The British royal family and Wimbledon have long gone hand in hand, dating all the way back to 1907, when the then-Prince of Wales and Princess Mary (soon to be King George V and Queen Mary) first attended the Wimbledon Championships. And as the world’s oldest tennis tournament, it’s also proven to be a stylish affair; one which draws a range of A-listers, with appearances over the years by everyone from celebrities like Beyonce and Bradley Cooper to activist Malala Yousafzai and Vogue editor-in-chief Anna Wintour. But the event’s reigning style champion is undoubtedly Kate Middleton. An avid tennis fan, the Princess of Wales took over as patron of the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club (AELTC) in 2016, following Queen Elizabeth II’s resignation from the role, by which time Kate had already been making major appearances at Wimbledon for nearly a decade.
Whether cheering on the players from her seat in the Royal Box (often accompanied by Prince William) or presenting trophies at the end of the match, Princess Kate is always dressed in a winning look—and she’s not afraid to repeat ensembles that she knows work. From dresses inspired by the tennis whites tradition to eye-catching brights and quite a few polka dots, Kate’s classic style shines through, and is often paired with a few key, thoughtful accessories—not to mention some very animated facial expressions, because even the Princess of Wales can’t contain her excitement when it comes to Wimbledon.
In honor of the 2023 Wimbledon Championships, make yourself a Pimm’s Cup and take a look back at all of Princess Kate’s best courtside style moments.
Kate has been attending Wimbledon since long before she became a member of the royal family. In 2007, when she was simply known as Prince William’s girlfriend, Kate excitedly took in a match wearing in a red dress and black cardigan.
The following year, Kate brought the black cardigan back, this time sporting it over a white midi dress.
Just a few months after Prince William and Kate’s wedding was broadcast around the world, the couple made their first official Wimbledon appearance as the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge. Still embracing bridal attire (and Wimbledon court dress codes) in an all-white ensemble, Princess Kate wore a tiered dress by Temperley London, which featured very appropriate tennis skirt-style pleating, and accessorized with nude heels, a nude clutch and her signature bouncy blowout.
To watch the men’s quarter-final play out from the Royal Box alongside Prince William, Kate arrived in a cream dress by Alexander McQueen creative director Sarah Burton (the same British designer behind her iconic wedding gown). The cable-knit frock had nautical elements with a sailor collar and navy stripes, to which Kate matched her navy pumps and her sapphire-and-diamond engagement ring and earrings.
Back in cream for another match, Kate paired a sleeveless dress from Joseph with a matching jacket, as she watched the men’s singles final with her sister, Pippa Middleton.
Kate had to skip Wimbledon in 2013, as she was heavily pregnant with Prince George (it’s the only year, aside from the canceled 2020 matches, that she didn’t attend), but she returned the following year in a white embroidered Zimmermann dress. The cotton dress featured elbow-length sleeves and a fitted waist, and Princess Kate added a pop of color with her accessories, like her fan-shaped Anya Hindmarch woven straw clutch.
Princess Kate mixed bold colors and patterns for her second Wimbledon appearance in 2014, in this green and blue geometric-print Jonathan Saunders dress.
Showing us all the power of a good accessory, Kate paired this bright red L.K. Bennett dress with a leopard-print Diane von Furstenberg clutch.
The following year, Kate took in the ladies’ semi-finals in a sunny yellow Roksanda dress, with white colorblock details at the sleeves and hemline that coordinated with her white Victoria Beckham Quincy tote. Prior to the match, Kate met with tournament officials, armed forces personnel, the event’s ball boys and girls as well as Venus and Serena Williams’ mother, Oracene Price.
A few days later, Kate was back in the Royal Box with Prince William, this time wearing a bespoke version of a dress that debuted as part of the Alexander McQueen pre-fall 2016 collection. The printed design was quite quirky for Princess Kate, as it was emblazoned with a variety of images including lipsticks, skulls, moths and even eyes, but she made the look her own by accessorizing with two classics: her go-to Cartier watch and Ray-Ban Wayfarer sunglasses.
2017 marked Kate’s first Wimbledon as royal patron of the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club, and it also marked her first Wimbledon in polka dots—though it certainly wasn’t her last. For the occasion, Kate wore a white-and-black polka dot Dolce & Gabbana dress, with black suede sandals and her trusty Victoria Beckham tote.
For her second appearance at the 2017 tournament, Kate chose a custom Catherine Walker fit-and-flare design that featured cap sleeves and a wildflower and poppy print. She also wore a purple and green pin, to signify her role as patron of the AELTC.
