With two days left until Queen Silvia’s big 80th birthday, our journey through some of her best tiara moments arrives in the 2010s with a rare appearance in the family’s grandest fringe tiara.
For another King’s Dinner celebrating the Nobel Prize laureates in December 2018, Queen Silvia arrived on the arm of her king wearing glittering diamonds from the Swedish collection. She paired the jewels with a bright pink evening gown and a shawl in shades of pink and orange.
The spotlight jewel of her ensemble was her tiara: the dazzling diamond fringe that has been worn by generations of Swedish royal women.
The Baden Fringe Tiara, as it is usually called here, takes its name from its first Swedish royal owner: Princess Victoria of Baden, who was the nation’s queen consort via her marriage to King Gustaf V. Victoria was the daughter of the reigning Grand Duke and Grand Duchess of Baden and a granddaughter of Kaiser Wilhelm I of Germany. When she married Crown Prince Gustaf of Sweden in September 1881, the diamond fringe was given to her by her parents as a wedding present.
Victoria of Baden wore the fringe as a corsage ornament on her wedding day. In fact, she wore it often in that setting, but she also regularly used it as a tiara, especially in the years before her husband inherited the Swedish throne. The tiara is an interesting piece, because it doesn’t have a separate frame. Instead, the piece maintains its form as a tiara thanks to a series of springs that provide tension. When that mechanism is released, the jewel can be worn as a necklace or a corsage ornament.
The fringe tiara has been part of the Bernadotte jewel foundation for around a century, and it’s been used by numerous members of the family for gala occasions over the years. For the 2018 King’s Dinner, Queen Silvia wore the tiara with a lovely diamond necklace with a large pendant drop.
She also added a really intriguing pair of diamond climber style earrings to her ensemble for the dinner.
It’s rare these days to spot Queen Silvia wearing the fringe tiara, though she does use it on occasion. Above, she wears it for a gala dinner in 1977, less than a year after her royal wedding.