One of my favourite pieces from Camilla’s personal
jewellery collection is her turquoise demi-parure. consists only of a necklace and matching earrings but they are lovely and I
like the word, so I am going to continue to refer to this set as the Duchess of
Cornwall’s Turquoise Demi-Parure.
The parure consists of a tiara and matching earrings. The necklace is made of turquoises set in diamond frames. From each turquoise, a pear-shaped stone is suspended, also in a diamond settings. Five rows of diamonds nest between each clasp. The earrings consist of an oval turquoise
surrounded by diamonds, suspended from a smaller round turquoise.
|The Turquoise Demi-Parure|
The style of the necklace
was very popular in late Victorian and early Edwardian times so in all probability
it (and presumably, the earrings as well) is a late 19th or early 20th century design.
The provenance of the necklace and earrings is a bit
obscure and, given the probable creation time, some suggested the Duchess had inherited the set from her
great-grandmother, Alice Keppel. It was, however, later clarified that while
the set is indeed a rarely-worn
piece from Camilla’s family collection, it was not inherited through Alice's
|The set worn for a day event (left), an official dinner (middle), and with a tiara (right)|
of the first occasions Camilla wore this necklace to was Prince Charles’ 50th
birthday celebrations at Highgrove in 1998. Camilla wore the demi-parure with a
velvet peacock gown by Antony Price that had been specially designed to
showcase the magnificent jewellery. Since her wedding, the Duchess has worn the set on various occasions, from day to evening events, and even with a tiara.
Turquoise is a popular stone in the British Royal Family;
not one but two other royals counted very similar demi-parures in their
collections – the Duchess of Gloucester and Princess Margaret. Until I found
the provenance and history of those parures (as well as better pictures), I had
a bit of a trouble in distinguishing the necklaces because they really do resemble each other
(and Camilla’s) quite a lot. I’ll be covering those two parures soon, so stay
|Princess Margaret wearing the Persian Turquoise Parure (left) and The Duchess of Gloucester in the Teck Turquoise Parure (right)|
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