What You Never Knew About Kate Middleton

Ever since marrying Prince William, now first in line to the British throne, in 2011, Kate Middleton (now Catherine, Princess of Wales) has been one of the most well-known public figures in the world. Catherine wasn't born into the aristocracy. Born in Reading in 1982, her father was a flight dispatcher and her mother was a flight attendant who later started their own party decoration company (via The Daily Beast). Catherine met William while studying at St. Andrew's University in Scotland. After a lengthy courtship, the pair married at Westminster Abbey in a ceremony that was watched by an estimated 162 million people around the world (via Express).

Since then, Catherine has settled into the royal family and welcomed three children — Prince George, Princess Charlotte, and Prince Louis. Chances are, Catherine will one day be Queen Consort when her husband inherits the throne. Curious to learn more about the woman who will, in all likelihood, one day be queen? Here are a few things you may not have known about her.

The royal family teases her for being chatty

It's easy to imagine that Catherine, Princess of Wales, is pretty much perfect. She never has a hair out of place, she always picks the right outfit, and she manages to make taking care of three children look easy. But apparently, there are one or two things about Catherine that her family can't help but tease her about. 

In the ITV documentary "Our Queen at Ninety," Catherine explained that her family thinks she talks too much when she's out in public. "There's a real art to walkabouts, everybody teases me in the family that I spend far too long chatting," she confessed. "I still have to learn a little bit more, and to pick up a few more tips, I suppose" (via Us Weekly). 

While being too chatty is hardly a flaw, it sounds like her family always notices when Catherine gets stuck in a conversation with a member of the public for a little too long. 

Catherine used to be roommates with her sister Pippa in a luxurious London apartment

Princess Catherine hasn't always lived in a palace. In fact, before joining the royal family, she lived a pretty normal life — well — that is if you call living in a multi-million dollar home "normal." 

Before marrying Prince William, Catherine lived with her younger sister, Pippa Middleton. The pair allegedly lived in the stylish area of Chelsea in west London in a large three-bedroom, three-floor apartment owned by their parents. The lavish apartment featured an impressive dining table, expensive furnishings, and freshly renovated modern bathrooms. In other words, Catherine may have been living with a roommate, but her apartment was definitely fit for a princess.

According to The Sunday Times, the apartment was put on the market in 2018 for a jaw-dropping £1.95 million. Apparently, the Middletons initially bought the apartment in 2002 for just £780,000.

Catherine has some surprising musical abilities

Many royal fans probably know that Catherine, Princess of Wales, is, like the other royals, very into sports. She loves tennis, field hockey, running, archery, ping pong, golf and even something called "land yachting" (via Town & Country). But you may not have known that Catherine is also pretty musical.

As a child, Catherine played piano. Although talented, Catherine never considered making her hobby a profession. As her former teacher, David Nicholls once told the BBC, "I don't think she was ever going to be a concert pianist."

Catherine also played the flute and sang in choir until she was 18 and even joined her school's chamber orchestra called the "Tootie-Flooties." Apparently, she even earned a Grade 5 music theory qualification. This theory seemed to come in handy in 2017, when Catherine conducted a children's orchestra in Hamburg. Even though she only conducted a few chords, it's clear that Catherine is still pretty musical (via Classic FM).

Catherine is a fan of making homemade gifts for her family

If you think choosing good Christmas presents is hard, try joining the royal family. While you may think that the royals would expect only the more expensive presents, apparently, they sometimes like to give handmade presents. 

For her first royal Christmas, Catherine, Princess of Wales, even gave the late Queen Elizabeth II a gift of homemade chutney. "I can remember being at Sandringham, for the first time, at Christmas," she recalled (via Express). "And I was worried what to give the Queen as her Christmas present. I was thinking, 'Gosh, what should I give her?'" She decided that instead of splurging on a pricey gift, she'd give something more personal. 

"I thought, 'I'll make her something,' which could have gone horribly wrong. But I decided to make my granny's recipe of chutney." Apparently, the gift was a success — Catherine even noticed that it was sitting on the table the next day. "I think such a simple gesture went such a long way for me and I've noticed since she's done that on lots of occasions and I think it just shows her thoughtfulness, really, and her care in looking after everybody," Catherine said.

