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Monday 22 September 2014

Decked out in green - right down to her eyeshadow - Kate Middleton is dressed for St Patrick's Day

Published 17/03/2014 | 13:10

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The Duchess of Cambridge during her visit to Mons Barracks in Aldershot, Hampshire, as the Irish Guards regiment marks St Patrick's Day. Photo: Bradley Page/Daily Mail/PA Wire
Kate Middleton during the St Patrick's Day parade at Mons Barracks in Aldershot
Kate Middleton during the St Patrick's Day parade at Mons Barracks in Aldershot
Kate Middleton presents a shamrock to the regimental mascot Domhnall during the St Patrick's Day parade at Mons Barracks in Aldershot
Kate Middleton presents a shamrock to the regimental mascot Domhnall during the St Patrick's Day parade at Mons Barracks in Aldershot

Bottle green is a hard to colour to carry off.

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But Kate Middleton has no fear. Wearing a green coat, matching shoes, hat and even eyeshadow, she was fully kitted out for St Patrick's Day.

She presented shamrocks to soldiers from the Irish Guards in Hampshire as the regiment marked St Patrick's Day in traditional fashion.

Kate handed out the sprigs as her husband William, Colonel of the Irish Guards, watched the ceremony at the regiment's base Mons Barracks in Aldershot.

Hundreds of proud wives, girlfriends, and parents were seated on the parade square to enjoy the presentation of the shamrocks, a century-old tradition inaugurated in 1901 by Queen Alexandra, the wife of the Edward VII.

In the past the role was famously carried out by the Queen Mother, but also performed by the Princess Royal and many others over the years, in many different countries.

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The Cambridges arrived at the military base by chauffeur driven car and were greeted by the commanding officer 1st Battalion Irish Guards, Lieutenant Colonel Ed Boanas.

In keeping with the day, the Duchess wore a stylish emerald green coat by Hobbs and matching hat by Gina Foster, and wore a gold Cartier Irish Guards brooch, a Royal Family heirloom also worn by the Queen Mother.

The Duke looked smart in a Household Division frock coat and carried a ceremonial sword.

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At the start of the ceremony, William was one of the first to receive a shamrock from his wife and, following tradition, tucked it under the regimental star on the front of his cap.

In front of the royal couple were around 300 soldiers, the majority from the Irish Guards, but they were joined on parade by a company of reserve soldiers from the London Regiment with whom they are paired under the new Army 2020 restructuring process.

The event is the one day when the entire regimental family comes together and there were veterans on the parade ground proudly displaying their medals on their suits along with a small contingent of cadets.

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Kate, who wore a large sprig of shamrock on her left shoulder, presented baskets of the plant to officers and warrant officers who handed them out to the soldiers.

Officers received their sprigs from the Duchess and she chatted for a while to each man in turn.

Last was Domhnall, the regiment's Irish wolfhound mascot, who had his head stroked by Kate before she pinned some shamrock to his collar.

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