I have been asked time and time again why in the world I like to #replikate. Why it is that I have a fascination with the Duchess of Cambridge and the Duchess of Sussex and, even more so, why do I copy their fashion? People even want to know where my passion for royalty came from.

If I look back, I truly believe the attraction to British Royalty came from watching my mother mourn the death of Diana, Princess of Wales. At the time of her death I would have only been 9 years old and, as a general rule of thumb, I don’t have the best memory. However, I do remember the intensity with which my mom watched the news coverage. I do remember how devastated she was by Diana’s death. I do remember my mom talking about how Diana loved her boys so much and how refreshing that was for her to see.

Flash forward to 2011 and I had my first personal experience of indulging in royal watching. The wedding of Prince William to Kate Middleton was a fairy tale – there are no other words to describe it. I woke up early to watch it and have followed Kate ever since. I anxiously awaited every birth announcement and seeing the Duchess of Cambridge attend her first royal engagements.

Jumping to 2017, it was not surprise that my obsession with the British Royal Family grew even deeper when Meghan came on the scene. As an avid watcher of Suits, I was already familiar with Meghan and was so excited to see her join the royal family. I remember saying to my mom that she was “made for royal life” because of her sincerity when dealing with people and interest in humanitarian works.

Not to mention the incredible fashion. And man-oh-man was the fashion tremendous. It was around this time that I found the community of #replikaters and #mirrormegers that I love so much. I loved seeing amazing women across the world rock these royal outfits in their everyday lives. And I wanted that too. With a limited budget, though, I set out to recreate these stunning looks in my own way – through second hand shopping.

My passion for shopping second hand really flourished when I started recreating Kate and Meghan’s looks. I learned about cut, fabric, brand, and care. I learned how to flatter my own body. I learned about patience (because let me tell you to thrift takes patience). I learned how to use the Duchess of Sussex and the Duchess of Cambridge’s brilliant styles as inspiration and to put my own spin on different looks.

For me, it’s not about dressing like Kate or rocking the exact same look as Meghan. It’s about developing my own sense of style and what works for me all while learning and experimenting with fashion in a fun and sustainable way.

This is also why we created Your Royal Closet. We know that shopping second hand can sometimes seem less than glamorous. We know that if you’re out there searching for pieces in thrift shops and consignment stores, it can be daunting. We want to make second hand shopping for #mirrormeg and #replikate pieces the best possible experience for you, so that you too can learn to develop and experiment with your own style all while taking cues from the best of the best.