Catherine has a secret to wearing heels all day

Let's face it — Catherine, Princess of Wales, always looks flawless, right down to her feet. Even though she often spends all day on her feet, she often wears pretty uncomfortable-looking heels. So how on Earth does she manage?

Well, according to etiquette expert Myka Meier, Catherine allegedly has a few tricks up her sleeve. Apparently, she wears non-slip tights from John Lewis along with gel strips that keep her feet in place in her shoes (via Insider). On other occasions, she's worn Alice Bow insoles to keep her feet comfortable. "She thinks they're great," one source told Vanity Fair. While the company didn't confirm whether or not Catherine does wear their insoles they did note that they had experienced a huge increase in visits to their website since reports spread of Catherine's preference for the brand.

Of course, Catherine doesn't always wear heels. At outdoor, sporty events, she is often seen wearing flats or even sneakers.

Catherine has a trick to looking good in candid photos

Ever noticed that there aren't really any bad pictures of Catherine, Princess of Wales? How does she always look so perfect in her photos? Well, according to experts, it's not due to her hair, her makeup, or even her genes. Instead, it all comes down to a simple trick. 

'Well, the Duchess of Cambridge has had some media training and I'm going to share a cheeky little style hack that she uses every single time without fail," stylist and royal fashion expert Miranda Holder explained to The Sun. "She has simply been trained to always keep her chin parallel to the ground. She doesn't tilt it down, she doesn't tilt it up, and that ensures a flattering photograph every single time.”

Wait — does holding your head parallel to the ground really ensure a good photo? Apparently, it does! "I can tell you from years of working with supermodels, celebrities, and models, that you can be the most gorgeous person in the world and still get a horrific photograph," Holder went on. "So it really is all about your relationship to the camera and where you place your jaw." It sounds like good posture really does make all the difference — and Catherine knows it.

Catherine, Princess of Wales, is officially a fashion trendsetter

While we all know that Catherine, Princess of Wales, is one of the most stylish royals, you may not have realized just how influential she really is in the world of fashion. 

According to the e-commerce company Lovethesales, Catherine was the most influential royal during the Platinum Jubilee in 2022 when it came to fashion (via Women's Wear Daily). After her appearances at the event, searches for her clothes and outfits reportedly went up by 400%, while Launchmetrics reported that people copying Catherine's outfits resulted in millions of dollars of revenue for brands. Apparently, searches for coat dresses went up by 87%, while searches for fascinators rose by 22%. Meghan Markle came in a close second, with searches for her outfits rising by 82%.

Catherine's fashion influence has also allegedly translated into an increased interest in the concept of recycling outfits, as she is a great advocate of eco-conscious fashion (via WWD).

Catherine experiences a condition in cold weather

We bet you didn't know this about Princess Catherine: She has cold hands. During a trip to Wales in March 2022, she and her husband Prince William made an appearance and greeted wellwishers. While the weather was cold, William revealed that the Princess of Wales suffers more than most in the winter. "She has the coldest hands ever," William said. There are any number of reasons a person could experience cold hands. According to the Mayo Clinic, cold hands can be a sign of anemia, autoimmune disease, or just a symptom of being in a cold place. However, William provided his own guess as to why his wife's hands are always so frosty. "They say, 'cold hands, warm heart,'" he remarked (via Woman & Home). 

We have to admit that it's pretty adorable of William to worry about his wife's hands — and to give her that extra little compliment! Maybe Catherine's chilly hand problem is why she always seems to be wearing gloves during public appearances in the winter.

Catherine, Princss of Wales, has a code name

Catherine, Princess of Wales, has one of the most recognizable names in the world. So, it comes as no surprise to learn that Catherine doesn't actually use her own name when she's out and about and wants to keep a low profile. 

