Thursday, April 11, 2013

British Royal Jewels: The Queen's White and Rose Gold Flower Brooch

This lovely brooch is one of Her Majesty’s rarely worn pieces and appears to be a recent addition to her collection.
White and Rose Gold Flower Brooch
The brooch is in form of a flower: the two blossoms and one of the leaves appear to be made of pink gold. In the centre of each blossom there is a pinkish orange stone (possibly topaz) surrounded by brilliants. The rest of the brooch is in white gold adorned with small diamonds.

Jewel of the Day - April 10: Queen wears the White and Pink Gold Brooch

The Queen honoured several notable British men and woman at an investiture today at the Windsor Castle. During the ceremony, she wore one of her rarely worn flower brooches. You can read the little information available on the brooch here – The Queen’s White and Rose Gold Flower Brooch.
The Queen giving Kate Bush her CBE for services to Music: Her Majesty is wearing the White and Pink Gold Flower Brooch
During the investiture, representatives of various areas of British society were honoured, from Olympic medallists to singers. Among the big non-sports related names was Kate Bush who received CBE for services to Music. 

Friday, April 5, 2013

British Royal Jewels: The Queen's Pink Sapphire and Diamonds Brooch

Queen Elizabeth has been wearing this brooch regularly, but not at all often, in recent years.
The Queen's Pink Sapphire and Diamonds Brooch
The brooch is composed of a pink stone in a diamond frame. It is surrounded by ten round diamonds with further ten small brilliants between them. This jewel reminds of the much more famous Prince Albert Sapphire brooch in design and style, although it unlikely they share the same provenance.

Jewel of the Day - April 4: Queen Elizabeth wears Pink Sapphire Brooch

The Queen donned one of her rarely-seen brooches, the Pink Sapphire brooch, for a visit to Mars Chocolate Factory today. The brooch is composed of a pink stone in a diamond frame, surrounded by large round diamonds with small brilliants between them. More on the brooch here - The Queen's Pink Sapphire and Diamonds Brooch. 
Queen Elizabeth wearing the Pink Sapphire Brooch on a visit to Mars factory
Don't forget to check other jewels worn by Queen Elizabeth in 2013 (so far), which includes a handy "Leaderboard" of her brooches! At this point, the Gold Dahlia Brooch is in the lead, although the Pink Sapphire just climbed up to a joint second place. 

A couple of words about the actual visit. The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh were given a tour of the Mrs Chocolate UK's headquarters in Slough. They were also shown the plant where the Mars bar was first produced and Maltesers was invented. The royal guests learnt about the technology used to turn raw cocoa beans into the finished yummy product.

Danish Royal Jewels: Queen Ingrid's Diamond Stars and Pearls Tiara

The Stars and Pearls Tiara is a historic piece connected to Swedish, Norwegian and Danish Royal Houses. It is now in possession of Princess Benedikte, Queen Margrethe’s younger sister, and has become one of her trademark pieces.
Queen Ingrid's Diamond Stars and Pearls Tiara
The tiara consists of diamond-encrusted stars and pearl pendants, all nesting on diamond settings. It is believed to have been made in 1850s by unknown craftsmen. Although most tiaras of similar design feature detachable pearl and/or star pendants, the pendants in this one cannot be removed. 

The Stars and Pearls Tiara originally belonged to Sofia of Nassau, Queen Consort of King Oscar II of Sweden and Norway. She had received it as a wedding present from her brother Prince Adolphe, Duke of Nassau (later, the Grand Duke of Luxembourg).

Jewel of the Day – April 4: Danish Royal Ladies at the State Banquet

The President of Finland, His Excellency Niinisto Vainamo, and Mrs Jenni Elina Haukio paid a state visit to Denmark from 4 to 5 April. The last state visit from Finland to Denmark was in 2001, while the last state visit from Denmark to Finland was back in 1973.
Queen Margrethe, Princess Mary, Princess Marie, and Princess Benedikte at the state banquet
On April 4, there was a state dinner in honour of the President and the First Lady, and as usual, the Danish royal ladies dazzled in the jewellery department.

Queen Margrethe wore the Danish Floral Aigrette Tiara together with diamond riviere and earrings.
Crown Princess Mary wore her Wedding Tiara, which personally I prefer to the much more often seen Diamond and Ruby Tiara from the ruby parure. Princess Marie wore her Diamond Floral Tiara – the same one she wore on her wedding day. No surprises there since it’s the only tiara from the royal collection she has the use of (as far as we know, it’s not even hers). Princess Benedikte wore my favourite tiara from her collection - Queen Ingrid's Diamond Stars and Pearls Tiara.

