29 November 2013

Windsor Guildhall Visit

The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh visited Windsor Guildhall, Windsor, to officially unveil two stained glass windows marking her Diamond Jubilee.
Click above for a video from ITNSource.
Déjà vu! This is a straight up repeat, brooch and all, from this year's Maundy service.

Three Strand Pearl Necklace

In other news...'tis the season for investitures, I guess - another one was held on Thursday, November 28th.  

Photo: ITNSource

27 November 2013

Audiences at Buckingham Palace

The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh met with the family of artist Albert Namatjira at Buckingham Palace. The Queen also received the High Commissioner for Malta in London and the Ambassador from the United States of America for audiences.
Click above for an article, pictures, and video from ABC.
Interesting - one of the longer three strand pearl necklaces, for a change.

In other current event news...an investiture was held on Friday, the 22nd, though it was hard to see the brooch as usual.

Photo: ABC

21 November 2013

Visit to Southwark

The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh visited The Shard and Southwark Cathedral, Southwark, London.
Click above for an article, photos, and video from the Daily Mail.
I wondered why we didn't see an amethyst brooch on that lovely purple outfit from earlier this week, as we usually do - must have had it in reserve!

Photo: Daily Mail screencap

20 November 2013

Audiences at Buckingham Palace

The Queen received several people for audiences at Buckingham Palace, including the Most Reverend Desmond Tutu.
I found this explanation (above and in their linked Flickr site) for the visit interesting. Like, just in case you thought he'd just popped by for some gossip and a scone. Nope.

19 November 2013

Contemporary British Poetry Reception

The Queen, along with the Duke of Edinburgh, the Princess Royal, and Princess Michael of Kent, attended a reception for contemporary British poetry at Buckingham Palace.
Click here for an article and gallery from the Mirror.
I think I rave about the richness of this suit every time it pops up, but it's time to do it again: check this photo on the British Monarchy's Instagram - is this the perfect accompaniment to the setting, or what?!

Photo: PA

18 November 2013

Flashback: CHOGM Dinners

I was delighted to see that the Duchess of Cornwall turned up for the formal dinner at the 2013 Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) in Sri Lanka in full tiara gear - and looking fabulous to boot in the Greville Tiara along with a favorite pair of diamond earrings, a diamond bracelet, and the Queen's family order.
When in attendance at the biennial meeting for the heads of government of the Commonwealth nations, the Queen turns the black tie dinner into a tiara event for herself. I wondered if the Duchess, who accompanied the Prince of Wales as he opened the summit in his mother's place, would continue the tradition - after all, it has become rare to see royals in tiaras on solo trips without the monarch. It's nice to see the event continue to receive a bit of added pomp, given how important the Commonwealth has been to the Queen over the years.

The CHOGM summit officially began in 1971 and the Queen started to attend in 1973. The 2013 Sri Lanka meeting is the first she's missed, as the palace stated her long-haul travel amounts are under review. This flashback covers the tiara-filled CHOGM banquets over the years. (It does not include every year, nor every jewel from those years represented - only identifiable pieces are mentioned, and evening watches are not included - and it does not cover dinners held for Commonwealth leaders prior to the 1971 time frame. Most of these appearances include the Star of the Order of the Garter, if not also the Riband and Lesser George; some also include the Queen's two royal family orders. Other honors are noted below if they can be identified.)

1975: Girls of Great Britain and Ireland Tiara
1977: Grand Duchess Vladimir Tiara with pearls
1979: Modern Sapphire Tiara, George VI Sapphire Necklace and Earrings, Modern Sapphire Bracelet 
1983: Girls of Great Britain and Ireland Tiara, Dorset Bow Brooch
1985: Grand Duchess Vladimir Tiara with pearls
1987: Grand Duchess Vladimir Tiara with emeralds, Delhi Durbar Necklace
1989: Girls of Great Britain and Ireland Tiara, Queen Victoria's Golden Jubilee Necklace, Duchess of Gloucester's Pendant Earrings
1993: Queen Alexandra's Kokoshnik Tiara, Antique Girandole Earrings, King Khalid Diamond Necklace
1995: Modern Sapphire Tiara, George VI Sapphire Necklace and Earrings, Modern Sapphire Bracelet, and the Queen's Service Order for New Zealand

