At the recent state banquet at Buckingham Palace, the Queen Consort, Camilla and the Princess of Wales drew attention. King Charles III and Queen Consort hosted the banquet for the President of the Republic of South Africa. And while it’s not uncommon for the duo to wow royal onlookers with their fashion statement, this occasion was indeed special. Because both royal ladies paid tribute to their respective mothers-in-law with their tiaras. Even more special are the stories behind these royal jewels. Read on to find out how these pieces came into the possession of the royal family:
The Belgian Sapphire Tiara
Camilla, the Queen Consort of the United Kingdom, was seen wearing the Belgian Sapphire Tiara at the state banquet. From the 1960s to the early 1990s, the late Queen Elizabeth II wore this jewelry quite often. This is a piece of jewelry that has one too many names. Sometimes this tiara is referred to as the “Victorian Sapphire Tiara” because it was made to coordinate with a set of Victorian-era sapphire jewelry that the late Queen already owned. This is also where the second name comes from, the George VI Sapphire Tiara. The late Queen Elizabeth II had received the sapphires, a necklace and earrings from her father, King George VI, as a wedding present in 1947. A bracelet and ring later complemented the necklace and earrings. According to the Court Jeweler, these pieces of jewelry were made around 1850. The English playwright Noel Coward apparently called the sapphires “the largest sapphires [he had] ever seen.”
Queen Mary’s Lover’s Knot Tiara
The new Princess of Wales, Catherine also paid tribute to her late mother-in-law, Lady Diana. This tiara is associated with four royal ladies namely Queen Mary, Queen Elizabeth II, Lady Diana and now Kate Middleton. In 1913, Queen Mary decided to add a new tiara to her already extensive collection and turned to the Cambridge Lover’s Knot Tiara for inspiration. She commissioned the jewelry company Garrard to make a copy of it and that’s how the iconic piece of jewelry was born. The original tiara had a row of upright pearls at the top, making it even bigger and grander. These pearls were once used on the Girls of Great Britain and Ireland Tiara. However, later the pearls were removed and the current version with diamonds was created. The late Queen Elizabeth II acquired this tiara in 1953 after the death of Queen Mary. It has since been passed down to her daughter-in-law Lady Diana and granddaughter Kate, who made her debut at the diplomatic reception in December 2015.
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