The Princess of Wales meets Pope John Paul II at the Vatican on 29 April 1985. At this occasion the Princess is required to adhere to the demands of protocol and wears a calf-length black lace dress by Catherine Walker. The Victorian style dress with a dropped V-shaped skirt is worn with a lace veil in the same fabric. The back view reveals some exquisite button detailing. Protocol also demanded that the Princess wear gloves, an accessory not much used in her working wardrobe.
Diana purchased this off-the-peg gown in Knightsbridge in 1985. It is a cocktail Ballerina-length dress designed by Jacques Azagury with padded shoulders, a long fitted black velvet bodice embroidered with glimmering blue stars and shapes. The drop-waisted skirt is a double-layer of royal blue organza tied on the hip with a bow. The Princess of Wales first wore this dress in Florence in April,1985 at a banquet given by the mayor.