Kate Middleton is known for her impeccable style and her striking, yet simple beauty which inspires and causes envy in women around the world. The Duchess of Cambridge has entirely taken on her role in the royal family with elegance and grace and many compare her classic style to that of her late mother-in-law, Princess Diana.
In fact, Duchess Kate is a role model to so many for her fashion sense and for the products she invests in, that she has sparked the “Kate Middleton Effect,” meaning that the beauty acts as a catapult to various businesses’ success simply by purchasing or donning items available.
— SimplyStylish (@ClassySassySwag) December 20, 2016
The most recent example as to how the duchess has boosted sales for a relatively unknown or new business involved Vanessa Seward, a British designer whose design was worn by Kate at a Heads Together campaign over the holidays. Hello shares the account of Seward, who is set to open her first UK shop.
“‘I consider that as really my lucky moment,’ she said of the Duchess wearing one of her dresses just as she was starting to fit her London boutique. ‘I had no idea she was a customer. I remember looking at my Instagram account and suddenly it wouldn’t stop buzzing.'”
There have been numerous accounts given by a slew of designers, beauty brands and baby brands that rave over how Kate has increased business simply by buying and using their products, wearing their attire, or dressing her little ones in their clothing. The immediate spike in sales experienced by such businesses has reportedly come as a welcome surprise to many, yet one designer whose brand was swiftly touched by the duchess has a very different account as to the effect Kate truly had.
When Middleton appeared alongside Prince William in a gorgeous blue silk wrap dress by Issa in 2010 to announce their engagement, designer Daniella Hayela, founder of the fashion label that was based in London, initially felt honored by Kate’s choice of garment.
Unfortunately, it seems that the Kate effect hit Issa London with far too much force seeing as only five years following the announcement by the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, the fashion brand closed its doors for good. Marie Claire shares words of Hayela as to how Middleton impacted her brand for the better and then for the much worse.
“Issa was a niche brand. We had a loyal following, but in 2008 and 2009 we were in serious financial trouble. When Kate wore that dress everything changed.”
Daniella went on to share that she and her staff of 25 had no idea that Duchess Kate was set to wear Issa for the memorable appearance, and the very effect that has been associated with Middleton was more like a tidal wave that the business could not handle.
Issa went from being a relatively unknown brand to an “overnight sensation,” as the publication notes. Hayela and her small staff simply could not keep up with the demand that followed the appearance.
— ELLE Magazine (US) (@ELLEmagazine) February 22, 2017
Daniella was unable to meet the expectations of clients and produce the garments quickly enough. She was also unable to afford the costs of production which led to extreme stress for the designer and a financial burden.
“The bank refused to give me credit, and the factory was screaming for me to pay its bills’, she explained. ‘I left because I couldn’t take any more. I felt so stressed that my hair went white and started falling out. I was broken by the end of it. I had a great business, which I’d built up on my own over a decade. To watch it evaporate was heartbreaking. I took two years out and didn’t design a thing. It was too painful.”
[Featured Image by Andrew Matthews – WPA Pool/Getty Images]