On Tuesday, the Queen of the Netherlands headed to France for a special new exhibition highlighting the unique work of a Dutch fashion designer—and brought along big royal diamonds for the occasion!
Queen Maxima headed to the Museum of Decorative Arts in Paris on Tuesday evening for the official opening of “Iris van Herpen: Sculpting the Senses.” The exhibition is dedicated to the avant-garde work of Dutch fashion designer Iris van Herpen, who was on hand with her partner, Salvador Breed, for the exhibition opening. French First Lady Brigitte Macron was present for the event as well, as were the museum’s president, Johannes Huth, and the Dutch Minister of Social Affairs and Employment, Karien van Gennip.
For the exhibition opening, Queen Maxima wore—of course—a gown by Iris van Herpen. The dress features the designer’s signature sculptural philosophy, with delicate pleating and soaring lines.
With the dress, Queen Maxima wore major diamonds from the family vaults, including an absolutely stunning pair of diamond earrings.
The earrings feature a large diamond cluster stud and an even larger diamond cluster drop.
Here’s a closer look that allows you to appreciate the sheer size of the diamonds in the center of each cluster.
The earrings are a clever reuse of diamond clusters that form part of another important Dutch royal jewel: the Stuart Tiara. Dating to 1897, the tiara was made to showcase the enormous, pear-shaped Stuart Diamond, which was acquired in the seventeenth century by King William III and Queen Mary II of England. The diamond returned to the Netherlands after their deaths, and during the reign of Queen Wilhelmina, it was set in this magnificent tiara. Queen Maxima wore the complete tiara for the first time in 2018, appropriately during a state visit to the United Kingdom.
Maxima has tinkered with the tiara over the years, wearing it in various settings with different pieces added or removed. She’s often used four of the large clusters in this earring form. Above, she wears a smaller setting of the tiara with the double cluster earrings in Germany in 2021.
We also saw her wear the earrings in Athens in November 2022.
And, even more recently, she wore the earrings for a fabulous daytime occasion: the coronation of King Charles III and Queen Camilla at Westminster Abbey in London.
Here’s another look at the earrings during this evening’s appearance in Paris.
And here’s a glimpse at the diamonds that adorned Maxima’s wrists and fingers, including the smaller Dutch East Indies Bracelet, worn on her left wrist.
This isn’t the first time we’ve seen Maxima wear one of Iris van Herpen’s creations. She notably chose a dress from one of the designer’s collections for her 50th birthday celebrations in May 2021. She accessorized with diamonds and emeralds from the family collection on that occasion.
She paired the same dress with diamonds and emeralds again during the state visit to Sweden in October 2022.
Delightfully, the same dress was even featured in the royal family’s Christmas card in 2021, which showcased a private photograph taken with their beloved pups during Maxima’s birthday celebrations earlier that year.