This is not among my favorites of hers. It’s not aggressively terrible, obviously, but I think it needs your styling assistance, Fug Nation.
Lop off the sleeve skirts, lose the cummerbund, eliminate the odd dickie-esque neck covering, and it’d be interesting yet not excessive.
Aw, I think this is a sweet look for her. Remove the bow and we’re in business. It’s a bit complicated with the light piping around the shoulders, but it’s kind of a moot point since her glorious hair covers most of that anyways.
You know, nix those little elbow ruffles and I’d be ok with this. It’s a bit fashionier than she usually goes for, and I appreciate the effort. Plus, I love her. I can’t stay mad at you, Kate!
Completely agree re: the elbow ruffles (I was going to call them “sleeve trimmings” but elbow ruffles is better.) I could also change the sleeves to sheer black with no pattern, or perhaps cap sleeves, also in sheer black? But those changes are optional, the elbow ruffles are my major complaint. And I also love her
Side note, I looked at one of the slide shows of her looks pre-wedding, and yeah, someone is dressing for her future job. She never went CRAZY before, but some of her old outfits just wouldn’t look right on a future queen. I can’t even imagine the pressure on her to pick out just the right clothes and always look appropriate and beautiful. I wonder if she misses the ability to be a little more creative, or if lots of excuses to go shopping and wear amazing clothes compensate for that.
Also, I just re-viewed the entire Olympian abs post. Yay
yeah i vote nix the elboffles (elbow ruffles) and i’d like it more… i also am not crazy about a ruffled skirt too. it comes across too flamenco-y.
Just rip off everything that has white on it, a la Jamie Lee Curtis in True Lies.
Definitely need to lose the sleeves (maybe all together, tho it is October) and clean up the neckline. I wouldn’t necessarily mind the neckline as is, but with the sleeves and the cumberbund/bow it’s a bit much. Getting rid of the cummerbund alone would make this much better.
Also… I feel like maybe the pumps are too heavy for this dress? I mean, it’s fall and the dress is black, but it also has a slightly delicate feel to it, thanks to the flowers/sheer sleeves. Ehhh, as I look at the picture more, I guess I don’t care. They’re fine, but not great.
I agree, Abigail. It would work without the frou frou up top and without the cummberbund bow. Or if the sleeves and chestal area were solid, maybe? Leave the embroidery to the bottom? I dunno. Not her finest here but not atrocious.
She’s royalty her bra straps should not show. But call me old fashioned, bra straps should not show royal or not.
Still love her.
I’m pretty sure those aren’t bra straps. Her dress is essentially a solid black slip dress with a sheer, embroidered overlay. The straps you are seeing are the straps from the slip dress. It’s fairly obvious if you look at other pictures- the straps directly coincide with the ridge of the black “slip.” The seams of the sheer overlay are also black and piped with the pinkish embroidery, so I can it’s easy to confuse the seems with the foundational garment.
I was thinking it was bra straps too, but even if they are straps for the slip, they are driving me crazy – if only because it looks like they are bra straps just pushed to the side!
Then it is a design flaw. Presumably the sheer part will keep the whole thing from sliding off her shoulders, so the slip dress shouldn’t need the straps. It definitely looks like underwear and this is not Jersey Shore.
Sanrda- I could be wrong, but my understanding is that the dress is two separate garments. The black slip is the underdress and the sheer embroidered overlay is not attached to the slip, so straps are necessary for the underdress. I agree they look like bra straps, but the underdress is not attached to or supported by the overlay (again, not 100% positive on this, but that is my understanding).
Thank you for the stroll down Olympic Ab memory lane, it was just the break I needed!
On Kate’s dress, I’d lose the flowered sleeves OR the flowered skirt, both is just too much flowers. Love the gratuitous cake pic too
I think this would look a lot better with her hair up. The neckline is beautiful, but you can’t really see it. I agree about losing the bow too.
I agree. The dress already has too much going on, and the hair just adds to the mess. Maybe with her hair up, and without the ruffley sleeves, I could get on board.
