April’s birthstone is the glittering diamond, and where I live, it’s also the month for spring rainstorms. What better way to combine the two than a shower of diamond drops? The royal tiara that exemplifies that idea best is definitely the Alexandrine Diamond Drop Tiara.
Today, we’re taking a look at an appearance from the tiara on its current owner, the Countess of Frederiksborg. Born Alexandra Manley, she was Princess Alexandra of Denmark during her marriage to Queen Margrethe II’s second son, Prince Joachim, which lasted from 1995 until 2005.
After her divorce from Prince Joachim, Alexandra has remained a part of the extended royal family. (After all, she’s the mother of two of the Queen’s grandsons, Prince Nikolai and Prince Felix.) She’s often invited to big family events like jubilee and birthday celebrations. In January 2012, she and her second husband, Martin Jørgensen, attended a gala concert celebrating Queen Margrethe’s Ruby Jubilee in Copenhagen.
Alexandra wore red for the occasion, a gorgeous nod to the Ruby Jubilee. The cut of the gown, with its mandarin collar, is also a lovely little gesture toward her own Chinese heritage. She accessorized with a white fur wrap (necessary for a Danish winter event) and diamond and ruby jewels.
Here’s a close-up of her tiara, the Alexandrine Diamond Drop Tiara. It’s the only tiara that Alexandra has ever worn in public.
The provenance of the tiara is a little hazy, but as the name suggests, it once belonged to Queen Alexandrine of Denmark, the current Queen’s paternal grandmother. Alexandrine wasn’t much of a jewelry enthusiast—but her mother, Grand Duchess Anastasia of Mecklenburg Schwerin, who was born a Romanov grand duchess, was one of Fabergé’s most enthusiastic customers. I’ve never seen a portrait of Alexandrine in this tiara, but she reportedly did wear it on occasion.
When Queen Alexandrine died, the diamond drop tiara was left to her elder son, King Frederik IX of Denmark. In 1958, he presented it to his eldest daughter, Margrethe, as an eighteenth-birthday gift. Queen Margrethe wore the tiara for years, both before and after she inherited the throne. Here, she wears the tiara with the diamond floral earrings from the Danish crown jewel collection for the return dinner during the British state visit to Denmark in May 1979. The event was held aboard the royal yacht Britannia.
Queen Margrethe gave the tiara to her new daughter-in-law, Princess Alexandra, as a wedding present in 1995. She wore it for her royal wedding ceremony, which took place at Frederiksborg Castle Church in Hillerød. It was the only tiara that she wore during her time as a Danish princess, and she’s continued to wear it for gala events in the years following the couple’s separation and divorce. (This upsets some royal tiara lovers, as the tiara has technically now “left royal hands,” but it’s likely that it will be inherited by Alexandra’s royal sons and possibly worn by their wives.)
For the jubilee concert in January 2012, Alexandra paired the tiara with modern ruby and diamond earrings.
She also added a few more adornments: gold rings set with diamonds and rubies, and a pair of bracelets (one diamond tennis bracelet, one cross bracelet).