Hush-hush! Duchess Meghan and Prince Harry, who are expecting their first child together, were still keeping their baby news under wraps when Prince Charles’ 70th birthday portraits were taken, a source tells Us Weekly exclusively.
According to the insider, the couple had not told anyone they had a little one on the way when the family photos were taken in mid-September in the gardens of Clarence House. The royal brood even spent quality time together at Charles and Duchess Camilla’s home that afternoon after the picture session was complete.
In the two photos released on Tuesday, November 13, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex stand together behind a bench, where other members of the family are seated. Meghan, 37, wears a slim-fitting, black-and-white sheath dress, with no signs of a visible baby bump. Harry, 34, and the Suits alum formally announced the pregnancy on October 15, though Kensington Palace said in a statement at the time that the royal family congratulated the pair at Princess Eugenie’s wedding on October 12.
Prince William and Duchess Kate’s three children — Prince George, 5, Princess Charlotte, 3, and Prince Louis, 6 months — stole the show in the portraits. The source tells Us that photographer Chris Jackson was able to get such great shots thanks to Nanny Maria, who was standing to the side of the photographer making silly faces and waving to get their attention. The royal eyewitness tells Us that everyone burst into laughter at one point, making for a more relaxed photo.
The session was quick at only 15 minutes. The insider notes that with the children there, “everyone had to work fast.” In particular, Louis was “so well behaved. … He is the most adorable, placid little boy you will ever meet!”
According to the source, it was first suggested that Charles take the portraits with only his grandchildren, but the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, both 36, believed it would be best if everyone was together for the momentous occasion. George and Charlotte were all smiles in the pictures as they sat on their grandfather’s lap and cuddled up to Camilla, 71, respectively. Meanwhile, Louis grinned big as his mother held him.
The Prince of Wales selected Jackson as photographer because he is trusted by everyone, according to the royal source. Furthermore, the insider says, “He has an eye for those wonderful candid moments that make pictures like this so special.”
The royal family fêted Charles with a swanky party at Buckingham Palace on Wednesday, November 14. “Over his 70 years, [Prince] Philip and I have seen Charles become a champion of conservation and the arts, a great charitable leader — a dedicated and respected heir to the throne to stand comparison with any in history — and a wonderful father,” Queen Elizabeth II said in a toast to her son. “Most of all, sustained by his wife Camilla, he is his own man, passionate and creative.”