Princess Diana: A look at how the People's Princess spent her last birthday

Princess Diana is a name that echoes all across the globe. July 1 marked the late royalty’s 57th birth anniversary. The Princess of Wales married Prince Charles in 1981 and gave birth to two sons, Prince William and Prince Harry. They later divorced in 1996.


On her 36th birthday in 1997, the Princess woke up to a bouquet of 90 flowers as Harry called her from school. Diana was letting go of her past troubles and making plans for her future when her untimely death just two months later broke hearts all over the world. William said that he still feels shocked about his mother’s death, reported Hello! Magazine. To honour Diana on what would have been her 57th birthday, we take a look back at how she spent her last birthday in the world.


Her brother Earl Spencer recalled that Diana was in dazzling form on her last birthday. The two were together at London’s Tate Gallery where the Princess was a guest of honour. At Diana’s funeral, Earl said, “The last time I saw Diana was on July 1, her birthday in London. As opposed to typical behaviour where one celebrates their special day with friends, Diana was a guest of honour at a special charity fundraising event. She sparkled, of course.”


Diana sported an emerald and diamond necklace that originally belonged to Queen Mary, at the gala. She wore a black-beaded, Chantilly gown by Moroccan-designer Jacques Azagury, that complimented the Princess. It was revealed that Jacques gave the gown as a birthday give to Diana which was delivered to her at the Kensington Palace on the same morning. He said that Diana loved wearing black in the evening, a colour that the Royals only wore in mourning. However, since she was no longer royalty, she could where whatever she wanted.

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Jacques shared, “Diana loved the gown. I believe she had another dress to wear but ended up wearing mine. She was happier than I had ever seen her. There was something about the way she carried herself; a certain new-found confidence.”


Diana was amongst the most glamourous guests that night. She met the likes of Steve Martin, Philip Treacy, Karen Elson, Carole Bouquet and late musician David Bowie’s wife, Iman. However, Diana outshone the crowd and was the focus of every gaze.


At the event, she received countless presents from her fans including bouquets, cards and a few balloons. Sadly, along with her birthday, it was also the Princess’ last gala. Many people that she spent that evening with were later present at her funeral. But she shone with the stars on her last birthday, capturing the true essence of who she was – a People’s Princess who had learnt how to use her position of power for the good of others.

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