Kate Middleton Just Tried Victoria Beckham's Go-To Outfit Formula

The Duchess of Cambridge's style is often considered a little bland for the fashion crowd (too many Breton tops, coatdresses, and beige patent pumps for the street style set's liking). Given that she's representing the royal family on an international stage, she needs to look polished and select classic items that'll photograph well and won't date after several months. It's no easy task to tick all these boxes while also pleasing the fashion crowd. Still, Middleton does balance this with making more fashion-forward choices, wearing unexpected London Fashion Week designers such as Simone Rocha and Barbara Casasola, experimenting with new silhouettes, and subtlety nodding to the latest trends.

Kate Middleton style: a green blazer and wide-leg trousers

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Today, the duchess has outdone even herself in the polished stakes. Having spent last night tiara-clad while hosting a diplomatic reception alongside her husband, Prince William, and other senior royals, we were in awe at how fresh she looked as she disembarked a plane in Cyprus mere hours later.

Kate Middleton style: a green blazer and wide-leg trousers

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True to form, Middleton's ensemble hit the mark, wearing a green wool blazer by Smythe and a pair of navy Burberry wide-leg trousers. We don't know about you, but we think this looks exactly like the sort of thing Victoria Beckham would wear. Finished off with a khaki suede clutch and matching courts from her favorite accessory hot spot, L.K.Bennett, the duchess's outfit is as chic as they come. However, this isn't the only gorgeous getup she's treated us to this week.

Kate Middleton style: tartan

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A few days ago, K.Mids proved her fashion prowess by wearing a beautiful tartan midi skirt by Emilia Wickstead with the key knit of the season—a classic cardigan by Brora. Walking through cascading fake snow in her red plaid, she looked like she was shooting the Cambridges' family holiday card.

Kate Middleton style: tartan

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Looking for more DoC action? Then scroll below to see 21 times Kate Middleton didn't wear what we expected—and looked like a total fashion pro.

Kate Middleton style: The Duchess of Cambridge wearing an off-the-shoulder red Alexander McQueen dress

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Style Notes: On the royal tour of Germany, Middleton opted for a more fashion-forward outfit for her evening look, wearing an off-the-shoulder red maxi gown by Alexander McQueen. She also swapped her nude court shoes for a pair of scalloped stilettos by Prada and wore a pair of Simone Rocha tassel earrings.

Kate Middleton style: The Duchess of Cambridge wearing a tweed Chanel dress

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Style Notes: The Duchess of Cambridge always masters diplomatic dressing, wearing looks that celebrate British fashion and designers of her host nation. A trip to Paris only meant one thing: head-to-toe Chanel. If we were princesses, we would wear this fitted Chanel bouclé dress with a waist belt complete with the double-C logo and a classic quilted Chanel bag at all times.

Kate Middleton style: The Duchess of Cambridge wearing a Gucci shift dress

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Style Notes: Even the Duchess of Cambridge wasn't able to avoid the Gucci effect, as on a visit to the V&A she wore a Jackie O–style fitted dress with red and navy stripe detailing and attractive gold buttons. She was never going to wear the brand's tee, but we love how she supported Alessandro Michele by turning to Gucci.

Kate Middleton style: The Duchess of Cambridge wearing a red Preen dress

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Style Notes: The Duchess of Cambridge loves this Preen by Thornton Bregazzi dress so much that she also owns it in black. And we can totally see why, as this is an elegant, classic evening dress that she can wear for years—if not decades. However, the asymmetrical neckline and pleated skirt also make it a firm fashion-editor fave.

Kate Middleton Style: The Duchess of Cambridge wearing a yellow Jenny Packham tea dress on the Canadian royal tour 2016

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Style Notes: One of our all-time favorite DoC looks came during the Canadian royal tour in 2016. This yellow Jenny Packham tea dress caused quite a scene when repeated gusts of wind created a series of "Marilyn moments." If that's not the sign of a fashion icon, we don't know what is.

Kate Middleton style: The Duchess of Cambridge wearing a lilac dress from Emilia Wickstead

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Style Notes: Lilac is a notoriously tricky color to pull off, but this bold move paid off for the duchess on her royal tour in Germany, where she wore this elegant sleeved dress by Emilia Wickstead. It's appropriate but not too safe.

Kate Middleton style: The Duchess of Cambridge wearing a blush-coloured Alexander McQueen dress at the wedding of her sister Pippa Middleton

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Style Notes: While many fashion experts are still skeptical about fascinators in general, you do have to admit there's something very current about the DoC's head-to-toe blush ensemble (from Alexander McQueen) at Pippa Middleton's wedding.

