Austria · France · Monaco

Royal Wedding Gowns – Dramatic Coats and Wraps

You may want to put your feet up for this entry. When I started, I had forgotten there were so many coat wedding dresses in royal-land, but as you will see, even leaving off those we have covered in other categories, it’s a long list. So long that I have divided it into three posts: Drama, Elegance and Second Weddings. Let’s tackle DRAMA! today.

Bride: Philomena de Tornos y Steinhart
Designer: Christian Lacroix

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It’s Lacroix, darling, how could it be anything but dramatic? When The Duke of Vendôme married Philomena de Tornos y Steinhart in May 2009, the bride wore what might be one of the more intricate, dramatic royal wedding gowns ever. Crafted of ivory silk taffeta, the gown featured a fitted bodice with pleated detailing, covered with sparkling embellishments and festooned with tulle. The bodice opened into an enormous, ruched skirt, which, in turn, led to the train. The bolero is covered in dense floral brocade with mother of pearl woven throughout, and the dress is finished off with a blue silk bow around the waist.

The whole look was further dramatized by the turquoise, gold and diamond tiara, which secured the antique ivory veil.

Baroness Francesca Thyssen-Bornemisaz
Designer: Versace

If anyone can give Lacroix a run for the drama money, it’s Versace, right? When Baroness Francesca Thyssen-Bornemiszs married Archduke Karl of Austria in January of 1993, Versace was at the height of his designing powers, and this dress is the epitome of his over-the-top aesthetic.

The wedding was held in the Austro-Hungarian style and the father of the bride led his daughter into the ceremony in traditional Hungarian clothes. The bride’s dress had to compete, and it most certainly did. The relatively simple satin dress was covered with a lace-up coat, which covered the ballgown skirt to dramatic effect. The coat’s embellishments included large buttons and a heavily embroidered cuffs and peplum. The bride wore a pearl and diamond bandeau tiara, which secured the 200-year-old Habsburg veil. The bride wore satin gloves and carried a Mass Book instead of a bouquet. 

Bride: Tatiana Santo Domingo
Designer: Valentino

The religious wedding ceremony of Andrea Casiraghi and Tatiana Santo Domingo was held on February 1, 2014, and it simply oozed winter wedding romance. The pair were married in the old Romanesque monastery of Rougemont,  in Gstaad,  Switzerland, and snow floated gently down over the wedding party and guests. The bride wore bespoke Valentino, and what few photos and sketches we have to piece together the event add up to major atmosphere.

The House of Valentino released an official sketch which showed an ivory cashmere coat, with a hood – very practical way to protect the bride from the cold. The dress itself was elaborate silk tulle and lace macramé, with a fitted bodice and tiered skirt. Tatiana borrowed the fringe Cartier tiara from Princess Caroline, which she wore sans veil.

Which of these dramatic coats and wraps speaks to you?
Austria · Britain · Luxembourg · Netherlands · Other Royals · Sweden

ROYGBIV—Green Jewels

Happy Thursday friends! It’s time for another edition of ROYGBIV and today we are talking about green jewels. For a refresher on jewels already discussed, feel free to take a look back at Red jewels, Orange jewels, and Yellow jewels.


This emerald egg has a beautiful color, and I nearly fell over when Maxima wore it with the van Gogh dress on a state visit to China in November 2015, along with my beloved “Walnut” clutch.

When anyone uses the word “stonking” to describe a jewel, my mind immediately comes to this emerald. It’s simply enormous and to my eye, has a striking color to boot. Nice and bright and can stand up to any sort of evening dress.

Max also has some new green jewelry this year, and I’m intrigued by the stone combinations here. I think I like the original four peridot configuration a bit better.


Who can forget Archduchess Isabella’s diamond and peridot tiara? Sometimes mistaken for emeralds, these peridots have been worn on a few occasions in modern times. The tiara is pretty grand and can be worn in two forms. The late American comedienne Joan Rivers famously wore the earrings and necklace to the 2004 Golden Globes Awards.

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Queen Silvia has a waterfall necklace featuring emeralds, which I’d like to see used again. It’s quite pretty, though this color combination shown here is quite Christmas-y, no?



Wallis Simpson received a striking emerald engagement ring from Edward that is hard to miss.


Queen Victoria’s luscious emeralds with a video explanation.


It has often been said that the Chaumet Emerald Tiara held by the Luxies reminds people of Wonder Woman’s tiara. While I can see that, the staggering size of the central element deserves a moment of glory.



Princess TnT, or Gloria has had some really really large jewels available to her in the past. Here is one of the tiaras that wasn’t sold during her widowhood. It reminds me of Monaco’s Cartier Pearl Drop, but with emeralds and I find it to be much more successful the our English friend, Vlad.



We’ll just let this beauty speak for itself. Enjoy this video from Christie’s. It’s sensational!

What do you think of these green examples? Would you like to see any of these pieces on different people?

Show us your favorite royal green jewelry in the comments!

Austria · Britain · Denmark · Netherlands · Spain

ROYGBIV–Red jewelry!

Readers seemed to enjoy our first entry into ROYGBIV, so I thought we might like to play along with jewels as well.  The goal with the jewelry displayed here is to feature the prominent color on the piece, although it will most likely be sharing space with other materials.  Let’s dig in!

This ruby parure belonged to Elisabeth Amalie Eugenie “Sissi”, wife of Emperor Franz Joseph I of Austria. Big, saturated colors. I feel like there are a lot of earrings, pendants, and rings possibilities with all those drops.

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Elizabeth II has inherited the County of Cornwall ruby bracelet from her grandmother, Mary. The center can be worn as a brooch or a pendant. You can read more about it at Artemisia’s Royal Jewels blog.

Artemisia’s Royal Jewels

Annnnnd then she also has this Grima brooch business.

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND – DECEMBER 01: Queen Elizabeth II arrives at Liverpool Lime Street train station at the start of a day-long visit to Liverpool on December 1, 2011 in Liverpool, England. The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh will visit the Museum of Liverpool and New Brighton’s Floral Pavilion. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)

Heading over to Spain, we can see Sofía with her Niarchos Rubies. I think this is a versatile set and I wish we could see it more often. You can read more about it here at The Royal Watcher.

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The House of Orange has quite a few ruby offerings, but I have to showcase the current Queen in all her splendor with various parts at Carl Philip Bernadotte’s wedding again. Because awesome.

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And my favorite iteration of the Danish ruby necklace, worn by Crown Princess Mary the night before Guilliaume & Stephalux’s wedding. Love the collar style.

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What are your favorite royal red pieces of jewelry? Do show us in the comments.