Why Kate Middleton Didn't Wear Her Engagement Ring During Today's Hospital Visit

Stephanie Petit

Kate Middleton was missing her key accessories during her latest outing.

The royal stepped out on Tuesday morning to join a creative workshop run by the National Portrait Gallery’s Hospital Programme at the Evelina London Children’s Hospital and see how the arts support children’s health, well-being and happiness. However, she was notably without her sapphire and diamond engagement ring and her diamond eternity band.

While Kate wore her gold wedding band, she was missing her iconic engagement ring which once belonged to her late mother-in-law, Princess Diana. She also left her white gold diamond eternity band behind.

This is because Kate slipped off her sparklers in adherence with the hospital’s policy on minimal jewelry. Since she would have to cleanse her hands thoroughly before touring the wards and treatment areas, it is recommended to remove jewelry before entering.

Mark Cuthbert/UK Press via Getty; Inset: Samir Hussein/WireImage
Kate Middleton | Yui Mok/PA Images via Getty Images

Kate’s stunning engagement ring often comes off during hospital visits, dating back to the year she and Prince William tied the knot. While opening the Great Ormond Street Hospital’s Mittal Children’s Medical Centre in Jan. 2018, she also opted to leave the accessory behind.

Kate Middleton | Tim Rooke/Shutterstock

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Instead, Kate accessorized her outfit by Dolce and Gabbana with a matching earring and necklace set as she participated in activities such as photography, illustration and 3D set design with children. She even posed so 10-year-old heart patient Luke Wheeler-Waddison could take her picture!

Kate Middleton | PA Wire/PA Images

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Kate’s stunning engagement ring is a sight to behold, consisting of 14 solitaire diamonds surrounding a 12-carat oval blue Ceylon sapphire set in 18-karat white gold. Her gold wedding band, however, which she usually wears along with her engagement ring, is much more simple.

The Welsh gold wedding ring is an 88-year-old royal tradition, dating back to Elizabeth Bowes Lyon and the future George VI. In 1923, the royal ring was fashioned from a gift of Clogau gold with enough left over for the weddings of the Queen in 1947 as well as those of the late Princess Margaret, Princess Anne and Princess Diana. And just before Kate’s royal wedding to Prince William, the palace announced that her wedding ring would also be made of Welsh gold.

Kate Middleton | Toby Melville - WPA Pool/Getty

Meghan Markle also followed the tradition, using a piece of Welsh gold gifted to her by Queen Elizabeth to fashion her wedding band. Prince Harry, however, opted for a platinum wedding band with a textured finish.