Our week-long Sparkling Spotlight on pearl tiaras wraps up today with a gorgeous bejeweled moment from Queen Letizia of Spain.
In November 2021, King Felipe VI and Queen Letizia of Spain hosted President Sergio Mattarella of Italy and his daughter, Laura, for a state visit. On the first evening of the visit, they held a state banquet at the Royal Palace in honor of their guests.
Felipe and Letizia both wore the insignia of the Order of Merit of the Italian Republic for the occasion. Letizia also paid another special tribute to her Italian guests by wearing a black evening gown by Giorgio Armani.
Letizia accessorized with major diamonds and pearls from the family collection. The spotlight piece was Queen Maria Cristina’s Diamond and Pearl Loop Tiara, a nineteenth-century jewel made for King Felipe’s great-great-grandmother. The tiara was later passed down to Felipe’s grandmother, the Countess of Barcelona, and then worn by Queen Sofia.
Letizia sensibly paired the tiara with a relatively small pair of diamond stud earrings. It was a smart decision for more than one reason. It made wearing the required face mask much easier, and it also kept the focus on the other, more significant diamond jewels she wore. And what spectacular diamonds they were! Her necklace, a classic diamond rivière, is part of the joyas de pasar collection assembled by Queen Ena.
She also wore a matching diamond bracelet. This is the jewel that many of us (including me) believe has been made using a section removed when shortening the diamond necklace. I’d wager that the bracelet can be easily added back to the necklace to restore the original length as well.
Letizia used yet another heirloom jewel to secure her order sash: the gray pearl and diamond brooch from the joyas de pasar collection. The brooch behaved perfectly during this occasion, but just a few months later, it gave Letizia a tough time during a military ceremony!
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