The Duchess Effect sees Le Chameau wellington sales soar after Kate wears them
THE 'Duchess Effect' has hit the wellington boot market as sales of Le Chameau footwear have reportedly risen sharply since Kate Middleton wore them to a charity camping event.
The Duchess of Cambridge was pictured wearing a £160 (€199) pair of Le Chameau Vierzonard wellingtons at the Expanding Horizons' primary school scheme at Widehorizons Margaret McMillan House in June.
Since then Wellie-web.co.uk has seen a 32 per cent increase in sales of the wellies.
Managing director Giles Palmer said: "We have very much seen a boost in our sales, which are up by 32 per cent.
"Sales in the wellies have also increased by 56 per cent year-on-year.
"We've also been inundated with enquiries for the boot she wears. They're very good boots and she must certainly know her wellies.
"If Kate wears a product, everyone wants to get hold of it."
Another retailer, Best Boots, has also seen higher sales - and have even been approached by other countries who want the shop to ship them over.
Derry Connors, managing director and owner, said: "We have noticed a reasonable increase in our sales, particularly in the items Kate wears.
"We've had a lot more interest since she was pictured in them, and even sales of a similar boot have increased.
"There have been a lot of enquiries for export from Australia and the US. Something like this always sparks a quake in sales figures."
The so-called 'Duchess effect' has previously boosted sales of Burberry trench-coats, Issa dresses and even spaniels like her own puppy Lupo - with sales soaring immediately after she is spotted in - or with - them.
The leather waistcoat Kate also wore on the countryside trip has already boosted stockist Really Wild Clothing Company's sales, despite its £415 (€515) price-tag.
And it seems Kate's fashion prowess is being adopted by men too - retailer Phillip Morris has been shifting an exact male's version too.
John Jones, Phillip Morris managing partner, said: "There's no doubt about it - our sales have improved since Kate was pictured in the wellies.
"I missed what was going and then was looking at a list of traffic on the site and was like 'something funny's going on here'.
"We have a segment called What Kate Wore and that was fifth or sixth on the list - behind big sites like Google and MSN, so it sparked a lot of interest.
"Figures across the Le Chameau range have increased. Men's boot sales are up too.
"There has been stuff she has worn before which has captured the imagination, but not to this extent. Festival season is starting and the Isle of Wight Festival was a quagmire so demand has gone up for wellies."
Karl Waktare, managing director of LLC Ltd which imports Le Chameau products into the UK, said: "Having the Duchess regularly pictured in Le Chameau is great news for us.
"The recent exposure has made the general public aware of what Le Chameau customers have known for years. Due to their build quality and enduring comfort, Le Chameau are 'the brand' of choice for true country people, like the Duchess.
"All Le Chameau boots are handmade by master boot makers and whilst they are not the cheapest boots on the market, their longevity means they offer excellent value for money."