In 2010 Kate Middleton slipped into a simple jersey dress by little known Brazilian designer Daniella Issa Helayel to announce her engagement to Prince William. Three years later, the Issa label is one of the most successful fashion brands in the world worn by everyone from Madonna to Katy Perry.
The Duchess in her Issa engagement frock.
The Kate Effect is similar to the affect Michelle Obama has had on fashion. Both women have a chic conservative style that appears effortless but most importantly achievable. Much of the Middleton and Obama appeal is in their ability to wear both ends of the market wearing high-street brands alongside local favourites. Kate Middleton has done for Issa what Michelle Obama did for Maria Pinto and Jason Wu propelling them into the mainstream and fast-tracking their cult status.
Kate's famous sapphire blue wrap-dress - which retailed for approximately $AU620 - sold out within hours of the wedding announcement and remained on back-order for almost a year due to the demand. It has spawned countless knock-offs and has just been re-issued in a maternity cut for women who are expecting a' la the Duchess. Middleton has continued to wear the label both on and off the red carpet making the brand a global go-to for dresses for every occasion. Capitilising on the Kate Effect is fashion e-tail giant THE OUTNET who today announced a collaboration with Issa which includes a collection of archived designs - including Kate's favourites - that have been reworked exclusively for a limited edition period.
"We work with brands in a variety of ways," explains Managing Director of THE OUTNET, Stephanie Phair. "We're taking a new creative direction with Issa by showcasing this established brand with a fresh point of view and an emphasis on occasion dressing."
The range include Issa's signature lace, jersey and crepe in a rainbow of colours from fuchsia and emerald to classic navy and metallic. The collection includes the glamorous floor-sweeping gowns favoured by the Duchess alongside wrap dresses and day shifts. The prices start from £203 and will be available exclusively at www.theoutnet.com from Tuesday April 2nd, 2013.