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Favorite 2019 Separates Poll & A Fashion Flashback

Hello-Hello, and happy almost-weekend. (Although these days, that word summons a vision of Maggie Smith’s character in Downton Abbey asking, “What is a weekend?” because the days do run together sometimes!) 

We are back with a very quick post focused on Kate’s ensembles that featured trousers instead of dresses. There were several requests to include these in a poll, so here we go.  We begin with a March visit to the Henry Fawcett Children’s Centre.

The Duchess wore a Gucci blouse made of a silk satin georgette in a color called ‘pale violet orchid.’ Some may remember that the blouse was shown online as buttoning in the back, but Kate styled it with the buttons in the front.  She paired the vibrant top with navy wide-leg trousers by Jigsaw that we first saw her wear for a visit to Cyprus in December 2018.  Accessories included her Aspinal Midi Mayfair bag and Gianvito Rossi Piper 85 Suede Pumps ($695), and earrings we’d not seen for quite some time, her Links of London Hope Egg pair.

The Duchess sported separates with a nautical flair for a May announcement about the King’s Cup Regatta.  

The Duchess wore a sweater believed by many to be by ARKET, one of H&M’s brands, done with a traditional Breton stripe. Her trousers were by  LK Bennett, the brand’s ‘Parker’ style, with a high waist, wide leg, and distinctive buttons.  The Duchess carried a bright red clutch that looked like the Emmy style seen when Kate visited the V & A  in June 2017. Her heels appeared to be a new pair, the Josie by Emmy London ($510). 

For the unveiling of her Back to Nature Garden at the annual Chelsea Flower Show, the Duchess sported casual separates.

The Duchess was in a pair of culottes by Massimo Dutti, one of the brands owned by Zara parent company Inditex. They were a viscose/linen blend with wide legs, button front, belt loops, front and back pockets.  On top, she wore the Mabel Shirt (£255) by MiH Jeans, a broderie anglaise piece in 100% cotton featuring scallop trim on the neck and puffed sleeves.  Kate wore her Superga Cotu Classic Sneakers ($39 with promo code SNEAKERS) and her Monica Vinader Siren earrings ($175) in 18K gold-plated vermeil atop sterling silver.

We saw the Duchess in polka dots for a September visit to Sunshine House.  

She wore a top by Equipment, the label’s Slim Signature Silk Shirt ($280). The piece is slightly fitted and features a button front, double chest pockets, and a box pleat on the center back.  The Duchess wore another pair of culottes, as they were labeled on the Zara UK site (£29.99); on the US site, the item name was High Waisted Pants ($49.90). Made of polyester, the style has a wide leg and an invisible side zipper.  Her shoes were her Gianvito Rossi Piper 85 Pumps ($695), and she repeated her Simple Filigree Short Drop Earrings (£5) by British retailer Accessorize

For an October engagement at the Natural History Museum, Kate sported another pair of wide-leg trousers.

The Duchess was in a pair of culottes by Jigsaw with a relaxed, wide-leg silhouette. Called the Relaxed Gathered Waist Culotte (£89, no longer available), the polyester style had slanted on-seam side pockets and a stitched front crease. On top, Kate wore the Warehouse Wave Pointelle Jumper ($69 no longer available).  She accessorized with her Chanel handbag and also brought back her Fringed Leather Pumps by Tod’s. She wore her Asprey Oak Leaves earrings as well.

It was a mix of new and old pieces at a November celebration for Shout Crisis volunteers.

The Duchess brought back her Smythe 2-Button Blazer ($795, no longer available), a single-breasted style in a Prince of Wales check that was made from a wool/linen/nylon blend. Kate wore a pair of trousers by Joseph, the Zoom style ($515 originally, no longer available), a mid-rise design with a slim fit, side-seam pockets, back welt pocket, front zipper, and belt loops. Ankle-length in design, the trousers are lined in 100% cotton. Kate repeated her Gianvito Rossi ‘Piper’ suede pumps.

