Red-carpet looks to real-life buys – for a fraction of the original price

Looking at how a number of iconic celebrity outfits have been half-inched by online retailers.

Kate Middleton, Duchess Of Cambridge, at a 2012 Olympic Gala. Mark Cuthbert / UK Press via Getty Images
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Do you recall the peacock­green gown that the Duchess of ­Cambridge, Kate ­Middleton, wore at the 2012 Olympic Gala? The dress in question was designed by Jenny Packham, and featured an ornately embellished lace back and cap sleeves, with a pleated bodice and jewelled belt. It was an exclusive rendition of the designer's famous Aspen gown, which in its simplest forms costs about Dh20,000. But online, the dress is available for Dh620. Granted, it's not an original Jenny Packham, but online at, it's promised that the dress will appear exactly as it looks in the image of the duchess wearing it on the red carpet. To date, the online retailer has sold more than 700 pieces of the ­replica dress, showing that knock-off ­designer gowns are quite popular in today's internet age, for everyone from school girls on the hunt for prom outfits to brides in need of trendy wedding dresses.

There are other celebrity dresses that have become iconic, and have quickly become available online after a star is seen wearing it.

At this year’s Academy Awards, Beyoncé traded in her sparkly leotards for an elegant floor-length white dress by Stella McCartney. Online at the same site, a replica is available for Dh585.

Gwyneth Paltrow wore a one-shouldered pink Ralph & Russo gown at the ­Academy Awards, complete with an oversized rosette on the shoulder. At ­, a copied dress is available for Dh440.

Nina Dobrev made a striking statement in a red Reem Acra gown with midriff cutouts at this year's Vanity Fair Oscar Party. At, a knock-off costs Dh805 – a ­"special price".

While shooting the TV series Gossip Girl in 2010, Blake Lively wore a glamorous grey lace gown by the Lebanese designer Zuhair Murad. It's quite a popular number on more than one replica-­gown sites, selling for Dh840 at ­