The Kate Middleton Fashion Effect
The Kate Middleton effect is the trend effect that Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge has on others, from cosmetic surgery for brides, to sales of coral-coloured jeans. 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 over £1 billion to the UK fashion industry," while Tony DiMasso, L. K. Bennett’s US president, stated "when she does wear something, it always seems to go on a waiting list".
Some claim that Kate's fashion choices have also had a profound effect on charitable causes. 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. 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.
The Kate effect was purportedly felt by the maternity brand Seraphine when the Duchess wore one of the brand's dresses in their first official portraits with Prince George reportedly increasing turnover by 50%. Other brands which have enjoyed enormous success from Kate Middleton wearing their collections are Goat, LK Bennett, Jenny Packham, Emilia Wickstead, Alexander McQueen, Reiss, Temperley, along with a whole host of newer brands from Kate’s recent visit to India.
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." A designer who 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 Kate Middleton effect is another term for the improvement in support for the monarchy with new royals coming of age and their family formation compared to the lows of the 1990s. The UK economy is definitely pleased with the huge upturn in sales that all of these brands take with such a fabulous ambassador.