16 July 2014
Queen Sonja's Amethysts
We've had a look at two of the modern sets of jewelry owned by our Magpie of the Month, Queen Sonja of Norway, and today, we're shining the spotlight on a third. But while the first two sets are extremely modern in execution, the third set, her amethyst parure, has echoes of heirloom pieces in its design.
The amethyst and diamond parure was a gift to Queen Sonja from her husband, King Harald V of Norway. The set consists of several pieces: a convertible necklace/tiara, a pair of earrings with removable drops, two bracelets that can be combined and worn together as a second necklace, and a brooch that can also be attached as a part of the bracelet-necklace. Harald clearly values versatility in the jewelry sets that he gifts to his wife!
Sonja wore the entire set at the gala held the night before the wedding of her son, Crown Prince Haakon, in 2001. She pinned the brooch to the center of her gown's neckline, and she stacked both bracelets on her right arm.
For years, the queen was the primary wearer of this piece, sporting it as both a necklace and a tiara. In recent years, however, she appears to have either given or permanently loaned the parure to her daughter-in-law, Crown Princess Mette-Marit. (There’s some speculation that it might have a gift in celebration of the birth of Mette-Marit’s daughter and the heir to the throne, Princess Ingrid Alexandra.)
The crown princess generally wears the piece as a tiara, though she only sometimes uses the combined pair of bracelets to make a matching necklace. At the Swedish royal wedding in 2013, for example, she wore a capelet over her dress that made the addition of a necklace a bit of a moot point.
One other Norwegian royal woman has also worn the tiara, however: Princess Märtha Louise donned the amethyst parure, including the tiara and the bracelet-necklace, at the 2010 wedding of Crown Princess Victoria of Sweden. While Mette-Marit features sleek hairstyles, Märtha Louise backed this tall necklace tiara with an impressive hairstyle, providing the amethysts with a substantial brunette backdrop.