Princess Kate once again borrowed from the late Queen Elizabeth’s trove of spectacular jewels to meet with international dignitaries.
The royal paired a sparkling, deep red Jenny Packham gown with a set of diamond earrings borrowed from the monarch’s collection, as well as the rarely-seen Lotus Flower Tiara, to attend the annual Reception for Members of the Diplomatic Corps at Buckingham Palace on Tuesday. Kate last wore this particular headpiece originally fashioned out of a necklace in 2015 to a state banquet held for Chinese President Xi Jinping, and prior to that, she wore it to another Diplomatic Reception in 2013, marking the first time it has been seen in over a decade. Queen Consort Camilla also borrowed from her late mother-in-law’s collection for the evening, opting for her Belgian Sapphire Tiara.
The Lotus Flower Tiara originally belonged to the Queen Mother, Queen Elizabeth I, who fashioned it out of a necklace she received as a wedding gift in 1923 from her husband King George who purchased it from Garrand. The piece features diamonds and pearls arranged in a meander and festoon design. The tiara was then gifted to her daughter, Princess Margaret, in 1959 and it became one of her most frequently worn accessories. Prior to her death in 2002, she returned the tiara to the royal vaults before it was revived by Princess Kate in 2013. The Belgian Sapphire Tiara was purchased by Queen Elizabeth to complement a sapphire necklace, earrings, bracelet, and ring gifted to her by her father King George as a wedding present in 1947. The pieces were about a century old and reportedly made around 1850. In 1963, the monarch purchased a nineteenth-century sapphire necklace that once belonged to Princess Louise of Saxe-Gotha-Altenburg to go with that collection, converting it into a tiara which she wore frequently from the ’60s until the early ’90s.
Since assuming her new title as the Princess of Wales, Kate has been frequently borrowing from the royal vaults. During an outing in Boston last week in support of her husband Prince William‘s 2022 Earthshot Prize, the royal wore a bright green Solace London dress which she paired with a very special Windsor family heirloom—a cabochon emerald and diamond choker necklace that once belonged to Princess Diana. The necklace was a gift from Queen Elizabeth II upon Diana’s 1981 marriage to King Charles III, and the late princess went on to make headlines at the time for once wearing it as a headband.
And late last month, Kate wore her first tiara since becoming Princess of Wales, choosing the Lover’s Knot tiara also frequently worn by Princess Diana, as well as a bracelet that once belonged to the queen for a banquet held in honor of the state visit of South Africa’s President Cyril Ramaphosa. Camilla borrowed a piece from the late monarch as well, choosing Queen Elizabeth’s sapphire tiara and matching necklace for the event.
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