Royals | Celebrity

9 Times Kate Middleton's Outfits Caused Controversy

From her famous wedding dress to her tailored designer coats, Kate Middleton has established herself as a fashion icon. Her style has been compared to that of Princess Diana's on multiple occasions and almost everything she wears has the tendency to sell out quickly.

Those who knew her before she became a royal revealed that the Duchess of Cambridge has always been "immaculately dressed."

"There was always something slightly galling about having your child at school with the Middletons," said the mother of Kate's old schoolmate. "Every pristine item of clothing would have a beautifully sewn-in name tape, for instance.There were huge picnics at sports day, the smartest tennis rackets, that kind of thing. It made other families feel rather hopeless."

While Kate has consistently impressed us with her outfit choices over the years, she has also had some not-so-great moments.

1. Solomon Islands Faux Pas

Huffington Post

In 2012, William and Kate embarked on a royal tour to the Far East and South Pacific on behalf of the Queen, and while most of the trip went well, it was not without controversy.

While in Solomon Islands, Kate rocked a colorful sundress to an official dinner celebrating the nation's culture. She and her team of stylists believed the dress to be from a collection by a local designer, but they were later informed that they had thought wrong.

The dress was in fact the work of a designer from The Cook Islands, located 3,000 miles away. Turns out, a member of the royal couple's welcoming committee, Kethie Saunders, was to blame for the mix-up.

"The Duchess wore the dress because she believed it to be from the Solomon Islands government and thought it would be an appropriate gesture," read a statement from a government spokesperson. "Had she known it were from the Cook Islands it would not have been worn and she feels bad about the confusion."

2. BAFTA Awards Dress

Anthony Harvey/BAFTA/People

Back in February, the Cambridges attended the 71st British Academy of Film and Television Arts Awards (BAFTA), and Kate chose an elegant floor length dark green gown with a black sash right above her baby bump.

Despite looking regal in her outfit, not everyone was happy with her choice. People were disappointed that the duchess did not wear black to the event to show her support for the Time's Up movement.

At past events, celebrities wore black outfits to get the point of the initiative across and start conversations around gender inequality, pay disparity, as well as sexual harassment and abuse.

What many did not realize is that Kate's hands are tied when it comes to making certain statements, especially when it has to do with such a politically-charged movement. Royals are supposed to remain neutral and keep away from controversial matters.

3. Roller Disco Shorts


Kate adopted a more conservative style after her engagement to William, but like any young woman in her 20s, Kate wasn't afraid to show a little extra skin.

During her separation from William in 2008, Kate attended a roller disco-themed charity event dressed in bright short shorts and a sequined halter top.

Media outlets reported that the royal family were "appalled" by Kate's "most unladylike display."

4. Playing Peekaboo


During one of the stops of the 2011 Royal Tour of Canada, Kate wanted to be mellow in a yellow Jenny Packham dress, but the strong wings at the Calgary airport got in the way.

The duchess struggled to keep her dress from revealing what's underneath, and the media had a field day with the wardrobe malfunction.

5. Outshining the Queen


In 2012, Queen Elizabeth II celebrated the 60th anniversary of her accession to the British throne. However, she wasn't the only one making headlines on the special day.

The monarch's granddaughter-in-law was the talk of the town for outshining everyone around her, including the Queen and Camilla, the Duchess of Cornwall, in a vibrant red dress.

British media and Kate's critics weren't too pleased with Kate's choice, many asking "Did Kate Middleton really steal the limelight from the Queen on a day dedicated to the latter's memory by wearing a captivating red dress?"

6. Fur Gloves

William and Kate are big on spending quality time with their children, and taking family trips is one way they do so.

In 2016, they shared six photographs from their family ski vacation, and while many people were stoked to see how adorable Prince George and Princess Charlotte looked, others were furious about an element of Kate's ski fashion.

PETA UK was not pleased about Kate's choice to wear a pair of Restelli Guanti gloves lined with fur.

"If the gloves are indeed made of real fur, we'll be contacting Kate, who we imagine is unaware that possums killed for their fur are often caught in bone-crushing steel-jaw traps," Mimi Bekhechi, the director of PETA U.K., told E! News in a statement.

7. Showing Skin For Charity

Daily Mail

Sure, this was from Kate's pre-royalty days, but the media won't ever let her forget about it.

Shortly before meeting William, Kate wore a completely transparent dress to walk the runway at her college's charity fashion show, and many are convinced the sheer outfit helped her catch William's eye for the first time.

Designer Charlotte Todd even called the dress "a piece of fashion history."

8. Ascot Lace

Got Celeb

Kate was a vision in a white lace dress by one of her favorite brands, Alexander McQueen. However, it wasn't just royal fashion watchers that were turning their heads upon the future Queen's arrival.

Kate's look was criticized for being too short, see-through, and inappropriate for the occasion. Ascot fashion police were up in arms over the fact that the outline of Kate's legs could be seen through the fabric, which is considered a major no-no for a royal.

10. The Wedding Dress

Hello Magazine

Kate's Ascot outfit wasn't the only white lace dress from the Alexander McQueen label that has stirred controversy.

Her iconic wedding dress, which was designed by the head of the fashion house Sarah Burton, has caused another British designer to file a lawsuit.

Bridal designer Christine Kendall claims that Burton stole and copied her idea and used it to create the royal wedding dress.

Kate has not commented on the legal matter, but a spokesperson for ALexander McQueen made a statement to CNBC denying the claims.

"We are utterly baffled by this legal claim. Christine Kendall first approached us at Alexander McQueen almost four years ago, when we were clear with her that any suggestion Sarah Burton's design of the royal wedding dress was copied from her designs was nonsense. Sarah Burton never saw any of Ms. Kendall's designs or sketches and did not know of Ms. Kendall before Ms. Kendall got in touch with us — some 13 months after the wedding. We do not know why Ms. Kendall has raised this again, but there are no ifs, buts or maybes here: this claim is ridiculous."

What do you think of Kate Middleton's style? Let us know in the comments!

For more about Kate, check out:

10 Things You Didn't Know About The Future Queen of England

20 Times Kate Middleton Dressed Up Just Like Princess Diana

Awa has been writing for Shared for 3 years. She is a serial snacker who unapologetically loves celebrity gossip. Drop her a line at