Does Meghan Markle’s latest evening look – a classic little black dress with a statement neckline, belted waist and pencil-style skirt – give you a creeping sense of déjà vu? That’s probably because you’ve seen the style in question many, many times before, albeit perhaps worn in a different colourway, or with different accessories, on many, many other celebrities.
The dress we’re talking about, which Meghan wore to attend the Commonwealth Women’s Empowerment reception hosted by foreign secretary Boris Johnson, is the Jackie O style by Los Angeles-based label Black Halo. Since it launched back in 2006 (when co-founder and designer Lauren Berman found that her tops would become untucked from her high-waisted pencil skirt frustratingly often) the sophisticated style has been championed by a veritable who’s who of Hollywood, with high profile fans including (deep breath) Kim Kardashian, Britney Spears, Tyra Banks, Fergie, Scarlett Johansson and Blake Lively. By 2012, it had proved so ubiquitous that Jezebel named it ‘the dress that won’t die’ (a backhanded compliment if there ever was one…)
The simple but glamorous style, which retails at an accessible prince point of around $375, has since become a mainstay for the brand, now available in a range of colours from white to burgundy to tan. The black version, as worn by Meghan, is the most popular, according to a 2013 brand profile in the Wall Street Journal. ‘If I don’t have 500 black Jackies in the warehouse at all times, I could be in trouble,’ Sean Pattison, Berman’s husband and Black Halo’s co-founder, told the paper.
While the dress certainly didn’t need a publicity boost, the so-called ‘Meghan effect’ will surely only create further demand for the Jackie O.
See the stars who've worn the 'Jackie O' in the gallery below...
Meghan kept things simple and classic in the black version of the cult style for a Commonwealth Empowering Women reception.
The former Grey's Anatomy star wore the Jackie O in blue for the Peter Alexander boutique opening back in 2008.
Hey there, throwback Kim K! Before she became the most famous person in the universe, Kim wore the Jackie O in white for a 944 magazine party in 2007.
In the earl days of Gossip Girl, Blake Lively wore the style in white for a CW presentation.
Taraji P. Henson
Taraji P. Henson chose a mint green version with a light pinstripe with matchy-matchy accessories (this was 2009, after all) for the premiere of The Taking Of Pelham 123.
Tyra (who also owns the Jackie O in purple, fyi) wore the dress in khaki for a New York Times event in 2009.