Pippa and James Middleton
Pippa Middleton and James Middleton on Centre Court at the Wimbledon Tennis Championships in London, July 9, 2015. Reuters/Stefan Wermuth

The engagement of Pippa Middleton and James Matthews is one of the most talked about of the year. As the sister of the Duchess of Cambridge, Pippa’s life has been made public, but her relationship with James has stayed a relatively private matter.

Pippa first made headlines in 2011, when Kate Middleton married Prince William at Westminster Abbey. She was the maid of honour and quickly rose to popularity when the public caught a look of her dressed in a figure-hugging white Alexander McQueen gown. She is now planning her own wedding, which is reportedly scheduled for May 2017.

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Born Philippa Middleton on Sept. 6, 1983, the now 33-year-old socialite graduated from the University of Edinburgh with a degree in English Literature. She put this degree to use when she released a nonfiction book, entitled “Celebrate,” in 2012. The book was about social etiquette and party organising, but it was widely ill-received.

She has also taken reporting jobs from US talk programme "Today." However, The Sun reported that she turned down an offer of EUR400,000 (AU$575,000) from US network NBC since she did not want to move to the United States.

Meanwhile, 41-year-old James went to school at Eton and is the older brother of former Made in Chelsea star Spencer Matthews. He proposed to Pippa in July after less than a year of dating. Pippa’s engagement ring, which has a 4 carat Asscher-cut diamond, is estimated to be worth EUR200,000 (AU$288,000).

James is the chief executive officer of Eden Rock Capital Management Group, which has a head office in London. And while James has made a name for himself, his parents were able to provide him a lavish childhood. They purchased the Eden Rock retreat at St. Barths in 1995, and it is now one of the top 100 hotels in the world.

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Together, Pippa and James like to frequent ski slopes and are often photographed in their gear. They even competed in the Birkebeiner ski race in Norway. The two also took part in the London to Brighton charity bike ride and the 47 mile Otillo swimrun.

It has not been confirmed, but a friend of Pippa told People Magazine that the wedding would be in May 2017. Designer Giles Deacon is also suspected as the man behind Pippa’s wedding dress, as he was photographed delivering a garment bag to the bride-to-be’s home.