The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s eight day tour of the Caribbean was a smashing success. From meeting with local vendors, to participating in parades and greeting throngs of well-wishers, Kate and William were a literal tour de force. The couple managed to flawlessly execute a week long scenic and diplomatic getaway that thrilled royal watchers, delighted locals and impressed royal reporters.
While the Duchess of Cambridge often plays it safe with tried and true fashion favorites on her home turf in the UK — in Belize, Jamaica and the Bahamas, Kate had a style renaissance. From glitzy emerald gowns featuring tufts of tulle and sprinkles of glitter, to body hugging lacy sheaths and show-stopping satin couture — the duchess showed off dynamic and daring designs not part of her typical conservative closet and mostly modest Windsor wardrobe.
Diplomatically dressing and paying homage to her hosts, Kate curated a collection of fun island fashions mixed with luxury labels. The duchess did a magnificent job of incorporating old and new fashion favorites, local designers and vintage pieces into her traveling wardrobe. Kate’s Caribbean lookbook was a masterclass in royal dressing with show-stopping gowns, dazzling accessories and designer shoes all utilized to create sleek and timeless sartorial statements.
Not one to be intimated by the humidity or rain, Kate was mindful of the climate and opted for comfortable yet weather appropriate styles in each tour stop. The duchess selected a sea blue scalloped hem cocktail dress for her first stop in Belize. An office appropriate outfit, Kate’s look was feminine and eye-catching. Dressing in the colors of the Belize flag, her ensemble would set the tone for the rest of the trip — and give a preview of her medley of impeccably tailored gowns and day dresses.
Not completely straying from her winning formula of retro flair mixed with ‘princess proper’ attire — Kate elected to wear sandals and sneakers plus a pair of canvas wedges but also pricey pumps like Aquazzura panelled white and gold cut out heels and sparkly embellished Gianvito Rossi pumps described as a “Cinderella shoe” with a price tag over $2000. (She also donned seashell earrings from Anthrpologie costing less than $60).
Kate’s flirtation with Disney fantasy was on full display — the duchess wore a striking lemon yellow Roksanda statement dress on arrival in Jamaica which perfectly exemplified a very Belle (i.e. Beauty and the Beast) ballgown. And the Disney references didn’t end there–she also wore a frothy Princess Tiana green dress (off-the-shoulder and sparkles included) from the likes of Jenny Packham and a floor-sweeping Cinderella-like bespoke creation from the fashion house of bridal designer Phillipa Lepley. Even Kate’s aquamarine Emilia Wickstead and ethereal mint Self-Portrait dress felt slightly ‘Little Mermaid.’
Overall, Kate’s fashion choices were surprising, refreshing and modern. While the duchess always looks immaculate and impeccably suited on British soil — her choices are often demure and stately. For their Caribbean tour, Kate followed her ladylike playbook but experimented with color, played with thrifted accessories and opted for fun patterns and prints. From floral peplum numbers to casual coral, tangerine and teal stripe a-lines — Kate dressed appropriately up and down for every occasion.
And while the couple were jet-lagged due to a 5-7 hour time difference (depending on location), Kate’s hair, makeup and skin were always flawless. Not one for beauty product overload, the duchess stuck with a neutral palette of muted lipsticks, lightly applied foundation and clear manicured nails. Other than a borderline bright red lip at the Belize airport, a tawny lipstick at the Governor General’s House in Jamaica and a matte berry lip for the final reception in the Bahamas — Kate kept her makeup clean, simple and natural.
Perhaps the most exciting part of the trip was watching Kate truly enjoy and embrace her hard earned style status and experiment with a few trendy and modern clothing items and accessories. Rather than her budget minded British wares, Kate went full girly glam. As a roving royal and island hopper, the duchess was allowed to indulge her wardrobe whims from beaded bags with bamboo handles to oversized blue bobble earrings and flashy footwear — the duchess shunned stiff and dowdy and instead turned over a new fashion leaf. Kate’s bright white platform pumps, metallic gowns and lacy bodycons were a refreshing change from her tweed blazers, heavy wool coats and fair isle turtlenecks. The duchess brought her beauty to the beach and truly turned the tide style-wise.
Here are a Few Fashion Highlights from Kate’s Caribbean Tour Wardrobe:
Tory Burch Smocked Floral Dress
Alexander McQueen Flared Crepe Trousers
Shop the flared tailored trousers at Matches Fashion
Ray Ban New Wayfarer Classic Sunglasses
Shop Kate’s RB2132 Sunglasses at Nordstrom
Alexander McQueen Grain de Poudre Blazer and Alexander McQueen Grain de Poudre Wool Slim Pants
Aquazzura Cece 105mm White Pumps
Shop the shoes at FarFetch
Self-Portrait Pleated Chiffon Midi Dress in Mint Green
Alessandra Rich Belted Floral Jacquard Peplum Midi Dress