The South Korean state visit to the United Kingdom officially began this morning, with both the Queen and the Princess of Wales wearing sparkling diamonds and sapphires for the occasion.
The King and Queen were joined by the Prince and Princess of Wales at Horse Guards Parade in London on Tuesday morning for an official welcome ceremony for President Yoon Suk Yeol of South Korea and his wife, Kim Keon-hee.
For the welcome ceremony, Queen Camilla wore a dark blue ensemble with a coordinating hat and black accessories. Her hat and dress are by a favorite designer, Anna Valentine, and her hat was made by Philip Treacy.
Queen Camilla also added several jewelry accessories set with pearls, gold, sapphires, and diamonds.
She wore her pearl drop earrings with the sapphire, diamond, and ruby studs. The earrings previously belonged to her late mother-in-law, Queen Elizabeth II. She also added a sapphire, gold, and diamond brooch from the late Queen’s collection, which has an even longer documented royal history.
The brooch was brought to the British vaults by Queen Mary, who is said to have purchased it in the 1930s from the estate of Empress Marie Feodorovna of Russia, mother of the last Russian emperor and sister of Queen Alexandra. Later, the brooch became a great favorite of Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother.
Around a decade ago, Queen Elizabeth II also began wearing the brooch, notably selecting it for a visit to the Vatican in April 2014. The brooch’s delicate gold filigree work is easy to spot in this image.
Queen Camilla made her debut in the brooch at the Commonwealth Day service at Westminster Abbey in March 2023. She also wore the same pearl drop earrings on that occasion.
The Princess of Wales, interestingly, also repeated her earrings from March’s Commonwealth Day service at the welcome ceremony. She paired them with a vibrant red dress and cape from Catherine Walker, plus coordinating shoes and a Jane Taylor hat.
The earrings feature cabochon sapphire and diamond studs and clusters, with a single round diamond linking the two sections.
These, of course, belonged to Diana, Princess of Wales, who wore them often in the 1980s and 1990s. Above, she pairs them with her pearl choker necklace with the grand sapphire and diamond cluster clasp—a gift from the Queen Mother—in the spring of 1991.
Kate made her debut in the earrings at Trooping the Colour in June 2022, and she’s worn them often since. We most recently saw her wear the earrings last week at the Shaping Us National Symposium in London.
Here’s one more look at the sapphire and diamond earrings with today’s red ensemble.
I’ll see you all back here later today to discuss the jewels worn for tonight’s state banquet! Any tiara guesses?