Kate Middleton wore something really special to meet Queen Letizia of Spain

The heirloom hasn’t been seen in 30 years

kate middleton necklace
(Image credit: 2017 Max Mumby/Indigo)

The heirloom hasn’t been seen in 30 years

The Duchess of Cambridge attended Queen Letitia of Spain a special banquet in honour of the State visit of the King and Queen of Spain, and chose to wear something with special meaning for the occasion.

To go with her Marchesa gown, Kate borrowed a stunning necklace from the Queen, and what makes it even more special is that it hasn’t been seen in public for 30 years.

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The Queen Elizabeth Bandeau Necklace is quite a lavish affair, featuring a diamond flowers and rubies, and finished off with a single suspended diamond.

kate middleton

It was bought by Lady Greville from Boucheron in 1907, who later left it to her friend the Queen Mother when she passed away in 1942.

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Queen Elizabeth wearing the necklace in 1963

The Queen Mother then gifted it to Queen Elizabeth on her wedding day. Her majesty had it shortened so it was easier to wear, and wore it to a few royal engagements herself, the last being an opera gala during a state visit to Sweden in 1983.

That means it was last worn 34 years ago, which makes it all the more special.

Penny Goldstone

Penny Goldstone is the Digital Fashion Editor at Marie Claire, covering everything from catwalk trends to royal fashion and the latest high street and Instagram must-haves.

Penny grew up in France and studied languages and law at the Sorbonne Nouvelle University in Paris before moving to the UK for her MA in multimedia journalism at Bournemouth University. She moved to the UK permanently and has never looked back (though she does go back regularly to stock up on cheese and wine).

Although she's always loved fashion - she used to create scrapbooks of her favourite trends and looks, including Sienna Miller and Kate Moss' boho phase - her first job was at MoneySavingExpert.com, sourcing the best deals for everything from restaurants to designer sales.

However she quit after two years to follow her true passion, fashion journalism, and after many years of internships and freelance stints at magazines including Red, Cosmopolitan, Stylist and Good Housekeeping, landed her dream job as the Digital Fashion Editor at Marie Claire UK.

Her favourite part of the job is discovering new brands and meeting designers, and travelling the world to attend events and fashion shows. Seeing her first Chanel runway IRL at Paris Fashion Week was a true pinch-me moment.