Kate Middleton stunned at a dinner given in honor of Chinese President Xi Jingping Tuesday evening at Buckingham Palace in London. In her first state banquet since marrying Prince William, Duke of Cambridge, in 2011, the duchess wore a deep red gown paired with a delicate tiara.
Middleton has been recently out of the spotlight while caring for the royal couple's daughter, Princess Charlotte, born in May. Charlotte was the second child of the couple, following the birth of Prince George in 2013. For her first state banquet at Buckingham Palace, she wore the Lotus Flower tiara once owned by the Queen Mother and a favorite of Princess Margaret. She also donned chandelier earrings loaned to her by the queen and a cap-sleeved Jenny Packham dress with a fitted bodice and full skirt.
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Nearly 170 guests were set to attend the extravagant banquet, held in honor of the first visit from a Chinese president in 10 years. The queen takes a personal interest in the set-up of state dinners, reportedly checking the banquet settings and tables herself.
— Kate Bennett (@KateBennett_DC) October 20, 2015
Late British critic Christopher Hitchens once wrote that the British monarchy's primary function was to "restore a patina of glamour that has been all but irretrievably lost." Middleton has been seen by many fans as a princess of the people who has helped restore this glamour through her class and traditional style.
The Chinese president's visit has been shrouded in controversy, as human rights groups throughout the U.K. staged protests concerning reported instances of human rights violations in China, such as torture and imprisonment for political dissidents. Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn reportedly spoke with Xi about issues of human rights during the dinner.