The world's most famous in-laws, the Middletons, are under fire again in the press, this time for launching new royal-baby-themed party favors from their company, Party Pieces. The new products could be viewed as cashing in on the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge's upcoming little prince or princess (or both!).
The Daily News led with an article titled "Now Middeltons cash in on Kate's Pregnancy." The Celebrity Dirty Laundry blog followed with "Kate Middleton's parents cash in on royal baby," and Pakistani Today published "Middeltons 'Little Prince' cash in?" Even ABC news asked "Are Kate Middleton's parents profiting off the royal pregnancy?"
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This isn't the first time the Middletons have received flak for releasing royal-themed party favors, according to the Daily Mail. "Earlier this year, [Party Pieces] offered paraphernalia themed around the Royal Wedding and the Queen's Diamond Jubilee. Its street party items included state carriage-shaped cardboard teapot vases, coat of arms cups printed with 'Long Live G&T' and canape flags featuring crown-wearing corgis."
The current new items in question are "Little Prince/Princess plates" and a "1st Princess Castle Fun Party Pack" which includes castle-themed plates, cups, napkins, decorations and loot bags. Potential buyers are instructed to "Create a magical castle for your little princess and her guests to celebrate her first birthday in style."
In defense of the royal in-laws, the Prince/Princess lines themselves are not new, just bulked up a bit, potentially to meet increased demands.
Party Pieces was launched by Carole Middleton in 1987. Since then, it has become the family business, turning the Middletons into self-made millionaires. Both Duchess Catherine and her sister Pippa have worked for the company, which makes party favors and paper goods for every sort of celebration.
It's unlikely Kate will be celebrating with a baby shower, which is an American tradition. Instead she may opt for the British custom of a Blessingway, according to pregnancy website The Bump, where "friends and family gather to spend time with the expectant mom and wish her well without gifts."
Regardless of what you think of the Middletons for making party favors that might profit from royal-baby mania, there's no doubt that grandparents everywhere consider their first-born grandchild true royalty.
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