Two future queens, side by side!
On the first day of their official visit to Sweden, Prince William and Kate Middleton met up with their hosts (and Swedish counterparts!), Crown Princess Victoria and Prince Daniel after a morning spent watching (and playing a bit of) bandy hockey. After a lunch with Victoria’s parents, King Carl Gustaf and Queen Silvia, the foursome bundled up to make their way to Stockholm’s Nobel Museum, where they met with the curator to learn a bit more about Sweden’s famed Nobel Laureate system.
And Kate and Victoria, it seems, have more in common than just their royal status: They both wore green, faux fur-trimmed coats for the occasion. (Their futures don’t exactly align: While Victoria will one day be the monarch, Kate will be the consort.)
Victoria’s coat is from Ida Sjostedt, a Swedish designer. Kate wore a green coat with black faux fur cuffs and a black faux fur lapel by TROY London over a green dress by Catherine Walker. She also wore the Peruvian Connection alpaca hat we saw her wear on Christmas Day. (Troy was founded by Kate’s friend, Rosie van Cutsem.) Kate’s earrings were Green Amethyst and Green Tourmaline Special Edition in 18-carat yellow gold by Kiki McDonough.
It was a reunion of sorts of the two couples, who are basically each other’s counterparts in their respective countries. One day, William will be King, and Victoria will be Queen — and the two are actually distant cousins! Their ages are within just a few years of one another — William and Kate are 35 and 36, respectively, while Victoria is 40 and Daniel is 44. Their children are close in age, too, and they each have one girl and boy (though in opposite order): Princess Estelle and Prince Oscar are 6 and almost 2, and Prince George and Princess Charlotte are 4 and 2. Victoria and Daniel also attended William and Kate’s 2011 wedding.
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The group’s arrival to the Nobel Museum gathered quite a crowd in Stockholm. Well-wishers and locals even had a chance to hand over gifts to the royals. Karin Wahlgren, 75, from the suburb of Järfälla, handed William a special glove to wipe their dog Lupo’s paws with.
Princess Victoria, Prince William, Kate Middleton and Prince Daniel
“You hold the dog with one hand and use the glove on the other to wipe him,” she told PEOPLE. “He said, ‘The dog always comes in with dirty paws, so it will come in handy.’ ’”
Wahlgren was also awestruck by Kate, who she says “was more beautiful in reality than I imagined she’d be. She has a sort of radiance.”
Staci Cunningham, another member of the crowd, told PEOPLE that she chatted about the bitter Swedish cold with William and Kate.
“We asked them if they were enjoying their visit,” she said. “They are. They were friendly and sweet. It was kind of them to take so much tome in the cold.”
Also among the crowd was math teacher Niklas Schild, 33, who told William that he’s planning to travel to Windsor to join the festivities surrounding Prince Harry’s wedding to Meghan Markle on May 19.
“William told me, ‘You’ll be very welcome — it will be a very happy day’,” said Niklas.
The couple also chatted to British 7-year-olds Tia Hart and Eva Rouse, who live in Stockholm.
“Kate asked us if we like living here and what kind of things we like doing,” said Tia. “We said we like tobogganing and she said that her children would love that too.”
And wellwisher Christine Redrin, 50, gave Wiliam and Kate presents for Prince George and Princess Charlotte — two stuffed toy elks.
“I loved Princess Diana and her boys are just like her,” she told reporters. “I told William that I’m so happy for Harry getting married, and he thanked me. I remember them when they were little boys and they have both been through such a lot, and it’s lovely to see them happy.”
Earlier, William and Kate had enjoyed a private lunch at Stockholm’s Royal Palace, hosted by King Carl Gustaf and Queen Sylvia, before emerging from the palace doors with Victoria and Daniel, who proudly showed them the view of the river before walking with them through the cobbled streets a short distance to the square.