Happy Birthday, Kate! A Look Back At The Duchess' Old-School Wild Style

Happy birthday, Duchess of Cambridge! Here's to the last birthday the royal couple will get to celebrate as a twosome. In honor of Kate's big three-one, we started digging through the vast photo archives of her, reveling in how polished and poised the People's Princess always appears. So consistently, in fact, that when it comes to Kate, there are very few surprises. (Seriously. Try to find a picture with her hair in a ponytail.)
But we kept digging, and suddenly we remembered: Kate was a college kid when she met William, long before she officially became the Mrs., moved into the palace, and began reining in her free-spirited, mini-skirt-wearing tendencies. So while we love the well-appointed mom-to-be, let's remember when she used to let her funky freak flag fly.
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This is the Kate you know and love. And for whom a night out means long sleeves, a high neck, and a glass of water. Photo: Rex USA
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We were shocked to find this picture — not because Kate looks bad, but because she never wears a hemline that short anymore. And with legs like that, girl, it's a crime to hide 'em. What's not a crime, however, is Kate's natural, unbidden smile. Love this carefree alter ego.

Photo: Rotello/MCP/Rex/Rex USA
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Here, we have all the elements of a classic look, though one that's a tad rough around the edges. That hat! So jaunty. And the jacket and scarf! So very post-collegiate in a 2010 way. Not to mention, that's a fine move you got going on there, Ms. Middleton.

Photo: Rex USA.
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Sure, she was dressing for an '80s rollerskating theme party, for charity. But she continues to do plenty of philanthropic work and it never involves this much leg. The Queen and company could learn a thing of two from this.

Photo: Rex USA
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A plunging v-neck and a slippery salmon gown, if salmon liked attending warehouse raves. This Kate is clearly one who's not yet imagined herself residing in Buckingham Palace. Which makes it even more awesome.

Photo: Rex USA
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Ah, yes, the traditional celebrity-exiting-car photo, which Kate has always been able to manage gracefully and cooter-free. Though nowadays, we're guessing she's even more guarded until she assumes an upright, hands-clasped position.

Photo: Rex USA.
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Belly shirt + Olsen-twin bobo = enough said.

Photo: Rotello/MCP/Rex/Rex USA
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This picture is actually just a few months old, but we still see a glimmer of the wild child in you, Kate. Have a great one.

Photo: Tim Rooke/Rex/Rex USA
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