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Kate Middleton Wears Gold Earrings Designed by Princess Diana's Favorite Jeweler

At Christmas services, the Duchess of Cambridge flashed stones from Kiki McDonough -- who once counted the late Princess of Wales as one of her best customers.

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Duchess of Cambridge Kate Middleton's plum coat and matching couture hat designed by Jane Corbett -- worn for her first official Royal Christmas Church Service at Sandringham -- made international headlines on Christmas Day. 

But many observers missed the small, delicate diamond, citrine and 18 ct gold earrings designed by Chelsea-based jeweler Kiki McDonough.
 
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The buzz is that the earrings (worth around $3,000) were a Christmas present from Prince William. This would certainly make sense given Kate is a longtime fan of the brand. This year, she wore a silver, diamond-studded cross on a chain with matching diamond earrings and another pair of 18 carat gold citrine drop earrings to the Epsom Derby -- both by McDonough.
 
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And there's even a strong royal family connection. Kiki's designs were favored by the late Princess Diana. And William actually proposed to Kate with his mother's engagement ring (not by Kiki). Diana herself choose the $60,000 ring (14 diamonds surrounding a sapphire) in 1981.

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Kiki tells Vogue: "I once counted Princess Diana as one of my most loyal customers and we always had such fun choosing designs for her to wear - she took great pleasure in wearing my jewelry. It is a very special added extra that Catherine now enjoys wearing my designs too."

Elizabeth.Snead@THR.com

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