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Based on: Kensington Palace + Diana: Her Fashion Story, 17 December 2018

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Kensington Palace

Once the home of Diana, Princess of Wales, Kensington Palace in London’s Chelsea is still a working palace to this day. Highlights of a visit to the palace include its gorgeous sunken gardens and the Royal Ceremonial Dress Collection.

These are just some of Kensington Palace‘s most fascinating and famous sights:

The King’s State Apartments:Follow in the footsteps of visitors to the court of George I and II, climb the magnificent King’s Staircase and see if you can master the games of court!

The Queen’s State Apartments: Visit the intimate apartments created for Mary II and discover the tragic story of young Duke William Henry and the end of the Stuart dynasty.

Kensington Palace Gardens:Kensington Gardens’ elegant avenues and architecture has featured in various blockbuster films including Finding Neverland, Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason and Wimbledon.

Luminous Lace:Don’t miss this spectacular light piece at the centre of the palace, which is made from almost 4 km of electroluminescent wire and contains nearly 12,000 Swarovski crystals.

Victoria Revealed:Explore Queen Victoria's long and extraordinary life - in her own words. Inspired by the Queen's own journals, and featuring displays of personal objects in the rooms where she once lived, the exhibition Victoria Revealed gives an intimate account of Victoria's extraordinary life.

Diana: Her Fashion Story. Celebrate the life of Diana, Princess of Wales, in this major new dress exhibition at Kensington Palace. Trace the evolution of the Princess’s style, from the demure, romantic outfits of her first public appearances, to the glamour, elegance and confidence of her later life. Don’t miss an extraordinary collection of garments, including the iconic velvet gown, famously worn at the White House when the Princess danced with John Travolta.

Diana: Her Fashion Story.

From her first public appearances in 1981, Diana, Princess of Wales, captivated the world’s attention as a princess, as a trendsetter and as a patron and advocate of charities. Twenty years on from her death, a new exhibition and temporary garden celebrating her life will be opened at Kensington Palace, her home for over 15 years.

Opening in February, the exhibition ‘Diana: Her Fashion Story’ will trace the evolution of the Princess’s style, from the demure, romantic outfits of her first public appearances, to the glamour, elegance and confidence of her later life. From her earliest royal engagements, everything Diana wore was closely scrutinised, and the exhibition will explore how she navigated her unique position in the public eye: learning to use her image to engage and inspire people, and to champion the causes she cared about.

Replacing the popular ‘Fashion Rules’ exhibition in Kensington Palace’s Piggott Gallery, ‘Diana: Her Fashion Story’ will display exquisite and celebrated outfits from throughout the Princess’s public life. The exhibition will bring together an extraordinary collection of garments, ranging from the glamorous evening gowns worn on engagements in the 1980s, to the chic Catherine Walker suits that made up Diana’s ‘working wardrobe’ in the 1990s. The Princess’s relationship with her favourite designers will be explored through a display of some of their original fashion sketches, created for her during the design process.

Exhibition highlights will include the pale pink Emanuel blouse worn for Diana’s engagement portrait by Lord Snowdon in 1981, and Victor Edelstein’s iconic ink blue velvet gown, famously worn at the White House when the Princess danced with John Travolta. A blue tartan

Emanuel suit, worn for an official visit to Venice in the 1980s, will go on display in public for the first time. The suit, a rare survival of the Princess’s daywear, was only recently rediscovered and acquired by Historic Royal Palaces – the charity responsible for Kensington Palace - at auction.

Whilst in residence at Kensington Palace, the Princess admired the changing floral displays in the historic Sunken Garden and would often stop to talk to the gardeners who care for it. In 2017, the gardeners at Kensington will dedicate the new planting in the garden to Diana, creating a temporary White Garden.

Complementing the palace’s exhibition, ‘Diana: Her Fashion Story’, the garden will be planted with flowers and foliage inspired by memories of the Princess’s life, image and style. Spring planting will include an elegant palette of tulips and scented narcisii through a carpet of 'forget me nots'. In the summer, pots of classic English white roses will surround the reflective pool in the centre of the garden and the planting will become more exuberant, with glowing ornamental grasses weaving through Cosmos daisies and billows of graceful Gaura. The garden will be installed for spring and summer 2017.

Eleri Lynn, curator of Diana: Her Fashion Story, said,

‘Diana, Princess of Wales, was one of the most photographed women in the world, and every fashion choice she made was closely scrutinised. Our exhibition explores the story of a young woman who had to quickly learn the rules of royal and diplomatic dressing, who in the process put the spotlight on the British fashion industry and designers.

We see her growing in confidence throughout her life, increasingly taking control of how she was represented, and intelligently communicating through her clothes. This is a story many women around the world can relate to, and we hope many visitors will join us next year, to get a closer look at some of Diana’s most iconic outfits, on display in her former home.’

Sean Harkin, Gardens Team Leader, Kensington Palace, said,

‘It’s a great privilege for myself and my team to care every day for the beautiful gardens of Kensington Palace, and we’re looking forward to creating a White Garden next year which celebrates the life of one the palace’s most famous residents: Diana, Princess of Wales. We hope to capture the energy and spirit which made her such a popular figure around the world.’

Ticket Information

Inclusions:

  • Entry to Kensington Palace and Gardens
  • Entry to Diana: Her Fashion Story.

IMPORTANT: The exhibition ‘Diana: Her Fashion Story’ is extremely popular. On average customers should expect to queue for up to 2 hours to enter the exhibition. Unfortunately fast-track tickets are not available. Voucher holders will be placed on the next available time slot upon arrival. Please be aware due to the exhibition’s popularity it may be that the next time slot will be later in the day.

Opening Days: The palace is open 7 days a week all year round, except 24 - 26 December. The Orangery is open 7 days a week all year round, but occasionally closes for functions. Your voucher will be accepted by the attraction up to 7 days after the voucher date selected.

Opening Times: Winter 10AM-4PM (last entry 3PM) and Summer 10AM-6PM (last entry 5PM).

Address: Kensington Palace is located at Kensington Gardens, London, W8 4PX England.

Directions: BY LONDON UNDERGROUND: Use District or Circle lines to High Street Kensington (10 - 15 minutes walking time to the palace, more for those with limited mobility). Use Central Line to Queensway (10 - 15 minutes walking time, more for those with limited mobility) or Notting Hill Gate (20 - 25 minutes walking time, more for those with limited mobility). BY BUS - Bus routes: 70, 94, 148, 390 to Bayswater Road or 9, 10, 49, 52, 70, and 452 to Kensington High Street.

Additional Information: All visitors stated must be present to redeem this voucher. Visitors who are not present when the voucher is redeemed will not be entitled to a refund. During the winter months Kensington Gardens close at dusk, and the only exit from the park at this time will be via a turnstile at Orme Square Gate which is on the north side of the park leading onto Bayswater Road. From Bayswater Road you may continue your onward journey by bus or by tube at our local Underground stations: Notting Hill Gate or Queensway. There is no access to Kensington High Street through the park after dusk.