It’s that time again ... we’re checking in with our favorite British royal bride (and now, mom-to-be) to see how things are progressing—style-wise, that is.
She’s barely showing, but Meghan Markle is proving a long-held theory about expectant mothers, as she appears to be ... blossoming. Granted, her recent adoption of a few more more vivid colors and prints are likely due to the fact that she and Prince Harry have been on a 16-day tour of Australia, Fiji, Tonga and New Zealand, where it’s currently spring; but there’s also an undeniable vibrancy and optimism her brighter palette conveys.
Maybe it’s our own desire to escape from the increasingly gray days of fall, but by infusing her ladylike style and generally sedate palate of nudes, neutrals, and navies with breezier silhouettes, crisp whites and an array of jewel tones and garden-fresh colors, Meghan has been brightening our moods just looking at her—and has us anticipating how her style might evolve in tandem with her pregnancy over the next several months.
The royal couple just wrapped their travels, which included more than 70 engagements with Meghan wearing at least 30 different outfits. So, without further adieu, here are a few highlights from the past few weeks:
Meghan’s sleek sleeveless sheath may not be a departure from her typical royal wardrobe, but the bright white of her “Blessed” dress by Australian designer Karen Gee, was a fresh take—as was her rolled-sleeve trench coat by Martin Grant, giving a relaxed vibe to her royal appearance. In a sweet touch, she accessorized with diamond-encrusted butterfly earrings previously belonging to Princess Diana, and beige suede Stuart Weitzman “Legend” pumps.
If there’s one look we’ll be craving when temps climb again, it’s breezy striped sundresses like the ones Meghan wore in Australia that we’ll be reaching for. Meghan caught a little heat for the royal protocol-defying high side slit on her dress by Reformation (below right), but we’re especially fond of the boldly striped, full-skirted maxi below left, again by Martin Grant.
Women of color know whites and ivories beautifully offset our skin tones, and Meghan is no different; the custom ivory Zimmermann dress and matching hat by Stephen Jones she wore to meet the Fijian president brought out the best of her glow.
But it was the show-stopping, capped-sleeve and caped blue gown the duchess wore to a state dinner in Fiji which was one of the few outfits to show off her growing baby bump during the tour. It was also chosen to match the cerulean blue in the country’s flag. Created by British brand Safiyaa, it is known online as the brand’s Ginkgo Cape dress, and is still available for pre-order—if you have $1,405.
But a true hint at how Meghan’s maternity style might bloom was the already sold out red silk ruffled and floral printed dress by Figue she wore to a market in Fiji, which she paired with ankle-tied black espadrille wedges
And for her final appearance in Fiji, the duchess donned a jewel tone, looking absolutely elegant in an peacock-hued sheath dress by Jason Wu with exposed seams and raw edges.
For her arrival in Tonga, Meghan was dazzling in a vibrant red jewel-necked and appliquéd dress by Self Portrait, available for pre-order for $493.
But again showing off how great she looks in white—as well as reminding us slightly of her minimalist wedding gown, Meghan’s custom sleeveless white gown with embellished shoulders by Theia. Furthering the bridal effect, the duchess once again wore Princess Diana’s aquamarine ring, as she did at her wedding reception in May.
And then, there were the shirtdresses—a standard for the duchess, who wore both a striped version by Martin Grant and a bright blue by Veronica Beard, which she paired with powder blue Mary Jane pumps by Banana Republic for her farewell to Tonga.
Doubling back to Australia for an event in Sydney, Meghan wore what was perhaps the most magical of her many dresses on the tour, donning an aviary-embroidered black and white tulle tea dress by Oscar de la Renta which entirely befit her fairytale princess image.
For the Invictus Games, Meghan was cheery and casual in a crimson wrap jacket by Scanlan Theodore, black jeans by Australian brand Outland jeans—notably, a sustainable brand which combats human trafficking by training and employing women rescued from exploitation—and heels by Sarah Flint.
For the evening, she opted for an olive-hued, double-breasted tuxedo dress by Antonio Berardi and buckled, beige ankle-strapped heels by Aquazzura.
The heels made an appearance again the following morning as the duke and duchess made their departure from Sydney; Meghan wearing a belted burgundy jersey dress by Hugo Boss.
When the royal couple arrived in New Zealand, Meghan did so in a checkered trench by New Zealand designer Karen Walker, which she wore over a surprisingly affordable maternity dress by fast-fashion retailer ASOS.
But gamine elegance was in order for the evening, when Meghan wore a black, cap-sleeved cocktail dress by Gabriela Hearst to give a very well-received speech about voting and feminism, which the duchess said was simply a matter of “fairness.”
For an outing the next day, the duchess was casual yet accessibly chic in a Club Monaco coat, which she wore a turtleneck by Jac + Jack and jeans, both in black, and suede lace-up Stuart Weitzman boots, which gave the look a slight edge.
For an arts exhibit in the evening, Meghan turned to another New Zealand designer, Maggie Marilyn, for her white, double-breasted tuxedo minidress, which sported one of our favorite features: pockets.
Proving a penchant for sleeveless, double-breasted silhouettes
(is this the new boatneck?), the duchess donned another for a reception on Wednesday; in fact, she’d also worn the navy Antonio Berardi dress during an appearance with her now-husband in 2017
And again in navy, Meghan made her farewell, first in a dress by Stella McCartney, and then in a sweater and skirt set by Givenchy, piped with royal blue pleats—notably, these were the same two designer she wore on her wedding day.
Considering that the duchess is already in her second trimester of pregnancy, this may the last time we see her in non-maternity wear for a while—though we can’t wait to see what her custom-made pregnancy wardrobe looks like.