Kate Middleton officially became a member of the Royal Family in 2011—really, even before that— the Duchess of Cambridge’s style has had an undeniable influence on ours. She wears skinny jeans, we wear skinny jeans. She wears wedges, we wear wedges. It’s practically a fact: Whatever Middleton wears becomes a thing.
Given that my job is to know about trends before anyone else, I instantly perked up when I saw photo evidence of the future Queen wearing polka dots not once, not twice, but
three times already this summer. After all, knowing what I know about Middleton’s influence, anything she wears on three occasions will undoubtedly become a top trend of the season before long. But it wasn’t until I noticed just how similar her polka-dot looks were to outfits worn by fashion’s other favorite royal Princess Diana that I called it: Polka dots are about to go viral.
On Kate Middleton: Alessandra Rich dress; Finlay Henrietta Sunglasses ($225)
WHO: Princess Diana. Middleton first debuted the print at the Big Jubilee Lunch during the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee weekend in early June, choosing an electric-blue, polka dot dress by Alessandra Rich. Clearly a favorite of hers, she then wore it again just one month later at Wimbledon on Tuesday. When compared side-by-side, the midi-length dress, which features quarter-length sleeves, a pleated skirt, and a belted waist, appears to be an homage to a similar one worn by the Princess of Wales in 1989 during a trip to Kuwait. Princess Diana’s dress likewise featured a pleated skirt and white polka dots, though hers included a white collar and matching, oversize buttons. (It was the ’80s, after all.)
On Kate Middleton: Alessandra Rich dress; Sally-Ann Provan hat
WHO: Princess Diana. In between, the Duchess of Cambridge attended the 2022 Royal Ascot, where she wore an almost identical outfit to one worn by Princess Diana at the same event in 1988: a white polka-dot dress with pearl jewelry and, of course, a wide-brim hat. Middleton specifically chose an Alessandra Rich dress with chocolate-brown spots and a matching Sally-Ann Provan hat. Her late mother-in-law’s look only differed in that her ’80s-era look was black-and-white and paired with a gold watch. Given how much power the two women have over our sartorial choices, it’d be a mistake not to get a head start on what will assuredly become a major trend this summer. Keep scrolling to shop the royal-approved print.
This dress is pure class.
Bikini season is nowhere near over. Shop the matching Hipster Curved-Waist Cheeky Bikini Bottom ($40).
No one does polka dots quite like Réalisation.
So this is what love feels like.
It’s a need, not a want.
A going-out LBD, but make it royal-approved.
The perfect breezy dress for a hot day.
If you really want Kate Middleton’s look, you best go straight to the source.
This might just be the perfect bikini. Shop the matching Devin Polka-Dot Bikini Briefs ($90).
Casual and cool.
I’m not ready to give up on puff sleeves just yet.
Cottagecore is going strong.
This skirt is just begging to be worn.
Incredible doesn’t even begin to describe this dress.
The easy summer dress style everyone needs at least one of.
A simple wrap top always comes in handy.
The prettiest silhouette I’ve seen in a while.
An asymmetric hemline instantly elevates.
This shade of pink is trending right now.
Coming Up: Kate Middleton Just Wore the Gorgeous Color That’s Trending at Zara and Mango