Queen Sofia of Spain celebrates her birthday today, and we’re joining in the festivities with a look at a major set of ruby and diamond jewels from her collection.
In July 2008, King Juan Carlos and Queen Sofia of Spain welcomed King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia to Madrid, hosting a gala dinner in his honor at the Royal Palace. Abdullah reigned until his death in 2015, and his brother, King Salman, is now (at least nominally) on the throne.
King Juan Carlos and Queen Sofia were joined by the Prince and Princess of Asturias (now King Felipe VI and Queen Letizia) for the dinner. It was a semi-formal occasion, with the men in business suits and the women in gala attire with sparkling jewels but no tiaras.
Queen Sofia selected a black evening ensemble, festooned with sequins and fringe, for the dinner.
She accessorized with some major pieces of jewelry: diamond and ruby statement earrings and a matching bracelet. She also wore diamond rings on both hands, and I believe the piece on her left wrist is an evening watch.
Here’s another look at the diamond and ruby pieces from the dinner. The imposing jewels have a modern floral design.
According to my notes, Sofia only wore the earrings and bracelet on this particular occasion, which has led many to speculate that they were a diplomatic gift from King Abdullah. The size and design of the pieces also suggest a Middle Eastern provenance. It’ll be interesting to see whether Queen Letizia ever wears the earrings or the bracelet for a relevant diplomatic occasion in the future.