31 December 2017

The Best Royal Jewels of 2017: #1 (Letizia and the Joyas de Pasar)

MATT DUNHAM/AFP/Getty Images

Take one of Europe's most stylish royal women, and add a serious collection of heirloom diamonds, and you know you've got our top royal jewel moment of the year!

#1: Letizia and the Joyas de Pasar

The Best Royal Jewels of 2017: #2 (Victorian Tiaras on Display)

Victoria and Albert Museum

Is there anything better than a surprise reappearance from a tiara feared lost? Soon, you'll be able to visit two of them in London -- and maybe a third, too...

#2: Victorian Tiaras on Display

30 December 2017

The Best Royal Jewels of 2017: #3 (German Wedding Tiaras)

JULIAN STRATENSCHULTE/AFP/Getty Images

In Germany this year, three weddings of couples with royal and noble lineage brought out some important royal jewels. A trio of rarely-seen royal tiaras definitely makes our list...

#3: German Wedding Tiaras

The Best Royal Jewels of 2017: #4 (Princess Sofia's Tiara Redesigned)

JONATHAN NACKSTRAND/AFP/Getty Images

Who doesn't love a good tiara transformation? And when a sparkler's improved as much as this one was, there's no doubt that it belongs on our year in review countdown...

#4: Princess Sofia's Tiara Redesigned

29 December 2017

The Best Royal Jewels of 2017: #5 (Kate's Borrowed Jewels)

CHRIS J RATCLIFFE/AFP/Getty Images

The Duchess of Cambridge's borrowed royal jewels made our year in review countdown in 2016, and her collection of loaner items has only increased this year. Here are some highlights...


#5: Kate's Borrowed Jewels


The Best Royal Jewels of 2017: #6 (Meghan Markle's Engagement Ring)

Christopher Furlong/Getty Images

Our countdown of the best royal jewel moments of 2017 rolls on with one of the most romantic royal jewels of the year...


#6: Meghan Markle's Engagement Ring

28 December 2017

The Best Royal Jewels of 2017: #7 (The Norwegian Birthday Celebrations)

HAAKON MOSVOLD LARSEN/AFP/Getty Images

When both a king and a queen celebrate their 80th birthdays in a single glittering weekend, you know that some major jewels go on display! Our countdown continues with a look at...


#7: The Norwegian Birthday Celebrations

Jewels on Film: THE CROWN (Season 2, Episode 6)


Our bejeweled recaps of Netflix's The Crown continues with the sixth episode of season two, "Vergangenheit." With a German language title that simply means "the past," you've probably correctly guessed that there's a whole lot of historical information in this episode. (If you need to catch up on any of our previous recaps, head over here!)


The Best Royal Jewels of 2017: #8 (The Sapphire Jubilee Snowflake Brooch)

Governor-General David Johnston/Twitter

Our countdown of the best royal jewel moments of the year continues with a brand-new addition to the world's greatest brooch collection...


#8: The Sapphire Jubilee Snowflake Brooch

27 December 2017

The Best Royal Jewels of 2017: #9 (The Ruby Peacock Necklace)

OLAF KRAAK/AFP/Getty Images

Another jewel dusted off from the royal vaults comes in at number 9 in our countdown of the best royal jewel moments of the year...

#9: The Ruby Peacock Necklace


The Best Royal Jewels of 2017: #10 (The King Luis Diamond Tiara)


It's that time of year again, magpies: we're counting down the ten best royal jewelry moments of 2017! We're kicking things off with a surprise appearance from an important Portuguese royal tiara...

#10: The King Luis Diamond Tiara


26 December 2017

The Daily Diadem: The Boucheron Laurel Wreath Tiara

JONATHAN NACKSTRAND/AFP/Getty Images

Crown Princess Victoria of Sweden, holding Princess Estelle, wears the Boucheron Laurel Wreath Tiara at the wedding of her sister, Princess Madeleine, in June 2013; read more about the tiara here!


Jewels on Film: THE CROWN (Season 2, Episode 5)


"Marionettes," episode five of the second season of Netflix's The Crown, is light on both plot and jewels, unfortunately. But we've still got a few interesting things to discuss jewel-wise -- and history-wise! (If you need to catch up on previous recaps, they're all over here!)


