Housekeeping Note: The Handbag is taking a couple of days off for the holiday, and will be back on Tuesday, December 28th. If there are any Christmas photos, please feel free to add them to the Christmas greetings post! We wish all Baguettes and Hofdudes who celebrate a very Merry Christmas. For everyone, we hope you stay safe and healthy and we’ll see you next week!
Hard as it is to believe, it’s that time of year again. When the Queen makes her speech at Christmas, guessing her brooch is an annual event for royal watchers. We’re going to see if any of us can make the right choice this year. We have a lot of history here, folks. Not that it typically makes things easier. She still surprises us often.
Updated! A photo of the speech has been released ahead of time, and it looks like her choice was the Sapphire Chrysanthemum. This is a sentimental choice. She wore it for her 73rd-anniversary photos in November 2020, her Diamond Anniversary photos in 2007, and most famously for a series of photos taken at Broadlands during her honeymoon.
We couldn’t unearth brooches for the following years:
- 1953, 1954, 1955, 1956 – Her Majesty may have worn a brooch, but we don’t have photos. These speeches were made by radio. The first television broadcast would occur in 1957, and in 1960 the broadcasts began to be pre-recorded. If anyone can find photos of these missing years, we’ll gladly add the brooches.
- In 1959 the Queen, pregnant with Prince Andrew, prerecorded a radio message instead of a television broadcast.
- In 1963 the Queen was again pregnant, this time with Prince Edward. She pre-recorded a radio speech.
- 1964, 1965, and1968 are simply missing. If you can find the brooches from those years, we’ll add them to the post!
- 1969: The Queen did not make a speech. The documentary Royal Family was shown instead.
- Surprisingly, there were “No Brooch Years”: 1957, 1958, 1961, 1972, and 1989.
This is her favorite go-to for the yearly event.
Cambridge Pearl Pendant 1971, 1978, 1996, 2004, 2012, 2014
This is a very close runner-up with five appearances.
Pearl Trefoil 1985, 1992, 1997, 2000, 2005
If I owned this one, it would show up all the time. It’s still a favorite for Her Majesty with four appearances.
Cullinan V 1975, 1981, 1999, 2008
These are all very different style brooches and probably favorites for different reasons. Two of them, the Grima (gift from Prince Philip) and the Flower Basket (gift from her parents for the birth of Prince Charles) are probably sentimental choices.
Flower Basket 1988, 2006, 2013
Jardine Star 1982, 1995, 2017
Grima Ruby 1986, 2007, 2018
These were so nice they had to be seen twice ; ). At Christmas, that is.
True Lover’s Knot 1960, 1962
Frosted Sunflower 1966, 2010
Australian Wattle 1967, 1976
Empress Marie Feodorovna’s Sapphire 1994, 2001
Queen Victoria’s 11 Pearl Brooch 2009, 2016
Prince Albert’s Sapphire 1987, 2019
Sapphire Chrysanthemum 1952, 2021
She has a large collection and some make the very occasional appearance at Christmas. In some years, such as 2002 when The Queen lost both her sister and mother, the sentimental choice is obvious. Other years, the reasons are not so apparent to outsiders.
New Zealand Fern 1970
Modern Ruby 1977
Scroll Cambridge Emerald 1980
Diamond and Gold Rose 1983
Teck Corsage 1984
Sapphire and Ruby Spray 1990
Gold Lace Work 1991
Amethyst Bouquet 1993
Williamson Diamond 1998
Centenary Rose 2002
Queen Victoria’s Bow Brooch 2003
Flame Lily 2011
Queen Mother’s Art Deco Aquamarine Brooch 2015
Queen Mother’s Shell Brooch 2020
If you would like to see a chronological listing of the Queen’s brooches at Christmas, check out the post at Her Majesty’s Jewel Vault, here.
“And for me and my family, even with one familiar laugh missing this year, there will be joy in Christmas, as we have the chance to reminisce…”
In her 2021 broadcast, The Queen reflects on the life of the Duke of Edinburgh, while looking ahead to her Platinum Jubilee in 2022. pic.twitter.com/IMf3aW4IxI
— The Royal Family (@RoyalFamily) December 25, 2021