Well, well... what a week Meghan Markle has had.
The Duchess of Sussex has just upped her wardrobe game, and now officially joins the ranks of the Very Well Dressed. Although always smartly turned out, in the first few weeks following her wedding, Markle relied on safe outfits in tasteful shades of pink and beige that, while undeniably neat, were a tad unadventurous. Now, perhaps as a sign that she is settling into her new role, she seems to become more daring with her choices, as her outfits this week have proved.
So what has happened?
The reason behind this subtle but important style evolution seems to be that the Duchess has called on the help of her best friend, Jessica Mulroney. When Mulroney isn’t acting as Markle's unofficial maid of honour (her two sons were also page boys at the wedding), she is a stylist who dresses the Canadian first lady Sophie Trudeau. And it seems that she was enlisted to curate the wardrobe for the royal couple's most recent appointments.
Knowing that Markle suits a sleeker look, Mulroney is working to her strengths, with lean silhouettes, minimal fussiness and lots and lots of boatnecks (remember that wedding dress?), creating looks that are chic and effortless in a new, sophisticated palette.
First was a dazzling yellow Brandon Maxwell dress worn to the Commonwealth Youth Challenge. A boat-neck, sleeveless column falling to mid shin, it skimmed rather than clung and looked sensational on her.
Then there was the christening of Prince Louis on July 9, to which Markle wore an olive green Ralph Lauren dress. Falling to knee-length, this dress had another boat-neck, softened with a slight bishop sleeve. Although a tricky colour in the pallid northern European light, she suits greenish tones well, with a small gold hardware detail on the belt giving just the right amount of lift.
For the 100th Anniversary of the Royal Air Force the following day, Markle wore a midnight blue Christian Dior dress that was very Audrey Hepburn-esque, down to the bracelet sleeves and – you guessed it – boat-neck. With a fit-and-flare cut, it was the perfect balance to Prince Harry’s dress uniform.
She then embarked on an official trip to to Ireland, where she donned a racing green sweater and pencil skirt by Givenchy, which was the very essence of laid back elegance, before changing into a square necked black dress by British designer Emilia Wickstead for a garden party in Dublin.
Next came a bespoke Givenchy black trouser suit teamed with a white scoop neck T-shirt and killer heels, in which she gamely tottered over cobblestones and even attempted hurling. Finally, to meet the Irish President Michael Higgins, Markle donned a taupe Roland Mouret dress with a draped folding skirt. I, for one, am giving her current sartorial choices a huge thumbs up.
Queen Rania vs Melania: Who wore it best?
Haute couture autumn/winter 2018-19: our favourite looks from the runway so far
10 looks from Dolce & Gabbana's Lake Como-inspired Alta Moda show - in pictures