At Buckingham Palace they didn’t know that 9, very cold, January 1982 it would have been special for the future of the English monarchy. While disagreements and bitterness rose between Charles and Diana a few months after their marriage, with Elizabeth beginning to tremble and the throne to shake, he was born, in fact, in Reading, Berkshire, Catherine Elizabeth Middleton who had already written his destiny in his name.
Once upon a time, therefore, a girl from a middle-class family, pretty, affable, with delicate features, long-limbed, mild. A country girl with big green eyes, raised on bread and Cinderella, who dreamed, like so many (all) of the prince charming in the most classic version: a good match with blond hair and blue eyes.
What did yes, that Catherine, this is Kate , the only one out of millions of peers, has been able to realize her dream, it is easy to say. Under that affable smile, those kind and respectful manners, that sometimes almost stinging composure, the girl hides a steely temperament, an uncommon determination and an extraordinary perseverance. The future Duchess of Cambridge has studied hard and long (and continues to do so) to become what she is today. William’s wife, future queen, loving mother of three children including the heir to the throne of the United Kingdom, approved with full marks by Her Majesty and every member of the royal family like Diana and Meghan have never been the most influential person of the Third Millennium on customs and fashion, adored by subjects and people all over the world.
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Kate Middleton has found the winning formula, the holy grail of royal power. Sort of a champion of style, feminine like Marie Antoinette and rigorous like Lady Oscar with the outfits always designed to perfection on her, institutional but modern at the same time, for decades she has been sporting clothes capable of generating instant obsession, from perennial Everyone Gen Z . The Kate effect on the wardrobeafter all, it is well known. What can we add to everything that has already been written about her and her looks and to the hundreds of pages that open up on the Internet when one goes to “Kate Middleton + fashion”?
The girl who won her prince’s heart twenty years ago by parading in a transparent, boldly sexy outfit (the “historic” mini dress worn at a charity show, in crinkled black and gold fabric, strapless and with bluette edges. Charlotte Todd), so little Kate Middleton royal edition, is today the coolest, most inspirational and radiographed forty year old in the world.
Wannabe Kate with all her wardrobe is the dream of many girls who send immediately sold out whatever garment you wear since the announcement of the engagement in 2010, when she flashed in a dress that would make her a future fashion star and that would give a sneak peek of his sense of style: regal, stately, and hip. Her deep blue silk jersey wrap dress, made by the British label Issa London, later renamed the ‘Kate dress’ in her honor, sent the company into a tailspin, failing to meet the demands for the garment, it has even closed its doors.
She, as skilful as any of the crowned heads, understood that dose the deluxe and designer outfits by Alexander McQueen (among others, the now iconic dress of her wedding in 2011 is among the most expensive ever, estimated at over 250 thousand pounds) or Jenny Packham (a brand she loved and chosen, among other things, for three postpartum looks) to low cost ones of Zara, Topshop or Gap for a few tens of euros would have guaranteed her a place of honor without expiration in the hearts of the most à la page subjects.
How not to love her if, then, we consider that she also holds the scepter of queen of recycling? There are countless times that Kate has shown the world her soul green in step with the times coming to show off even three or four times, for different occasions and years later, the same outfit (like the Alexander Mc Queen coat dress worn in poker from Charlotte’s baptism in 2015 to Harry and Meghan’s wedding in 2018 ).
Not only praise praise praise: to William’s wife no criticisms were spared on the outfits over time, from Jenny Packham’s dark green dress she wore at the Bafta in 2018 (when attendees all wore all-black looks in support of the Time’s Up movement) to the white lace McQueen dress she wore at Royal Ascot in 2017 she did point the finger at the most puritans for breaking strict dress codes because they are short and transparent.
In short, behind every Kate Middleton dress, coat and style choice there is a story, a meaning and a complex study. In honor of its first 40 years, in the gallery, we have chosen 40 representative ones which have been key points on the path that will lead her, one day, to wear the crown of a great dynasty. From the unreachable to those that we can also have us mere mortals in the closet to the pre-monarchy ones that we did not expect on her.
To dream of appropriating a small piece (also of fabric) of the existence that befell Catherine the great 4.0. To her, who among us certainly lives the most real of fairy tales, in any possible sense, best wishes for her first 40 years.
Other stories of Vanity Fair that may interest you:
– Kate’s coat dresses: why do the Duchess’ coats look like dresses?
– The great stories of royal clothes. Kate and Jenny Packham’s sequin royal debut
– Kate Middleton, there is no more fashion influencer than her