Meghan in Victoria Beckham for Christmas Service at Sandringham!

Harry and Meghan celebrated their first Christmas together as a married couple with the Royal family at Sandringham.

It’s hard to believe how much has changed since Meghan joined the festivities for the first time last year. Twelve months later the couple had a beautiful wedding, undertook a slew of engagements, their first Commonwealth tour and of course news Baby Sussex is on the way. Next Christmas will be their first as parents, and the Sussexes will be settled in their new Windsor home Frogmore Cottage by then.

The couple made the walk to St Mary’s with William and Kate, as they did last year.

Prince Charles led the group closely followed by William, Kate, Meghan and Harry. Prince Philip was notably absent, however the Palace said he is in “perfectly good health”. The Duchess of Cornwall is unwell with a cold and was also unable to make the service.

The Earl and Countess of Wessex with their children Louise and James.

Autumn Phillips and Princess Beatrice followed closely by Princess Eugenie and Jack Brooksbank.

The arrivals video below offers a good look at those in attendance.

We saw an array of splendid photos of Meghan and Kate.

Her Majesty was resplendent in a soft dove grey coat with fuchsia pink trim.

The parish church of St Mary Magdalene is of exceptional historical interest, with memorials to many members and relations of the Royal family from Queen Victoria onward. King George VI, Princess Diana and more recently Princess Charlotte were all baptised there.

The Duke and Duchess departing church.

You can see Meghan and Kate curtsying at 1.40 in this video.

One of my favourite aspects of Christmas Day at Sandringham is seeing the crowds turn out; often the same local faces year after year. Seeing the royals arriving and departing has become a tradition for a number of royal watchers. I think the royals greatly appreciate the gesture, it’s one of the reasons we tend to see them spending as long as they can meeting those waiting…

….and this year was packed with special moments.

The Mirror reports:

‘Afterwards the young royals went on a brief walkabout and when Meghan saw 17-year-old Jessica holding up a small sign with her Instagram username on it, Jessica Scarlett, she instantly recognised it and gave her social media friend a hug.

The teenager, from Peterborough, described the experience as “amazing” adding : “I started watching Suits, then I started following her on social media and then followed her acting and followed her humanitarian work, so I’ve been a fan of her for years.

“There were a group of us girls on social media she became kind of close with and interacted a lot online.” She said about the duchess, who closed down her social media accounts before her marriage to Harry: “This is the first time I’ve met her, she just said ‘it’s so lovely to meet you, incredible to finally see you’ and she was asking how we all are and if we’re still talking and supporting each other.”

A delighted Jess shared this tweet afterwards. The meeting reminded me of a moment in New Zealand where Meghan reunited with a young woman she supported on Instagram. It’s great to learn how she used her reach on social media to offer encouragement to young women.

When asked about Baby Sussex, Meghan said: “We’re nearly there.”

A video from the walkabout.

There’s additional footage in this video filmed by a well-wisher.

Amidst a very difficult month of headlines, there was no doubt in my mind we would see a united front and photos of the Cambridges and Sussexes arriving together as they did last year. An onlooker captured this moment as they returned to the ‘big house’. Watch a video here.
Moving on to a look at what Meghan wore for the service.

The Duchess wore the Victoria Beckham Tailored Slim Coat. The $3,085 piece is described: “This is a tailored coat inspired by classic men’s outerwear, impeccably tailored for a slim fit, accentuating the silhouette of the body. Cut from super soft, deep navy cashmere, it features a wide lapel and a central back vent for movement. Made in Italy and finished with luxurious horn buttons and a silky navy lining, a wardrobe staple for the cooler seasons.”

It is thought Meghan’s navy v-neck midi dress could be a custom Beckham piece.

Heaven noted Meghan wore a new hat by British milliner Awon Golding.

The wool felt Vika pillbox hat features a crinoline bow and dipped goose feathers.

Meghan’s boots are by Victoria Beckham. Described as: “Make an elegant impression in Victoria Beckham’s towering black leather boots from the label’s Pre-Fall ’18 collection. This minimalist design has been crafted with maximum impact as the sleek rounded-toe silhouette is set on a high block heel”. They retail for $1,200 at My Theresa.

And Meghan’s bag is the sold out Victoria Beckham Powder Box style.

Anne suggests Meghan’s could be the Jennifer Meyer 18 Karat Gold Turquoise necklace.

A closer look at the piece on Meghan.

In case you missed Her Majesty’s Christmas speech, the monarch reflected on personal celebrations throughout the year: “It’s been a busy year for my family, with two weddings and two babies – and another child expected soon. It helps to keep a grandmother well occupied.” The Queen focused on the importance of respecting each other and overcoming our differences: “Even with the most deeply-held differences, treating the other person with respect and as a fellow human being is always a good first step towards greater understanding.” Indeed, the Queen’s wise words could be applied to royal watching. It’s my hope we’ll see a kinder royal community emerge in 2019.

Hope you’re all enjoying a wonderful Christmas with your nearest and dearest. I noted over on Duchess Kate, I’ve been reminded it can also be an incredibly painful time for those who have lost a loved one or know someone grieving. Sending good thoughts in particular to those who find it a trying period.

With sincere apologies for the lateness of the post and a word of thanks to those who have been in touch. I’ve been under the weather for the past couple of weeks and relapsed on Christmas Eve. Thankfully, I’m finally on the mend. Thank you all for bearing with me during this period. Sorry to those of you who were checking in yesterday for a new post on the service. I expect normal service to resume from here on in.