As Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's wedding day quickly approaches, the former Hollywood actress is steadily preparing to become the Duchess of Sussex and take on a role that will forever change her life. As Markle prepares to join the royal family, take on royal duties, and becomes a citizen of the U.K., we've witnessed an abrupt change in her style. With millions of people watching her every move as she takes on this extravagant change in her life, Markle knows that long gone are the days of wearing bandeau tops and sequins minis as she adjusts to wearing more tailored pieces and refined attire.
The duchess-to-be has been in the Hollywood spotlight since the early 2000's, but landed her big break in 2011, portraying Rachel Zane on USA network's series, Suits. We've seen the brunette beauty go from wearing plunging necklines and midriff-baring clothing to more ladylike pieces since dating Prince Harry, including her assortment of luxurious coats we are all pretty much wishing were in our closets.
So before May 19th approaches, and we all tune in as Prince Harry and Meghan Markle say their "I do's," let's take a look back at the future duchess' fashion style and see how much it's changed since she began dating a royal. Check out these 20 photos of how Markle's style has transformed from red carpet glam to effortless and chic.
20 Meghan Markle Makes The Working Girl Wardrobe Chic
Before her engagement to Prince Harry, Meghan Markle was making a name for herself in Hollywood. Markle got her big break on the TV series, Suits, starring as Rachel Zane for seven seasons. Before she landed the role on the USA network show, Markle made appearances in a number of other TV shows, including General Hospital, CSI: NY, 90201, and Fringe. You've probably also seen her in a few films, too, including Remember Me and Horrible Bosses. In Suits, Markle played a paralegal, so her wardrobe mainly consisted of power suits, however, she knew how to make those somewhat boring outfit’s office chic. When Markle was on the show for a total of seven seasons, women were inspired by how she could make a simple white button-up and pencil skirt look so good, and a lot of those women wanted to copy her wardrobe. We saw the star keep it classic in a number of pencil skirts, but would show her personal style with different types of sweaters, shirts with cool necklines, and embellishments. When Markle was asked if she was married to the power suit, because of the show, she said, "My wardrobe for Suits isn't like Working Girl— dressing for work doesn't have to be so on-the-nose these days, the key is to have your own point of view attached to it. Personally, I love cropped pants in vegan leather, a great fitted blazer, and a button-down." She knew how to make each outfit unique and women were able to make those boring office outfits just a little more glamorous.
19 Markle Would Rather Invest In Timeless Pieces Than Follow Trends
If you've watched Suits, then you're familiar with Meghan Markle's character's well-groomed looks. However, the 36-year-old beauty revealed that her personal style is a little different than the show's paralegal, Rachel Zane. Speaking about her style, Markle stated, "It's a lot more relaxed than Rachel's. If I think about my style icons, I love [stylist] Geraldine Saglio, and [French Vogue editor] Emmanuelle Alt. The way I dress is really monochromatic and tonal, and I really like classic pieces. I also love that French way of styling, where if your outfit is pulled together, then something's got to be disheveled— your hair, your make-up. Whereas with Rachel, everything is just polished and perfect. There's something really pretty about effortless beauty." Meghan Markle's style has consistently looked effortless. She's even admitted that she's not a fan of keeping up with the latest fashion trends, and instead, opts to wear pieces that are comfortable. "Wear what makes you comfortable and isn't going to make you cringe in three years when you see the photo. I'm not very trend driven. I'll pepper it in here and there, but invest in classic pieces and you'll never regret it," she states. Even though we've seen Markle in designer threads that are easily worth thousands while she's out and about with Prince Harry, she has a way of making them her own.