Christmas Jewels from Sandringham

ADRIAN DENNIS/AFP/Getty Images

The Windsors gathered at the Sandringham estate in Norfolk on Christmas for their annual celebrations, and their attendance at morning church offered us a glimpse of some holiday jewels -- and the newest member of the family!

25 December 2017

The Daily Diadem: The Brabant Laurel Wreath Tiara

Sean Gallup/Getty Images

Queen Mathilde of the Belgians (then Duchess of Brabant) wears the Brabant Laurel Wreath Tiara at the pre-wedding gala for Hereditary Grand Duke Guillaume of Luxembourg, October 2012; read more about this tiara over here!


Merry Christmas!

LISE AASERUD/AFP/Getty Images

Merry Christmas, Magpies! No matter what holiday traditions you celebrate, I have a few sparkling wishes just for you this year...

24 December 2017

The Daily Diadem: Maria Vladimirovna's Pearl Kokoshnik

Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images

Maria Vladimirovna, one of the pretenders to the Russian imperial throne, wears a pearly kokoshnik at the princely wedding in Monaco, July 2011; read more about this sparkler over here!


Christmas in Motion: Baking with the Bernadottes

Crown Princess Victoria, Princess Estelle, and Prince Daniel celebrate Christmas 2013 (screencapture)

Tis the season for holiday cheer, magpies! Today, we're giving the bling a bit of a rest to focus on something even more precious: adorable GIFs of Sweden's crown princely family baking Christmas cookies a few years ago. Enjoy!

23 December 2017

The Daily Diadem: The Napoleonic Amethyst Parure Tiara

Keystone/Hulton Archive/Getty Images

Queen Silvia of Sweden wears the Napoleonic Amethyst Parure Tiara at a banquet at the Spanish embassy in Sweden, October 1979; read more about the tiara's history over here!


Jewels for the Emperor's Birthday

TORU YAMANAKA/AFP/Getty Images

Emperor Akihito of Japan celebrated his 84th birthday today, and as is tradition, the Japanese imperial family gathered for a public balcony appearance in Tokyo to mark the occasion.


The Diadem of the Stars

The Diadem of the Stars (Wikimedia Commons)

It seems like all the world is decorated with holiday stars these days, so I thought it was only appropriate to feature one of the starriest and spangly-est tiaras that ever graced a royal head: the star tiara of Queen Maria Pia of Portugal. Worn in various forms during the last years of the Portuguese monarchy, the Diadem of the Stars is now a part of the Portuguese Crown Jewels.


22 December 2017

The Daily Diadem: Queen Mary's Diamond Bandeau

Photo licensed to The Court Jeweller; DO NOT REPRODUCE

Princess Alexandra of Kent wears Queen Mary's Diamond Bandeau for a state banquet at Buckingham Palace during the German state visit, October 1958; learn more about the bandeau, which has probably since been remodeled, in this post on Queen Mary's diamond tiaras


The Fife Tiara Has a New Home

Arts Council England/Sotheby's

Breaking tiara news today: the Fife Tiara, one of the most glittering, classic nineteenth-century tiaras still extant today, officially has a new address!


This Week in Royal Jewels: December 15-21


December 15-21, 2017

It's the last weekly jewel review of the year -- we're taking next week off for year-in-review posts -- so I made sure it was an extra sparkly one! Don't forget to vote for your favorites in the poll below!


YANN COATSALIOU/AFP/Getty Images

15. Princess Charlene of Monaco wore teeny sparkling stud earrings for the annual Children's Christmas event at the Palais de Princier on Wednesday.


21 December 2017

The Daily Diadem: Princess Kako's Tiara

Photo licensed to The Court Jeweller; DO NOT REPRODUCE

Princess Kako of Akishino wears her diamond tiara and its accompanying suite of jewels at the Spanish state banquet in Tokyo, April 2017; learn more about this tiara over here!


