My top royal jewelry moment of 2022 was a brilliant last hurrah for one of the world’s longest-reigning monarchs: Queen Elizabeth II’s incredible Platinum Jubilee.
Queen Elizabeth II marked the 70th anniversary of her accession in February at Sandringham. An official photograph of the monarch was released to mark the milestone, showing her wearing the Aquamarine Clip Brooches gifted to her by her beloved father, King George VI.
On February 5, the day before the accession anniversary, the Queen wore pearls with the small Nizam of Hyderabad Rose Brooches for a special reception in the ballroom at Sandringham.
On the accession day itself, another portrait of the Queen was released. This time, she wore pearls with the Greville Ivy Leaf Clip Brooches, another gift from her parents. (Coincidentally, they were also the last brooches she wore in public before her accession in 1952.)
A series of special exhibitions was organized by the Royal Collection to celebrate the Queen’s remarkable milestone year. At Buckingham Palace, jewels, including the Diamond Diadem, were displayed alongside portraits of the monarch.
At Windsor Castle, a special exhibition showcased items from the Coronation (including the Coronation gown!), as well as a selection of the Queen’s important brooches. Notably, we were treated to more information about the fabulous Diamond Jubilee Quartet gifted to her in 2012 by the late Sultan of Oman.
And at the Palace of Holyroodhouse in Edinburgh, a Platinum Jubilee exhibition showcased clothing worn by the Queen for her Silver, Golden, Diamond, and Platinum Jubilee celebrations.
The good people at Sotheby’s also got in on the jubilee exhibition fun, mounting a special show of spectacular tiaras for the occasion. Among the diadems on display was Queen Victoria’s Emerald and Diamond Tiara.
In June, the world’s eyes were on London as the Platinum Jubilee festivities officially kicked off. The first event on the calendar was Trooping the Colour. The Queen was able to attend, wearing pearls with the Guards Brooch as she reviewed her troops from the palace balcony.
Numerous members of the royal family joined the monarch on the balcony for the traditional flypast as well.
And the Duchess of Cambridge gave us a jewelry thrill, wearing the sapphire and diamond cluster earrings that belonged to Diana, Princess of Wales.
The Queen was due to attend a special beacon lighting after the Trooping the Colour festivities had ended, but she felt unwell and had to fulfill her part of the lighting chain from Windsor Castle.
For the occasion, she debuted a brand-new jewel: the Goldsmiths’ Platinum Jubilee Brooch. The diamond and platinum brooch featured the Queen’s favorite flower, lily of the valley, entwined with roses, thistles, leeks, and shamrocks.
We also learned shortly afterward that the Queen had received other bejeweled gifts to mark the anniversary, including the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Platinum Jubilee Brooch. Sadly, we never got to see the Queen wear these jewels in public.
The Queen was unable to join the congregation at a jubilee service of thanksgiving at St. Paul’s Cathedral, but the ladies of the family represented her in all their best jewels.
Indeed, the Windsors fanned out across the country to greet well-wishers on the Queen’s milestone anniversary. The Princess Royal represented her mother at the Epsom Derby.
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge headed to Cardiff with Prince George and Princess Charlotte for the national visit to Wales.
The Earl and Countess of Wessex made appearances in Northern Ireland for their national visit.
And the Princess Royal was out and about in Scotland as well, including a visit to the Edinburgh Zoo.
The Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall attended a special Big Jubilee Lunch in London.
Nearly the entire royal family, minus the Queen, were present for the Platinum Jubilee Party at the Palace.
Though the Queen wasn’t well enough to be there in person, she thrilled everyone watching by appearing in a surprise video with Paddington Bear (and wearing the Cullinan V Brooch!).
Prince George and Princess Charlotte were especially excited to see their great-grandmother with Paddington.
The final moment of the jubilee celebrations was the Platinum Jubilee Pageant on the Mall in London. The royals were in attendance again for the event, including the Prince of Wales, the Duchess of Cornwall, and the Princess Royal.
The entire Cambridge family was present, too.
After the pageant, the Queen made a surprise balcony appearance at Buckingham Palace—the final such appearance of her reign. She was joined by Charles, Camilla, and the Cambridges for the poignant moment.
The Queen wore one of Queen Victoria’s Bow Brooches for the important moment. As the nation thanked her for her service, she offered them one final salute. How lovely that she was able to hear their gratitude in person one more time!