How Kate Middleton Put A Longstanding Royal Rumor About Princess Diana To Rest

Kate Middleton's style has changed through the years, but she's always been her own kind of fashion icon. The Princess of Wales has many signature tricks when it comes to her wardrobe, and fans now expect to see certain details incorporated into her fashion. One thing Middleton is known for is honoring those who came before her. She's borrowed wardrobe items from fellow royals and paid homage to her in-laws through the jewelry she wears. Another fashion habit that Middleton is known for is repeating outfits. While some might consider this a fashion "don't," Middleton is never afraid to wear a favorite piece more than once. So, it really comes as no surprise that Middleton chose to wear a pair of earrings that her late mother-in-law wore time and time again. And, in doing so, she squashed rumors that these earrings had been revamped.

Middleton and Princess Diana have their fashion icon status in common. Another thing Middleton has in common with her mother-in-law is a desire to use her princess-hood to improve the world. Middleton's project, Shaping Us, is seen by many as her chance to make "generational change." Per InStyle, in November 2023, Middleton headed to The Design Museum in London to appear at the Shaping Us National Symposium. She sported a bold purple pantsuit by Emilia Wickstead, and the bright outfit choice certainly put all eyes on her. But, it was Diana's iconic pair of earrings that she paired with her suit that really got people talking. 

Fans were thrilled to see Princess Diana's original earrings again

When Kate Middleton gave the keynote speech at an event for her Shaping Us campaign, she donned a pair of Princess Diana's favorite earrings. Each drop earring is comprised of two sapphires and diamond clusters, and Diana fans know this particular pair well. She wore them on many occasions — even sporting it at important events, like the 1996 Met Gala and on the cover of British Vogue in 1994. 

This pair of earrings was such an important piece of Diana's wardrobe that it piqued public interest when they weren't seen after her death. A longstanding rumor claimed that the iconic earrings had perhaps been fashioned into another pair, since Middleton spent a decade sporting a similar, smaller pair on and off. Middleton's single-sapphire earrings worried many Princess Diana fans, since re-cutting the gems would have severely altered an important piece of royal fashion history. So, it was a pleasant surprise when the original drop earrings made a very public reappearance on Middleton's ears. This proved that Middleton's single-sapphire earrings and Diana's classic double-sapphire pair weren't one and the same, after all. In an interview with People, jewelry historian Lauren Kiehna explained, "The sapphires in Diana's earrings are cabochons, and the sapphires in Kate's smaller earrings are faceted. The claim [that they were the same pair] has now been fully debunked as Kate has now worn the double cluster earrings."  

Why these earrings are particularly close to Middleton's heart

In light of the rumors surrounding this classic pair of earrings, folks were thrilled to see the recognizable accessory — especially at an event that was so similar to the kinds of philanthropic projects that Diana was known for. Yet, eagle-eyed fans may have actually spotted the famous earrings on Kate Middleton before. She wore them for the first time publicly in 2022 and has sported them a few times since. It's no wonder that Middleton loves these earrings — for reasons beyond their icon status. It's the perfect match for another piece from Princess Diana's jewelry collection that Middleton inherited: her engagement ring. 

Prince William passed on a beloved family heirloom to his wife — proposing to her with his mother's sapphire ring with diamond clusters. According to Middleton, Diana's ring fit her perfectly when she first tried it on, proving that she and her mother-in-law will always be linked. And, now that she's sporting one of Diana's favorite matching jewelry pieces, she's got a perfect matching set that honors her late mother-in-law in the sweetest way.