1997: On the Queen, the Grand Duchess Vladimir Tiara with pearls, Queen Victoria's Golden Jubilee Necklace, Queen Victoria's Pearl Drop Earrings. The Queen Mother's jewels include the Greville Tiara.
1999: Grand Duchess Vladimir Tiara with pearls, Qatar Pearl and Diamond Demi-Parure, Queen Adelaide's Brooch, and a pearl bracelet we haven't covered yet
2002: Grand Duchess Vladimir Tiara with no drops, Antique Girandole Earrings, King Khalid Diamond Necklace
2003: A pearl and diamond set we haven't covered yet. This year she opted for a less formal look and did not wear a tiara.
2005: Girls of Great Britain and Ireland Tiara, Antique Girandole Earrings, King Khalid Diamond Necklace

2007: Girls of Great Britain and Ireland Tiara, Antique Girandole Earrings, Nizam of Hyderabad Necklace. The Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall were also in attendance - Camilla made one of her most dazzling appearances to date in the Greville Tiara and the full five strands of the Greville Festoon Necklace (which can be worn as separate strands of two and three, as seen on the Queen Mother above).
2009: Girls of Great Britain and Ireland Tiara, a pair of diamond earrings we haven't covered yet, Nizam of Hyderabad Necklace 
2011: The Brazilian Aquamarine Parure (tiara, necklace, bracelet), and the Order of Australia
2013: The Duchess of Cornwall only, see top of post.
2015: See here.

Photos: PA/Getty Images/AFP/BBC/CHOGM

14 November 2013

Visit to Manchester

The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh visited Manchester for several engagements.
Click above for an article, photos, and video from the BBC.
I was wondering when we'd see the return of the Jardine Star, and here we are!


13 November 2013

Walking with the Wounded Reception

The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh met with Prince Harry and the teams from the Walking with the Wounded South Pole Allied Challenge during a reception at Buckingham Palace. The Queen also held audiences today.
Video, above. Click here for an article and pictures from the Express.
Prince Harry and an amethyst? Is it my birthday?!

11 November 2013

Flashback: State Visit from France, State Banquet, 2008

The Queen's second outing of the center of the large Diamond Cockade Brooch was during South Korea's state visit; the first was during a March 2008 state visit from the President of the French Republic, Nicolas Sarkozy, and Madame Sarkozy. The state banquet was held at Windsor Castle.
Video: The Queen's speech at the banquet
Just like at the Korean banquet, in 2008 the brooch was used to secure a simple and bold red sash, France's National Order of the Legion of Honour (they are not, of course, the same - in 2013, Korea's Grand Order of Mugunghwa was worn). I do wonder if it is the red that encourages her to bring out the Cockade, or just simply the fact that it works so well on a strong, single-colored background.

In 2008, she added rubies to emphasize the red; I believe this was her first outing of the luscious Crown ruby earrings and necklace which had always been a favorite with her mother. To this she added pieces that had been in her collection longer, the Art Deco Diamond and Ruby Bracelet and the Burmese Ruby Tiara (a shame she didn't complete the Queen Mother set and go with the Oriental Circlet, but I'd always prefer that one). She also wore her Pearl Evening Watch, an unusual choice without pearls elsewhere in the jewelry, and a Diamond Bar Brooch on her back.
Other tiara-wearing members of the family included the Princess Royal in her Festoon Tiara, and Princess Michael of Kent in her pearl and diamond tiara. The Duchess of Cornwall wore more of the Queen's collection: the Greville Tiara, and Queen Elizabeth's Coronation Necklace (which I wish she'd wear more often - it is spectacular, and suits her so well!). I didn't realize until I took this look back just how well the Queen Mother was represented here, but it seems fitting, doesn't it?

Photos: Getty Images/PA/WireImage/Reuters

10 November 2013

Remembrance Sunday

The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh, accompanied by members of the Royal Family, attended the Remembrance Sunday ceremony at the Cenotaph, London. The service honors those that have died in armed conflicts.
It was once again the Dorset Bow Brooch glinting away in the sun at the solemn Remembrance service. Though the Queen was well bundled up, we can assume there's a pearl necklace, etc., in there somewhere. Her traditional cluster of poppies was also present once again, after taking a leave of absence from the previous evening's event.

A few more scenes from around the Cenotaph:
The Queen was backed on the ground by the Duke of Edinburgh, the Duke of Cambridge, Prince Harry, the Earl of Wessex, the Princess Royal, and the Duke of Kent. Prince Harry laid a wreath on behalf of the Prince of Wales, who marked the day in India where he is on tour with the Duchess of Cornwall. The Duke of York visited Camp Bastion, Afghanistan, and participated in a service there.
Watching from the balconies above were the Duchess of Cambridge, the Countess of Wessex, Vice Admiral Sir Tim Laurence, the Duke and Duchess of Gloucester, and Princess Alexandra of Kent. The Countess of Wessex wore the badge of the 5th Battalion The Rifles, as she is their Royal Colonel, and the Duchess of Cambridge wore a crystal poppy brooch from Buckley London.

