How the 'dressing gown coat' became Meghan Markle's signature winter silhouette

Caroline Leaper
Meghan Markle in Edinburgh today, wearing Burberry and Strathberry - Getty Images Europe

Every member of the royal family who has ever shown desire to be considered a style plate has owned a personal series of fashion signatures - the Duchess of Cambridge is synonymous with nude stilettos and Alexander McQueen, for example, while the Queen has her Launer London handbags, technicolour skirt suits and silk headscarves at Balmoral.

Establishing a level of consistency in her wardrobe is something Meghan Markle is now also clearly keen to do - in her old life it was fine to flit between old favourite red carpet designers and up-and-coming names, but now there will be a strategy in place to ensure that she uses her platform to boost a balance of home and away brands, look modern yet timeless, juggle thriftiness and glamour, and all manner of other considerations that she didn’t previously need to think about when she was simply ‘getting dressed’.

Arriving in Edinburgh today with her fiancé Prince Harry, Markle made efforts to cement the first pillars of her own royal fashion repertoire, wearing British brands as she visited the city’s castle. As well as a commitment to Strathberry (the Edinburgh-based handbag brand was relatively under the radar until she carried one of their Tri-Colour Totes in December) today’s look also cemented a favourite silhouette.

Meghan Markle wearing a Mackage coat and Strathberry bag in Nottingham in December

Markle’s ‘dressing gown coat’, as we’ve dubbed them on the fashion desk, today came from Burberry. A £1,995 tartan design in a wool and cashmere blend, it delighted the Scottish crowds and tied nicely with her bottle green East/West crossbody from Strathberry, priced at around £273.

It’s a silhouette that, if styled badly, can drown the wearer. But Markle has worn one to every outdoor event she’s attended since becoming engaged to Prince Harry (imagine the double-height wardrobe required to store them all) including wrap styles from Stella McCartney, a button-front Sentaler and a military-influenced Mackage peacoat.

Artfully belting the gown coat, leaving the front open to reveal a slimmer-line outfit underneath (weather permitting) or pulling it together with a crossbody bag in a contrasting colour are all tricks to note if you’re conscious of losing your figure in a top-to-toe, cocooning silhouette.

If modesty is the new policy for Markle, who is in the process of switching out her favourite red carpet miniskirts and adapting to the Queen’s ‘no knees’ policy, then the message is clear - she couldn’t get more covered up than in the all-covering, cover-up.

Three of the best: Elongated winter coats

topshop

 Dressing gown coat, £175, topshop.com

burberry

  Double-breasted tartan coat, £1,995,  Burberry at net-a-porter.com (same as Meghan Markle's)

jigsaw

 Grace coat, £252, jigsaw-online.com