The Countess of Wessex: Best of 2019
The Countess of Wessex has been an integral part of the Royal Family for 20 years and continues to focus on her charity work while promoting the U.K. both domestically and abroad. This year, the Countess undertook several international visits and has proven herself one of the Royal Family's most valuable assets. Here are some of my favorite moments from 2019 with the Countess of Wessex.
It is very possible this made the list simply for the clutch that Sophie chose to accessorize with. Royals tend to make several appearances throughout the Wimbledon tournament so it wasn't unexpected that the Countess of Wessex came to watch a match. However, her clutch seemed to get almost as much media attention as she did. The light blue clutch proved the Countess has a brilliant sense of humour and read "I’m not saying I am wonder woman. I’m just saying that no one has ever seen me and wonder woman in the same place,"
9. 100 Women in Finance
This fall, the Countess of Wessex joined women in New York and Toronto in her role as ambassador for 100 Women in Finance. The organization aims to encourage women to go into the finance field by providing examples of successful women in the industry and networking globally. She joined the organizations first impression panel and met with leaders in the industry during her visit.
8. Wild Place Project
In a rare family outing the Earl and Countess of Wessex were joined by their children, Lady Louise and James Viscount Severn at Wild Place Project. The attraction was at the Bristol Zoo this summer and fit in with Prince Edward's role as patron of the Bristol Zoological Society. The family toasted marshmallows and fed giraffes during their visit. Generally fans only see the Wessex family together for the annual Trooping the Colour as they don't make too many official visits all together since James and Louise are still in school.
7. The Earl and Countess of Wessex celebrate 20 years of marriage
This year Edward and Sophie celebrated their 20th wedding anniversary. The couple were married in 1999 at St. George's chapel at Windsor Castle. Sophie and Edward share two children, Lady Louise and James Viscount Severn. They marked the special day by posing for a photograph at Royal Ascot taken by longtime royal photographer, Chris Jackson.
6. The Countess of Wessex at Royal Ascot
Like many of the other royals, the Countess of Wessex's fashion advanced this year, opting for more daring prints and new styles. Sophie chose a new style at Royal Ascot, wearing a blue flare legged jumpsuit for the horse race. She looked incredible and it was a definite style highlight of the year.
The Countess of Wessex also rocked a bolder flower print on her second day at Ascot. the floral pattern coordinated with her fascinator which was easy to see in the portraits taken by Chris Jackson for their 20th Anniversary. Royals have always evolved their styles, finding what is most flattering for them personally as well as bringing certain trendier pieces in and 2019 seemed to be a fashion turning point for several Royal Women.
5. International Women's Day
This year on International Women's Day, The Countess of Wessex officially announced her support for the Women's Peace Security and Preventing Sexual Violence Initiative. The two campaigns have made up much of the Countess's work through the year and are likely to inform large parts of her work moving forward.
The announcement came during a reception the Countess hosted at Buckingham Palace on International Women's Day. The reception celebrated the role women play in peacebuilding across the globe. The Countess has championed women's empowerment and the importance of including women in the workforce, politics, and leadership roles since 2014 and her work in the areas has continue to expand.
4. Royal Visit Kosovo
The Countess of Wessex pledged her support to the Preventing Sexual Violence Initiative and much of her work has centered around this in 2019. During a visit to Kosovo, Sophie found out more about the 1998-1999 conflict and how it impacted women in the country. It was an incredibly powerful visit as she was able to meet with some of the women who have spoken about their experiences with sexual violence during the conflict.
A big part of the initiative is to include women in peacebuilding movements in order to ensure that sexual violence is not continued to be used should future conflict arise. She also learned about the reasons bringing perpetrators of sexual violence can be so difficult and met with religious leaders to see the part religion can play in the peacebuilding and healing process.
3. Countess of Forfar
Early this year the Queen gave Prince Edward the Earldom of Forfar to mark his 55th birthday.Sophie will therefore use the title of Countess of Forfar when in Scotland. The Couple visited Forfar in July in their first official visit to the region since receiving the title. The last Earl of Forfar was Archibald Douglas who died in 1715 without any heirs and therefore the earldom became 'extinct' until the Queen bestowed the title this year.
2. Royal Visit India
The Countess of Wessex undertook five days of engagements in India focusing on the ways the Queens Diamond Jubilee Trust is working to prevent avoidable blindness in the country. Sophie has done work with the blind and preventing avoidable blindness for several years and it is a cause incredibly close to her since her own daughter has vision troubles stemming from her birth.
Lady Louise was born prematurely due to prenatal abruption and after her birth she was diagnosed with esotropia, a condition where one of both eyes turn inwards. Louise has had two surgeries to correct the issue but the Countess of Wessex has continued working with those who have vision impairmens as well as working to prevent avoidable blindness.
1. The Countess of Wessex and the Queen
After what could be described as a tumultuous year for the Royal Family, I absolutely loved seeing Sophie step up in a major supporting role for the Queen. It is well known that the pair have a very close relationship but it became much more evident throughout the year. The Countess of Wessex was seen with the Queen at Balmoral throughout the summer holiday as well as making several visits to Windsor throughout the year. On Christmas Day, Sophie rode back to Sandringham with the Queen following church.
Since becoming the Queen's daughter-in-law in 1999, Sophie has proven to be a reliable and steady source of friendship and comfort to the Queen. While her courtship with Prince Edward was longer than the Queens other childrens (Edward and Sophie dated for six years compared to the dozen or so dates that Prince Charles and Princess Diana went on before announcing their engagement) and taking it slow has proven itself. Since Prince Philip retired from public life Sophie has stepped into a major supporting role for the Queen and this year that support has been invaluable.
Leave a comment below of you favorite moment from the Countess of Wessex in 2019!