And wore her Mappin and Webb Empress earrings and pendant. (There is a substantial discount for these pieces detailed on the Retail Roundup page.)



I have just one Fashion Flashback to share today, but I think it’s a good one. 

Six years ago today, the Duke and Duchess, styled as the Earl and Countess of Strathearn when in Scotland, had several engagements in that country.  They started the day with a visit to the Strathearn Community Campus, an area with a variety of leisure and sports facilities.

The duo visited MacRosty Park, unveiling a Fields in Trust plaque, declaring the Park’s status as a protected green space.

They visited the Famous Grouse, Scotland’s oldest distillery.

They were given loads of gifts for Prince George. 

For the day’s engagements, the Duchess wore a coat by Scottish designer Jonathan Saunders. 

It was the Athena Wool Jacquard Coat (originally $2555) from the designer’s a/w 2013-2014 collection. A big part of the piece’s oomph comes from the fabric, a blend of 86% wool, 11% mohair, and 3% polyamide that showcased a gradient stripe. Below, a closer view that also shows how the buttons were matched to the different colors in the pattern.

Other design elements included a notched collar, single breast pocket, full-length sleeves, flap front pockets, and a single vent at the back.

Mr. Saunders closed his label in 2015 and joined DVF as creative director in May 2016 but left that position after eighteen months. He has stepped away from fashion and launched a new endeavor called Saunders Studio; a contemporary furniture line is in the works. 

Beneath the coat, it’s believed the Duchess wore the ”Scarlett pleat front dress”‘ in ‘geranium, by Goat Fashion. From the spring 2014 collection, the Italian wool-crepe dress featured a round neck, half sleeves, an optional belt, diagonal pleats/darts at the front waist area, a hidden back zipper and back slit.Photos via

NOTE: I made an error in the original version of this post, saying the Duchess wore Goat’s Thea dress in ‘geranium,‘ but that is not the conclusion we came to back in 2014 when the Duchess was seen in the dress again at a July engagement.   

Kate accessorized with her Sledge heels ($295) and Avona clutch, both pieces by LK Bennett

She wore a Celtic brooch that was said to be a wedding gift and her Kiki McDonough Citrine Drop Earrings (£458). 

I was fond of the coat, liking its distinctive pattern and silhouette, but I don’t recall it being a great favorite for many. 

With all that is going on, I am sending special hopes that everyone can stay safe and healthy this weekend. To brighten things up, here is a quick video of Dame Maggie Smith’s classic question weekend question from Downton Abbey.  


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Sunday 31st of May 2020

I must go with the Smythe blazer look because I referenced it here on the blog when looking for inspiration for an interview look. Many thanks to the Duchess and WhatKateWore—I got the job! ?


Sunday 31st of May 2020

Oh, good on you, Meredith! Congratulations!


Sunday 31st of May 2020

My vote goes to the oxblood and olive combination. Love the look, and the Chanel bag and Tod's shoes pair together so well with the clothes as a backdrop. So many interesting details.


Sunday 31st of May 2020

I am not enamored with any of the trouser choices but I went for the Jigsaw ones because at least they weren't cropped or culottes, both of which I truly dislike. I voted based on the trousers, not on the tops, btw.

A huge thank you for your steady supply of distractions, Susan. I haven't been able to write much but have truly appreciated them. With things loosening up here and the kids back at school - albeit with reduced hours - I can enjoy the posts even more now!


Sunday 31st of May 2020

I voted for the Warehouse Jumper/Jigsaw Culottes ensemble. I think cropped culottes are tricky, but something about this outfit just worked for me - the color combination, the shoes, and the graceful way the culottes flowed.


Saturday 30th of May 2020

I am struck by the platform heels in the outfits from the early 20-teens. So glad she has retired them. The revival of the platform shoe from the 70's should have never happened!

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