Our Sparkling Spotlight continues to shine this week on gala jewels worn by Queen Sofia of Spain, who celebrates her birthday tomorrow. Today, we’ve got a glamorous appearance in diamonds and pearls from 2005.
In November 2005, King Juan Carlos and Queen Sofia of Spain hosted President Hu Jintao of China and his wife, Liu Yongqing, for a state visit.
The first evening of the visit featured a grand state dinner at the Royal Palace in Madrid, attended by the presidential couple and several members of the Spanish royal family.
Queen Sofia wore a vibrant purple evening gown for the dinner with the blue and white sash of the Order of Charles III. She pinned the order’s star near the neckline of her dress.
Queen Sofia accessorized with diamonds and pearls, including several pieces with major royal provenance. Her diamond and pearl tiara is a legacy from her husband’s grandmother, Queen Ena. The tiara was made by dismantling and reimagining one of Ena’s wedding gifts, and during its time in her jewelry box, it also featured an emerald setting. That made it an excellent partner for her emerald necklace, which we recently discussed here. Now, however, the tiara is worn solely in this pearl setting. (Today, it’s worn by Queen Letizia.)
Queen Sofia paired the tiara with other pieces of Ena’s jewelry, including the diamond bracelets from the joyas de pasar collection. I believe this is also the joyas de pasar pearl necklace. She also wore modern pearl drop earrings and secured her order sash with a fleur-de-lis brooch.
There were a few other royal tiaras at the dinner that evening, too. Queen Letizia (then the Princess of Asturias) was absent because she had just given birth to Infanta Leonor. But Sofia’s daughters were both present. Infanta Elena wore the Marichalar Meander Tiara, while Infanta Cristina wore the Spanish Floral Tiara—the tiaras that both princesses wore on their wedding days.