18 Even When It's For A Cause, Markle Dazzles On A Red Carpet
When she wasn't working on Suits, Meghan Markle was showing off her personal style on red carpet events. The actress looked stunning at this London Global Gift Gala in November 2013. The gala is characterized by the fusion of two different worlds: celebrities and philanthropy and is a fundraising gala to support the lives of children and women worldwide. Markle is a passionate philanthropist and has been since she was young. "I was 11 or 12 years old when I became a member of the National Organization for Women in the States. I've always been a young feminist and looking back, I guess there are all kinds of pieces to that puzzle. It's always been important to me to be vocal about what I feel is right, whether that's as a woman, or being bi-racial [her mother is African American and her father is of Dutch-Irish decent]. I think so much of it is when you can't find what box you can tick, or where you fit in. My dad always taught me to just make your own box, so that's always been part of how I moved in the world since I was young. An outspoken little one— oh, my goodness, a handful! But I think it's just who I am." Markle said. Markle isn't a stranger when it comes to working with charities and organizations. The star has worked as a Global Ambassador for World Vision, she's an advocate for the United Nations, and has supported many organizations that help to support women and children in need.
17 Meghan Always Keeps Her Personal Style In Mind
Looking back at a few fashion choices from Meghan Markle, you can easily see that the starlet enjoys wearing skirts and shorts that show off her amazing legs. Like in this photo, during Fashion Week in 2013, Markle wore a black midriff-baring co-ord, showing off her long legs. However, while the soon-to-be duchess enjoys playing around with fashion and showing off her amazing figure, ever since getting engaged to Prince Harry, her hems lines have definitely lowered. Meghan knows that she's constantly in the spotlight ever since she and Prince Harry made their engagement announcement. Her decision to wear certain pieces is now constantly going to be scrutinized and judged. However, she's been doing an excellent job with the transition and we can see that she's been experimenting with her looks. Unlike her future-sister-in-law Kate, whose wardrobe seems a lot more conservative, Meghan adds a touch of flair to every outfit, whether it's a fashion-forward coat, a chic leather tote, or cool sunglasses. The actress still keeps her cool-girl style and is much edgier than Kate, which we admire. What we also love about the future Duchess of Sussex's style is that she also seems really comfortable in them. She's mentioned before in an interview how she would rather be comfortable in what she wears then wear something just because it's on trend for that season. "You have to keep it simple," Markle said in an interview with Matches Fashion.
16 From Being Discovered At A Party To Becoming A Future Duchess
Meghan Markle had no idea she would become a Hollywood star. Before landing her big role for USA network's, Suits, Markle was working at the US embassy in Buenos Aires, Argentina and it was then that a manager spotted her at a holiday party. "Yeah, it was a holiday party. I'd been working at the US embassy than in Buenos Aires, Argentina, and I went home for a party, and this manager Drew had seen me. He approached a friend of mine from college and asked her if I was an actor. I'd done a student film for her when we were in university together, so she gave him the film the next day. He called me and said, 'You're going to make money, and I want to take 10 percent.' He was like, 'I think you need to stay in LA.' Then you fast forward all these years of not working and trying to figure it out, and I'm just so grateful that all these stars came into alignment for Suits because it's changed my life," Markle said. It’s pretty amazing how Markle’s life changed so drastically from becoming someone who just wanted to change the world into a better place, to getting her big break as a Hollywood actress, to becoming the soon-to-be wife of a Prince.
15 Was This The Dress That Caught Prince Harry's Eye?
Did Meghan Markle win the affections of Prince Harry after stepping out in this Misha Nonoo dress back in 2015? When Markle arrived at the CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund Awards dinner wearing Nonoo, Markle wasn't a big Hollywood star just yet, but she did make heads turn in this metallic mini-dress. Nonoo, who is also said to be a really close friend with Markle, was rumored to have introduced the actress to Prince Harry. In a joint interview, Meghan and Harry revealed that they were set up by a female friend, but never said whom. Misha seems like she was responsible for the set up since she knew both Meghan and Harry. Markle was even spotted wearing a Misha Nonoo Husband Shirt, which costs $185, during her first public appearance with Harry at the Invictus Games. "It was through her and then we met once and then twice back to back two dates in London, last July," Harry told a reporter about the matchmaker. "And then it was I think about three, maybe four weeks later that I managed to persuade her to come and join me in Botswana. We camped out with each other under the stars— she came and joined me for five days out there, which was absolutely fantastic," Harry added. Harry and Meghan's relationship is literally a modern-day fairytale.