Jewels on Film: THE CROWN (Season 2, Episode 4)


We've got a little more replica bling on hand -- and a lot more tempestuous romance -- in "Beryl," the fourth episode of this season of The Crown. Settle in for a look at lots of jewelry and lots of historical clarification (and if you need a quick catch-up on previous recaps, head over here!)...


Royal Blue Topazes

Andreas Rentz/Getty Images

If you're a December baby (like me!), one of your birthstones is the icy blue gem we're celebrating today: the vibrant blue topaz. Today, I've got several examples of royal jewels set with this lovely blue gemstones for us to enjoy.


20 December 2017

Love and Desire in Gems and Jewels at the V&A

Image © Victoria and Albert Museum, London

Attention London magpies -- and anyone who will happen to be in that vicinity next month!

The Victoria and Albert Museum -- AKA my personal jewelry mecca -- is hosting an event that may be of interest to some of you. "Love and Desire in Gems and Jewels," a study day event all about jewelry, is being held at the V&A on Saturday, January 20. My friends at the V&A reached out to share more information about the event with me, and I wanted to pass it along to all of you. 

The Daily Diadem: The Prussian Tiara

JEAN-PIERRE MULLER/AFP/Getty Images

Infanta Elena of Spain wears the Prussian Tiara at a state dinner for the Emperor and Empress of Japan in Madrid, October 1994; read more about this heirloom sparkler over here!


Queen Elizabeth II: A Year in Brooches

Jonathan Brady - WPA Pool/Getty Images; Toby Melville - WPA Pool/Getty Images; TOBY MELVILLE/AFP/Getty Images

As 2017 draws to a close, it's time to enjoy a look back at some of the glittering brooches worn over the past year by Queen Elizabeth II of the United Kingdom. From new pieces to old favorites, here's a selection of some of the brooches the Queen sparkled in during 2017. (Note: this isn't a comprehensive survey of every brooch worn, but just an overview of some frequently-worn pieces.)

19 December 2017

The Daily Diadem: The Swedish Six Button Tiara

HAAKON MOSVOLD LARSEN/AFP/Getty Images

Princess Sofia of Sweden wears the family's Diamond Six Button Tiara at the 80th birthday celebrations of King Harald and Queen Sonja of Norway, May 2017; read more about this important tiara over here!


Jewels on Film: THE CROWN (Season 2, Episode 3)


Time for another installment of our bejeweled recaps of The Crown, magpies! Today, we're looking at the replica jewels and the historical realities of episode three of the second season, "Lisbon." This episode forms a sort of a finale to the first three episodes of the season; if you've missed any of our previous recaps, you can find them here!


Book Review: Queen Victoria's Matchmaking (2017)

Queen Victoria's Matchmaking (Photo: The Court Jeweller)

At the end of last month's book review, I ran a poll to let you decide which of my upcoming royal reads should be reviewed here next. The winner was Deborah Cadbury's Queen Victoria's Matchmaking, which was published last month here in the United States. I'm happy to say that I think you all chose an excellent book!


18 December 2017

The Daily Diadem: The Dutch Emerald Parure Tiara

Mark Renders/Getty Images

Annemarie Gualtherie van Weezel wears the pearl setting of the Dutch Emerald Parure Tiara at her wedding to Prince Carlos of Bourbon-Parma, first cousin of King Willem-Alexander, in 2010; read more about this multi-setting tiara over here!


Vintage Victorian Jewels for Camilla

Steve Parsons - WPA Pool/Getty Images

The Duchess of Cornwall celebrated Christmas -- and brought out perhaps her most important British royal brooch -- on Thursday evening at the Olympia Horse Show.


17 December 2017

The Daily Diadem: The Argyll Diamond Daisies

Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images

Princess Michael of Kent wears diamond daisies as a tiara-style hair ornament at the princely wedding reception in Monaco, 2011; the diamond daisies belonged to Princess Louise, Duchess of Argyll, who wore them at her wedding in 1871 -- they were later left to Princess Marina and now belong to the Michaels of Kent


Jewels in Motion: Nobel Prize Festivities (1974)

The Swedish royals attend the 1974 Nobel Prize Festivities (screencapture)

In 1974, the Swedish royal family looked quite a bit different than it does today. At the end of one era and the dawn of another, the family gathered to celebrate the Nobel Prize recipients of 1974 -- and they brought along an extra queen to help with the reception!

