As royal Christmas card portraits go, it is rather staid compared to some of the more comical pictures of old.
Prince William and his brother, Prince Harry, once posed in giant ornamental garden pots with their father, Prince Charles.
But this year William, the second in line to the throne, and his wife, the Duchess of Cambridge, have plumped for a more formal – almost Victorian – pose for their annual offering this year.
The picture, released yesterday, shows the family against a plain white backdrop, as if in a studio setting, although the photographs were actually taken at Kensington Palace standing in front of a portable photographer’s backdrop.
This year William, the second in line to the throne, and his wife, the Duchess of Cambridge, have plumped for a more formal – almost Victorian – pose for their annual offering this year
William is in a lounge suit and blue tie, with his hands resting on his son’s shoulders.
Lively little George, has his left foot lifted, as if itching to get away, although he is also clasping his daddy’s finger.
The future king is wearing an Amaia Kids £44 Pereprine top, £15 Vaello belt and a pair of £39.95 Pisamonas moccasins, which he also wore his first day of school.
The prince has just completed his first term at Thomas’s, Battersea, where, his father recently revealed, he appeared as a sheep in the annual nativity play.
Little Princess Charlotte, bright as a button, looks almost mischievous in a blue dress by an unidentified designer and £29.95 Dona Carmen Bebes Mary Janes.
Her mother, Kate, is shown around the time she became pregnant with the couple’s third child, who is due in April.
The Duchess’s hair is longer than the choppier style she sports now and she is a wearing a baby blue suit by royal favourite Catherine Walker, which bears more than a passing to resemblance to similar ensembles worn by William’s late mother, Diana Princess of Wales.
Princess Diana and Prince Charles with Prince William and Harry as children
The picture was taken around the time of George’s fourth birthday in late July especially for their Christmas card.
It is part of a set taken by Getty Images’ royal photographer, Chris Jackson, who is handily married to Kate’s PA, Natasha Archer.
Mr Jackson said yesterday that he was ‘delighted’ the couple had used the picture, and is being tipped as favourite to take the official engagement portraits of Prince Harry and his fiancé, Meghan Markle.
Clarence House also revealed yesterday the card sent out this year by Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall.
Although it is also a formal shot of the couple, the picture is considerably warmer and more relaxed.
It was captured by society photographer Hugo Burnand, who also took the couple’s wedding pictures, at a private party to celebrate Camilla’s 70th back in July.
Thrown by her husband at Highgrove, his country estate in Gloucestershire, Charles looks tanned and happy in a dinner jacket while his wife is elegant in an evening dress with a deep neckline and what appears to be a stunning diamond flower choker around her neck.
The Prince of Wales with his sons William and Harry in a picture taken on the moors at Balmoral in 1996
A Christmas card sent by Prince Charles of himself with his two young sons, Prince William and Prince Harry