Kate Middleton effect

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Kate Middleton wearing a Reiss dress[1] during Canada Day celebrations on July 1, 2011.

The Kate Middleton effect[2] (also the Kate effect, the Duchess of Cambridge effect or the Duchess effect)[3][4] is the trend[5] effect that Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, is reported to have had on others, for example in sales of coral-coloured jeans.[6] Although Middleton was in the public eye for many years as the girlfriend of Prince William, the effect began after the announcement of the couple's engagement in November 2010, which spawned a media frenzy.

According to Newsweek, "The Kate Effect may be worth £1 billion to the UK fashion industry," while Tony DiMasso, L. K. Bennett’s US president, stated in 2012, "when she does wear something, it always seems to go on a waiting list".[7]

Her wedding dress was put on display at Buckingham Palace in the summer of 2011, the display helped to raise approximately £8million for the Royal Collection, as well as the charitable fund of the Duke and Duchess, and was reported to have drawn a record number of visitors.[8][9] This charitable contribution was enhanced in 2012 when the Duchess gave her first public speech for her patronage, EACH (East Anglia's Children's Hospices), and was seen wearing one of their charity bracelets, the bracelet then went on to sell out rapidly, although the number of available units beforehand was not known.[10]

In August 2013, the Kate effect was purportedly felt by the maternity brand Seraphine maternity when the Duchess wore one of the brand's dresses in their first official portraits with Prince George reportedly increasing turnover by 50%.[11]

However, the Kate Effect may be exaggerated because of her penchant "for wearing styles that have long sold out" and that "habit of choosing last season's designs meant that those wishing to emulate her look had already missed out." Roland Mouret, a designer who has worked with Kate, was reported to say that business was more likely to be boosted by US reality television stars. The CEO of Whistles agreed, remarking: "We do short runs. By the time you see pictures of Kate, we've probably sold out anyway." The CEO also described the Duchess as "a great advert, but no more than that".[12]


  1. ^ IBTimes Staff Reporter (July 1, 2011). "Stunning Kate Middleton celebrates Canada Day in Reiss dress". International Business Times. Retrieved September 18, 2012. 
  2. ^ "A Year Later, the Kate Middleton Effect Is Still Going Strong". Newsfeed.time.com. 2012-04-27. Retrieved 2012-05-07. 
  3. ^ Thomas-Bailey, Carlene; Zoe Wood (30 March 2012). "How the 'Duchess of Cambridge effect' is helping British fashion in US". The Guardian. Retrieved 3 May 2012. 
  4. ^ Deborah Arthurs (2011-12-28). "Kate Middleton's Midas touch strikes again as 'Duchess effect' helps Reiss double its profits". Daily Mail. Retrieved 2012-05-07. 
  5. ^ Smith, Sean (24 May 2011). Kate: A Biography of Kate Middleton. Simon and Schuster. p. 142. ISBN 978-1-4516-6156-9. 
  6. ^ Rawi, Maysa (16 March 2012). "The Kate effect strikes again: Sales of coral-coloured jeans soar after Duchess wore pair to play hockey". Mail Online. Retrieved 3 May 2012. 
  7. ^ Hirschmiller, Stephanie (2 May 2012). "'You're meant to be a princessy type of person, so act like 'one!': Shoe designer Nicholas Kirkwood slams The Duchess of Cambridge's taste in shoes". Mail Online. Retrieved 3 May 2012. 
  8. ^ Christopher Wilson (2011-09-09). "A tale of two dresses: Kate's wedding gown raises £8m on display at Buckingham Palace while Diana's outfit is carted around the globe". Mail Online. Dailymail.co.uk. Retrieved 2013-03-31. 
  9. ^ "Kate Middleton's Wedding Dress Could Attract More Visitors to Buckingham Palace in a Single Summer Than Ever Before - The Cut". Nymag.com. 2011-04-30. Retrieved 2013-03-31. 
  10. ^ Victoria Murphy (2012-07-23). "Kate Middleton: Kate Effect strikes again as £10 charity bracelets sell out after Duchess is pictured wearing one". Mirror Online. Mirror.co.uk. Retrieved 2013-03-31. 
  11. ^ The Kate effect could double maternity brand's turnover after dress Duchess wore in baby portrait sold out in 48 hours
  12. ^ Ward, Victoria (2013-01-07). "The 'Kate Effect' overstated due to Duchess's thriftiness". Telegraph. Retrieved 2013-03-31.