In 2018, Kate attended the ladies’ singles finals with her new sister-in-law, Meghan Markle, and the duo appeared to coordinate in printed ensembles. While Meghan opted for a striped Ralph Lauren shirt and wide-leg pants separates combo, Kate chose a white cap-sleeve Jenny Packham gown with black polka dots that closely resembled tennis balls. Nude pumps and a Dolce & Gabbana Sicily bag rounded out the look, which of course wouldn’t be complete without her Cartier watch.
For her second Championships match, this time with Prince William, Kate wore a fitted yellow Dolce & Gabbana frock.
Kate’s best take on tennis whites came in 2019, when she wore this 1940s-inspired dress from eco-conscious brand Suzannah. The button-down frock ended up being one of her favorites, as Princess Kate—who is known to re-wear looks—has been spotted in this particular dress several times since. For Wimbledon, Kate styled the midi with a black bow belt and black leather trim satchel bag (both by McQueen), as well as her Ray-Ban sunnies.
Kate later attended the tournament with both Meghan and Pippa, this time in a forest green Dolce & Gabbana dress with gold button accents. She brought back her Dolce & Gabbana Sicily bag, and finished off the look with a nude pumps.
Kate had the honor of presenting the Championships trophy to the men’s singles finals winner, Novak Djokovic, during her final Wimbledon appearance of 2019. For the big event, Kate chose a pastel Emilia Wickstead blue dress with twisted detailing along the shoulder straps, which she styled with an intricate beaded clutch, ankle-strap heels and pearl drop earrings.
A face mask was the accessory of the moment when Kate attended the 2021 Wimbledon Championships (the 2020 pandemic forced the tournament organizers to cancel the annual event for the first time since World War II). Making a stylish return, Princess Kate switched it up from her usual go-to dresses and instead paired a navy polka dot midi skirt by Alessandra Rich with a white t-shirt and navy blazer by Smythe. Sticking with the white and navy theme, Kate accessorized her look with a Mulberry Amberley bag and heels, both in white.
During her second appearance that year, Kate presented the ladies’ singles finals trophy in a green Emilia Wickstead dress, paired with the same white Jimmy Choo pumps she wore the week prior.
For her last Wimbledon appearance of 2021, Kate went back to a tried-and-true silhouette in a blush pink dress by Beulah London (an ethical fashion brand committed to supporting victims of sex trafficking). The short-sleeved crepe midi dress featured button detailing, and a matching tonal belt for a more fitted feel. Kate donned a floral print mask throughout the grounds for COVID safety, and her look also included the beaded clutch and nude ankle strap heels that she wore to Wimbledon just a few years earlier.
To cheer on the men’s quarter finals players, Kate kicked off her 2022 Wimbledon appearances in a bright blue pleated polka dot dress by Alessandra Rich, which she paired with her dependable Mulberry Amberley handbag, pearl drop earrings and tortoise frame sunglasses.
Back in another sunny yellow design by Roksanda, Kate’s dress for the ladies’ singles final was a short sleeve cut that featured structured shoulders, with a fitted bodice that flowed into an ankle-length skirt. Her classic accessories included white heels and citrine and diamond earrings, as well as a practical sun hat and cat eye sunglasses that she occasionally sported throughout the day.
Kate was perfectly coordinated with her son, Prince George, who made his first Wimbledon appearance as he joined his parents in the Royal Box for the men’s singles final, dressed in a navy suit. Princess Kate turned to her go-to polka dot designer, opting for a navy and white Alessandra Rich number with a feminine bow and decorative button details at the front, as well as diamond and sapphire jewelry and Bulgari cat eye sunglasses.
In her most talked about look yet, the Princess of Wales appeared to take inspiration from her late mother-in-law, Princess Diana, with a retro Balmain blazer in mint green. Her pleated white midi-skirt seemed to give a nod to tennis whites, and it paired perfectly with the blazer’s contrasting white lapel and buttons, as well as her pointed toe heels and Mulberry Amberley bag (all in white, of course). Kate was joined by Wimbledon champion Roger Federer, whom she played a few sets with mere weeks ahead of the tournament.
In her second appearance at the 2023 championships, Kate chose a Self-Portrait dress in a lime green shade that matched the tennis balls. The tailored look included a belted jacket and pleated chiffon skirt, which Kate paired with nude suede pumps by Gianvito Rossi, a matching clutch by Emmy London and pearl stud earrings by Cassandra Goad (plus, Victoria Beckham sunglasses that she wore throughout the day). The Princess of Wales also debuted a new hairstyle, wearing a half-up, half-down look that was knotted at the back with soft waves.
Kate kept the green theme for the final day of Wimbledon, where she presented the winning trophy to Carlos Alcaraz for the men’s singles final, after watching the match from the Royal Box with William, Prince George and Princess Charlotte. This time, Kate opted for an emerald green color with a Roland Mouret dress that featured knotted bow detailing along one shoulder and a long pencil skirt.