For more on the Remembrance Services:


09 November 2013

Festival of Remembrance

The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh, accompanied by other members of the Royal Family, attended the Royal British Legion Festival of Remembrance at the Royal Albert Hall, London. Ahead of the Festival, they reviewed the South Steps of the venue, which were renamed the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Steps.
The Queen's pulled out one of the larger brooches I wish we saw more often, the Williamson Diamond Brooch with its spectacular pink diamond center. But interestingly, she wore no red poppies with it - unusual, as we've just seen in our flashback.
She also wore one of her longer triple strands of pearls (a few glimpses of the clasp, above). And she wore a few diamond rings, though it's hard to tell which ones, and what I think is her usual gold watch. 

Several other members of the family were in attendance along with HM and the DoE: The Earl and Countess of Wessex, the Duke of Kent, Princess Alexandra of Kent, Prince and Princess Michael of Kent, the Princess Royal, Vice Admiral Sir Tim Laurence, and the Duke and Duchess of Gloucester (you can just see the Duchess peeking out from behind Tim Laurence, below).
I noticed the Princess Royal was wearing her own diamond star brooch - sometimes confused with the Jardine Star Brooch, but no, just another example of how popular that motif has been over the years. For a gallery from the event, click here.


08 November 2013

SSAFA Opening

The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh opened the new headquarters of the SSAFA armed forces charity at Queen Elizabeth House, London. They were welcomed by Prince Michael of Kent, President, and Princess Michael of Kent.
Click above for a video report and article from the BBC.
I just had to update my entry for this brooch - it used to ponder the reasons why this brooch wasn't more of a favorite with the Queen, but this marks the fourth appearance since this time last year. Not in the shadows anymore! Three cheers from all the pearl fans out there, no doubt.

Click above for a longer video including the presentation of the Queen's badge, seen above, from ITNSource.
During the visit, Prince Michael presented the Queen with a badge to mark her 60 years of service. Perhaps we'll get a glimpse the next time she has an engagement with the charity.

Oh, and also: I have updated the post from our recent state banquet with delicious video showing the full level of Queen-y sparkle. Must not miss. (Plus, the Duchess of Gloucester's second tiara appearance of the visit!)

Photos: BBC & ITN screencaps

07 November 2013

State Visit from South Korea, Farewell

The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh bid farewell to the President of the Republic of Korea, Park Geun-hye, at the conclusion of her State Visit to the United Kingdom.
Video, above
I didn't realize the Modern Ruby Brooch hadn't been seen since April 2012...guess I didn't miss it much.

06 November 2013

Audiences at Buckingham Palace

The Queen received the most recent recipient of Australia's Victoria Cross, Corporal Daniel Keighran, for an audience at Buckingham Palace. She also received the Governor of the Bank of England.
Click above for an article and video from ABC News.
The Cambridge Pearl Pendant Brooch looks so lonely without its pendant, doesn't it?

Photo: ABC screencap

05 November 2013

The Diamond Chandelier Drop Demi-Parure

The Diamond Chandelier Drop Demi-Parure (Necklace and Earrings, inset)

A matched set of a necklace and a pair of earrings, this demi-parure is made of diamonds in multiple intricate pendants, each tipped with a pear-shaped diamond drop. Its provenance has not been officially confirmed, but it certainly has the look of a gift from one of the Middle Eastern rulers, and The Queen did wear it during a 1987 state visit from King Fahd of Saudi Arabia. (I am using a name that refers to its complicated pendant structure, since the gift is not confirmed.)

The Queen

The Queen has used this set fairly often, even for some official portraits. It is a slightly more grand option than pieces such as the King Khalid Diamond Necklace (very similar, and a confirmed Saudi gift), the Diamond Pear-Shaped Pendant Fringe Necklace, or the King Faisal Diamond Necklace (another confirmed Saudi gift).

The Countess of Wessex

During the 2019 state visit from the United States, it appeared that the necklace and earrings had been loaned to The Countess of Wessex for use.

