With only seven countries around the globe still living under control of a monarchy, there is not one more famous or more talked about than the monarchy that rules the UK. With the many versions of Richard, Henry, or Elizabeth there have been 66 different rulers over the years that have all lead to this moment. No one in the UK could’ve imagined the popularity of a prince marrying a commoner, let alone how popular the pair would become around the world. With Jennifer Aniston and Brad Pitt, Katie Holmes and Tom Cruise, and Kim Kardashian and Kanye West having all had some of the most famous (and most expensive) weddings of all time, it is hard to beat them. How about when you are literally marrying Prince Charming? With a dress that cost over $430,000, two cakes that cost $80,000, and $800,000 in flowers, it is no wonder that William and Kate’s wedding comes in as one of the most expensive of all times at nearly $34 million!
The wedding fetched in the biggest audience ever for a single event on television. The figures sat at around 2 billion people worldwide (including 23 million Americans) who tuned in to watch the grand event. Since then the couple’s popularity has grown and grown. Having welcomed two beautiful children into the world already, and a third on the way, everyone is watching the pair with eagle eyes as they wait for any updates from the palace.
But what was life like for Kate before she was welcomed into the Royal world? Believe it or not, her and her family had a fairly regular upbringing as they grew up. If anything had changed, though, we may not have Wills and Kate as we know and love them today. Kate and her family have certainly embraced their new lifestyles well.
Kate and Pippa were (and still are) as thick as thieves when it comes to how close they are. The two were often photographed after a night on the town, as well as Kate being joined by her friends as they visited clubs, bars, and parties all nights of the week. However, a school friend of Kate’s spoke about how she never saw the future Duchess show any signs of drinking too much as she would always know when enough was enough.
After Pippa graduated, she was thrown into the big wide world of working. She moved into the house she shared with her two siblings which enabled her to find work for a luxury products company. Here she was in charge of publicizing the firm, but she didn’t work for them for long. Pippa moved on to become an event manager for a company named ‘Table Talk’ that was in charge of organizing parties and corporate events in London.
Philippa Charlotte Middleton was born on September 6, 1983, nearly two years after her older sister. Pippa also had a private education growing up as she attended the same school as her elder sister after she had returned from her short time in Jordan. Pippa managed to get a sports scholarship to help towards her college once she had graduated school. Pippa even followed in her sister’s footsteps as she went to university in Scotland too, but to study English Literature at the University of Edinburgh instead.
When all else seemed to fail for the young Middleton, Pippa decided she would join her parents and sister in the family business. Pippa took on a different role to Kate as she was instead given the job of editing the company’s website. As well as this, she was also the editor of the company’s blog which was useful after her experience in the party planning world from her previous job. All her experience even meant that she was able to help plan her sister’s wedding day.
The media was already following Pippa before she had become known for being the Duchess’ sister, but had some mixed reviews on the younger Middleton. Pippa was named number one on the UK’s ‘society singleton’ list ahead of many famous faces. However, Pippa also received accusations of being a ‘wannabe’ in the famous world that only attended parties as a member of staff rather than an invited guest. The articles were not good publicity for this young celebrity.
As well as older sister Kate, Pippa also has a passion for sports and living a healthy lifestyle. Pippa is a keen skier so often found herself spending the winters on the slopes with her family as she grew up. Her enthusiasm for the sport has continued into her adulthood as she can still regularly be seen on the mountain tops. Pippa’s other sporting interests include cycling and running, both of which she has competed in races for, often raising money for charity.
Striving for greatness
Kate’s family hadn’t always had the upbringing that they do now. Kate’s mother came from a long line of builders and coal miners when she was growing up, and it was her mother, Dorothy Goldsmith, that gave her the push to strive for greatness. Carole became an air hostess which is where she met Kate’s father. When she was growing up Kate’s parents decided on a change of careers as they set up their own mail-order company for party supplies. The success of the business made the family millionaires.
Kate met her future husband, William, while she was attending university, but the pair expressed their feelings for each other in a somewhat unique way. Kate was modeling in a charity show for the university wearing nothing but a black lace number over matching lingerie. William was all too quick to jump at the opportunity to watch his future Mrs, so he paid over $265 to sit in the front row. That is true dedication!
