For the first time in nearly three years and first time as Princess of Wales, Kate Middleton sported a tiara on Tuesday as Buckingham Palace welcomed the President of South Africa, Cyril Ramaphosa, into the United Kingdom. It was a special day, with it being the first state visit since Queen Elizabeth II died.
Kate Middleton, along with her husband – Prince William – met Ramaphosa at the Corinthia Hotel early on Tuesday and ushered him to the Horse Guards Parade, where King Charles III and Queen Camilla were waiting. After the ceremonial welcoming, the group took a carriage up to Buckingham Palace.
The tiara Middleton chose to wear was Queen Mary’s Lover’s Knot – one of Princess Diana’s favorite tiaras. Commissioned by Queen Mary in 1913 from Britain’s House of Garrard, the lovely tiara is an exact replica of the one her grandmother – Princess Augusta of Hesse, the Duchess of Cambridge – owned.
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The last time Middleton wore the Lover’s Knot tiara was in December 2019 during a Diplomatic Corps reception. She famously paired it with a long-sleeved navy velvet gown by Alexander McQueen – the same person who designed her wedding dress, which she wore on April 29, 2011 during a special day.
As for the state visit with Ramaphosa, Middleton paired the stunning and sparkling tiara with a white gown by Jenny Packham, the Royal Family order (near the left shoulder), and the Dame Grand Cross of the Royal Victorian Order star (on her left hip) and sash (across her body). She looked absolutely stunning.
Kate Middleton added a little flare to her outfit with the addition of a beautiful pearl bracelet that came from Queen Elizabeth’s jewelry box and the Bahrain pearl drop earrings from Princess Diana’s jewelry box – the same earrings Middleton wore on November 13th during the National Service of Remembrance.
Her husband, on the other hand, wore a black suit with a white bowtie. He had the Garter Star and the Thistle Star on his left jacket, and three smaller medals above them– one for each of his grandmother’s jubilees he attended (Gold in 2002, Diamond in 2012, and Platinum most recently in 2022).
Kate Middleton Wasn’t the Only One Making Her Tiara Debut
Not only did Kate Middleton make her tiara debut as Princess of Wales, but Queen Camilla made her tiara debut since King Charles III took the throne – following the passing of Queen Elizabeth II. Her tiara, which was worn by Queen Elizabeth II in a state visit in 2015, was fitted with diamonds and sapphires.
There were several other members of the Royal Family in attendance, including Prince Edward (Earl of Wessex and Forfar), his wife Sophia (Countess of Wessex and Forfar), Prince Richard (Duke of Gloucester), his wife Birgitte (Duchess of Gloucester), and Prince Edward (Duke of Kent).
In a video posted by The Royal Family on Twitter, King Charles III and Queen Camilla were shown inside the banquet hall to inspect the table before the State Banquet began. The table was fitted with more than 100 candles, seasonal fruit displays, flower arrangements, and other beautiful, historic centerpieces.
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As for what was on the menu for the night, attendees were given ‘grilled brill with wild mushrooms and truffles in sorrel sauce and ballotine of Windsor pheasant filled with artichokes, quince compote and port sauce’ – according to PEOPLE. If not full already, they had caramelized apples and iced vanilla parfait.
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