16 December 2017

The Daily Diadem: The Russian Pearl Bandeau

Wikimedia Commons

Princess Alexandra, the Hon. Lady Ogilvy wears her mother's Russian Pearl Bandeau at a royal ball during her visit to Brisbane, 1959; read more about the tiara over here!


The Persian Turquoise Tiara

Photo licensed to The Court Jeweller; DO NOT REPRODUCE.

When the Queen Mum married the Duke of York in 1923, the two of them never expected to become monarch and consort one day. But even the second lady of the land would have needed quite the jewel collection in those days, and today's tiara, the Persian Turquoise, is one that she received as a part of her wedding jewelry haul.


15 December 2017

The Daily Diadem: The Kent Festoon Tiara

Wikimedia Commons

Princess Marina, Duchess of Kent (born Princess Marina of Greece and Denmark) wears her diamond festoon tiara in a colorized portrait; read more about this tiara over here!


This Week in Nobel Gala Jewels: December 10-11


December 8-14, 2017

Time for one of my favorite posts of the year: the roundup of the best Nobel gala jewels of 2017! Good luck picking a favorite, and don't forget to vote in the poll below!


BERIT ROALD/AFP/Getty Images

10. Crown Princess Mette-Marit of Norway (shown here with ICAN campaigner and Hiroshima survivor Setsuko Thurlow) wore one of her favorite pairs of statement earrings for the Nobel Peace Prize Concert on Monday.

This Week in Royal Jewels: December 8-14


December 8-14, 2017

This is only the first royal jewel review of the day -- stay tuned in a few hours for a special Nobel jewel roundup! Don't forget to vote for your favorites in both polls!


Xaume Olleros/Getty Images

10. During her trip to Senegal, Queen Letizia of Spain wore earrings set with purple and green gemstones on Tuesday for an official lunch with First Lady Marieme Faye Sall.

14 December 2017

The Daily Diadem: Elena Vladimirovna's Fringe Tiara

Wikimedia Commons

Princess Elizabeth, Countess of Toerring-Jettenbach (born Princess Elizabeth of Greece and Denmark) wears the diamond fringe tiara that belonged to her mother, Grand Duchess Elena Vladimirovna of Russia, on her wedding day, 1934; the tiara was later inherited by Elizabeth's daughter, Countess Helene


Jewels on Film: THE CROWN (Season 2, Episode 2)


The second episode of this season of The Crown, "A Company of Men," wasn't particularly jewel-heavy, but we've still got plenty of fiction vs. history to unpack here. If you need to catch up on any of my previous Crown recaps or posts, you can head over here first!


Jewel History: Royal Wedding Presents (1900)


"Royal Wedding Presents"
(originally appeared in Cassel's Magazine, Jun-Nov 1900)

Although there is a great family resemblance between the wedding presents given to Royal personages, there are, nevertheless, distinctive features among them, suggested sometimes by the known tastes of the couple about to enter the holy bonds of matrimony, by the circumstances of the time, the nationality of the bride or bridegroom, and the fashions just then prevalent. These presents, too, have greatly increased in number of late years among all classes, as many of us know to our cost; and something depends on the time that has elapsed since the last similar occasion.


13 December 2017

The Daily Diadem: Victoria Melita's Diamond Kokoshnik

Wikimedia Commons

Grand Duchess Victoria Feodorovna of Russia (born Princess Victoria Melita of Edinburgh; previously Grand Duchess of Hesse and by Rhine) wears an elaborate diamond kokoshnik in a portrait; the top portion of the tiara was later worn as a necklace by her daughter, Grand Duchess Maria Kirillovna, on her wedding day


Even More Nobel Tiaras

JONAS EKSTROMER/AFP/Getty Images

We've talked about the royal tiaras worn at the Nobel Prize ceremony in Stockholm on Sunday, but we've still got a few tiaras from members of the royal household to discuss.