Instead of having a major water balloon fight, at The University of St Andrews in the UK, their initiation ceremony was to have a great big foam fight. All the freshman of the year would participate in the battle, with Kate being no exception to the tradition. It sounds like a rather exciting and fun way to get acquainted with your new classmates. Perhaps universities in the states should start adopting this ritual? It would definitely be a lot less painful.
Change of career
After leaving the retail brand, Kate decided she would go into the family business instead for a change of scenery. Kate was the new photographer for the company’s magazine where she could pursue a long-term hobby of hers. Kate has always had a keen interest in taking pictures (she even took the first few photographs of each of her children before a professional photographer did) and even launched a branch of the company that specializes in throwing first birthday parties.
A brief split
Did you know that William and Kate had a brief breakup before their wedding, putting a temporary spanner in the works for Kate officially becoming a member of the royal family? The couple split while they were holidaying in Europe, but after a few years they worked out their differences and the rest is history. It is reported that Kate used this time to mature as a person, as well as work on her career at her parent’s company. She left her position there just before the wedding and has been working full time for her duties as the Duchess ever since.
Time for a move
After Kate graduated with her degree in hand, she was lucky enough to have parents there to support her. Mom and dad were quick to purchase a property in an exclusive area of London where their three children could houseshare together. The three moved in during 2002 where Kate ended up getting offered a job at ‘Jigsaw’, a British retail store, where she worked as a buyer of accessories. Kate was reportedly a model employee when she worked for the company over five years.
The famous ring
Surely many of you still remember the famous picture that appeared in the press when Kate and prince William were photographed fooling in the car, during which everybody noticed that she had something unique on her finger. The british people and the rest of the world were ecstatic about the good news, and Kate was finally welcomed into their hearts. You sure made a great pick Will!
Getting an education
The boys decided that anyone new going to the school would be rated by them on their personality and how attractive they found them. Kate disappointingly received a score of 2/10. The teasing didn’t set Kate up for the easiest of times when she was going through school, but she managed to prove everyone wrong when she passed all of her subjects with ease. It was her time at school that also got Kate her childhood nickname…
‘Squeak’ was the unusual nickname that Kate ended up being branded with during her time at school. The name was nothing to do with her appearance or the sound of her voice, but was all from a class pet – a guinea pig! It doesn’t seem like anyone will be comparing Kate to any small furry creatures nowadays though, but back in her school days, it was all fun for her friends. We wonder whether the name gave her a love or a hate for the little rodents?
Life before university
Before heading off to university, Kate decided she would take a gap year to relax before the pressures of exams started. The future Duchess flew off to Italy for her 365 day holiday but didn’t spend the whole time lounging around. She did, however, do voluntary charity work alongside studying her passion for art in the birth country of many famous artists. Kate would begin studying the history of art at university when she returned to the UK.
Perhaps it was competing with her successful sister, or maybe it had something to do with being the middle of three siblings, but something growing up made Pippa into a very competitive woman. Her desire to win began way back when she was in elementary school when she would cheat at playing a game called ‘conkers’. The idea was to break your opponent’s horse chestnut by smashing them together, so Pippa would often coat hers in clear nail varnish to make it stronger.
Living off their parents
Kate and her siblings didn’t have to ask for much when they were growing up as their parent’s success meant they got given nearly everything they needed. Kate continued to be educated privately but had to leave an all-girls school she attended due to bullying when she was 14 years old. After leaving the school, Kate got her chance to attend a mixed gender school. However, this wouldn’t be an easy journey for Kate either as the boys began picking on the newbie.
No fad diets here
Kate has always had a slim figure, even when she had been enjoying partying in her student days. However, there is a secret as to why that doesn’t involve any crazy diets or exercise regimes. Kate has always had a keen interest in sports, including hockey, swimming, cross-country running, and tennis. That’s quite an impressive list of competitions under her belt and shows how she has managed to maintain her slim physique all these years.
During a period before William was even on the scene, Kate had another love interest. It is hard to imagine the Duchess with anyone else, but it did exist! Kate must have had a thing for the name though as she was previously dating a man named as Willis. It is rumored that the pair weren’t together for very long before they split up, but thank goodness they did, or we wouldn’t have the loveable royal couple we know today.
James’ early years
James William Middleton was born on April 15, 1987, and is the youngest of the three Middleton children. James was educated at the same private schools as his two older sisters, as well as getting accepted into the University of Edinburgh, just like his older sister Pippa, in 2005 where he chose to study Environmental Studies. However, the youngest Middleton decided that university life wasn’t for him and he quit after one year studying there. Leaving, however, wasn’t in vain.
