A huge part of being a member of the royal family is dressing the part. No one understands that better than Kate Middleton, who continues to dazzle with her fashion choices every chance she gets. In fact, Middleton is so admired for her sartorial acumen that she’s been named the year’s “top royal style influencer” in eBay’s annual U.K. Retail Report, the Evening Standard reports.
The honor may come as something of a surprise to some royal watchers, most of whom still have Meghan Markle on the brain in the wake of her lavish May wedding (almost anything and everything the actress turned Duchess has worn this year has gone on to sell out). And while Middleton’s sister-in-law finished “a close second,” Middleton continues to capture the public’s imagination with her outfit choices.
“While Meghan was clearly the focus of the fashion pages this year, Kate’s distinctive style has long been a hit with shoppers on eBay since her wedding in 2011,” Rob Hattrell, UK vice president of eBay, told the Evening Standard. He cited the birth of Prince Louis, the third and youngest child of Middleton and Prince William, as one of the factors that helped Middleton finish ahead of Markle. “We always see an uptick in searches around landmark royal events and 2018 was a bumper year for small businesses on eBay,” he added.
Among the items that got the biggest boost in sales after being worn by Middleton were tailored maternity coats and anything by designer Jenny Packham, after the Duchess of Cambridge wore a Packham-designed red smock dress during Prince Louis’s first public appearance.
The Evening Standard also reported that items by Alexander McQueen and Seraphine also saw a spike in searches courtesy of the Middleton effect.