The timeless outfit Carole Middleton wore the night before Kate's wedding featured a summer wardrobe essential 

Carole looked so chic when she stepped out on the evening before Kate's big day in 2011

LONDON, ENGLAND - MAY 06: Carole Middleton, Catherine, Princess of Wales's mother arrives at the Coronation of King Charles III and Queen Camilla on May 6, 2023 in London, England. The Coronation of Charles III and his wife, Camilla, as King and Queen of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, and the other Commonwealth realms takes place at Westminster Abbey today. Charles acceded to the throne on 8 September 2022, upon the death of his mother, Elizabeth II. (Photo by Andrew Milligan - WPA Pool/Getty Images)
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Kate Middleton and her family remain a permanent source of fashion inspiration for us. Even her mother, Carole Middleton has rarely put a foot wrong and knows the importance of investing in high-quality essentials that can be reworn in new ways. 

One specific summer essential, that remains at the top of our list, is a versatile summer coat or jacket. Back in 2011, Carole accompanied her daughters, Kate and Pippa, on the night before Kate’s wedding to the Goring Hotel in London, wearing the cropped cream jacket we all need in a capsule wardrobe

Catherine Middleton (R) is seen arriving with her mother Carole Middleton (M) and sister Pippa Middleton (L) at the Goring Hotel, where she will spend her last night as a single woman ahead of the Royal Wedding on April 28, 2011 in London, England.

(Image credit: Getty Images)

For the occasion, the night before the royal wedding, Carole wore a sleek black a-line dress with a cropped cream jacket over the top. With cropped three-quarter sleeves and curved edges, it was a smart, summery choice that many mother’s of the bride would wear for their daughter’s big day. 

Blazers and cropped blazers are one of the most versatile items to invest in, especially for wedding season each year. Need a light jacket that doesn't detract from your outfit? Why not try out a neutral coloured option that will always compliment and elevate your existing ensemble with a smart finish.

Shop Cropped Jackets

In 2024, cropped blazers similar to Carole’s are available at high-street favourites like H&M and Zara to high-end stories like Karen Millen. Choose from a relaxed or tailored fit to alter the shape of the outfit to either add sharp lines or an oversized feel to dress down a elegant number. 

Carole paired her look with black chunky kitten heels and a black shoulder bag to colour-coordinate her accessories with her dress. With a standout jacket like this cream cropped one in your wardrobe, you're ready for every occasion this summer. 

Jess Bacon

Jess Bacon is a freelance journalist, blogger and former editor with over six years of writing experience. As a screenwriter and journalist, Jess is keen to tell her own and other people’s stories through words, photos and film. She’s passionate about discussing young people's mental health, grief and feminism in life and how it's portrayed in the media, film and literature. Alongside her by-lines at renowned publications, Jess regularly speaks at charity events and festival panels about loss, mental health and Marvel. Along with her love of writing, Jess is an avid reader, spin enthusiast and dog-lover.