Sep 132012

Kate continues to return to favored designers for important occasions, tonight she wore a custom Alexander McQueen gown by Sarah Burton for the State Dinner in Malaysia. The function was hosted by His Majesty The Agong. Below we show William and Kate heading in to dinner.

James Whatling/Corbis/Pool

The gala was at His Majesty’s official residence, the Istana Negara; here we see Kate with the Queen and other guests.

Via Liyana Hanim Twitter

The bespoke creation was a jaw-dropper, but there was more to it than meets the eye. As is customary for Kate, the piece showcased an homage to her host country: that glittering gold embroidery is a hibiscus, the official flower of Malaysia. More from The Australian:

She towered over her hosts in a pair of four-inch satin heels and kept the tops of her arms covered in line with religious protocol in the Muslim country.

Kate wore her hair partially pulled back and up, a very pretty look.

Mark Large/Daily Mail/PA Wire/PA Wire

Below, Kate and her hosts before the meal, with thanks to Rebecca English of the Daily Mail.

Rebecca English, Daily Mail Twitter

More on the evening from Richard Palmer in the Express:

When the King and Queen arrived, Kate bobbed in an elegant, low curtsey.

William proceeded to chat with the King while Kate stooped as she exchanged pleasantries with his wife.

The Sun has more on how Prince William is doing:

Admiring the ladies’ outfits, William joked: I’ve got my heels on tonight, then told the Prime Minister: I am tired. It’s the jet lag that is hardest.

Kate’s gown was exquisite.

Splash News

The creamy white dress featured a sheer overlay with gold lame embroidery bordering the sleeves, neckline and center of the gown, the same thread was used to create the golden hibiscus floral motif scattered over the fabric. Other elements included an empire waist, shirred white fabric at the bust, short, sheer sleeves and a full, flowing skirt.

There has been some discussion about the propriety of Kate’s decolletage, particularly in comparison to what other women were wearing.

The UK in Malaysia Facebook

I don’t believe there is any chance Kate’s team wasn’t fully aware of what is and is not acceptable, I’m sure they were in touch with protocol experts and officials at the British High Commission. Whether Sarah Burton or Kate’s personal assistant Rebecca Deacon or anyone else, no one would allow a misstep on this Tour.

Is the bodice of the gown revealing, exposing more than what others are wearing? Yes. Is it in keeping with standards mandating covered shoulders and sleeves? Yes.

Mark Large/Daily Mail/PA Wire/PA Wire

Back to the Express story:

They dined with 400 other guests in the Royal Banqueting Hall, where circular tables were laid out around a dais upon which a table for the royal party was set.

The meal was described as a fusion of English and Asian cuisine. No alcohol was served but guests were offered sweet fruit juices and water.

William and Kate were given gifts by their hosts, laid out on a table for viewing. William received a special warrior’s sword called a kris, for Kate there was a pair of black lace heels by Lewre, a growing shoe and accessory brand based in Malaysia.


Other gifts included a batik dress and diamante clutch. The clutch carried by Kate tonight is one seen previously, the gold Wilbur and Gussie bag seen on previous occasions.

Wilbur and Gussie

We don’t know the designer of Kate’s bracelet, we *think* the earrings are by Vinnie Day, they have a resemblance to his leaf design earrings.

Splash News/Press Association

UPDATE: The jewelry is by Catherine Zoraida. With thanks to the WKW Facebook friend Sarah and the amazing Diana’s Jewels, we now know Kate wore the Scale (Spread Your Wings) Bracelet and Double Leaf Earrings.

Catherine Zoraida Spread Your Wings (Scales) Bracelet & Double Leaf Earrings

The Bracelet is gold-plated sterling silver, it features the same leaves as Kate’s earrings, it is £420/$680. The earrings are 18kt gold-plated silver, they are priced at £80 (about $130 USD) and may be purchased here, both items are handmade in England.

Ms. Zoraida is a UK designer, brought up in Scotland. She has done collections for Vivienne Westwood, Lulu Guiness and Matthew Williamson, her solo collection debuted in 2011. Her work is available at Austique, where we know Kate shops, as well as Anthropologie in London and Scotland and other upscale outlets.

Many had hoped to see a tiara tonight, but that was not the case. However, nothing was needed to enhance the glamor factor, the Duchess looked stunning. Kate wore open toed sandals, with high heels as noted above.

We’ll be back to update the earrings, bracelet and shoes if we gather any more information. I’ll also do a brief post on the rest of yesterday’s activities, including Kate’s speech at Hospis Malaysia. If interested in a video on the event, click here for ITN’s menu.

Tomorrow’s itinerary is very busy:

  • 10 – 11:30am Kate & William attend a cultural event at the Kuala Lumpur City Center (KLCC) and do a walkabout
  • Next on the agenda, the pair are guests of honor at a luncheon hosted by the British Malaysian Chamber of Commerce, 1200 are expected for the function. Following lunch Prince William will give a speech talking about the importance of the relationship both for British and Malaysian prosperity
  • After the Chamber event the British High Commissioner and his wife host a Diamond Jubilee tea party at their residence. This is the event that was the subject of an online contest, the High Commission held a photo contest, two lucky winners will be included at the Tea. (You can see photo submissions here.)
  • Among the notables expected at the tea are shoe impresario Jimmy Choo, actress Michelle Yeoh and Olympian Pandalela Rinong (a London 2012 Bronze Medal winner), our thanks to Royal photographer Mark Stewart for sharing this information
  • Kate & William leave Kuala Lumpur, flying to Kota Kinabalu in Sabah, Malaysia. They will be welcomed with a reception hosted by the Sabah State Government before retiring for the evening.



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