If you've kept up with the Duchess of Sussex's inspiration-worthy wardrobe on her and Prince Harry's royal tour, you've likely been convinced to invest in a shirt dress this season. While the Duchess has opted for the casual-yet-elevated style throughout the tour, her latest piece may just be the best. But Meghan Markle's blue shirt dress looked quite different from its pre-fall runway debut — in fact, it was altered to meet the notoriously strict royal-wardrobe guidelines.
On Fri., the couple had a ceremonious departure from the Nuku'alofa airport in Tonga, where their private jet awaited to whisk them away to Sydney for a couple of days in continuation of their 16-day tour. Markle dressed for her final day on the island in fall's biggest dress trend. The $595 Veronica Beard Cary Dress is sky blue, long sleeved, and belted around the waist to add structure to its slouchy fit. The piece includes tonal buttons up the front and long slits up the legs — or rather, it did before Markle's seamstress stitched them up to give her a more modest look.
The original dress featured a flouncy, almost streamer-style skirt with slits of varied lengths running along the thigh. But the Duchess' style squad must have deemed the slits too risqué for royalty, because when she stepped out in the dress, they had been tailored to hit below the knee instead.
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When the dress debuted in the pre-fall collection, the Veronica Beard model wore the classic number with sunny-yellow mule-style heels, but Markle opted for a pair of gray pointed-toe strappy shoes to dress it up. The mom-to-be wore her hair in a slicked-back, middle-parted ponytail, flaunting her favorite accessory: the Adina Reyter diamond earrings that she wears constantly. The former actor's look was polished enough to be broadcasted to the entire world but also comfortable for the flight back to Australia. And that's the best quality of a shirt dress: versatility.
While the Duchess' shirt dress was a perfect fit for a royal event, Sienna Miller recently ran errands in a much more casual plaid dress by Zara. Other shirt dress-obsessed celebrities include Claire Foy and Carey Mulligan, who have both been wearing different variations of the wardrobe staple all year long. Even Markle has worn a shirt dress since her royal tour started. On the first day, she sported a short-sleeve Brandon Maxwell maxi with a pleated skirt in her favorite olive-green hue.
The shirt dress is a must-have for your fall wardrobe. It can be paired with your favorite booties, a pair of casual slip-on mules, or heels for your more formal events. You can even pair the dress with your go-to leather jacket for a simple everyday look.
Ready to recreate the royal's look? Ahead, The Zoe Report's favorite Meghan Markle-inspired shirt dresses on the market right now.