article. It’s in the Daily Telegraph here: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/royal-wedding/8147929/Royal-Wedding-Middletons-money-how-was-it-made.html (I’m not sure if pasting links in is allowed on this site, so if not, the title is “Royal Wedding: Middletons’ money – how was it made?” and the writer was Andrew Gilligan.) There are all sorts of other interesting facts in there too, like how they paid over $1.5 million for a flat in London in CASH for Pippa and Kate to live in.

        Incidentally, Waity K & the Prince are in the DM again today at a wedding in Switzerland. Almost all the comments about them are negative. I find it extremely interesting that William is now no longer getting a “But he’s Diana’s son” pass and is getting tarred with the same brush as Waity.

      • bluhare says:

        Thank you for the link, baskingshark. I can’t believe I missed that one. It certainly does sound a bit like they don’t want their business partners publicised, doesn’t it, and certainly doesn’t do anything to dispel the “laundering Uncle Gary’s money” theory.

        Isn’t it interesting that they paid cash for the London apartment, and land adjacent to their house, yet mortgaged the new mansion.

    • TalkyTina says:

      I hate to do this.
      I get the comparisons with Kim K.
      However, Kim K is not a glorified welfare mama on the tax payers of the US.
      Do NOTHING Kate is on the tax payers of the UK.

      Ugh! Did i just sorta stand up for that K woman!?
      I need a drink.

  30. Mcsarlat says:

    FYI minimum wage in Mexico ranks between $8 – $9 a DAY depending the area. So they are probably making more money than working minimum wage

  31. Flower says:

    Apologies if someone else has posted this link as I haven’t had time to read all the comments yet but the Middletons so called self made millions and the clandestine structure of their company have been gossip fodder for years. This article throws up some very interesting statistics and business abnormalities.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/royal-wedding/8147929/Royal-Wedding-Middletons-money-how-was-it-made.html

    • Carolyn says:

      absolutely. With you all in agreeing that there have been rumours about the Middletons for quite some time now.

    • Suze says:

      Fascinating article.

      I think they should have called her Shady Katy instead of Waity.

    • TalkyTina says:

      That link is shocking!!
      They paid CASH ….£780,000 for Waitys London apartment! That was in 2002.

      Quote…
      “But by 2005, 18 years after the company began, 10 years after the Middletons moved into their current home, and long after Kate had left Marlborough, Party Pieces was still taking the comparatively modest total of “more than a thousand orders a week,” according to an advert they placed offering to sell their mailing list”
      In that same year they purchased land around their house for almost £300,000 in CASH!

      Quote….

      “Accounts for one of Party Pieces’ major competitors show profits of only around £130,000 a year – and this in a business which is said to be LARGER than the Middletons”

      And for those saying Daddy Wait had an inheritance….

      Quote..
      “Probate records show, however, that it was £19,500 – the then equivalent of £480,000 – of which Peter Middleton’s share was ONLY a quarter.”

      What the flying EFF?

      And I think the British people have every right to question this. Because of their actions their lazy daughter is nothing but a glorified do NOTHING welfare mama on the tax payers!

      And they are making money using their royal connection.
      It is disgusting that someone like Willy and Wait will sit on the throne one day.

  32. Zombie Shortcake says:

    That header pic pose is saying “can’t you see I’m dying! Why are you making me be here?” Lol