On Tuesday evening, the King and Queen of the Belgians hosted a state dinner at Laeken Castle near Brussels, and Queen Mathilde wore important royal jewels—but no tiara!—for the occasion.
King Philippe and Queen Mathilde welcomed President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa of Portugal to Belgium for a state visit on Tuesday.
The visit was a second meeting between the royal couple and the president. He welcomed the Belgian royals to Portugal for a state visit in October 2018.
Tuesday’s state visit was a toned-down affair following a terrorist attack in Brussels on Monday.
The public welcome event for the visit was canceled. The royal couple received the president inside the Royal Palace instead, and it was decided to go ahead with the state dinner on Tuesday evening.
For the state dinner, Queen Mathilde wore a dark green velvet evening dress with lace panels. UFO No More tells us that the gown comes from the brand Costarellos. She also wore the insignia of her Portuguese decoration, the Order of Prince Henry.
Queen Mathilde opted not to wear a tiara for the state dinner. Citing information received from the palace by royal journalist Wim Dehandschutter, People reports that the decision to go tiara-less was a gesture toward the somber mood after Monday’s attack. Instead, she accessorized primarily with an important pair of diamond and pearl drop earrings that belonged to a previous Belgian queen consort.
The earrings are a legacy from King Philippe’s aunt, Queen Fabiola. She wore them frequently throughout the reign of her husband, King Baudouin, and in the years after his passing.
Queen Mathilde has embraced the earrings as a central part of her own jewelry collection in recent years, often choosing them for high-profile occasions.
And while Mathilde went without a tiara for the state dinner, she did add one more diamond ornament to her ensemble, wearing a brooch in her hair. It’s difficult to get a good look at the brooch. Some have suggested that the jewel is Queen Fabiola’s Diamond Fringe Brooch. Mathilde has worn that brooch in her hair before, notably for a state dinner in Athens. But, given the visible evidence in the photograph, I think it’s more likely that this is Mathilde’s antique diamond bow brooch, acquired at Christie’s in 2019.