The Duchess of Cambridge is known for re-wearing pieces she’s owned for years—a practice that is inherently sustainable, as it both reduces the number of clothes you buy and prevents the garments from ending up in landfill. Recently though, the royal—like her sister-in-law, the Duchess of Sussex—has been wearing more eco-friendly and ethical labels, including Gabriela Hearst, Faithfull the Brand and Beulah London.
Considering the impact the Duchess’s fashion choices have across the world (the so-called ‘Kate effect’ led to searches for particular items rising by an average of 86 per cent during lockdown), it’s only a good thing that she’s throwing her support behind designers promoting sustainable practices. Here, we round up nine brands the Duchess has been championing.
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1. Gabriela Hearst
New York-based designer Gabriela Hearst—who is known for her strong sustainable practices—was the perfect choice for the Duchess’s meeting with veteran environmentalist Sir David Attenborough in September. The royal opted for the Marley dress, made from repurposed denim by the brand, which is working towards an ambitious goal of using no virgin materials by 2022.
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Faithfull the Brand
Founded by designers Sarah-Jane Abrahams and Helle Them-Enger in 2012, Bali-based label Faithfull the Brand’s pieces are an antidote to mass consumerism, with all their pieces handmade, hand-dyed and hand-printed by local artisans in Indonesia. The Duchess wore the brand’s Marie-Louise midi dress during a visit to East Anglia’s Children’s Hospices in Norfolk in June, leading to it instantly selling out online.
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Fashion-editor favourite Raey also got the Duchess’s seal of approval in May, after the royal wore a yellow printed dress by the brand for a television appearance. Launched in 2015, MatchesFashion’s in-house label, which is best known for its minimal designs, focuses on using materials with low-environmental impact, as well as working with artisans and craftspeople to produce its garments.
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Parisian brand Sézane—whose celebrity supporters include Bella Hadid and Irina Shayk—has also caught the eye of the Duchess, with the royal wearing a cream jumper by the brand during a visit to a London nursery in January. As well as being a go-to for French-style staples, the label has laid out a series of detailed environmental commitments, including a target of using 80 per cent eco-friendly materials by 2021.
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A long-time fan of Stella McCartney, the Duchess most recently re-wore a blue shift dress by the designer—first seen in 2012—to launch her new photography competition, Hold Still, in June. With McCartney being well known for her eco credentials, it’s no surprise that both the Duchess of Cambridge and the Duchess of Sussex (who enlisted the designer to create her evening wedding dress in 2019) are among her high-profile clients.
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Known for her desire to support charitable causes, it’s clear why British brand Beulah London is another of the Duchess’s favourites. The label, founded by Natasha Rufus Isaacs and Lavinia Brennan in 2009, aims to create employment for previously trafficked women, with 10 per cent of profits going to the Impact Partners via the Beulah Trust, which works to eradicate modern-day slavery. The royal wore a navy floral dress by the label during a hospital visit in July, wearing a similar design in red for a video message in May.
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For a sportier look, the Duchess favours skiwear brand Perfect Moment, wearing a red puffer jacket by the label (first seen during an outing to London’s Olympic Park in 2017) for a festive engagement in December 2019. Founded by professional skier and filmmaker Thierry Donard back in 1984, the brand uses eco-friendly fabrics made from recycled plastic bottles, while its down is 100 per cent natural and recyclable.
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The Duchess debuted a new personalised pendant necklace during a visit to Wales in January, featuring the initials of her children: George, Charlotte and Louis. Its origin? Responsible jewellery brand Daniella Draper, which makes all its products in England and uses recycled gold and silver. The necklace isn’t the only piece by the designer owned by the royal: the Duchess also recently wore a pair of hoop earrings by the brand during a Zoom call with charity Action on Addiction.
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Ethical jewellery brand Monica Vinader is another regular feature from the Duchess’s jewellery box, with Kate first wearing a pair of green onyx earrings by the designer back in 2016. As well as offering affordable pieces, the brand is committed to the responsible sourcing of all its materials, as well as offering a lifetime repair service to ensure the longevity of its pieces. The jewellery label also works with charities, including Women for Women International, to ensure it has a positive social impact.