The seven-months-pregnant Duchess of Cambridge has gamely sat for a henna tattoo during a visit to an arts centre in England’s North East with Prince William.
William, 35, and Kate, 36, kicked off a whirlwind trip to Sunderland by visiting the opening of the Fire Station Arts Centre, one of the city’s most iconic buildings that was recently converted into a hub for artists.
Chatting to a group from Young Asian Voices at the Fire Station, Kate – due to give birth to her third child in April – asked if one of the girls would draw a henna design on her hand.
The duchess, wearing a Phaedra dress by maternity label Seraphine, appeared delighted when Shajida Begum, 18, drew her a dark brown flower with a swirl.
Begum said: “I said ‘Would you like a design?’ and she was like ‘Yes, if you don’t mind’.
“She was saying that it was really pretty.
Kate having some fun in Sunderland today — getting a henna tattoo pic.twitter.com/XRu3u7Hdkt
— Simon Perry (@SPerryPeoplemag) February 21, 2018
“I was just telling her how it works. I was telling her when she can wash it off – I said ‘when it becomes flakey’.”
Henna tattoos, typically brown and derived solely from plants, are safe to use during pregnancy.
Kate also asked the girls for a pack of bindis, which she said she wanted for her daughter Princess Charlotte, 2.
The royal couple earlier visited the striking Northern Spire bridge, already a major landmark and standing twice as high as Nelson’s Column and taller than Big Ben’s clock tower.
Kate slipped a heavy duty safety vest over her forest green bespoke Dolce & Gabbana coat, put on safety goggles and pulled her signature blowout into a ponytail so she could wear a hard hat as she surveyed the site. She even swapped her heels for practical boots for the excursion.
William, also in safety gear, and Kate met with local children and elderly who will benefit from the new bridge, as well as engineers and construction workers who were involved in the making of the bridge.
The bridge, which spans over the River Wear, is due to open spring this year.
The 1550-tonne pylon bridge is the second part of the Sunderland Strategic Transport Corridor, a five-phase plan to improve links between the A19 and Sunderland city centre and the Port of Sunderland.
The Northern Spire will help reduce congestion around the city, speed up car journeys and allow land along both sides of the River Wear to be regenerated and developed.