Kate Middleton put in a dazzling appearance as she celebrated the work of one of her charities at the National Portrait Gallery on Wednesday evening.The Duchess, who is six months pregnant, wore a baby blue Emilia Wickstead cocktail dress that showed off her growing baby bump and her favourite grey suede heels to the event, held in honour of The Art Room, a charity of which she is patron.In a speech delivered to the 250-strong audience, which included artists and school children, Kate said it felt "incredibly special" to be celebrating the work of the charity, which uses painting and drawing to build confidence and independence in young people.
"I am a firm believer in the power of art to make a difference, and The Art Room in providing this on a daily basis," she said.Kate has been patron of The Art Room since early 2012 — and Wednesday's event held extra significance for the pregnant royal since it took place in the National Portrait Gallery, of which she is also patron.The gathering was held to celebrate the launch of the Pledge for the Future appeal, the charity's fundraising initiative, and its 11th anniversary.The Art Room holds sessions one to four days a week in Oxford and works with more than 20 schools. Kate visited the Art Room last year and has continued to work with the organisation.
The event marks the third time the Duchess of Cambridge has visited the National Portrait Gallery, earlier this year the mum-to-be attended the unveiling of her first official portrait.The portrait by award-winning artist Paul Emsley was greeted with mixed reviews, however Kate appeared pleased with the painting saying: "It's just amazing, I thought it was brilliant.The visit comes in the middle of a busy week for Kate. On Tuesday, she visited a primary school in Manchester and on Thursday she will join forces with Prince William and brother-in-law Prince Harry when the royal trio visit the Warner Bros Studios in Hertfordshire.