How to Dress Like Kate Middleton

{By Brittany Sadler}

Besides being a princess (I know that’s not technically true, but seriously, how much more princess-ly do you have to be?) Kate Middleton is also my favorite modern fashion icon. Her effortless elegance, and ladylike modesty have been setting trends ever since she stepped on the royal stage. The bad news: there’s only one British prince left, so fewer chances for the rest of us. The good news: her styles are not only gorgeous, they’re very flattering on lots of body types.

So here’s how to dress like a princess:

1. Go monochrome

Pulling off head to toe color may seem intimidating. But the one-color look is remarkably easy to put together. Make sure the colors match and think about adding a few tasteful accessories but keep your shoes simple so they fade into the background. Choose a deep or brilliant color for a stunning and lengthening look.

2. Cover up to stand out

Skin doesn’t have to be showing to look drop dead gorgeous! Kate has mastered wearing a simple silhouette in a bold design or color for a dramatic and alluring style.  The key is that the dress has to fit you perfectly in order for the look to be sleek and striking rather than boring.

3. Be pretty

Embrace feminity. Don’t be afraid of pastels and delicate fabrics. Kate manages to wear pretty clothes and yet never come across as fussy or overdone.  This is due to her excellent sense of proportion and her killer accessorizing.  Try belts for some polish over your prettiness.

4. V-necklines

An open v-neckline looks good on pretty much everyone. Personal taste and body type can determine how open you choose to go, but v-necklines in general lengthen your torso and draw attention to your neck and face. Kate obviously knows this, since even her beautiful wedding dress had a v-neckline.

5. Flatter your figure

Every figure can be flattered. And although Kate doesn’t really seem to have a lot of worries in that area, we can all learn from how she chooses her clothes. Dresses made of material that drapes and is ruched at the waistline with a gently flowing  knee length skirt are almost universally flattering. Know what your best features are and accentuate them.

6. Be British

Of course it always helps to actually be British, but for us Americans, we can definitely take a page from the British book of fashion. Tweed, plaids, riding boots! All so classy and look good on everyone.

7. Keep it classy (and easy!)

A blazer and jeans is a great go-to outfit. It can be dressed up with a white blouse and a belt, or dressed down with a striped shirt and espadrilles. Perfect for a day out about town.

8. Play with contrast

Contrasting colors like black and white or navy and white always look classy.  It’s hard to go wrong. Kate takes it in a military direction, or layers a black blazer over a white dress, both pretty and sharp.

9. Top it off beautifully

That one extra little touch can make the biggest difference! Never forget that your coat is part of your outfit, and in the winter, it’s sometimes the most visible part. Whether you favor a preppy peacoat, elegant car coat, gorgeous trench or sweet swing coat, make sure you invest in a great coat to keep you warm and looking great. Another great accessory that is much more popular in England than the US is of course, the hat. A longtime staple of a woman’s wardrobe, it has gone out of fashion in the past couple decades. However, if you really want to make a statement, top off your fit for a princess attire with a royal hat!

Don’t know where to look for perfectly polished pieces that don’t break the bank? Shop outlets and online sales at Ann Taylor (great for dresses) Ann Taylor Loft (nice blazers and skirts) , Banana Republic (coats, suits) , White House Black Market. Don’t have time to find outlets or sales? Target can have good basics, Kohls sometimes has a few nice things as do Forever 21 and H&M occasionally (beware though.. often you get what you pay for, so try to find pieces that are well-made and won’t fall apart in one wash!)