The Duchess of Cambridge, Kate Middleton, was seen wearing a tiara for the largest annual receptions at Buckingham Palace. The Duchess looked determined to shine as she arrived for the Diplomatic Reception in a chauffeur-driven Bentley.
With her long, dark locks swept back in a half-up half-down hairstyle to show off the delicate diamonds to their best advantage, the 31-year-old looked more regal than ever. She was wearing a bespoke evening gown by Alexander McQueen.
Kensington Palace confirmed that the tiara had belonged to Princess Margaret. It is a particularly delicate diamond tiara of fanned motifs crowned by floating diamond arches and studded with two pearls at the base and a central top pearl.
The tiara captured headlines last night because this gem is unique. It was made from one of her wedding gifts, a necklace of a Greek key pattern with pendant diamonds and pearls given by her husband, the future George VI. Jewellers Garrard dismantled it and created a tiara instead.
The Queen Mother often wore it as a young woman before handing it down to her youngest daughter, Princess Margaret, who also loaned it to Serena Stanhope for her wedding to Margaret’s son Viscount Linley.
Although Prince William and his wife have studiously avoided attending any state banquets since their wedding (when a tiara is obligatory), claiming they are left to senior working royals, tonight’s reception was something of a three-line whip.
There are 172 Foreign Missions currently accredited to the Court of St James’s in London, because St. James’s Palace is still the senior palace and official residence of the Sovereign.
Each year the Queen throws a lavish reception in their honour, where members of the royal family make a point of meeting and greeting each one.