Moroccan Royal Jewels: Lalla Salma’s Ruby and Diamond Tassel Set

Lalla Salma of Morocco has one of the most amazing jewellery collections in the world. It may not be the largest or the grandest, but it’s certainly among the most beautiful, tasteful and original ones.
Lalla Salma's Ruby and Diamond Tassel Set
The ruby demi-parure the Princess debuted during the incoming state visit from France is definitely one of the highlights of that collection. I can’t call them the grandest piece the Princess owns though because, in my opinion, that distinction belongs to her dazzling emeralds which I’ll cover later.

Jewel of the Day - April 4: Lalla Salma wears the Ruby and Diamonds Set

Lalla Salma of Morocco debuted a wonderful ruby demi-parure during a banquet in honour of incoming state visit from France on April 4.
Lalla Salma's wears her Ruby and Diamond Set
The set consists of necklace and the earrings are in a tassel design, although other unseen pieces (such as bracelets and/or rings) may be included as well. More on the set here - Lalla Salma’s Ruby Set.

The official visit to Morocco lasted from April 3 and 4, and was aimed at re-inventing the bilateral partnership between the two countries, and finding new ways to maintain Morocco's status as a "close and vital partner" of France. The countries traditionally enjoy very close relations and are allies on the international scene.

Jewel of the Day - April 4: The Queen wears Boucheron Aquamarine Clips

Queen Elizabeth wore her Boucheron Aquamarine Clips at the reception celebrating the British Film Industry on April 4.
Queen Elizabeth wore the Boucheron Aquamarine Clips today
The clips were an 18th birthday present to Princess Elizabeth from her parents, King George VI and Queen Elizabeth (The Queen Mother) in 1944. They are made of aquamarines and diamonds, and in a typical 1940s design combine baguette, oval and round stones. More about the clips here - The Queen's Boucheron Aquamarine Clips. 

Don't forget to check the other jewels worn by Queen Elizabeth in 2013 (so far), which includes a handy "Leaderboard" of her brooches! At this point, the Gold Dahlia Brooch is in the lead, although the Aquamarine Clips aren't far behind!

Monday, April 1, 2013

Requests Sunday: Josephine of Leuchtenberg's Amethyst Parure

The third and final article on this week’s Sunday Requests is dedicated to Josephine of Leuchtenberg’s Amethyst Tiara and Parure. Several people requested an entry on this suite, and I also had a request for amethysts separately, so here we go. 
The Amethyst Tiara
This parure has many names and I suppose it’s a matter of choice which names to use; “Queen Josephine’s Amethyst Parure” is just my preference. Others call this set “The Napoleonic Amethyst Parure” or simply “The Swedish Amethyst Parure”. 

The Amethyst Demi-Parure dates back to the first French Empire. Originally, it belonged to Empress Josephine who gave the set as a wedding gift to Princess Augusta Amalia of Bavaria upon her marriage to Eugene de Beauharnais, Duke of Leuchtenberg (Empress Josephine’s son).

Sunday, March 31, 2013

Requests Sunday: The Spanish Mellerio Shell Tiara

I was really glad to receive requests for this particular tiara because it happens to be my favourite in the Spanish collection. 
Mellerio Shell Tiara
This tiara was created Mellerio jewellery house in 1867. It is known as the Shell Tiara because of its shape. It is also sometimes called La Chata because the tiara’s first owner, Infanta Isabel, was known by that nickname. 

This beautiful Mellerio creation resembles a shell full of pearl and diamond drops that move with the wearer’s moves, creating a rather mesmerising effect. It also bears a resemblance to ocean waves. Seven beautiful pearls and a number of quite large, pear-shape diamonds adorn the “inside” of the shell. There is also a removable diamond drop suspended from the bottom centre of the tiara, but it is rarely attached nowadays.

Requests Sunday: Crown Princess Margaret's Egyptian Necklace

I missed the last two Requests Sunday (sorry for that) so, as promised, today we have three entries. The first article is dedicated to Crown Princess Margaret of Sweden's Egyptian Necklace - a piece that has been requested several times since Princess Lilian's death on 10 March.
Crown Princess Margaret's Egyptian Necklace
This interesting an unusual necklace is adorned with rubies, emeralds, diamonds and a sapphire, and decorated with scarabs. It was made by Jeweller Koch of Frankfurt in 1905. 

The necklace was a wedding gift to Margaret of Connaught from King Gustaf V of Sweden and Victoria of Baden on the occasion of Margaret’s marriage to their son, Crown Prince Gustaf Adolf (future Gustaf VI Adolf of Sweden).