Royal Etiquette - Kate Receiving the Eliza Doolittle Treatment

Kate Middleton has been having daily etiquette training said a source close to her, and it has dramatically shifted her confidence with crowds and within the Royal family.

The source stated that her mother and sister Pippa have also been included on some of the lessons. It's the biggest change in Kate so far, said the source. Her spontaneity is still there, but she's thinking and measuring her responses, her gait and her demeanor very carefully now, because of the tremendous help she's had from a top etiquette trainer who has helped many young debutantes.

Kate understands how Diana's warmth and easy touch won over the hearts of the crowd and she never wants to lose her own warmth and instant emotion, but she knows that dealing with leading dignitaries and heads of state is another matter entirely.

The source said she's developed a good relationship with Samantha Cameron (wife of British Prime Minister David Cameron) who has helped her and advised on this issue, and the two women have developed a close relationship. The royal insider also noted, Kate's not only a bag of nerves for her wedding (to be broadcast to a billion people), but also for the royal visit to Canada at the end of June.  By then, any gaps in her knowledge of etiquette and protocol will be very clear.
The source said, Kate knows she's not aristocracy -- and none of this will come naturally to her, and is very keen to get it right. She has been having daily lessons in deportment, curtseying, banqueting, talking, smiling, walking, standing and handling servants. Prince William has grown up meeting foreign dignitaries and royalty from all over the world, and he has also been instructing and helping her as well, said the source.

Her posture is improving daily and if you look at how she used to walk and stand you can see a dramatic shift, said the source. She's much straighter, more poised, in charge of her body and altogether more of a presence. Her shoulders are held back more and her head is higher -- she's standing much taller. Kate's also been having a crash course in table manners, how to hold her glass, how to hold cutlery, and so on.

All of these newly mastered 'royal' skills will be on display in Canada so she must be fully groomed by then, said our source. Henry Higgins would be proud.

View gallery: Kate Middleton's Royal Training

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Sharon Feinstein is a freelance journalist who has written extensively on entertainment, travel, the environment and women's interests. When Sharon isn't traveling the globe chasing exclusives, she's working hard at saving turtles.

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