In honor of the Oscars red carpet, I give you my top 10 favorite Kate looks since her marriage:
Roland Mouret dress & Smythe blazer
She looks like Business Barbie in a good way. This is Kate about to board a plan to leave the UK for Canada for her first overseas tour as the Duchess of Cambridge and I loved that she essentially dressed like was going on a business trip. Kate has recycled this Smythe blazer many times since and each time I’ve been a fan. We haven’t seen the dress recycled in public, but I hope we do someday. It’s polished, young and there’s nothing quite like the structure of a Roland Mouret piece.
Alexander McQueen dress
This was Kate’s first public appearance after announcing her pregnancy with Prince George and so she gets some bonus points just for the sheer fact that she reappeared from suffering acute HG looking like this. But I also genuinely love the dress, though we didn’t get a great look at it. The dark green is gorgeous on Kate and, God knows, she has the legs the pull off a high slit.
Diane von Furstenberg dress
Kate has loved a good DVF wrap dress since her single days, but this is one of my favorites. I love blue and white, so that may be part of why this one appeals to me, but Kate also looked glowing, relaxed and happy when she debuted this during the 2014 Oz/NZ tour. Could do without the wedges, but I’m also not the one teetering about in heels all day so I’ll not judge.
Gap pants and Smythe blazer
Here is one example of Kate recycling the Smythe blazer she debuted in look #10, but this time with a pair of printed Gap pants for a day trip to Cornwall with William. I love this look, though it got some mixed reviews at the time from some complaining that the pants were too tight for an official engagement. Frankly, I disagree and I think she looked great. Kate rarely wears pants publicly and when she does it’s usually J Brand skinny jeans or athletic wear depending on the task at hand. It was nice to see her mix it up with a casual, but still polished, look.
Temperley London dress
Take a moment and consider how unforgiving those ruffles would be. Kate looks great in this dress and considering there are, in fact, three tiers of ruffles, it’s slightly shocking this look doesn’t come across as too girly or fussy. I would go so far as to say it looks downright sleek. Kate wore it to Wimbledon a few weeks after her wedding.
Reiss dress and Joseph blazer
I distinctly remember seeing this photo in some magazine and thinking how fun it would be to see Kate Middleton shopping with a princess’s budget. This outfit is such an intersection of her single style with the trends she picked up as Duchess.
Jenny Packham dress
Kate debuted this dress in the autumn of 2015 shortly after the Palace announced she was pregnant with Princess Charlotte. Due to yet another round of HG she had had to cancel a mini-tour of Malta and there’s a theory that a couple of the looks she wore that fall were originally slotted for the trip. I don’t disagree and this dress would have looked fantastic with Malta as the backdrop. As it is, I loved what a departure this dress was for Kate and she nailed it. And if the dress itself wasn’t enough of a knockout, the fact that she paired it with those shoes was surprising, in a good way. It’s all fantastic.
Kate looks amazing in Issa and purple, so no surprises here. This image actually makes me nostalgic for the days of Kate’s suntan, but she seems to have retired her eternally sun-kissed look since having kids.
Barbara Casasola dress
Like the Jenny Packham dress above, part of what I love about this look is how surprising it is. I don’t think anyone would have seen this and thought “Kate.” But she looks amazing in it and it was by far my favorite ensemble of hers from 2016, which, all told, had some real boring moments. The off-the-shoulder, the draping, the flounce of the skirt – I’m in love.
Roland Mouret dress and Prada shoes
It’s the shoes that make this look for me, because it’s almost like the mullet of dresses. Structured and conservative up top, high slit and sparkling, strapping high heels below. And that’s not a criticism of the dress, which I obviously adore. This was a slow burn for me – at first, I just thought it was a generically pretty dress, but over time it has slowly become my favorite of Kate’s looks. It’s the one I wish I owned myself, but a big part of that is the heels. When she recycled this gown a few years later she wore her hair up in a ponytail, added a necklace and wore different shoes – no, she got it right the first time. A Roland Mouret is all about the cut and everything else can be kept simple, in my opinion.