Favorite Evening Appearance

In honor of Queen Sofía’s birthday last Saturday, we are going to have a Handbagger free-for-all! Please post your favorite Queen Sofía evening appearance below; it doesn’t have to be Hall of Fame worthy, if you love it, post it!

Mine is probably (99% sure) from Crown Princess Victoria’s wedding. Fab color, love the ruching, and the lacy skirt…just magnificent!

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Bonus OMA!!!

So…what’s your fave stupendous Sofía moment?


Random Royaling – Slovenia Visits Norway (Tiara Action!)

Slovenia’s President Borut Pahor visited the Norwegian royals today, and let’s just cut to the tiaras first, shall we?

Thanks to our Norwegian community member Ween we know that Sonja is wearing a 25 year old dress by Eric Mortensen, along with Queen Maud’s Pearl and Diamond tiara. I think we can add Sonja to the Princess Anne school of “retaining both your figure and your wardrobe” club. It is a small and elite group for sure.

Two days ago we had an AWWWWW father daughter moment between Felipe and Leonor, and today it’s a lovely mother son photo. I am intrigued by the brown boot choice, it works better than I expected.

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Sonja was very blue-y during the welcome ceremonies. It’s definitely worth it to click through the photos to see the gifts of fishing equipment for King Harald from his guest. There was obviously some father/son joking going on there – fill it in with your best imagination.

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Kongen og Dronningen ønsket Slovenias president Borut Pahor velkommen i dag. Det er første gang en slovensk president er på statsbesøk til Norge, og Kongeparet er vertskap for besøket. Det hele startet med høytidelig velkomstseremoni på Slottsplassen og kransnedleggelse på Akershus festning. Teknologi og Det grønne skiftet blir viktige tema under besøket. Utveksling av gaver er en del av tradisjonen. Slovenia deler den norske entusiasmen for ski og friluftsliv, og President Pahor hadde med seg slovenske ski til Kronprinsen og et sett med fluer til den ivrige fluefiskeren, Kong Harald. Foto: Stian Lysberg Solum @ntb_scanpix #kongehuset #kongharald #dronningsonja #kronprinshaakon #borutpahor #statsbesøk #slovenia #statevisit @borutpahor @embassy_of_slovenia_in_nordics

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Ween has promised to translate some Harald quips for us! I, for one, am all ears!


Hall of Fame: Floral Tiaras

Morning everyone! Trying a new twist on our tiara posts here, and following along with the “Hall of Fame” series The Handbag/Sudsy is working on now. We’re going to have some Hall of Fame Tiaras, starting with one that were recently featured in OC’s ROYGBIV:Florals post.

Now since I don’t have a favorite floral tiara (they’re not really my thing), I thought I’d start with LIL’s absolute fave: The Spanish Floral.

A bit of history: this tiara was gifted to Princess Sophia by General Franco for her marriage to Inante Juan Carlos. Side note: this caused a touch of controversy when it was worn by Letizia on a visit to the Netherlands in 2013. The Royal House later clarified that the tiara was originally made for Alfonso XII’s second wife, Archduchess Maria Christina. It left the family, to later be acquired by Franco from the Madrid jeweler Aldao.

So there’s our fave. If it’s yours as well, please vote for it below. If you have another floral that has your heart, please vote for it using the “Other” option. We’ll tally them up, and let you know which one wins!!

Which Floral Tiara is Hall of Fame worthy?

First or Final?

We’ve defended, we’ve voted and we once took a trip through time with the Dutch Antique Pearl Tiara.

This week we’re going to do a little time traveling ourselves, discussing tiaras in their previous and current forms. Tying into the other discussions this week (State Visit and Blue Jewels) we’re kicking this series off with Princess Anne’s Pine Flower Tiara.

The First Tiara

This tiara originally belonged to the Queen Mum, who received it as an anniversary present from her husband, King George VI. Created by Cartier, the original tiara was designed as a series of pine flowers and pine cones created from aquamarines. Interspersed between the flowers and pine cones were rectangular cut aquamarines.

Side note: pine cones in a tiara…seriously…I thought I had seen some weird stuff…but this might take the cake.

This one didn’t last in the Queen Mum’s jewelry box as she passed it on to her granddaughter Princess Anne. There are rumors that it went to Queen Elizabeth II first, but there are no photos of her wearing it (yes, they wear tiaras to private events, so it’s possible…).

The Final Tiara

At some point after receiving the tiara, Anne had it altered; removing the central pineflower and replacing it with a rectangular cut aquamarine. It also appears that she’s shortened it a bit, but that could just be that it’s hard to see the base in Anne’s hair.

Since Anne isn’t considered one of the “main players” by most media outlets, pictures of her wearing this tiara are usually from far away, through a car window or taken from TV screencaps.


So there you have it – Anne doing her best to keep pinecone tiaras in vogue.

What do you guys think?

Which do you prefer?

In Defense of the Tiara – Burmese Ruby

We’re heading back to the UK this week, for a rousing discussion about Queen Elizabeth’s II Burmese Ruby Tiara.

The History

Queen Elizabeth II is not a modern day Queen Mary, she doesn’t really play with her jewels, keeping most of them as she has received them. This is not one of those…

Elizabeth II commissioned this tiara from Garrard in 1973, using stones from the vault: 96 rubies which were a gift from the Burmese people on the occasion of her wedding, and diamonds which came from the Nizam of Hyderabad Tiara (another wedding gift). For a more in-depth history, check out the post over at the mothership.

The tiara is designed as a wreath of roses, separated by rays of diamonds. The center of each rose is made up of rubies, with diamonds representing the petals. A row of rubies connects each rose.

The Case for the Tiara

LIL: While the best way to defend it is to say “It can always be Mary-ed or cannibalized for it’s parts”, I’m going to surprise you all and defend this tiara as is! I like the swags well enough, and the open, airiness of the “rose” petals. Looks to be a good size for Betty’s head, too.

It really is dreadful, isn’t it?

The Case against the Tiara

LG: I love rubies, and I love diamonds, and I kind of like where this was going…but the execution is not good, at all. Queen Mary it and start over.

The Handbag: It has rubies and diamonds. It is designed to represent roses. How could this go wrong? In my eyes, it just did, in every way possible. That said, Lil’s Photoshopped all diamond version improves it immensely.

The Case of The In Between

OC: As is? Newp, despite the symbolism of the red and white roses. I’ve always maintained this would be amazing as an all diamond piece, in the medium sized category. I could even live with the roses even those ruby swags were diamond. I’ve spent a ridiculous amount of time thinking about this one.

Where do you guys stand?

How do you feel about the Burmese Ruby Tiara?