Will Kate Look to Diana as Inspiration for India?

Will Kate Look to Diana as Inspiration for India?

amanda leonor contributor

My name is Amanda and I’ve been a long-time fan of Kate’s fashion since she started dating William. My grandmother and I bond over our mutual admiration for the Duchess and Queen Letitizia. I am from Spain, but currently living in Los Angeles pursuing a career in the entertainment industry.

After confirmation from the palace that William and Kate will tour India, comparisons quickly flew to Charles and Diana’s 1992 tour. It was certainly a rocky point in their marriage and would ultimately be one of the more public, visible displays of stress and unhappiness. However, that visit provided some of the most iconic photos of Diana, and will likely do the same for Kate. So, while it’s quite safe to assume that Kate probably avoids directly channeling her late mother-in-law as much as she can, she does emulate Diana’s choices in a modernized way for important moments.

diana kate 1
diana and kate middleton 2kate and princess diana

On the first day of Diana and Charles’ tour, they attended a banquet in Delhi. Pictured here, Diana looked stunning in a jewel-encrusted black gown, the Spencer tiara, and glittering diamond earrings.

diana india

Kate went the black and silver route with her bespoke Jenny Packham dress during the tour of New Zealand. Considering their tour down under was their most recent major tour, it might be an unlikely choice to select something so similar to her Jenny Packham dress unless it was a completely new style.

kates clothes wellington jenny p dress

A huge impetus for Diana’s visit to Calcutta was to meet with Mother Theresa. While the meeting didn’t take place that day, Diana’s compassion was evident as she interacted with residents of the hospice run by the convent’s nuns.

diana and mother teresa

What is absolutely amazing about this image is how fashion has both evolved and remained unchanged. The structure of the neckline and sleeves on Diana’s dress corresponds very well to so many dresses Kate has worn. The pastel shade of pink is a hue that Kate is very familiar with.  And if it wasn’t for the baby blue border, I might have trouble believing the dress is 24 years old.

Overall, it’s likely that there will be a slight nod to Charles and Diana. In the same way that they visited Ayers Rock in Australia, as seen above. But the comparisons might end there. Neither William nor Kate want to duplicate his parents, especially not during a time of considerable strain in their marriage.

My personal predictions

I’d love a Will and Kate joint visit to Taj Mahal. It would be a beautiful contrast to the image of Diana alone on the bench.

diana taj


While I hope there will be at least one evening gown, I have the feeling there won’t be anything longer than midi-length, unfortunately. I have nothing to go on, except the hunch that for such a short trip they will both want to eliminate some of the pomp and circumstance.

I personally love how Kate finds a way to tie in the local culture into her wardrobe. It’s such a respectable way to affirm your appreciation in a subtle way. Indian fashion is known for intricate and detailed designs and vibrant shades. I’m very much looking forward to seeing how that will affect both William and Kate’s wardrobe! She occasionally channels the color of the host country’s flag into her ensembles. Seen here, on her first full day in Canada, she stepped out in red and white.

kates clothes white reiss

The colors of the Indian flag are saffron, white, and green. Saffron steers more into orange, and would be a lovely color for Kate to wear as I don’t believe we’ve seen her in the shade. Could any of these be re-worn?

kates clothes jaeger
kates clothes americas cup 1

kates clothes la dvf

My final wish is another speech from Kate at a palliative care center. She is gaining so much confidence with each time that she speaks, and it would be a great way to commemorate their trip (while tying in her focus on children’s wellbeing).

Is there any look of Diana’s that you think Kate could modernize? Or do you have an ensemble in mind that she should re-wear? I’d love to hear from you in the comments below!

2 Responses

  1. Linda

    Hello – I think we will see the pale blue dress, buttons down the front, beulah, she wore to the mosque (Asia 2012) – it would be apt and lovely to see it again. Linda

  2. Alejandra Ramírez

    Love the post! Great job!
    Howver, I see the suggestions you gave unlikely to happen (of course I could be wrong!)
    I think there might be one if not two gala events, one in India and another in Bhutan. I think at least one of them might require a tiara. :)
    I’m really hopping to see her outfit choices. I predict lots and lots of colors. Someone wrote in a post that she would love the see Catherine in a sari. Maybe she will wear a dress similar to it, like she did in 2012 where she wore two dresses with a kimono inspiration.
    It will be a wonderful tour to remember! :)

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