Kate Middleton style: The Duchess of Cambridge wearing a Barbara Cassola off-the-shoulder dress

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Style Notes: At an event at the Natural History Museum, Middleton wore one of her most "fashion" looks to date. Not only did she sport a more daring off-the-shoulder silhouette with a fitted fluted skirt, but she also opted for a new industry name, Barbara Casasola, a Brazilian designer who presents at London Fashion Week.

Kate Middleton style: The Duchess of Cambridge wearing a green Dolce & Gabbana outfit

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Style Notes: This fluted green Dolce & Gabbana midi dress with a nipped-in waist and statement shoulders is demure and stately but also won Middleton praise from the fashion crowd.

Kate Middleton style: The Duchess of Cambridge wearing a white gown from Self-Portrait in 2016

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Style Notes: Reminding us of the good ole times when the duchess wore things we could afford, this Self-Portrait gown was a major red carpet moment in 2016.

Kate Middleton style: The Duchess of Cambridge wearing a cream See by Chloe dress

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Style Notes: Here we have another example of Middleton winning in a French designer, as on her royal tour of Canada she wore a knitted, cream-colored See by Chloé dress, which was on trend thanks to the ruffled piecrust-collar neckline.

Kate Middleton style: The Duchess of Cambridge wearing a yellow Dolce & Gabbana dress to Wimbledon 2018

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Style Notes: Middleton's Dolce & Gabbana dress at the Wimbledon Gentleman's Final of summer 2018 highlighted the color of the season, Meghan Markle wore a similar version the week prior (less floaty, more structured, sans sleeves), and according to many retail sources—including our friends over at data agency Launchmetrics and the buying team at Net-a-Porter—it's the fresh dress trend everyone's been buying since last year. In fact, you could say the duchess starting the whole thing when she wore a very similar-looking yellow Roksanda dress to Wimbledon two years ago. Trendsetter, hey?

Kate Middleton style: The Duchess of Cambridge wearing a Troy London parka, skinny black jeans and Superga trainers

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Style Notes: Every now and then, we get a glimpse at "casual Kate," and she often chooses fashion-approved staples like Superga sneakers or a parka coat (like this one from Troy).

Kate Middleton style: The Duchess of Cambridge wearing a blue velvet Erdem dress during her maternity in Sweden

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Style Notes: Middleton ticked plenty of boxes with this velvet dress by Erdem while on tour in Sweden. If the flocked finish and fluted sleeves weren't enough, it's also a super-chic example of maternity occasion dressing.

Kate Middleton style: The Duchess of Cambridge wearing an off-the-shoulder floral Erdem gown to the BAFTAs

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Style Notes: Alexander McQueen is always a strong choice for the DoC, and this floral gown on the BAFTAs red carpet is no exception. Points for the off-the-shoulder cut.

Kate Middleton style: The Duchess of Cambridge wearing a pleated polka dot dress from Kate Spade

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Style Notes: Shirtdress? Check. Polka dots? Check. The duchess made a smart fashion choice with this chic Kate Spade New York dress.

Kate Middleton style: The Duchess of Cambridge wearing a Burberry trench coat with black tights and court shoes

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Style Notes: Ask any cool Brit and she'll tell you the same thing: Trench coats are forever, and an essential. A Burberry one makes the staple even more attractive.

Kate Middleton style: The Duchess of Cambridge wearing a sequined Jenny Packham gown for a gala in 2016

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Style Notes: Maybe it's the twilight, maybe it's the wine, maybe it's the incredible sequin Jenny Packham gown, but this gala dinner look from Kate will forever be etched into the fashion history books.

Kate Middleton style: The Duchess of Cambridge wearing a floral Orla Kiely midi dress

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Style Notes: In another stylish maternity moment, Kate ditched her buttoned-up coats and opted for this Orla Kiely floral-print dress instead, paired with her trademark nude pumps.

Kate Middleton style: The Duchess of Cambridge wearing a knitted nautical dress from Alexander McQueen

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Style Notes: From Coco Chanel to Madonna, every fashion icon has to have their nautical fashion look down. This knitted Alexander McQueen number was Middleton's take on a classic summer trend.

Kate Middleton style: The Duchess of Cambridge wearing a blue lace Temperley London dress

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Style Notes: Possibly a favorite look from the DoC, this sky-blue dress by Temperley London perfectly balances Middleton's penchant for lace with a fashion-forward finish.

This post originally appeared on Who What Wear UK. Want more? See Meghan Markle's style file, for starters.

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