Appearances (both Necklace and Earrings, unless otherwise noted):
11 December 2019: Diplomatic Reception (earrings on The Duchess of Cambridge)
3 June 2019: State Visit from the United States, State Banquet (on The Countess of Wessex)
5 November 2013: State Visit from South Korea, State Banquet 
1992: State Visit to Germany 

Photos: Getty Images/Lichfield/Royal Household

The Diamond Cockade Brooch

The Diamond Cockade Brooch
The Diamond Cockade Brooch has been worn to three coronations and used in its present form by four queens. This is a brooch with a rich history – and at this time, we don’t even know its whole story. It is said to have belonged to Queen Victoria, but it was Queen Alexandra that had it altered to the form we’re familiar with today. It’s a large clasp for a cloak, which is used as a stomacher or very large brooch, all made in diamonds. It comes in three pieces, a central star with eight points and large diamond elements between each, and two side pieces with an intricate knotted design. Before Alexandra, the piece was in five sections and was originally used as a cockade – normally a hat ornament, possibly part of a military uniform. The exact provenance and age is not currently known.
Queen Alexandra using the full clasp at her coronation (with close up of her heavily jeweled bodice) and using only the center section
Queen Alexandra wore the full three pieces to her coronation alongside her husband, Edward VII, in 1902 underneath her swags of pearls. It was also used at the coronation of George V in 1911 by Queen Mary, who wore it with the two side pieces at an angle. Mary was also known to use the side pieces with different brooches in the center.
Queen Mary (with the full clasp, and using the two side sections around other pieces), Queen Elizabeth (using the center section on her bodice), and Queen Elizabeth II (using the center section as a shoulder brooch)
Queen Elizabeth wore just the center section to her 1937 coronation with her husband, George VI – and it’s entirely possible it wasn’t seen in public again until Queen Elizabeth II wore it in 2008, to a state banquet for the President of France. (That 71-year delay makes it seem likely it stayed with the Queen Mother after 1952, not being unearthed until the Queen inherited her jewelry in 2002 and began to debut different pieces.) We haven’t seen the side pieces since Queen Mary’s time, and I suppose they suffer the same fate as most stomachers, becoming harder to wear as fashions change. Regardless of the difficulties of wearing it, it is a staggering piece, and it would be such a treat to see the whole thing once again some day.

Appearances (of the Center Section only, unless otherwise noted):
5 November 2013: State Visit from South Korea, State Banquet 
2008: State Visit from France, State Banquet

Photos: Lord Twining/Royal Collection/Getty Images

State Visit from South Korea, State Banquet

The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh, together with other members of the Royal Family, gave a State Banquet in honor of the President of the Republic of Korea at Buckingham Palace.

Unless you count the State Opening of Parliament, this is the first tiara event of the year for Her Maj, and more than likely the only one we'll see. So you have to love that she's busted out one of her biggest brooches (and a rare sight, at that), plus a hefty necklace and earring set - none of which we've covered on the blog before. She's done her best to tide us over, because she's a gem. She upped the sparkle factor but kept it all in white, which allowed the red of her Korean order to really stand out.
I'm not sure just yet which bracelet she's worn, so if you have any thoughts, chime in!

There wasn't much in the way of other British tiaras on display, only a mere glimpse of the Princess Royal. Once again, bonus points are awarded to the President, who shined in her traditional dress. Click here for a gallery.

Diamond Bracelet (Unidentified)
Diamond Watch (same as here)

UPDATE: Video of the banquet! Loooook at the sparkle...
You can also see the Duchess of Gloucester, also in attendance, but alas we still can't really see the tiaras for her or for the Princess Royal.  

There is also a traditional banquet for the visiting head of state at the Guildhall, which was attended by the Gloucesters.
And here we actually can see the Duchess well enough to tell that she's worn her favorite Gloucester Honeysuckle Tiara, in its all-diamond format.


State Visit from South Korea, Welcome Ceremony

The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh welcomed the President of the Republic of Korea, Her Excellency Park Geun-hye, at the beginning of her State Visit to the United Kingdom.
Video: The welcome ceremony. Click here for an article and pictures from the Daily Mail.
Glad to see the Centenary Rose Brooch out and about again - by my count this is the second outing this year - but...all these pink outfits and no debut of the new tourmaline brooch is just a tease, no?
(Bonus mention to the lovely President, though, for bringing her own elegant brooch bling!)

