28 February 2014

Lunch at Chequers

The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh had lunch at Chequers, the Prime Minister's country retreat.
Completing the week with yet another old favorite brooch! (And she does look like she's trapped in an overly long house tour, which is hilarious. We've all been there...)

27 February 2014

Queen's Anniversary Prizes and an Audience

The Queen, accompanied by the Duke of Edinburgh, presented The Queen's Anniversary Prizes for Higher and Further Education at Buckingham Palace, followed by a reception.
A two brooch day! A pair of aquamarine clips...

Also today, the Queen received German Chancellor Angela Merkel for a private audience at Buckingham Palace. 
Click here for video from ITNSource.
...and a pearl pendant, completing a day of old faithfuls.


Photo: ITN

26 February 2014

Large Diamond Solitaire Earrings

The Queen has more than one option in her collection for earrings composed of one large, single diamond each. I find that they can be hard to distinguish when in use, so we will group them together here.

Queen Victoria's Diamond Stud Earrings 
Queen Victoria's Stud Earrings, shown on (left to right) Queen Victoria, Queen Alexandra, the Queen
These two large, perfectly matched diamonds were set as stud earrings by Queen Victoria, according to Leslie Field in The Queen's Jewels. The earrings are today worn by the Queen after passing down from queen to queen after Victoria.

Queen Mary's Diamond Collet Earrings 
Queen Mary, the Queen
Queen Mary, who tended to avoid long, dangly earrings, used two of the round diamond collets from the Coronation Necklace to create a pair of earrings, according to Hugh Roberts in The Queen's Diamonds. These may be the pair shown above, though again it is impossible to say for sure.

This being a simple design, it is always possible that more examples exist.

Appearances:
2005: The Garter Service

Photos: Leslie Field/Queen Elizabeth II/Royal Collection/AFP

19 February 2014

Audience at Buckingham Palace

The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh received the Governor General designate of Australia and his wife at Buckingham Palace.
Not surprising based on her recent audiences with Commonwealth figures, but still I'm a little disappointed we didn't get one of the brooches with a direct Australia connection! Instead, we have the return of a standard favorite, the Flower Basket Brooch. (Click here for a bigger picture.)

17 February 2014

Reception for the Dramatic Arts

The Queen, Patron, Royal Academy of Dramatic Art, hosted a reception at Buckingham Palace together with other members of the Royal Family.

A treat from the Queen tonight, Albert's sapphire making its first appearance of the year! Yum. And my second favorite thing about the evening (from this article):
"Actress Ms Horrocks asked the Queen about the honorary BAFTA she was given in April last year and the monarch replied that she saw it all the time. 'I keep it on the TV,' she said."
Now, who can we get to ask her what she did with the set of London 2012 Olympic medals she was given, hmm?


Photos:WPA Pool/Getty

15 February 2014

The Women of Hampshire Brooch

The Women of Hampshire Brooch
This diamond and pearl brooch, which was originally intended to be used as a pendant, was Queen Mary's wedding gift from the Women of Hampshire in 1893. A committee chaired by the Duchess of Wellington raised £775 and selected this pendant from Garrard. The piece features a large brilliant with a foliate spray above and three bell flower pendants below - thanks to those flowers, this is often referred to as the Harebell Brooch. Two pear-shaped diamonds and one baroque pearl hang from the flowers; they are all removable. (Hugh Roberts notes that, as with the Richmond Brooch, the pearl here was at one point in time used for the Cambridge Lover's Knot Tiara, but was later returned.)
Queen Mary, left, and the Queen
Queen Mary used the pendant jewel as a brooch, and that is how it is used today. It passed to the Queen on her grandmother's death in 1953, and she wears it only occasionally.

