Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, or ‘Kate’ as we call her around here, wore Catherine Walker for the first time (publicly, at least) on July 2, 2011 during the Duke and Duchess’ Royal Tour of Canada. This has meaning for several reasons.
First of all, Catherine Walker was Diana’s favourite designer and Kate knew that wearing this dress would automatically invite comparison to Diana. This was a risk she was clearly willing to take and, if anything, it seemed like a real nod to Diana since Kate wore this on July 2, the day after both Canada Day and Princess Diana’s birthday. To add another layer to that, Kate wore this dress to Rideau Hall, the residence of Canada’s Governor General. She and William planted an Eastern Hemlock tree near to the tree planted by the Prince and Princess of Wales on June 21, 1983, which was Prince William’s first birthday.
This all cannot have been lost on Kate, and goes to show how much thought she likely put into choosing this dress. She got some flack for being a tad conservative and for perhaps dressing older than her years, but I think this dress hits just the right note. It could have used some more fun earrings, though. Oversized pearls, perhaps?