14 Meghan Dazzles In Red
This Dolce and Gabbana dress was made for Meghan Markle. Again, showing off her legs in the A-line dress at the 2016 Elle's Annual Woman in Television Dinner, Markle looked stunning as she walked the red carpet with a matching red lip. So what exactly is Markle's go-to red carpet look? The actress revealed in an interview, "I used to try to wear what people told me looked great, as opposed to what I was comfortable in. Now, the designer I wear so often on the red carpet is Lanvin— just beautifully crafted, simple silhouettes. I wore this really beautiful, nude-colored gown to the American Ballet Theatre opening, and it just fits me to a T." For a celebrity, being comfortable on a red carpet seems almost impossible, wearing the highest heels and dresses so tight you could hardly breathe. However, Markle isn't into all of that, she's a fan of simplicity and we can see that in the clothes she wears. Yet, she still knows how to look like a knockout. She did get Prince Harry to notice her and that's a pretty big deal. Who wouldn't want to nab a prince?
13 Markle's First Public Appearance With Prince Harry Makes Everyone Swoon
When Meghan Markle and Prince Harry attended the Invictus Games in Toronto, they were greeted with applause and cheers. It was the first time they were photographed side by side, looking like a real couple. Before attending the game, the duo was rarely seen together, possibly keeping their romance under the radar as best as they could. However, it looked like they were over keeping their love under wraps and looked happier than ever at the multi-sport event. Wearing a simple white button-up, designed by Misha Nonoo, and a pair of jeans, Markle still stood out as she and Prince Harry watched and cheered on the athletes. The Invictus Games is an international adaptive multi-sport event, which was actually created by Prince Harry, where wounded, injured, or sick servicemen and women compete in sports games like sitting volleyball, indoor rowing, and wheelchair basketball. Spectators were thrilled to see the couple make such a rare appearance together and photographers even flew all the way from England to Toronto to snap some photos of the duo, knowing quite well that their pictures would sell for thousands. It was also great to see Prince Harry and Meghan having a good time together. The couple was spotted holding hands, giggling, and smiling during their time at the event.
12 After The Couple's Big Announcement, Markle's Famous White Coat Sells Out
On November 27, 2017, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle announced that they had gotten secretly engaged earlier that month. The couple was extremely excited and elated to share the news with the world. What Markle probably didn't know was that her white wrap coat by Canadian brand Line The Label would become sold out in minutes by the time she and Prince Harry made their special announcement. According to Harper's Bazaar, when the couple made their engagement announcement, the Canadian brand's website crashed within minutes. There was a huge surge of users on the site, with people wanting to purchase the $750 coat. The coat was sold out in minutes and the label's co-founder and president, John Muscat, decided to rename the coat the "Meghan" in celebration of the soon-to-be duchess. Muscat stated that he was "surprised" and "touched" that Meghan wore the coat and his brand for the big news. "She's bringing a little bit of Canada with her to London," he said, adding, "She particularly loves this coat. She has it in every color so that makes a little sense. She wears it like a second skin." Line The Label is known for their relaxed outerwear, which is perfect for Markle, who has always expressed how much she loves feeling comfortable in the clothes she's in.
11 The Famous $75,000 Dress
When the soon-to-be royal couple released their stunning engagement photos, everyone couldn't help but notice the beautiful sheer and embroidered dress Meghan decided to wear. Markle's stunning dress came from British couture house, Ralph & Russo, and was rumored to be worth a whopping $75,000. Anyone would feel like a true princess in that dress, and luckily for Meghan, she actually got to feel like one during the couple’s photo shoot. It was also very smart of the former actress to choose a British designer and show off a rare piece like this one. After the photos were out, it was rumored that the dress could have been a hint at what her wedding gown would look like. According to Harper's Bazaar, Markle's very fashion-forward choice had many people wondering if Ralph & Russo would be her choice in making her wedding gown. "The process of designing a bridal gown is a sentimental and intimate one, and it would make sense that the new-to-England Markle would test out British labels she has her eye on in key moments leading up to the wedding to narrow down who she'll choose to work with on her dress (or dresses) for the big day," Carrie Goldberg for Harper's Bazaar wrote. We'll just have to wait and see which designer Markle decided to use to create her wedding dress on May 19th!
