If anyone’s wardrobe is worth emulating for a masterclass in polished, seasonal style, it has to be Kate Middleton’s. Always immaculately presented (even in jeans), the Princess of Wales has set the standard for modern royal dressing, and a look back through her outfit history shows a track record of well-curated, sophisticated looks that are surprisingly easy to replicate.
Far from the traditional twinset and pearls, Princess Kate’s style has been on our radar for a while, and not least because of her passion for championing British brands and her penchant for affordable high-street moments. Thanks to her, we’ve discovered new brands, swapped skinnies for puddle pants, and gotten tips on how to style a plain white vest—not bad for an unlikely street style hero.
And while we wait with bated breath to see what look she does next, now is as good a time as any to take tips from her wardrobe in a bid to refresh our own for the season ahead. Looking back at Kate Middleton’s autumn outfits past and present has highlighted some of the key pieces that she wears time and time again, and I’m happy to say that they’re all easily shoppable now. So if your wardrobe could do with a little royal makeover, keep scrolling for the only eight pieces you’ll need to master Kate Middleton’s easy, elegant style.
Style Notes: A staple in both French women’s wardrobes and royal circles alike, the tweed blazer has become the definition of casual-chic, and this vintage Chanel jacket has convinced us that tweed can be stylish as opposed to stuffy.
You can’t beat Balmain for a French take on classic tweed with a contemporary edge.
The easiest “smart” jacket to pair with a white T-shirt, jeans and heels.
The shape and silhouette make this blazer feel far more expensive than its high-street price tag.
There’s no need to spend four figures when Oasis jackets look this good.
Style Notes: If you don’t see Kate in a dress coat, it’s likely she’ll still be wearing a dress, and the perfect answer to chilly autumnal weather is a knit iteration–a cosy, comfortable seasonal must-have that’s as easily dressed up as it is dressed down.
Add suede knee-high boots for the office or trainers and a biker jacket for the weekend. Either way you wear it, you’ll be glad you chose this flattering ribbed knit.
From the split to the flared cuffs, this dress proves you can wear knits for evening, too.
Knit dresses can be just as comfy as slouchy, oversized jumpers.
Style Notes: We’ve seen plenty of coat trends already this year, but one timeless silhouette that works year after year is a sweeping maxi coat. Whether a lightweight trench or a substantial wool coat, a calf-skimming hem always manages to feel a little bit dressier no matter what you’re wearing underneath.
Take inspiration from the Princess’s sky-blue coat, and try introducing some pastels into your winter wardrobe.
A reliable wool coat that you’ll get years of wear from.
My favourite thing about this coat is the dramatic length, but the belted waist detail comes in close second.
Looking for a printed coat? This grey check is one I suspect the Princess would approve of.
Style Notes: There are only a handful of ways to make a suit feel fresh, but one of the most impactful is head-to-toe colour blocking. This white suit was a fresh change from the browns and greys we would expect to see from a formal appointment and served as reminder that unexpected colourways can work for just about every event in your social calendar.
The ultimate elegant dinner outfit. (Just beware of the red wine.)
This season is all about vibrant red, and what better way to wear the trend than a commanding, confident suit?
I’m struggling to think of who this underrated shade of purple won’t suit.
It has been well documented that Kate wears a lot of forest green. If it’s good enough for a royal…
Style Notes: It’s no surprise that the Princess knows good tailoring, and her trouser of choice is a reliable, pleated wide-leg style. There isn’t an aesthetic, shape or size that the wide-leg won’t suit, so if there isn’t already a pair in your closet, consider this your sign to invest.
Reformation has so much more than buzzy summer dresses. There’s plenty of sharp tailoring, too.
Guaranteed to go with every colour in this season’s palette.
Vince has mastered loose, luxe tailoring and should be one of your first choices when looking for refined separates.
H&M’s wide-leg trousers come approved by Who What Wear’s affiliate editor Emily Dawes, so you know they’re good.
Style Notes: Kate’s casual side is always one of the most fascinating to see. Her low-key looks always manage to be quintessentially British (incorporating plenty of Barbour jackets and Chelsea boots), but the most accessible thing in her wardrobe is the turtleneck jumper. While she often pairs a fine knit with a matching skirt for dressier events, we love the chunky, fluffy knits that she’s often spotted in while out and about.
It doesn’t get more versatile than a slouchy, cream turtleneck.
I can think of so many ways to wear this knit, but my favourite is with a leather miniskirt and tall boots.
First it was the eye-catching colour. Then it was the incredible fit. Either way, this feels like a sound investment.
Style Notes: Finally, a royal look we can all get behind! We can all identify with the easy weekend uniform of a jumper, leggings and flats, and apparently so does Kate (albeit with a slightly more fitted belted jacket).
We were excited to hear about Hailey Bieber’s hotly anticipated clothing collaboration, and the star of the show is this trouser/legging hybrid.
That’s right: completely seamless leggings for an even smoother fit. (They come in black, too).
Heist specialises in formfitting clothing, so you can trust that these high-waisted leggings will sculpt and shape in all the right places.
Style Notes: We simply couldn’t discuss Kate’s wardrobe heroes without mentioning a court shoe. There are more suede, leather and patent court shoes on the market than ever, so to separate the stylish from the samey, look for quirky details that make the classic feel a little more modern.
Chances are if you’re looking for a designer court shoe, your first stop is Louboutin. The Hot Chick pumps are the latest iteration of the classic style and come in a range of colours and heel heights, but all with the subtly scalloped edge.
I’ve never seen a Gucci shoe that I didn’t like, present company included.
On-trend Mary Janes from one of the Princess’s favourite British brands, LK Bennett.
When Narcisco Rodriguez’s collection for Zara dropped a few months ago, it flew a little bit under the radar. That means you may have missed out on seeing some of the incredibly chic accessories that accompanied the collection, including these “could be designer” heels for under £150.
Next up: Katie Holmes’s Dress-and-Boots Combo Is First on My List to Copy This Autumn