It was Kate Middleton’s year: The newly minted Duchess won the heart of both Prince William and the world, with her easy grace and shiny — so shiny! — hair. She was runner-up for Time Magazine’s Person of the year (“The Protester” won), and was recently named 2011’s best-mannered person (The worst? Kim Kardashian.) Her uterus even made our year-end list of what’s in and out, replacing her sister Pippa’s posterior as the royal body part fueling national speculation.
But mostly, we just envied the way she looked, the dresses and hats she wore and the ease with which she adapted to her new role in the public eye. When it comes to fashion, the Duchess hasn’t made a single misstep. Here are some of her most memorable looks.
The Floral Frock:
Kate chose Jenny Packham for a polo match in Santa Barbara on the royals’ American tour. Though it’s not the splashiest of her gowns, the Post’s Cara Kelly liked it for its cap sleeves and flattering high neckline. (Chris Jackson/GETTY IMAGES)
The Velvet Sweetheart Gown:
Prince William and Prince Harry escort Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge from a military awards ceremony at the Imperial War Museum in central London. Middleton’s sweetheart-neckline Alexander McQueen velvet dress left her shoulders bare. The ornate necklace was a wedding gift from a friend. (POOL/REUTERS)
The Grecian Satin Gown:
In Jenny Packham again, Kate attended a reception in aid of the National Memorial Arboretum Appeal at St James's Palace. The Duchess accessorized her Grecian, draped, satin chiffon gown with a poppy broach in honor of Remembrance, or Veteran’s Day. (POOL/REUTERS)
The Lilac Draped Dress:
Breezy and elegant, Kate arrived at a BAFTA Brits to Watch event in Los Angeles in a lilac Alexander McQueen gown. (POOL/REUTERS)
Kate’s cowboy look was charming and functional: She wore it on her Canadian tour, on a day spent watching children riding sheep at a rodeo. At first, the hat inspired some controversy. When the Duchess received it, she did not immediately put it on because it was windy. Though it was perceived as a slight, she and Prince William didn’t mean it as a snub, and they wore the hats later. (PHIL NOBLE/REUTERS)
The Maple-Leaf Hat:
The Duchess wore this red maple-leaf fascinator for the royals’ tour of Canada, along with the cream Reiss dress she wore for her engagement photos. (BLAIR GABLE/REUTERS)
The Navy Lace Shift:
The Duchess arrived in Canada in this lace shift dress, one of 30 outfits she wore for her tour. The Post’s Katherine Boyle said that the dress was a diplomatic nod to British and Canadian ties, as its designer, Erdem Moralioglu, is based in London but Canada-born. (Chris Jackson/GETTY IMAGES)
The Bold Green Shift:
Kate wore this bold green dress by Diane von Furstenberg to a July 8 private reception at the British Consul-General's residence in Los Angeles on her royal tour of America. (Chris Pizzello/AP)
And of course:
Obviously. (Martin Meissner/AP) View Photo Gallery: A look at Britain’s most-watched couple.
Did we miss one of Middleton’s outfits that you adored? Tell us in the comments.
Maura Judkis covers culture, food, and the arts for the Weekend section and Going Out Guide.