Euan Cherry/Wenn
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January 15, 2015 01:05 PM

For the first time in public – and for her first public role of 2015 – Princess Kate wore an outfit by the British womenswear and maternity designer Madderson.

The occasion marked her return to official duties after spending Christmas and her recent birthday at her country home Anmer Hall in Norfolk, and the pregnant (six months along) princess was all smiles as she greeted schoolkids and teachers at London’s Barlby School.

Later this week and then again on Monday, Kate, 33, will attend some other just-announced engagements close to her London home with Prince William.

Her appearance at the Barlby School in Ladbroke Grove was to open the newly launched Clore Art Room, which offers art as a therapeutic intervention to children between the ages of 5 and 16.

Every week at the school, of which Kate is a patron, up to 85 children access sessions that provide them with self-confidence, self-esteem and independence through creativity and self-expression.

Head teacher Anthony Mannix said it was “extremely exciting” to be able to host Kate. “Since opening The Art Room in October, we have been overwhelmed with the positive addition it has brought to the children,” he said.

The children and members of the staff clapped and cheered when Kate arrived before she went on to meet with a group of eight children and ask about their paintings.

Founder-director Juli Beattie praised Kate’s “interest and understanding in all that we do has been instrumental to the charity over the last few years.”

While Kate didn’t talk specifically about 18-month-old son Prince George, or the baby on its way, she was looking “radiant,” Beattie says. “I see her interaction with our children and, if she is that good with our children, what an amazing mother she must be.”

The Clore Duffield Foundation’s “sustained and loyal support of our work” was praised. “Through their generous provision, we have been fortunate to establish a relationship with Barlby and Oxford Garden Schools, two inspirational schools,” she said.

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