Becoming a voice
James decided that he wanted to leave his course at university because he wanted to venture out and start his own business. James also spoke about the fact that he had always had to combat his dyslexia, and wanted to become a voice for other suffers. He hoped in doing so that it would raise awareness of the learning difficulty as well as help to get other people the support they may need when in education.
Setting up shop
The grand business plan that James came up with was to sell home baking kits that included everything someone would need. The idea was that by having everything in one place, the home bakers would be able to experiment with more creative cakes and designs. James began baking at home using the family’s kitchen as his workspace where he could develop his ideas, but quickly had to expand to larger buildings as the business grew.
Keeping it in the family
After venturing on his own for many years, James eventually followed in his sisters’ steps and joined forces with his family’s party business. Here he sold his baking kits that contained everything needed to bake your own birthday cake at home which used the family company’s name to promote the new idea. James used his business knowledge to hit the UK’s baking boom at the exact right time as the kits were a huge success. They led to James being nominated for many young entrepreneur awards.
But what was life like for Kate before she was welcomed into the Royal family? Believe it or not, her and her family had a fairly regular upbringing as they grew up. If anything had changed, though, we may not have Wills and Kate as we know and love them today. Kate and her family have certainly embraced their new lifestyles well, with her heartthrobing siblings Pippa and James often appearing on newspapers and magazines.
The early years
Catherine Elizabeth Middleton was born on January 9, 1982, in Reading, England. Her parents Michael and Carole worked for an airline. The couple had three children, with Kate being the oldest, followed by Philippa, aka Pippa, and then James. The family lived in Jordan for two years from 1984 until their return to England in 1986. While living abroad, Kate attended a kindergarten that spoke English but she was then enrolled in a private school after stepping foot on home territory.
Young modeling career
Michael and Carole Middleton’s company specialized in selling party bags, decorations, toys, and all other things related to throwing children’s parties. As well as making the family an overwhelming amount of money, it also gave the children a chance to get their modeling careers off to a good start as they would be the main subjects in the early versions of the company’s magazines. It seems the young threesome did the perfect amount of looking adorable to sell all they did.
Carole Elizabeth Middleton had an under-privileged upbringing, spending the first half of her childhood in a council flat. After her mother pushed her to succeed in life, she applied for a job as an air hostess. At the time the position was considered to be one of the most glamorous in the world. The job meant that she had to leave high school at an early age, but for Carole, it was all worth it as she met her husband while working for the company. They then set up their successful business which allowed them to live in a multi-million pound house, a stark contrast to where she grew up!
Michael Francis Middleton was born into a very upper-class family, so he had a privileged childhood. Michael was taught at a private school that meant he was boarding away from his home and his family for most of his younger years. After he graduated from college, he trained to be a pilot. Michael was granted his license and started flying for a major British airline where he met his future wife aboard one of the flights. Michael then moved on to being in charge of the dispatching of planes instead.
Michael was lucky enough to inherit trust funds that had been left to him by previous family members which enabled him and his wife Carole to start their business that eventually skyrocketed for the pair. The money from both the inheritance and the success of their business had allowed the couple to buy their manor house as well as send their children to private school. Without the ability to give the children the upbringing they had, Kate and William would never have met, so thank goodness their hard work paid off.
Kate’s uncle Gary is the brother of her mother, Carole. When he was young Gary was often deemed as the outcast of the family because of how different he is to everyone else. Gary has been married four times over the years, three of which have ended in divorce. Gary began working at an IT recruitment company after his first marriage. Within the first six months of having the job he already owned shares in the business and had been named the company director.
Splashing the cash
Gary quickly earned millions from his business venture and didn’t hang around when it came to spending it. He started by purchasing a five-bedroom mansion near to his family in the UK that had a snooker room and a swimming pool. Gary then began adding to his collection after buying a boat as well as an extensive collection of supercars that he could whizz around town in. It appeared as though multi-million dollar ideas ran in this family!
Hitting the headlines
Over the years Gary has been in the headlines for many different reasons, including the suspicion of using illegal substances while on holiday, as well as getting into fights, and generally causing a scene. However, even after all of his antics over the years, Gary has admitted that he and his family have an excellent relationship and no love has been lost. While his behaviour may not fit in with the royal image, there’s nothing wrong with having a mischievous uncle in their family – they are, after all, just like many other families.