Think of London fashion and two Kates come to mind: Kate Middleton in a dress and mid-heeled pumps; and an artfully dishevelled Kate Moss, a coveted “It” bag dangling from her arm.
Kate Middleton’s well-bred preppy style has charmed the media and the masses-and sent fans swarming stores and e-commerce sites to snatch up her favourites like L.K. Bennett pumps, or her blue Issa engagement photo dress. “Kate’s style has a massive influence,” says Polly Vernon, editor-at-large for U.K. fashion magazine Grazia. “Her clothes, most notably from affordable Brit labels Reiss and Whistles, consistently sell out.” And classic British pieces are again fashionable, although fascinators are still for royal affairs only.
Then there’s paparazzi magnet Pippa, navigating London’s streets in skinny jeans or demure knee-length shift dresses, with perhaps a red Prada bag thrown in for punch. It’ll be interesting to see what the sisters will be sporting from the sidelines at the Olympics.
Kate Moss is the high priestess of the fashion mix, combining functional items (like the Hunter wellington boots she casually wore with a minidress to the Glastonbury rock festival in 2005) with designer pieces and more mainstream, or “high street,” finds. And she sexed up the venerable Burberry trench coat. (One of her style heirs could be MTV host and Chanel ambassador Alexa Chung, who wears Peter Pan collars and oxfords so artfully that they instantly become covetable.)
Former Torontonian Afsun Qureshi-Smith, a London-based writer at Style.com, says her London must-haves start with “a pashmina-essential for London weather,” and a pair of stylish cropped boots for walking everywhere. Any bling-free satchel is right on-trend here, but the cult bags are British brand Mulberry or a Balenciaga City “in a pop of
colour to offset all the black and grey” of London, says Qureshi-Smith.
Bridget Jones, the fictional patron saint of singletons everywhere, also has a style that endures. When London girls hit the wine bars and pubs after work, many have Bridget’s good-girl-gone-sexy look of heels, pencil skirt and a camisole peeking out from a snug cardie.
As for beauty, Kate and Pippa have boosted the popularity of well-tended, and most definitely dark brown, locks. Kate famously did her own makeup for her wedding, with defined eyes, sheer pink lips and healthy flushed skin. Throw in nails polished in a trendy shade, and it’s a look that says London.