Nix the embroidery on the bottom. Keep the embroidery up top, but the bell elbow length sleeves have got to go. I’d prolly bring the embroidered sleeves all the way down to wrist length with no bell-y, ruffle-y crap.
Every time I see cummerbund, I think Cumberbatch, so thanks for bringing that to my day.
The Royal Order of Sartorial Splendor has a picture of the original dress, which is adorable (apparently Kate wanted some changes. Not for the better, obvs): http://orderofsplendor.blogspot.ca/2012/10/random-royal-appreciation-partying-with.html
I really like the original.
I like the original, too! Change it back, and it’s unfugged quite nicely.
The original is much better but I still don’t care for the elbow ruffle/ sleeve skirt/ pouf-thingies. I know they’re in right now, but I hope they leave soon.
Holy crow – the original is a delightful and slightly historical little frock. Possibly more all black than Kate usually goes, but she’s lovely and could have totally pulled it off, especially with one of her lovely and colorful coats.
lose the bow and the “bell” sleeves going on at her elbow and this will look fantastic..i love a happy Will, but please, no more double breasted suits, it really doesn’t suit him!
Get rid of the elbow ruffles for sure.
I’d nix the embroidery entirely. Or at the very least, have it just on the top and not at the bottom too.
This is very 70s to me…and not in a good way.
Not to start the rumors again, but maybe that is a hide the pregnancy dress? The high cumberbun (sp?) might serve as a way to mask it… I am just so excited at the prospect of a royal baby!
Also, the sleeves are hideous.
I think they both always look wonderful and happy and it’s enough to make my day.
Her dress is perfect for a tea party, in my opinion.
Yes I would say it’s the sleeves, they annoy me for some reason. But I’m not offended by the rest of the dress, I had to look twice for the bow
FIRST, I adore Kate and love how she is so normal and I’m dying to go drinking with her, I bet she’s hilarious after a few! I’m the first to checkout what she is wearing at public events and respect her right to privacy, HOWEVER, my inner newlywed hints that the best way to distract from an baby bump is an all black number with giant distracting flower sleeves and skirt.
That being said, carry on. It’s none of my business.
I think it is aggressively terrible, actually. At least, for her. Blergh.
Yeah, I hate it. (and I love her.)
Cut out all the rufflely crap and have a plain black skirt (I’m cool with the cummerbund) and three quarter length sheer sleeves. But still. Just start over.
I have lived my life believing that word was ‘cumberbund’. This is almost as bad as when I used to mispronounce ‘queue’.
Same here on both accounts! Did you ALSO pronounce it “quay”?? Because I always thought that’s how it was pronounced, and still say it in my head that way when I’m reading.
For the dress… I don’t mind it as much as everyone else seems to, but I’d still say the best way to unfug it up would be to wear the original linked above. I love the original–all the busy details work on that one much better, and the more structured sleeve is much prettier.
I ALSO have always thought it was cumBERbund!
I also pronounce “coif” as “coy-f” in my head (I think you say it “quaff”, but I’m not sure. And I’m 34 years old. French words are my weakness). Anyone else? Just me? OK.
The biggest issue for me (aside from the bow) is the length. It’s not as noticeable from the front, but that back shot of her really shows it. She’s like me, she has strong muscular calf muscles, and that length- that hits right at the calf- is unflattering and makes the legs look bigger.
Give it to me. I don’t know that it’s Kate’s style, but I love it so much, I kind of want to marry it.
I like the sleeves and elboffles. I’d loose the cumerbund and bow, and I’d do it in a different colour, maybe grey? That would contrast nicely with the light coloured lace. And with a lighter pump, maybe a pointy toe sling back.
See, you linked to the Olympian Abs, and now I don’t care about Kate’s dress.
Love the embroidery, lose the cummerbund and we’re fine.
Only saw the thumbnail, so I totally thought Wills was doing the Discount Double-Check. I’m going to pretend that he was.
Too bad the dress code for the event was their spiffy uniforms and not their fabulous physiques. Oh, Kate’s dress? I also like the original better. This is too frou-frou for the usually-sleek Duchess.
I want this dress for my very own – love love love it.
Line the sleeves to the beginning of the ruffle (wrist peplum?)
