PHOTOS: Kate Middleton Dutifully Carries Her Own Umbrella!

Kate Middleton appeared outside today at one of her final scheduled public appearances before the April 29th royal nuptials and, in a rare twist on her usual out-of-doors look of apparel designed to be worn by a female, she carried an umbrella! Also of note, she carried the umbrella herself.

Luckily for Kate, the weather cleared up as her appearance went on, which means that she was later able to doff the umbrella and instead clutch her navy and gold clutch with both hands. Handy! But what is most fascinating about the photoset of Kate and Prince William’s visit to Darwen, England, is that Kate appears to be consistently walking behind William almost every step of the way. For those of you who have already read Vanity Fair’s lengthy and engrossing recap of all things Royal Wedding Oriented in May’s issue of the magazine, you’ll know that the amount of steps Kate stays behind William is actually kind of a rule.

From the article which, sadly, has not yet been published online in its entirety:

Unlike Diana, who made it her quest to rebel against the royal grain, Kate appeared to adhere to the protocol expected of her instinctively. She listened to William’s aides and followed the Prince, making sure she stayed one step behind him. As she would during their televised interview with journalist Tom Brad, her intention was to follow his lead. Outshining Charles had been one of Diana’s flaws, and Kate did not want to make the same mistake.

Things that can probably also be filed under “following protocol,” Kate’s choice of a conservative navy dress and blazer and moderately-heeled pumps.

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