30 May 2015

Saturday Sparkler Special: Queen Mary's Tiaras (Part 4)

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One more round of Queen Mary's tiaras as we finish up our May specials on her collection! Today, we're looking at tiaras that have been sold, dismantled, or are otherwise unaccounted for. (If you missed any of our earlier posts -- on her diamond, diamond and pearl, and colored gemstones tiaras -- be sure to go back and explore!)




The Ladies of England Tiara

Original Owner: Queen Mary of the United Kingdom
Maker: Hunt and Roskell, ca. 1893
Fate: Dismantled, ca. 1913

Given to Mary as a wedding present by a committee of 650 "Ladies of England," the tiara could also be worn as a necklace or a corsage ornament. Mary had the tiara dismantled in 1913. The diamonds were recycled and used in two new tiaras: the Lover's Knot Tiara and the Honeysuckle Tiara.





The County of Surrey Tiara

Original Owner: Queen Mary of the United Kingdom
Maker: Unknown, ca. 1893
Fate: Dismantled, ca. 1913

Another of Mary's wedding presents, this tiara was a gift from the people of the County of Surrey. It could also be worn as a necklace. When Mary had it dismantled in 1913, its diamonds were used in the making of two other tiaras. Thirteen of the large brilliants were used to replace the upright pearls that were originally placed atop the Girls of Great Britain and Ireland Tiara, while the rest of the diamonds were used in the construction of the Honeysuckle Tiara.




The Collingwood Fringe Tiara

Original Owner: Queen Mary of the United Kingdom
Maker: Collingwood and Co., ca. 1893
Fate: Dismantled, ca. 1919

Queen Victoria gave this convertible necklace/tiara to Mary as a wedding present, and the bride sensibly wore it nestled among flowers on her wedding day. In 1919, she had the piece dismantled, and the diamonds were used to make her new diamond fringe tiara.


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Queen Mary's Boucheron Loop Tiara

Original Owner: Queen Mary of the United Kingdom
Maker: Boucheron, ca. 1902
Fate: Dismantled, ca. 1911

This tiara was commissioned by Mary from Boucheron in 1902, using diamonds that had been given to her by De Beers the previous year. She had it dismantled about a decade later and had the diamonds used to make the Delhi Durbar Tiara.


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Queen Mary's Wreath Bandeau Tiara

Original Owner: Queen Mary of the United Kingdom
Maker: Unknown
Fate: Unknown

Mary wore this small bandeau in portraits; you can just make out a laurel-wreath pattern in between the larger diamonds. The fate of this small bandeau appears to be completely unknown. (The gorgeous choker she wears in this photo and the one above is the Love Trophy Collar.)


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Queen Mary's Feather Aigrette

Original Owner: Queen Mary of the United Kingdom
Maker: Collingwood and Co., ca. 1893
Fate: Unknown

The Duke of York -- later George V -- gave this to his bride, Mary, as a wedding gift. She wore it in portraits, but its fate is also not known. (Note: the bandeau worn at the base of the aigrette in the photo above is the base of the Collingwood Fringe Tiara discussed above; the aigrette is a separate piece pinned into Mary's hair.)


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Queen Mary's Amethyst Tiara

Original Owner: Queen Mary of the United Kingdom
Maker: Unknown
Fate: sold at auction

Like her grandmother, who won the famous Cambridge emeralds in a charity lottery, Mary apparently won these amethysts at an auction. She had them set in a parure which included a tiara, a necklace, earrings, and a brooch. She gave the set to the Queen Mother, but it was later sold at auction. In recent years, Vogue editor Anna Wintour has been seen wearing the necklace from the set.