Royal fans were sent into a frenzy on the morning of Friday, Dec. 14 when Kate Middleton and Prince William revealed their newest family Christmas card photo to the world. Seriously, the snapshot of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge posing with their three adorable children — Prince George, 5, Princess Charlotte, 3, and Prince Louis, 8 months — is too cute for words! But upon closer inspection, we realized the portrait actually shows something very unusual about little George’s outfit.

In the pic, George can be seen holding onto his dad’s shoulders as he balanced on one leg in a cute green sweater and a pair of black Hunter rain boots. But it’s George’s blue pants that made us take pause… because this is the first time we’ve seen the eldest Cambridge kid in trousers instead of shorts!

Prince George Princess Charlotte
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Before now, Kate and William have exclusively dressed their oldest son in shorts — but why? Aren’t George’s legs cold?! Etiquette Expert William Hanson actually once told Harper’s Bazaar that dressing young boys in shorts instead of pants is just “a very English thing” to do. “Trousers are for older boys and men, whereas shorts on young boys is one of those silent class markers that we have in England. It’s a very English thing to dress a young boy in shorts,” Hanson explained. “Although times are (slowly) changing, a pair of trousers on a young boy is considered quite middle class — quite suburban. And no self-respecting aristocrat or royal would want to be considered suburban. Even the Duchess of Cambridge.”

Hanson then suggested we could see George wearing shorts until he’s at least eight years old. “The usual custom is that a boy graduates to trousers around eight years old. This is, historically, perhaps due to the practice of ‘breeching,’ which dates back to the sixteenth century,” he said. Since George is only age five, we’re guessing the pants he’s wearing in the Cambridge family’s Christmas card photo may be due to cold weather. Who knows for sure, but maybe we’ll be seeing George donning cute trousers lots more from here on out!

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