Duchess Kate channels Princess Diana again with her latest look

By Zach Harper

Did the polka-dot shirt the Duchess of Cambridge was wearing at her surprise engagement on Sept. 19 look familiar to you? If so, it’s because Princess Diana wore a very similar look while visiting South Africa in 1997!

Kate was beaming at her previously unannounced engagement on Sept. 19! Photo: © Ian Vogler - Pool/Getty Images

Duchess Kate stepped out to the Sunshine House Children and Young People’s Health and Development Centre to meet with staff and those who have used the Family Nurse Partnership. It’s a voluntary home visiting program for first-time parents aged 24 and under that partners with them with a special nurse who visits from early pregnancy until their child turns two. The goals of the program are to ensure healthy pregnancies and improve children’s health.

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Kate looked stunning in a polka-dot shirt by Equipment, which she paired with flared black trousers and black Gianvito Rossi pumps. The mom of three has showcased her love of polka dots many times throughout her years as a royal, which was something she had in common with her late mother-in-law – and you won’t believe the example below.

Nelson Mandela and Princess Diana met to discuss HIV/AIDS at his home in Cape Town in 1997. Photo: © Anna Zieminski/AFP/Getty Images

While visiting late South African President Nelson Mandela in 1997, Diana chose a simple black-and-white polka-dot dress for her day at the leader’s home in Cape Town. Similar to Kate’s shirt, it featured two breast pockets, but had gold buttons on the pockets and up and down its front. It also had a different neckline and short sleeves.

Of course, Kate’s brother- and- sister-in-law Prince Harry and Duchess Meghan are due to travel to South Africa in just a few days – and will land in Cape Town. While in the country, they will also meet with Nelson’s widow Graça Machel. We can’t help but wonder if the Duchess of Cambridge was paying an intentional nod to Diana’s previous trips to the continent and the Royal Family’s long friendship with Nelson, who passed away in 2013.

PHOTOS: The Royal Family’s previous trips to Africa, from the Queen to Duchess Meghan

We’ll next see Kate on Sept. 26, when she and Prince William officially name the RRS Sir David Attenborough at a ceremony in Birkenhead – unless, of course, she decides to make another surprise outing!

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