Appearances:
26 March 2014: Audiences at Buckingham Palace
14 February 2014: Audiences at Buckingham Palace
1961: Commonwealth Visit to India and Pakistan

Photos: Leslie Field/Royal Collection/IDBS/Keystone

13 February 2014

The Four Row Japanese Pearl Choker

The Four Row Japanese Pearl Choker
Though the Queen has a habit of shortening longer necklaces to suit her, she usually stays away from the choker style, making this particular piece an interesting part of her collection. The necklace includes four rows of pearls with a central diamond clasp in a curved shape, each side including three rows of diamonds that join at the top and bottom with marquise diamonds. According to Garrard: The Crown Jewellers for 150 Years, the Queen commissioned this from a set of the "finest cultured pearls presented to her by the Japanese government." She made her first state visit to Japan in 1975; the choker was in use by at least 1982.
The Queen (left, center) and the Princess of Wales (right)
The Garrard book posits that it was inspired by the Queen's new daughter-in-law at the time, and she did notably loan the piece to the new Princess of Wales during a state visit from the Netherlands in 1982. It is only occasionally used by the Queen, in whose collection it still remains.

Appearances:
1982: State Visit from the Netherlands (on the Princess of Wales)

Photos: Leslie Field/EPA

09 February 2014

Flashback: State Visit to Italy, Papal Audience, 2000

Buckingham Palace announced the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh will take a one day trip to Rome in April of this year, including an audience with Pope Francis. Her last visit to Vatican City came in October 2000, during a state visit to Italy, when she and the Duke visited Pope John Paul II.
http://www.itnsource.com/en/shotlist/ITN/2000/10/17/BSP171000033/?s=queen%20and%20pope
Click above for a video from ITNSource.
On that occasion, the Queen complied with Vatican protocol and wore all black, attaching a veil to her hat. She also added some extra gem power to her standard day look with a larger triple strand of pearls, the Ladies of Devonshire Earrings, the Richmond Brooch, Queen Mary's Pearl and Diamond Floral Bracelet, and her Black Strap Watch.

According to reports about the upcoming visit, it will be an informal one; the Queen is not expected to wear black or a mantilla/veil. Past visits to Vatican City were even more formal than the appearance in 2000, and you can look for those in upcoming flashbacks!

In current events... The Queen and the Duke went to church at Sandringham one last time before heading back to London this week. She wore the Flame Lily Brooch, a particularly appropriate choice since she recently marked the date of her accession, and that was the brooch she wore when returning home for the first time after her father's death.

Updated... On Monday, the Queen dug out the Grima Ruby Brooch and returned to London by train.

Photos: AP/ITN

03 February 2014

Visit to RAF Marham

The Queen, Honorary Air Commodore, visited RAF Marham, King's Lynn, Norfolk.
Haven't actually seen a shot of this one with the brooch (she's worn the Prince Albert sapphire with this ensemble previously) but look - she matches the kiddos. Adorbs.

As things kick back up after the Sandringham break, a traveling state visit has been announced! It's just a pop over to France, but it's nice to see a trip in the works. HM and the DoE's trip to France will be June 5-7, and will include celebrations of the 70th anniversary of the Normandy landings.

Update: Thanks to more pictures on the British Monarchy's Flickr, we have a brooch - she's broken the Albert trend and opted for the Sapphire Chrysanthemum.


Photo: British Monarchy Instagram

02 February 2014

Flashback: State Visit from India, State Banquet, 2009

Video: The Queen hosts a state banquet at Windsor Castle for Pratibha Patil, President of India, during her October 2009 state visit to the United Kingdom.
This is a rare colorful (well, relatively colorful) state banquet appearance for the Queen in recent years, as she donned a gold gown and rubies to welcome the Indian president. In addition to the Burmese Ruby Tiara, she's wearing the Ruby and Diamond Swag Demi-Parure (necklace and earrings), the Richmond Brooch, the Art Deco Diamond and Ruby Bracelet, and a gold evening watch. She is also wearing her family orders and the Star, Riband, and Lesser George of the Order of the Garter. Here's a gallery with more looks at the visit, including a peek at the Duchess of Cornwall in the Greville Tiara, while the video above offers the best looks at the mysterious tiara (headband?) worn by the Princess Royal.

In current news... Excitement! Today at church, the Queen wore the Saskatchewan Tourmaline Flower Brooch for the first time publicly. And as expected, it looked fantastic with the pink tones in her outfit.