Kate Middleton's 'Duchess Effect' Is Making Brands Boatloads Of Money

Kate Middleton Princess Duchess of Cambridge

Photo: AP

When Kate Middleton wears a brand, it quickly sells out. The fashion phenomenon has been dubbed, “The Duchess Effect.”

While Middleton is also a fan of high-fashion favourites like Burberry and Stella McCartney, much of her wardrobe is purchased on High Street. 

From Zara to J Brand, see the labels that she’s boosting sales for. 


Even with a baby bump, Kate Middleton has shown her love for this up-and-coming brand.

The royal sweetheart reportedly wore a Zara cape out on the town during a London shopping trip this week, and she's been known to sport Zara dresses, tops and jeans to everything from children's charity plays to Olympic events.

A lacy Zara shift she wore to a charity event in December sold out on the website within hours.

LK Bennett

Another sell-out, this time in shoes.

Kate Middleton's well-known LK Bennett nude heels have become an online sensation, with a company executive noting the platforms are by far the brand's best-sellers.

Middleton wore the heels again and again this summer at weddings, birthdays and during a cross-country Canadian tour. The publicity spurred a shoe shopping spree for the UK accessory chain.

Prabal Gurung

The duchess shot this brand to online fame after donning one of its floral frocks to a meeting with the president of Singapore.

The Prabal Gurung dress was sold out in less than an hour, helping to rocket the brand to fame during fall's New York Fashion Week.

The designer shared his excitement on Twitter.

J Brand

Known for her affinity for dresses and skirts, Kate caused a stir this summer when she donned a pair of J Brand jeans during the Olympic games -- and wore them again at least four more times at the tournament.

She also sported a pair of the brand's tangerine skinny jeans to play a match with the Great Britain field hockey team in October.

The twill pants are available on the J Brand website for $169.

Wilbur and Gussie

Kate and Pippa have both been spotted holding envelope clutches from this offbeat handbag designer.

The designer is known to name all of his bag after family pets, including Charlie (a blue Burmese), Archie (a greyhound) and Boris (a Great Dane).

The handbags are available here.


Kate Middleton propelled this brand's blue sapphire dress to fame when she wore it to announce her engagement to Prince William in 2010 -- a near-perfect match to her engagement ring.

The form-fitting frock immediately sold out and has now been converted into a maternity dress for soon-to-be mums.

Middleton has been dubbed Issa's 'unofficial brand ambassador' and is often spotted wearing the label's digs at events.


Kate rocked a nude Reiss bandage dress during a meet-and-greet with the Obamas at Buckingham Palace last spring, boosting the frock into an instant sell-out and reportedly crashing the brand's website overnight.

She also sported the label during her engagement portraits with Prince William and bundled up in a fitted Reiss wool trench coat and belt during a visit to a soccer club a few weeks after the topless photo scandal that caused an uproar in the royal family.


This rising Singapore-based designer saw surging sales of a patterned blouse and matching pleated skirt Kate wore while traipsing through the Southeast Asian country with her hubby in September.

The website's traffic increased nearly tenfold over the course of a day after photos of the duchess in the breezy ensemble popped up, according to TIME.

Katherine Hooker

Kate helped this British label take off after tailoring one of the UK designer's tweed coats to hit above the knee.

Hooker's success from the story has led her to spread her designs, starting trunk shows across the United States this year.

Roksanda Ilincic

The duchess sported a lavender cocktail dress from this Serbian designer during an arts event with the British Prime Minister this summer, as well as on an earlier trip to Los Angeles.

Illincic, whose label is based in London, told Grazia Daily she was 'hugely excited' to see the Duchess wearing her dress and called Kate a 'great ambassador for British fashion.'

Illincic Tweeted her excitement about the sighting, said The Daily Mail: 'Looking beautiful - so proud #duchess of Cambridge is wearing my dress tonight, xr.'

Emilia Wickstead

This UK brand was founded in 2008, but Middleton is helping the couture label earn some street cred.

The Duchess wore a pink, pleated dress to a garden party at Buckingham Palace in May, an understated yellow coat dress to Scotland's Thistle Ceremony and an appropriately green dress to a St. Patrick's Day parade, all designed by Wickstead.

Jenny Packham

Kate has noted Jenny Packham as one of her favourite designers. Crowds adored a lacy, teal floor-length gown from the label that Middleton wore to an Olympic event.

Packham told The Daily Mail that revenues had spiked by 40 per cent in a year and a half, attributing the increase to 'the Duchess effect.'

Alexander McQueen

After wearing an Alexander McQueen dress on her wedding day, Kate has helped boost profits for the luxury retailer by nearly 30 per cent.

Kate's remained fond of the brand since her royal nuptials and has been spotted some of the designer's 'maternity wear' in recent months. She also stunned crowds in a white and gold McQueen gown during a visit to Kuala Lumpur last fall.

Orla Kiely

A printed 'Birdie' coat created by Irish designer Orla Kiely was a sellout within minutes after Kate sported it to a school visit in Oxford in 2012.

Middleton also donned the designer's threads during a visit in London and her sister, Pippa, has been spotted wearing the label's looks as well.

Kiely told IrishCentral that the royal exposure helped lift her profits by close to 20 per cent that year.


This designer's duds have been worn from celebrities from J-Lo to Katy Perry, but a white floaty dress the Duchess of Cambridge donned for a Wimbledon tennis match gave it extra attention.

Tells Metro, the dress sold out quickly online and the designer put up a cheeky website on its site in response:

'Unfortunately we've now sold out of the Moriah Dress but we have plenty of other Temperley London pieces in, so be sure to get them now before they disappear.

'You may not get the press attention that Kate does, but you'll definitely turn heads.'

The royal fashion icon also wore one a sheer white blouse from the designer next to the rodeo ring with William in Calgary.

You've seen what happens when Kate Middleton wears a brand...

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