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THE NAVY SEAL
Kate Middleton showed the world how princess chic is done at her official engagement announcement at St. James’s Palace on Nov. 16. The $535 ISSA dress (bought from Fenwicks on London's Bond Street) sold out online and in boutiques almost instantly.
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Having been a fan of the London label for the last five years, Middleton raised the fashion stakes by wearing her first custom-made ISSA dress in October to a friend's wedding. Modeled on a dress from her closet, she teamed the electric blue number with classic black accessories.
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Middleton hosted a table at a charity dinner for the Starlight Children's Foundation in Sept. 2009, showing off her svelte figure in a slate gray ISSA gown. With its low-cut neckline yet simple design, the dress is pure, sophisticated glamour.
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Middleton wowed the fashion pack back in 2008, in a floor-sweeping coral ISSA gown for a charity boxing ball. Stylist Nikki Pennie, who has worked with Middleton in the past, tells PEOPLE, "That dress was a big turning point for her because it was so glamorous without being too revealing. She loved it!"
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While the princess-to-be loves a plunging neckline, she always keeps the look demure and classy with long sleeves or a jacket and a simple, sturdy heel. ISSA’s designer Daniella Helayel tells PEOPLE: "Kate always looks chic and refined in the pieces she chooses to wear."
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WRAP IT UP
Rocking one of ISSA’s signature wrap dresses in the summer of 2007, Middleton perfects daytime dressing, pairing the monochrome dress with casual espadrille wedges and her favorite white Prada tote. "She is the epitome of a 21st century princess," says Pennie.
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On a night out in London in 2007, Middleton gets into the party spirit with a zebra-print shift dress by ISSA. Says Brazilian-born designer Helayel: “She has great taste, it brings me much happiness seeing her in my designs."