This morning, Kate Middleton was spotted departing her Kensington Palace home, making her way to Prince Philip's funeral at St. George's Chapel at Windsor Castle alongside her husband, Prince William.
The couple coordinated in black mourning attire, with William forgoing his military uniform for a suit and tie, and Kate wearing a black Rouland Mouret dress with an asymmetrical neckline. She finished off the look with matching heels, a veiled fascinator, and a pearl and diamond necklace — one that is particularly significant for the occasion.
According to The Daily Mail, the necklace has been identified as a four-row Japanese pearl choker from Queen Elizabeth's personal jewelry collection. It's said to be a gift from the Japanese government, and is crafted from the "finest cultured pearls."
The Queen first debuted the choker in the '80s, and most significantly at a dinner celebrating former Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher's 70th birthday in London in 1995, while Kate has previously worn the necklace to Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip's 70th wedding anniversary dinner four years ago.
The Queen also loaned it to Diana for one of her first royal engagements.
In addition to Kate and Will, Prince Charles and Princess Anne's daughter Zara Tindall were photographed leaving for Philip's service. The funeral will be a scaled-down affair due to COVID restrictions, and essentially only family will be attending the ceremony. Despite the limited guest list, "the occasion will still celebrate and recognize the Duke's life and his more than 70 years of service to the Queen, the U.K. and the Commonwealth," says a Palace spokesman.
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