10 Markle's Fashion Takes Notice
After Meghan Markle and Prince Harry announced their engagement, everyone was taking notice of the soon-to-be royal's fashion. In December, Markle was photographed in this gorgeous Joseph Full Midi Skirt, which is currently sold out, and paired her skirt with a Wolford Portland turtleneck, also sold out, Aritzia Amos Dress Belt, $45, and Kurt Geiger Violet Boots, which are also sold out on their website. To complete her look, which actually looks pretty comfortable, Markle wore a Mackage Double Breasted Military Maxi Coat, again, sold out, and accessorized with a Strathberry Midi Tote, which will cost you $675. After Markle began dating Prince Harry, the fashion world took notice of Markle's slight change of wardrobe. Long gone were the days of wearing short skirts and midriff-baring clothing. Instead, Markle showed us her unique take on a sophisticated, yet chic, style that would make her fashion pieces stand out from Kate Middleton's wardrobe. The boldest and maybe most fun look Middleton has worn was a polka-dot dress, while Markle appears to take more risks with fashion. While Markle has mentioned that she doesn’t necessarily follow trends, she is known for her bold looks and she's found a way to incorporate it into the clothing.
9 The "Meghan Markle Effect"
Meghan Markle joined the royal family for Christmas Day services at the Church of St. Mary Magdalene and looked impeccable in another beautiful coat. Markle joined almost sister-in-law Kate Middleton and Prince William during the services wearing a tan wide-collar Sentaler coat, that cost a whopping $1,395, and paired it with Stuart Weitzman boots, $798, Philip Treacy hat, leather gloves, and circular Chloe bag. Ever since we've seen Markle in all these amazing designer looks, the "Meghan Markle Effect" has taken place. Essentially, what that means is that everything the soon-to-be royal wears immediately sells out. Take for example that time Meghan wore jeans during the Invictus Games in Toronto, the jeans, which were by the label Mother, sold at an enormous rate. The brand's president and co-founder, Lela Becker, describe that there was a "massive spike for the month of October." "We beat our sales forecast by nearly 20 percent," Becker said on the effect having Markle wear their jeans had on the company. "We also saw a 60 percent increase in Google searches the last week of September, the week Meghan wore our jeans, versus the first week of September. The day after Meghan wore our jeans, we saw nearly a 200 percent in traffic. More people came to our website that day than they did on Black Friday." And there you have it, that's the "Meghan Markle Effect."
8 Envying Her Camel Coat
Elle magazine called Meghan Markle's camel coat the "Coat of Dreams," when she was spotted wearing it out with Prince Harry this past January. The couple visited Reprezent radio station in Brixton, south London, a youth radio station, which trains young people in media and employment skills. It was the couple's second public appearance together since making their royal engagement announcement in Nottingham. Obviously, there were crowds of people waiting to see the soon-to-be royal couple and style bloggers and the media waiting to see what exactly Meghan Markle was wearing. Of course, the future Duchess of Sussex did not disappoint. The actress wowed the crowd in a gorgeous long camel coat from Canadian brand Smythe, which is priced at $795 and is currently sold out. It wasn't the first time Markle wore a Canadian brand either. We saw her in Canadian brand, Line The Label, wearing their white coat when she and Prince Harry stepped out to make their engagement announcement. Also, Markle might just be a fan of Canadian designers since she did work in Toronto for six years while filming Suits. Underneath her coat, Markle wore mainly all British designers. The bride-to-be had on a Marks & Spencer wool blend round neck bell sleeve jumper, Burberry trousers and a scarf by Jigsaw, which was actually the place the Duchess of Cambridge used to work before she was engaged to Prince William.
