Sunday, November 6, 2011

Pippa Middleton

Pippa Middleton is a socialite and the sister of Kate Middleton, the Duchess of Cambridge.

Early Life
Born Philippa Charlotte Middleton on September 6, 1983, Pippa Middleton is the second of three children of Carole and Michael Middleton. Pippa’s older sister, Kate, was born in 1982 and is the Duchess of Cambridge through her marriage to Prince William. Born in 1987, her younger brother James, is a business man.

Pippa’s parents met working for British Airways—Carole was a flight attendant, and Michael was first a flight attendant, then a flight dispatcher. In 1984, the couple moved to Amman, Jordan, where they were based briefly.

In 1987, the Middleton family was back in England, living at Bradfield Southend in the county of Berkshire. Carole Middleton started a company called Party Pieces, selling decorations and accessories for children’s parties. Pippa and her siblings got their first taste of the spotlight modeling for Party Pieces catalogs. Party Pieces went on to become a successful business, and the once middle class Middleton family is reportedly worth more than $50 million.

Like her older sister, Pippa attended Britain’s elite schools, first at St Andrew’s School in Pangbourne, then Downe House, a girls’ boarding school, and then Marlborough College at Wiltshire. She was known as an organized and attentive student, and the more outgoing of the Middleton sisters. Though they were reportedly bullied for their middle class roots, Pippa was popular with her fellow students.

Pippa studied English literature at the University of Edinburgh, where she mixed with the children of the dukes and earls—her group of friends was known as the "castle crew." She dated George Percy, the son of the Duke of Northumberland. Percy's family castle was used as Hogwarts castle in the Harry Potter films. Pippa also dated JJ Jardine Patterson, the son of a banking family.

Rise to Fame
After graduating in 2008, Pippa worked at a public relations firm, then as an event planner in London. She was often spotted out at London’s poshest nightclubs, and on the arm of handsome young aristocrats.

It was Pippa’s sister, Kate, who changed the family’s fortunes for good. As a freshman at the University of St Andrews in Scotland, Kate befriended, and began dating, a young Prince William.

As Britons paid close attention to the future king’s romance, Pippa became a familiar face. Often spotted out shopping with her sister, or partying with the same group of people at London nightclubs, Pippa’s good looks and sense of style earned her many fans, as well as critics. Dubbed the "wisteria sisters," Kate and Pippa were criticized for what some perceived as social climbing. Seen out and about frequently, Pippa became a paparazzi favorite.

Royal Wedding
The much-awaited November 2010 announcement of the engagement of Prince William and Kate Middleton caused a national frenzy in Britain. Always close to her sister, Pippa reportedly helped Kate plan many of the details of the royal wedding and the reception.

When the much-anticipated wedding took place at Westminster Abbey on April 29, 2011, many eyes were on the bride’s younger sister—and Pippa, as the maid of honor, didn’t disappoint. Dressed in a slinky white dress by Sarah Burton at Alexander McQueen, Pippa held her sister’s train and chatted with Prince Harry during the televised ceremony.  Her beau, stockbroker and former cricketer Alex Loudon, sat beside her in the front row at the ceremony. The rave reviews of Pippa’s dress—and her figure—rivaled the enthusiasm for the bride's gown.

As the press continues to speculate about her personal life, Pippa’s star continues to rise. She had a front-row seat at many events at London Fashion Week in September 2011.

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