Photo: Getty Images

04 November 2013

The Richmond Brooch

The Richmond Brooch (sketch with pearl pendant; as worn, without)
A present from the town of Richmond for her 1893 wedding to the future King George V, Queen Mary's Richmond Brooch is a large piece made from diamonds set in silver and gold in a scrolling design surrounding a central pearl, with a pearl and diamond pendant hanging below. It's a flexible jewel - the central pearl and pearl pendant are detachable (Mary, as we know, was prone to switching around her jewels, and accordingly this pendant was once used in the Cambridge Lover's Knot Tiara), more pendants can be added, the whole brooch can be used as a pendant itself, and Queen Mary even used it in her hair.
Queen Mary (wearing the brooch in the center of her bodice, left, and as a pendant on a necklace while dressed in costume for the Devonshire House Ball, right)
The brooch has been identified by several different names over the years. In the original edition of Leslie Field's The Queen's Jewels, it was identified as the Warwick Sun Brooch, a present from the Earl of Warwick and family; in a later edition, it was called the Surrey Brooch, a present from the Ladies of Surrey Needlework Guild. Hugh Roberts' The Queen's Diamonds has now corrected this to be the brooch from Richmond. These were all wedding gifts to the then-Princess Victoria Mary of Teck; since the bride's gifts included upwards of 40 brooches, it's not surprising that some confusion has resulted.
The Queen, both with and without the pearl drop
The Queen inherited the brooch when Queen Mary died, in 1953. She wore it during her post-Coronation Commonwealth tour but then seems to have put it away. Only in her later years has it appeared again, worn for evening events and a few special day engagements. She has worn it both with and without the bottom pearl pendant.

17 April 2021: Funeral of The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh
10 November 2018: Festival of Remembrance 
19 May 2018: The Wedding of The Duke and Duchess of Sussex
10 June 2016: The Queen's 90th Birthday Service
8 November 2014: Festival of Remembrance
2009: State Visit from India
2007: Festival of Remembrance
2000: State Visit to Italy, Papal Audience

Photos: Leslie Field/Getty Images/Lafayette/V&A

02 November 2013

Flashback: Remembrance Events

In November, The Queen's calendar is always marked with events surrounding Remembrance Day, a memorial day to pay respects to the country's war dead. She attends the Royal British Legion Festival of Remembrance ahead of the main ceremony at the Cenotaph war memorial on Whitehall in London; other events can also be included, such as opening the Field of Remembrance at Westminster Abbey, though not every year. Red poppies are the symbol of remembrance, a reference to the World War I poem "In Flanders Fields" by John McCrae, and The Queen fastens a cluster of these with her brooch.

The Festival of Remembrance is an evening affair, with a few fancier jewels.
(A note: Pearl necklaces are all identified simply by their number of strands not because they are the same necklace, but because they're hard to identify by different names)

It might seem frivolous to talk about jewelry when it comes to somber events like this, but I think it's interesting how they can be used in symbolic and touching ways. At the main Cenotaph event, The Queen leads the wreath-laying ceremony with senior members of her family in uniform behind her (she herself attended in uniform during some of her years as Princess Elizabeth, but she wears regular black as Queen). Other members of the family watch from balconies above, and many of them choose to honor regiments they're identified with by wearing regimental badges; The Duchess of Cambridge has on occasion worn a crystal poppy brooch, the sales of which help aid the Royal British Legion. Sometimes The Duchess of Cornwall accents her poppies with her Diamond Stick Insect Brooch, which is said to have been a gift from her late father, a veteran and former prisoner of war.
For her part, The Queen dips into her collection of bow brooches. They handle the poppy job well, being large enough to accommodate the five poppies typically worn (as seen in the Festival flashbacks above, she has used brooches beyond the bows, but they aren't all well suited to the task - it appears she had to reduce her usual poppy number when using the Cambridge Pearl Pendant!). The Dorset Bow Brooch seems to be the most popular. None of these are restricted to use at Remembrance Day exclusively, but many aren't seen too often apart from poppy events, giving her choice a special touch.

Photos: PA/BBC/Royal British Legion/Getty Images/Corbis/EPA/AFP/Reuters

01 November 2013

The Newhaven Horse Brooch

The Newhaven Horse Brooch (shown with the Duke of Edinburgh's Tudor rose tie pin)
To commemorate their visit to East Sussex on October 31, 2013, the Newhaven Chamber of Commerce presented the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh with pieces donated by jeweler Mike Shorer and his company Historic Jewellery Reproduction. Picking up on the Queen’s love for horses, her brooch is a reproduction of a second century Romano-British horse brooch and is made from gold plated English pewter accented with green and blue enamel. (The Queen is not the only one that may have a replica of this second century piece – other versions up for sale in the past include one at the Royal Armouries Shop* and one previously auctioned on Ebay.) The Duke received a Tudor rose tie pin, also made of gold plated English pewter, which was inspired by Henry VIII’s Mary Rose warship.

We have not yet seen the Queen wear her Newhaven brooch.

*Thanks to Jelena for this link.

Photo: Sussex Express screencap