7 Meghan Markle's Satin Dress Is Another Sell Out
Every time Meghan Markle steps out in public in new attire, fans quickly jump to the chance to get exactly what she's wearing, no matter what the cost. While attending the first annual Royal Foundation Forum in London in February, with Prince Harry, Prince William, and Kate Middleton, Markle wore a $2,375 belted satin wrap dress by New York-based designer, Jason Wu. Once fans saw Markle in the blue dress, it was instantly sold out. During an interview, Jason Wu said, "When somebody like Meghan wears something of mine, the brand is instantly exposed to every corner of the globe and all eyes are on her. It's really incredible." Jason Wu is no stranger to dressing high profiled women. The designer dressed former First Lady Michelle Obama multiple times, including for the 2009 Inauguration Ball where we saw Michelle wearing that iconic white dress, which is now housed at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington. "I have been incredibly fortunate to dress very inspiring women," Wu said, adding, "In many ways, they were both in very important but also quite traditional roles and they really broke the glass ceiling. Both of them are real future thinkers and I feel really fortunate they appreciate my clothes and are very encouraging of me." Wu even mentioned that he's worked with Markle before, dressing her at times while she was filming Suits.
6 Shaking Up Tradition In A Suit
When Meghan Markle attended the annual Endeavor Fund Awards— her first semi-formal evening event with Prince Harry— she didn't wear just some boring A-line dress and pantyhose, the actress stunned everyone as she stepped out in a suit. Markle looked absolutely stunning in an Alexander McQueen suit with white silk Tuxe blouse and black stiletto pumps. If you're in the market for a suit, you're going to have to shell out a lot of cash for the one Markle wore. The suit jacket will run you $1,995, while the trousers cost $795. Markle really shook up the tradition, attending her first semi-annual formal event in a pair of pants. Wearing a suit instead of a dress to the event really showed that Markle is taking fashion into her own hands. While people pretty much expect the soon-to-be wife of Prince Harry in some sort of lavish gown, she surprised everyone in this stunning Alexander McQueen suit. "And while the tuxedo-like suit is attention-getting— female members of the royal family rarely wear pants to official events and almost never do so in the evening— the photos of the sharply-tailored suit aren't likely to become Markle's iconic fashion moment. That after all, is probably coming up in May and she doesn't want to steal her own thunder," Lyndsey Matthews wrote for Town & Country." Still, this is just another iconic look from Markle everyone wanted to copy.
5 All Smiles In Ireland
This was just another one of Meghan Markle's best looks and another coat we're all definitely wishing we had in our closets. Markle looked amazing while visiting Northern Ireland with Prince Harry. The actress wore a Victoria Beckham jumper, a Greta Constantine skirt, Mackage coat, and a Charlotte Elizabeth purse. Besides being an actress and now a well-known fashionista, Markle also ran her own lifestyle blog called The Tig. She began her blog in 2014, sharing her experiences and inspiring women all around the world. However, she had to say goodbye to her blog in 2017, as she did with all her other social media accounts, including Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram. Before she said her farewells to The Tig, she describes her blog as "a conversation between girlfriends." Markle stated in an interview, "I love connecting with the fan base and sharing my experiences. There's so much snarky stuff on the Internet these days, so I've tried to create a space that's really positive and hopefully inspires you to do something that's uplifting and empowering." While it’s sad that Markle had to let go of something she seemed so very passionate about, we’re pretty sure she’ll have a lot of new adventures to experience and hopefully share with her fans when she becomes a duchess.
4 Meghan Markle Is Marvelous In White
Markle and Prince Harry stepped out with Prince William, Princess Kate, and the Queen herself, Queen Elizabeth II, to attend a church service for Commonwealth Day, a national British holiday in March. However, all eyes were definitely on Markle and what she was wearing. The royal-to-be wore a $1,199 Amanda Wakeley cream coat (the late Princess Diana's favorite designer), with a matching white beret by designer Stephen Jones. Underneath, the actress wore a navy dress and matching navy pumps and accessorized with very little jewelry and a Mulberry clutch bag. Markle looked very elegant at the service and is making her own fashion mark on the royal family. Wearing white, Markle gave us a taste of what she might look like when she walks down the aisle on May 19th at the Windsor Castle in England. Simple and classy are the two perfect words to describe Meghan's look and she and Princess Kate matched, with Kate Middleton deciding to wear navy as well. It was Meghan's first official event alongside the Queen of England, so you know she had to look her best.
