There’s no denying royal ladies have access to some of the most beautiful – and expensive – jewellery collections in the world, especially when they often loan pieces to one another.
Catherine, Princess of Wales, has been known to wear sparkling pieces from her own jewellery box, as well as styles borrowed from the Queen herself.
The royal mum-of-three also inherited a wealth of heirloom pieces from her late mother-in-law Princess Diana when she married Prince William back in 2011, including her iconic engagement ring.
But through the years a clear pattern has emerged when it comes to Catherine’s jewellery; she consistently favours significant and sentimental pieces over flashy and over-the-top jewels.
Often opting for understated pieces like charm necklaces and delicate drop earrings, the princess likes to make subtle statements with her jewels and often pays tribute to family members past and present through the diamonds and pearls she wears.
In honour of her unique approach to royal jewellery, we’ve collected some of her most significant pieces and revealed the stories behind the glittering gemstones she wears.
Keep scrolling to explore Catherine’s generous catalogue of significant jewels.
Catherine dazzled with a stunning Jess Collet x Alexander McQueen head topper at the coronation of King Charles that consisted of a regal arrangement of shimmering silver bullion, crystal, and silver thread leaf embroidery that peaked in the centre of the creation.
For the first Platinum Jubilee since 2019, Catherine paid homage to her late mother-in-law by wearing her sapphire earrings. Princess Diana wore the pair on a few occasions, including during a visit to Canada in 1991, at the 1996 Met Gala, and a dinner hosted by Emperor Hirohito in Japan. Kate styled the sapphires with a recycled white Alexander McQueen coat dress.
The iconic engagement ring
It’s no wonder Catherine’s engagement ring is so significant, given it was originally selected from a catalogue and worn by the late Princess Diana. After her death the ring passed to Prince Harry, who later exchanged it with William so he could use the stunning ring to propose to Catherine.
Custom wedding earrings
At first glance these earrings seem significant only because Catherine wore them on the day of her royal wedding, but the elegant drop style have a second hidden meaning. Presented to the princess by her own parents as a wedding gift, the design features oak leaves and acorns, both of which appear on the Middleton family coat of arms.
Middleton family charm necklace
Catherine continued the Middleton family theme in this delicate charm necklace by British jeweler Asprey, which she has been photographed wearing countless times through the years. It also bears symbols of the Middleton coat of arms, including a diamond-encrusted acorn, and an oak leaf charm.
Diana’s pearl drop earrings
In 1981 Diana’s family jewellers, Collingwood Jewellers, gifted her these stunning pearl-drop earrings ahead of her wedding. Now Catherine regularly wears the jewels she inherited from her late mother-in-law, even donning this set for her appearance at the 2019 BAFTAs where she paid a subtle tribute to Diana.
Diana’s sapphire earrings
Catherine has been spotted wearing this earring set she inherited from Diana on several occasions throughout her time as a royal, from as early as 2012 to as recently as 2022. They’re understood to have been a wedding gift from Prince William and are extra special as they originally belonged to the original Princess of Wales.
Cambridge children necklaces
There’s no doubt about how much Catherine adores her children; in fact, when it comes to Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis she likes to wear her heart on her sleeve. or should we say, around her neck. The duchess has several necklaces that honour her children, including this on with three delicate pendants, each one bearing one of her children’s initials.
Cambridge children necklaces
Catherine has also been spotted in this necklace which has three charms in the shape of each of her children’s initials, arranged in the order they were born.
Cambridge children necklaces
And yet another one! This simple chain carries a pendant with the children’s initials engraved in shining gold.
The Queen’s chandelier earrings
These chandelier-style diamond earrings Catherine wore to the BAFTAs in 2011 were on loan to the newlywed royal from Queen Elizabeth for one of her first major outings after marrying into the monarchy. Though she hasn’t been spotted in them often, they were a symbol of Her Majesty welcoming Catherine into the royal fold.
The Queen’s pearl necklace
A decade later, Her Majesty loaned Catherine this stunning four-strand pearl choker to wear as the royal family attended Prince Philip’s funeral in April, 2021. The Queen often wore the piece in the ’80s and ’90s, and it was also worn by Princess Diana in the Netherlands once, so it carries plenty of royal significance.
Gold and diamond set
This glittering set Catherine war to the War Horse premiere may seem relatively subdued, but the jewels carry very special significance as they were gifted to her by King Charles after she married Prince William in 2011. They also come with a royal price tag; the set is worth an estimated $275,000.
‘C’ charm bracelet
Speaking of royal gifts, we can’t go past this stunning charm bracelet Camilla, Queen Consort, gave Catherine when she wed into the royal family. The gold bracelet The bracelet features a disc engraved with both of the women’s monograms; on one side it bears a coronet and a ‘C’ for Catherine, while on the other it has a crown and a ‘C’ for Camilla.