The Interesting History Behind One Of Princess Diana and Kate Middleton’s Favorite Tiaras

Special occasions in the royal family often call for the women to dress in formal wear and precious gems. The glamorous outfits and sparkly baubles are lovely to look at, but we’re not talking about fashion trends today. We’re talking about THE Lover’s Knot Tiara, one loaned to Princess Diana by Queen Elizabeth for her wedding in 1981 and part of the royal family’s jewelry collection.

Kate Middleton wearing tiara
Duchess of Cambridge wearing Lover’s Knot tiara | Getty Images/Max Mumby/Indigo

The headpiece was a top choice for the Princess of Wales

Since marrying Kate Middleton, Prince William has been known to share his mother’s jewels with his wife. This gorgeous tiara is no exception, and the duchess has been seen wearing it on several formal occasions. Both Duchess Catherine and Princess Diana have been regarded as fashion-forward ladies who put their own spin on their wardrobes, but this crown has an interesting history.

The Lover’s Knot was one of Diana’s favorites, and features diamonds and pearls from the royal family’s collection. The piece was created generations ago by House of Garrard jewelers for Queen Mary and was modeled after the original Cambridge Lover’s Knot. Yes, there are two of them in existence!

It’s more than a century old

The Court Jeweller, a site that specializes in British history and royal jewels, notes that in 1818, the then-Duke of Cambridge gifted the Lover’s Knot tiara to his bride, Princess Augusta of Hesse. Years later, she passed it down to her own daughter, who happened to be Queen Mary’s aunt. Queen Mary so admired her aunt’s diadem that she wanted to have her own version crafted.

Princess Diana wearing the Cambridge Lover’s Knot Tiara | Tim Graham/Getty Images

With pearls and diamonds plucked from various other pieces, a new Lover’s Knot tiara was born in 1913. According to Vogue, it contains 38 pearls and 19 “diamond arches.” Queen Mary passed down the eye-catching stunner to her granddaughter, Queen Elizabeth II in 1953. Since then, it’s been worn by Princess Diana and her daughter-in-law, the Duchess of Cambridge.

Always an attention-grabber, the tiara has often been snapped in photos and written about in headlines as part of the Princess of Wales’s wardrobe. Ironically, she loved the piece, but she found it to be heavy and headache-inducing and would sometimes opt for jewelry from the Spencer family collection instead.

The Queen Mary Lover’s Knot is now in Kate Middleton’s rotation

Out of the few times that the duchess has worn a headpiece, the Lover’s Knot has been her go-to accessory four times. Her last outing with the tiara was in October of last year for the annual Diplomatic Reception at Buckingham Palace. It was the perfect complement to her white gown along with a set of earrings from Princess Diana’s personal collection.

Before that, she attended a state banquet during the summer of 2018 where she also wore a pair of pearl and diamond earrings that were a favorite of her late mother-in-law. We’re sure she would love seeing how beautiful these jewels look on the duchess.

Seeing as to how these items are kept in the family and eventually handed down, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see Princess Charlotte follow in her mother’s fashionable and regal footsteps someday and wearing the famous Lover’s Knot.

Prince Harry has also shared some of his mother’s sparkle with his wife, Meghan Markle. Her lovely engagement ring includes two diamonds from Princess Diana’s collection. Both princes share these sentimental heirlooms with the women they love as a way to keep a part of their mom close. As far as the original Cambridge Lover’s Knot tiara, it is unclear whether it’s under royal lock and key or sitting in someone’s private stash.