3 Looking Stylish And Already Working Side By Side With Prince Harry
Arriving at the reception for the Commonwealth Youth Forum, where Prince Harry was announced as the new Commonwealth Youth Ambassador, Meghan Markle draped her blazer over her shoulders wearing this gorgeous midi dress from Australian designer, Altuzarra, with button details and black stilettos. With minimal jewelry, Markle just added a small black-and-white striped cross body bag from Australian brand, Oroton. The Commonwealth Youth Forum "aims to promote cross-cultural connections to achieve consensus among youth leaders on the policies required to address the challenges and opportunities facing young people," the CYF site states. Markle broke tradition by attending the event with Prince Harry since it is "typically unusual for someone who has not yet married into the royal family to be involved in a high-profile occasion like the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting Summit, which the Commonwealth Youth Forum falls under," E! News reported. However, Prince Harry was excited to have his future wife alongside him at the forum, stating, "I am also incredibly grateful that the woman I am about to marry, Meghan, will be joining me in this work, of which she too is hugely excited to take part in."
2 Meghan Opts For All Black For Anzac Day Service
Meghan Markle joined Prince Harry and Prince William for the annual Service and Commemoration and Thanksgiving at Westminster Abbey in London. The service marked Anzac Day, a day that honors the members of the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps who've served and died in wars, conflicts and peacekeeping operations. Markle opted to wear a skirt suit from New Zealand designer, Emilia Wickstead, for the commemorative service and a hat from Irish milliner, Philip Treacy, which featured a dragonfly on it. She accessorized her look with a gold clutch bag from Jimmy Choo and a small amount of sparkle with a pair of Cartier Galanterie earrings. Vogue described the suit skirt as having a "retro silhouette" with a "cropped, boxy jacket" and a "below-the-knee skirt [that] had an elegant 60's vibe." "[T]he look was reminiscent of the fashionable American First Lady Jackie Kennedy overall," Vogue said, adding, "The latest turn demonstrates Markle's growing sense of ease and confidence with her fashion choices for royal engagements. The demure suiting came with just the right directional touch thanks to its textural feel." The all-black outfit was a different look for Meghan, but it was highly appropriate for the service.
1 How Will Her Wedding Dress Look? Who Will Design It?
Meghan Markle and Prince Harry are set to wed on May 19th, at Windsor Castle in England. All eyes will be on Markle as she walks down the aisle. So who is the lucky designer that will be responsible for creating her wedding dress? According to Town & Country, the rumor is that Australian designer, Ralph & Russo, who Markel has worn before are crafting the dress. However, there have been many speculations and even online betting sites that think it could be anyone from Erdem, Roland Mouret, Jenny Packham, and Alexander McQueen. Whatever Markle wears, she will look stunning, but it's reported that the Queen herself has to give the final approval. According to Hello! magazine, it was a tradition for Queen Elizabeth to give her seal of approval. The Queen was reported to give the OK to Princess Kate's Alexander McQueen wedding dress when she got married in 2011. Harper's Bazaar reported that Markle's dress will likely cost six figures, with the royal family paying for the lavish gown. Also, with Markle being so fashion-savvy, it's said that she has been very hands-on with its design. "She has a keen sense of fashion and knows what she likes and also what suits her, which, of course, is another benefit of being a working actress," royal expert, Melanie Bromley, stated. Whatever Markle ends up walking down the aisle in, we're sure it'll be stunning and maybe even breaks just a little tradition.
References: goodhousekeeping.com, matchesfashion.com, harpersbazaar.com, thesun.co.uk, narcity.com, popsugar.com, businessinsider.com, glamour.com, elle.com, news.com.au, fashionista.com, townandcountrymag.com, hellogiggles.com, eonline.com