The Duchess Way: How to Dress Like Kate Middleton

| By: Mae Johnson

The Duchess Way: How to Dress Like Kate Middleton
In our fantasy-filled world, we were once princesses sashaying at royal parties in our magnificent ball gowns. This explains why, no matter our age, we never truly outgrow our fascination with royals. Of all the real-life royalties of our times, the Duchess of Cambridge Kate Middleton is, undeniably, the darling of the crowd---and for good reason.   Along with her husband, Prince William, Middleton represents the modern era of British royalty---fresh, elegant and poised. For the fashion-obsessed public, she epitomizes couture sophistication but occasionally surprises with high-street fashion, which gives us "commoners" hope that dressing like a duchess on a budget is possible.   Taking style notes from the Duchess herself, here are ways to dress like Kate Middleton.  

1. When in doubt, wear white.

If there’s one thing evident, the Duchess has a soft spot for white. It’s almost expected that she would favor a clean aesthetic while performing her royal duties, especially since nothing says upper-class sophistication than a polished, tailored white dress. At a special ceremony to mark the centenary of the Battle of Passchendale in Belgium, the Duchess wore a white coat dress by Alexander McQueen, which she paired with a stunning fascinator, of course!  

2. Recycle old favorites.

Wait, what? The Duchess recycles? As a matter of fact, she does---and she does it with flair. Five years after she was first spotted in a sequined Jenny Packham gown, Middleton took this old favorite out of the closet to wear at a charity gala dinner at Houghton Hall. The Duchess is a master at recycling, tweaking her accessories and hair to give old dresses a fresh look.  

3. Keep it subtle with a pair of classic pumps.

The hardest part about dressing up is having the eye to edit out the unnecessary pieces. As for Middleton, she likes to have a focal point, so she keeps everything else subtle. For instance, in order not to take anything away from the stunning blue dress she was seen wearing at the spectacular Royal International Air Tattoo, she opted a classic pair of pumps while aboard a helicopter with the adorable Prince George.  

4. You can never go wrong with pearls.

Sure, one may dazzle with diamonds, but pearls bear the Duchess’ signature style of ladylike perfection. A fitting ending to a gorgeous white dress, Middleton finished off her look for the Queen’s birthday party with a cascading pearl necklace and matching oversized pearl earrings.  

5. Always end with the right purse.

A style statement is never complete without an exclamation point, or in this case, the right purse. To dress like Kate Middleton means picking out the perfect clutch, like this metallic gold that stands out against her forest green Temperly London gown.  

6. Channel Parisian style.

Nothing says haute couture than Chanel. While attending a dinner at the British Embassy in Paris, the Duchess wore Chanel like a true Parisian, looking every inch elegant in a knee-length Chanel coatdress cinched at the waist with a black Chanel belt. So magnifique, no?  

7. Dress to fit the terrain.

Nothing could be worse than feeling like you didn't dress for the occasion. The Duchess certainly knows when to swap her pumps with boots in this royal tour of the Tiger's Nest Monastery in Bhutan. Here, she wore a Jaeger linen, Really Wild waist coat and Penelope Chilvers long tassel boots.  

8. Dress down but never slouchy.

To dress like Kate Middleton means you always care about looking your best, so even casual weekends require a certain level of sophistication. When it was time to dress down, the Duchess paired high-end investment pieces like Smythe navy blazer and Monsoon Fleur espadrilles with affordable fashion like ankle-length pants by Gap and white top by H&M.   Which of Middleton's fashion moments do you love the most? What style notes have you learned from trying to dress like Kate Middleton?    

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