Empress Masako Wears Stunning Imperial Chrysanthemum Tiara to State Banquet

Empress Masako's jewels at tonight's state banquet at Buckingham Palace did not disappoint.

The Empress of Japan opted for the Imperial Chrysanthemum Tiara for the occasion, her first time ever wearing the diamond headpiece, pairing it with a sparkling white dress and a diamond necklace. The Imperial Chrysanthemum Tiara is a tiara that is only worn by the empress, and features a design of chrysanthemum flowers. State banquets are a formal affair, with the white tie dress code requiring ballgowns and tiaras for the royal women in attendance.

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Queen Camilla, Empress Masako, Emperor Naruhito, and King Charles pose for a photo.KIRSTY WIGGLESWORTH - Getty Images
britain japan royals diplomacy
The royals arrive at Buckingham Palace.KIRSTY WIGGLESWORTH - Getty Images

Earlier today, Prince William welcomed the Emperor and Empress, accompanying them to the Ceremonial Welcome at Horseguards Parade. For the first day of the state visit, Empress Masako chose a lovely white lace coat dress, coordinating with Queen Camilla, who also opted to wear white for the occasion.

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Empress Masako, Queen Camilla and Prince William attend the Ceremonial Welcome of Emperor Naruhito and Empress Masako earlier today.Karwai Tang - Getty Images

The Imperial couple also visited Westminster Abbey in the afternoon, where Masako changed into a white skirt suit set with navy piping:

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Emperor Naruhito and Empress Masako of Japan arrive for a tour of Westminster Abbey.Jordan Pettitt - PA Images

While the official state visit began today, Emperor Naruhito and Empress Masako arrived in the UK over the weekend. The couple's state visit was initially scheduled for spring 2020, but postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic. In September 2022, the Emperor and Empress traveled to the UK for the state funeral of Queen Elizabeth, marking their first overseas trip since Naruhito's enthronement ceremony in 2019.

Both Emperor Naruhito and Empress Masako have ties to the UK; in fact, they both graduated from Oxford University—Naruhito attended Merton College from 1983 to 1985, and Masako studied international relations at Balliol College from 1988 to 1990. Later this week, the royal couple will return to Oxford for a private program of engagements, including a visit to the colleges where they studied.

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