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12-04-2010, 09:30 AM #1
Kate Middleton braves the snow in her favourite pair of black suede boots
She's set to become Britain's next fashion icon, but it seems Kate Middleton is taking it all in her stride.
The 28-year-old, who is facing unprecedented scrutiny in the sartorial stakes following her engagement to Prince William, reverted to a tried and tested look as she stepped out in snowy London last night.
The princess-in-waiting teamed a simple black jacket with her favourite pair of black suede boots for a carol service at St Luke's Church in Chelsea.
The knee-highs have long been a staple in Miss Middleton's wardrobe, having worn various pairs countless times over the years.
Festive spirit: Kate Middleton attends a charity carol service at St Luke's Church in Chelsea last night
While they have become her signature item, some fashion observers have suggested it may be time for her to 'ditch' the look.
Miss Middleton was lending her support to the charity event, which raised money for Ugandan orphans through the Henry Van Straubenzee Memorial Fund.
Lending her support: The event was in aid of the Henry Van Straubenzee Memorial Fund of which Prince William is patron
Prince William, who is in Switzerland with David Cameron and David Beckham to promote England World cup bid, is a patron of the organisation.
Meanwhile, Miss Middleton is set to become a trend-setter in another field too.
Kate is expected to become the most popular girls' name next year as new parents celebrate her marriage to Prince William.
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A study of 230million birth and marriage records dating from 1837 shows a surge in babies named after princesses following royal weddings.
The popularity of the name Diana doubled the year Lady Diana Spencer married Prince Charles in 1981, compared with the previous year.
The number of girls called Victoria increased by 35 per cent in 1840 when Queen Victoria married Prince Albert.
And the number of Elizabeths born in 1923, when Queen Elizabeth married Albert, increased by 846 - or 14 per cent.
There was also an increase when Queen Elizabeth II married Philip in 1947 and Beatrice married Henry in 1885, the study by family history website Ancestry.co.uk found.
The number of babies with a derivative of the name Kate totalled 2,466 in 2009, the latest figures from the Office of National Statistics show.
An increase in popularity similar to that following Diana's wedding would mean 4,932 babies named Kate in 2011, which could be enough to make it the most popular.
Wardrobe staple: Miss Middleton has worn black suede boots on many occasions over the years
The top three female names of 2010 had a count of 5,201, 4,555 and 4,479 respectively.
Dan Jones, from Ancestry.co.uk, said: 'We have scoured millions of our records and found that every time there is a royal wedding parents rush to name their new-born daughters after the princess.
'This happened with Diana, Elizabeth and Victoria - and we expect it to happen again next year with Kate.
'Kate and William's marriage has captured the interest of the nation and we believe many expectant mothers will want to mark the occasion.
'If Kate proves as popular as Diana, and the number of Kates double, it is likely to be the number one girl's name in 2011.' However, the trend is not the same for royal males.
There was a significant increase in babies named Philip following his wedding in 1947 but there were fewer babies named Charles and Henry following their weddings.
Further study revealed a similar influence on baby names inspired by royal births.
The names William and Harry rose in popularity throughout the 90s, following the birth of the two princes.
And the names Zara, Andrew, Anne, Beatrice and Eugenie also became more common.
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