They definitely overlooked GFY when handing out the Nobel prize this year. That slideshow is probably one of my favorites on this site (and that’s saying something!).
Wait, what were we talking about, again?
Oh honey, No. Burn it with fire.
Lop off the sleeves. This would be very interesting if it was sleeveless.
i should look so terrible……she can do no wrong so far with me.
Remove the entire sheer part up top, have the solid black continue into cap sleeves and a… I don’t know how to explain, not a high neckline but… at her neck? Actually, something like where it is but no sheer, just solid black. Then I could forgive the flamenco bottom and cummerbund (I just had my mind blow, I always thought it was cumberbund).
I think it’s jolly camouflage. She looks so darn pretty.
Think she looks great, again. She still hasn’t missed. I love the dress.
I don’t mind the dress. At whatkatewore.com they suggested that the modifications made to the dress were an homage to the gold medallists.
i LOVE this. I would lengthen the sleeves a tad and tighten the ruffle a bit, or make them full-length and leave the bell at the end. really, the sleeves are a B+ at best, but the rest of this i would TOTALLY WEAR!
It kind of reminds me of the dress Jamie Lee Curtis wore in True Lies, before she ripped the netting off and pretended to be a prostitute.
Haha. OMG. I was just coming here to post that. Too true!
let’s not dance around this ladies, Kate Middleton looks like a boring nerd. she is not a fashion icon, nor is she terribly attractive; lets not make her something that she isnt.
Man does she ever have great calves!
I think she just saw True Lies….
Remove cummerbund and lengthen the sleeves, complete with embroidery. Make the elbow ruffles a floppy cuff at her wrist. It is October, after all.
Agreed. Also hair up or in a low chignon, and with a colourful slingback shoe plus perhaps a chunky bracelet. Maybe turquise or electric blue like the fellow’s tie? Or emerald green?. Just a COLOUR.
I think I’m in the minority when I say I don’t mind the sleeves in and of themselves, but put with all the embroidery and the cummerbundbow and the sheer whatnot–too much! I don’t mind the contrast ribbon, so I’d say remove all flowers, the cummerbow, and the frou-frouness around the neck and along the bottom, keep the light pink/white contrast ribbon at edges of sleeves and along select seams, and the dress would go from ’70s tea party confection to funky fun. Or just switch it out with the original, as that was a lovely alternative.
I like it better from the back than from the front. Still, I agree with those who say ditch the sleeves and the cummerbund.
It’s too fussy for my liking.
More to the point, Harry will be in Afghanistan untilo the new year so won’t be joining the royal family for Christmas.
I love the original dress… Thanks for the link, @AnnieS! If she was wearing it as originally designed, this would be another Well Played for Kate! I think what this dress needs is to get rid of the cummerbund, the embroidered flare at the end of the sleeves and the embroidered fabric at the bottom of the skirt! It would be quite lovely as a LBD with some interest on the top! It’s just FINE!
BTW, GFY Heather’s finest work as a human being are the beans… God Bless! And, now I want cake!
I don’t even care about the dress, I’m just glad she is not as skinny as she has been.
Sleeveless, no cumberbumber, updo = unfugged.
Altho’ this isn’t exactly all the way to fugly as it is, just fugly in context of her overall totally enviable wardrobe. Put this on someone else (VHudge?), and we’d all be saying “Hooray! So much better!”
I’ve been saying that same thing about your Abs post!!!!! Refer to it often!!! It is incredible.
Okay, I’m officially the only person on the planet (besides Catherine, of course) who loves this as is. Good to know.
I think it would be beautiful without the sleeves. The bare arms would offset the sweetness of the bow.
I think it would look better if she BURNT IT AND WORE ANOTHER FROCK ALTOGETHER.
Holy __! I disagree; I think this thing IS aggressively terrible. I would chop the silly bell things off the sleeves and shorten it (a lot), losing all that frou-frou around the bottom (yikes). Way too much of a muchness.
The ivory brighten up her face nicely. Maybe some or all of the decoration on the lower half should go.
Is she wearing an ankle bracelet?! I love it!