Kate Middleton Honored Princess Diana at Her First State Dinner as Princess of Wales

Catherine, Princess of Wales during the State Banquet
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On Tuesday night, King Charles hosted the first state dinner of his reign, welcoming South Africa’s President Cyril Ramaphosa to Buckingham Palace for the banquet. It was an evening of firsts, including William and Kate’s first formal event as the Prince and Princess of Wales, titles they took on upon Charles’ ascension to the throne. In honor of the big moment, Kate took the opportunity to pay homage to the last Princess of Wales, her late mother-in-law, Diana.

For the event, Kate wore a white Jenny Packham cape gown with structured, embellished shoulders. On her head, atop a neat bun, Kate wore the Lover’s Knot tiara, which was frequently worn by Diana during her time in the monarchy. According to Vanity Fair, Queen Mary initially commissioned the piece from the jewelry company Garrard in 1914. It then passed to Queen Elizabeth II’s collection upon Mary’s death in 1953, and she began lending it to Diana starting in 1981. Kate’s array of jewels were completed with the late queen’s bracelet and diamond and pearl drop earrings, which also belonged to Diana.

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Similarly, Queen Camilla borrowed some jewels from former monarchs, wearing the late queen’s sapphire tiara and a matching necklace with her blue Bruce Oldfield gown. The necklace was a wedding gift to Elizabeth from George VI, and she later had the necklace made to match. Both Kate and Camilla pinned the yellow Royal Family Order in the form of a bow with the image of the late queen on their dresses. Kate, meanwhile, also wore the star and blue sash of the Royal Victorian Order across her torso.

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It was a day of historic jewels as earlier in the afternoon, Kate welcomed Ramaphosa wearing another pair of diamond and pearl drop earrings from Diana, as well as a brooch favored by the late princess.