As one royal source told Express, both Catherine and Prince William use the initials "DC" when they're trying to disguise their identities. "If anyone got hold of a phone belonging to a royal aide or security team member, they won't find Harry Windsor and Meghan Markle's names in it," the source explained of other royal family members. "It's far too risky in the wrong hands. They are given codenames but they are changed regularly for obvious reasons." Apparently, Catherine often goes by the name "Daphne Clark," while William is known as "Danny Collins."

However, on one occasion, Catherine used a different name. Apparently, she once went into a watersports shop and asked the shop owner to put a wetsuit on hold. When he asked for her name, she reportedly said, "Mrs. Cambridge" (via The Sun).

Catherine reportedly helped Charles and Camilla's relationship

While we may never know all of the tensions that go on within the royal family, it's safe to say that when Camilla, Queen Consort, married King Charles, things weren't exactly easy for her. According to Angela Levin, author of "Camilla: From Outcast to Future Queen Consort," Princess Catherine was there to help smooth things over.

"Fortunately, time helped improve Camilla's relationship with senior Royals, including Prince William, largely thanks to the Princess of Wales, who is a peacemaker," wrote Levin in the book (via Mirror). "Camilla is also a conciliator and doesn't nurse grievances. They both believe that supporting their husbands is a priority." Apparently, as both love the arts, Catherine and Camilla would go to art exhibitions together when things got a little tense in the royal family. Catherine also allegedly made an effort to spend time with Charles when things got difficult, too.

Catherine and Prince William cook for their children

Most people would probably assume that the royal family do very little housework. However, it turns out that Prince William and Princess Catherine are a little more hands-on than you might have imagined. 

As Vanity Fair reported, Catherine likes to cook her children meals when they get home from school (via Hello). And sometimes, the kids even help out, too. Catherine likes to cook healthy foods that contain plenty of vegetables, along with her specialty — vegetable curry. She has also been known to make homemake pizzas.  "I've done that with George and Charlotte — making pizza dough," she said once (via Hello). "They love it because they can get their hands messy."

Catherine also makes a simple pasta dish. "She was telling us how much her children love cooking and how they cook for her," Matthew Kleiner-Mann, chief executive of the Ivy Learning Trust, once said (via Yahoo). "They made cheesy pasta the other day. One stirs the flour, one puts the milk and butter in. And they make salads and stuff." Who knew the future queen was such a chef!

Catherine wants to modernize the monarchy

One thing Catherine, Princess of Wales, is not is outdated. While many people believe the monarchy to be an archaic system, Catherine promises to make small but important changes that will help to modernize the institution. For one thing, it looks like Catherine will start giving more and more interviews as time goes on in an effort to be more modern and open with the public. As royal commentator Erin Hill told Express, "It's showing she's maybe going to put forth a more modern, open monarchy when, one day, she becomes queen. Which is exciting."

Royal expert Richard Fitzwilliam agreed that Prince William and Catherine's approach was decidedly more modern than the royals who came before her. "They've been tremendously successful in protecting this mix of normality and royal status," Fitzwilliam told AFP (via NDTV). And, according to the Mirror, the couple even plans to go by their first names rather than their titles. It's clear that when Prince William eventually takes the throne, Catherine will be by his side to help bring the monarchy into the modern world.

Catherine will be portrayed on The Crown

In the sixth and final season of Netflix's "The Crown," Princess Catherine's storyline will be introduced. According to the Daily Telegraph, the young Catherine will be played by the 19-year-old newcomer named Meg Bellamy. Bellamy was the head girl at St Crispin's school in Wokingham before she submitted a self-tape audition for the show. Apparently, the show will cover and Prince William and Catherine's early years at St. Andrew's. 

As of this writing, we don't yet know exactly how much of Catherine's story "The Crown" will cover, but it's safe to say that the show will add its own flair to the story. After all, the show doesn't purport to be factual. In fact, in 2022, Buckingham Palace even released a statement to The Telegraph about how the show fictionalized the royal family's story for the screen. Even though "The Crown" may not give us Catherine's true story, it will still be fascinating to see her romance with William play out on TV. One thing's for sure — our fascination with the queen-to-be isn't about to die down any time soon.