Our week-long spotlight on glamorous bejeweled appearances by Diana, Princess of Wales continues today with an American gala held in 1995.
Diana arrived at the New York Hilton on December 11, 1995, for the annual United Cerebral Palsy dinner. The charity gala raised more than $2 million dollars that evening for the cause, and Diana was recognized with the organization’s humanitarian award. She wore a warm black velvet wrap as she arrived for the dinner, escorted by former US Secretary of State Henry Kissinger. General Colin Powell was also present for the dinner.
Inside, Diana removed the wrap to reveal a dark gown, featuring a tank-style neckline plus lace appliques and beaded embellishments.
Diana accepted the humanitarian award during the dinner. In her acceptance speech, she declared, “Let us demonstrate our humanity. Let us not wait to be asked,” adding, “Today is the day of compassion.”
Diana’s main jewelry accessory for the evening was a pair of diamond and pearl drop earrings. The earrings feature diamond-set horseshoe and laurel leaf motifs, from which round pearl drops are suspended. The earrings could also be worn without the drops. Today, they’re worn by the Duchess of Cambridge, who uses a different pair of pearl drops from Diana’s collection with the earrings.
Diana also wore a matching pair of diamond and sapphire bracelets, one on each wrist. The bracelets featured a checkerboard pattern.
The bracelets could also be worn linked together as a necklace. Diana wore them in that setting on at least one occasion (a return banquet in November 1985 during a state visit from the Emir of Qatar).
Here’s one more view that shows the distinctive pattern created by the diamonds and cabochon sapphires. Diana had worn this same jewelry combination with a different gown for a charity event at the Palace of Versailles the previous year.