Our November birthday tribute to royal ladies continues today with a sparkling heirloom diamond bandeau, worn by a Portuguese princess.
In July 2011, royals from around the world descended on Monaco for the wedding celebrations of Prince Albert II and Princess Charlene. Among these were numerous members of royal families that no longer have thrones. The former royal family of Portugal was represented by the Duke and Duchess of Braganza. Princess Isabel worked in the world of finance until 1995, when she married Dom Duarte Pio, Duke of Braganza, who is the head of the former Portuguese royal family.
The Braganzas do not hold an official role in Portugal, but they are often present at various major events, including the occasional state dinner. They’re also often invited to foreign royal celebrations, like the princely wedding. For the reception following the wedding in Monaco, Isabel opted for an elegant black evening gown and metallic accessories, plus a wrap that was, appropriately, Kelly green.
Though their jewelry collection includes a larger diamond diadem, the King Luis Diamond Tiara, Isabel often reaches instead for this smaller diamond tiara. It’s a small diamond bandeau that features floral elements interspersed with twisted diamond bands. The tiara comes from the collection of the Duke of Braganza’s mother, Princess Maria Francisca of Orléans-Braganza, who was a descendant of the former imperial family of Brazil (which is, of course, another branch of the Portuguese royal family.) On this occasion, Isabel wore the bandeau with dramatic diamond earrings and a diamond brooch.
The overall look was elegant and regal. Although the Duchess didn’t wear any royal orders for the occasion, the Duke wore a pair of rather interesting ones. You’ll probably recognize the necklet badge he wears: the Order of the Golden Fleece. But it’s not the version handed out in Spain—it’s the Austrian branch, currently headed up by Karl von Habsburg. Duarte Pio is also wearing the sash and star of a Portuguese order, the Order of the Immaculate Conception of Vila Viçosa. He’s the grand master of the order, which is associated with the former royal family of Portugal rather than the Portuguese government.