Prince Harry and Meghan Markle and Prince William and Kate Middleton’s Christmas Cards Include Subtle Clues About Their Relationships

Now that everyone’s seen Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s Christmas card and Prince William and Kate Middleton’s holiday card, one royal expert is weighing in on how they compare. Check out some of the subtle differences between the couples’ cards.

prince william kate middleton meghan markle prince harry christmas cards
Prince William, Kate Middleton, Meghan Markle, and Prince Harry | Stephen Pond/Getty Images

How the Sussexes and Cambridges differ in their card approach

The images that each couple used for their Christmas cards were quite different — at a quick glance, it’s evident that the Sussexes went for black and white, while the Cambridges selected a full-color image.

Then there’s the pose — Prince William and Middleton did select a casual photo, as the family posed next to a motorcycle, while Prince Harry and Markle sat in front of a Christmas tree and their baby, Archie, crawled toward the camera. The Sussexes’ shot was definitely more candid and an image that many would put in the outtakes pile rather than releasing it to the world.

Their body language is revealing

On the surface, the photos each couple used for their cards showed happy family moments, but body language expert Judi James believes the two cards show how different the two couples are, in very subtle ways.

James told the Mirror Online how Middleton and Prince William’s card was “traditional” while Prince Harry and Markle’s Christmas photo looked like it would “pop up in the pages of a glossy, high-class magazine.”

She explained: “With the Christmas tree in the background and with Harry and Meghan wearing cozy-looking casuals, their Christmas card shot did possibly start by having a more traditional slant. But by opting for a very non-festive monochrome with stylish logo and by selecting what must have been a spontaneous moment as little Archie broke from the pose to crawl straight into the camera, the Sussex’s card has become cool and rather Vogue-mag in style, as the two loving and obviously doting parents watch their son move in for his first close-up.”

James continued: “The pose shows the tight affection between Harry and his wife as they sit on the floor in mirrored poses, and the way their eyes are on their son rather than looking straight into camera makes them still appear rather lost in their own trio of love here.”

The royal expert enjoyed the contrast from the emotional interviews the Sussexes gave in their documentary, noting: “It’s good to see them sharing their fun side here after their rather emotional documentary, with a cute, humorous pose, but, like their iconic monochrome wedding photo with the fireworks, this is very much us watching them during a happy moment rather than them looking to camera to address us directly.”

Prince William and Middleton opted for a traditional vibe

Prince William and Middleton, according to James, went more “retro” with their card photo, noting: “William and Kate’s photo possibly started out as a bit of a cool idea too with the Steve McQueen style pose on the retro motorcycle.”

She continued: “But with the whole family grouped as a team it has become emphatically traditional in many ways, from the slightly bleached, ’50’s style coloring to the way William is sitting in a relaxed macho splay, while Kate stands more awkwardly beside him in a pretty but also rather retro floral dress.”

James then compared the poses of each couple and the subtle clues that point to their very different relationships. She shared: “In the Sussex’s pose Harry and Meghan sit like equals but in William’s card he is presented as very much the center of the family while Kate stands indulgently beside him.”

She noted: “It’s easy to see how this more traditional ‘line-up-with-eyes-to-camera’ shot would have found its way onto the Queen’s desk while Harry and Meghan’s adorably modern pose would be more likely to pop up in the pages of a glossy, high-class magazine.”