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Kate Middleton’s Off-The-Shoulder Dress Is A Surprising Addition To The Duchess’ Closet

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It's common for members of the royal family to stick to the classics when dressing up for public appearances, but sometimes they opt for a more daring choice. Whether it's swapping out an elegant gown for a sleek pant suit or acting as their own hair and makeup artist, when the royals take a risk, people notice. While an unusual addition to her typical wardrobe, Kate Middleton's off-the-shoulder dress proves that the Duchess isn't afraid to try out new trends.

Ever since her return from maternity leave, Kate Middleton has continued to surprise the public with subtle yet noticeable changes in her style. The Duchess of Cambridge recently debuted a new hair cut and color, including face-framing layers and warm-toned highlights.

Middleton was photographed on Wed. evening while visiting the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, where she had the chance to preview its brand new Photography Centre. For this royal appearance, Middleton chose a dress style that she's rarely been spotted in since marrying into the royal family.

The Duchess wore a purple-toned, tweed midi dress by Erdem, with an understated off-the-shoulder neckline and a dark-purple belt. To compliment the jeweled buttons and detailed broach on the dress, the Duchess added pointed, purple pumps and a small box-shaped clutch. She completed the edgy take on a classic ensemble by wearing her hair in her infamous flowing waves, and opting for a slightly smoky eye with nude lipstick.

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Middleton isn't typically the royal family member that's known for major style risks, but it seems as if she may be taking notes from her sister-in-law, Meghan Markle. In fact, Markle's first off-the-shoulder look sparked some controversy, as it technically went against royal protocol. Earlier this year, the Duchess of Sussex was photographed wearing a two-piece set by Carolina Hererra at the Queen's birthday celebration, Trooping the Colour. Markle must be a fan of off-the-shoulder necklines, as her notoriously minimalistic wedding gown also bared her shoulders.

Off-the-shoulder silhouettes haven't always been a staple when it comes to royal dressing, but it's likely that this updated, classic look is here to stay. Ahead, shop some of The Zoe Report's favorite Kate Middleton-inspired dresses to channel your inner Duchess.

Shop The Look

Molly Dress

Pepa Pombo

This jacquard knit dress may just be the classic piece you've been looking for. Although the hemline is a little shorter than Middleton's go-to, this dress will work great for a holiday party, a family gathering, or even a work event.

Stretch Texture Dress

Rebecca Taylor

Pair this multi-tiered navy dress with suede pumps and a colorful clutch. The best part? It's on sale for half off the regular price.

Off-The-Shoulder Dress

CHRISTIAN SIRIANO

If it's too cold to even think about sandals, pair this black and white piece with thigh-high boots and a longline trench coat à la Meghan Markle. Think of this dress as an investment — you'll wear it for years to come.

Midi Off-The-Shoulder Dress

Tufi Duek

Pair this bold midi with printed sling backs for a little bit of an edge. Add statement jewelry like chunky pearls or hoops to complete the look.