22 February 2017

Breaking Tiara News of the Day: Queen Letizia Wears La Buena

We interrupt your regularly scheduled Thursday tiara programming (and also our usual posting time schedule) for this important news flash:

The King and Queen of Spain welcomed the President and First Lady of Argentina to Spain for a state visit today, and hosted a state banquet in their honor.
CHECK. OUT. THAT. TIARA!!!!!!! Queen Letizia went all of 2016 without wearing a tiara, but she does wear tiaras at home when hosting state banquets, which gave her an opportunity to come back with a BANG  in 2017. The Fleur de Lys Tiara, known as La Buena, is the resident big gun diadem in the Spanish jewel vault. Made by Ansorena, it was a wedding present from King Alfonso XIII to Queen Victoria Eugenia in 1906. The fleur de lys symbol depicted in the tiara is a symbol of the House of Bourbon.

This is Letizia's first time wearing the Fleur de Lys Tiara; it was last seen in 2014 on Queen Sofia for the last state visit of King Juan Carlos' reign. It's among those jewels designated to pass from queen to queen per Queen Victoria Eugenia's will (the "joyas de pasar"). The large diamond earrings and hefty double diamond bracelets are also part of that group, and this is also Letizia's first time wearing those. When she goes big, she GOES BIG.

House of HM the King
The simple black Felipe Varela dress was really a master stroke here. Not only does Queen Letizia need to let those diamonds take center stage, she doesn't want to compete with the extra wide sash of Argentina's Order of the Liberator General San Martín. (Some sashes have skinnier versions for the ladies - like Spain's Order of Isabella the Catholic, worn here by first lady Juliana Awada - but this one apparently doesn't.)

Video: The gala banquet
I don't know about you, but I'm SWOONING. She totally carries off this enormous tiara. Regal to the max.

Man, this week is trying so hard to break my keyboard.

Royal Outfits of the Day: February 22

We don't always check in with the second day of a state visit - because, let's be honest, once the tiaras are done, so is my attention span - but in the case of Sweden/Canada Day 2, I have some Thoughts.

Princess Sofia attended the lunch on Day 2 of the state visit.
And those Thoughts are, in their entirety: NOOOOOOOOOO. The stripes and pleats might want to be a sporty tennis thing; the collar and lace are leaning down the Victorian widow path; that print wishes it was jazzy enough to be a Fresh Prince throwback. This dress just doesn't know what it wants to be when it grows up.
Philosophy Di Lorenzo Serafini Printed Twill And Lace Dress, h/t to Laura

The day's neck bow trend wasn't nearly over.
Princess Sofia attended the dinner on Day 2 of the state visit.
Kungahuset.se
I want to like this dress. I feel like I should be able to tap into the undying love I have for any sort of Elie Saab-ish embellished garment (right?!) - this version done by Ida Sjöstedt - I'm just not quite getting there.
Dress by Ida Sjöstedt
Ah, well. We'll always have the amethysts.

21 February 2017

Royal State Visit of the Day: February 21

The Swedish royal family welcomed Canada's Governor General for a state visit yesterday with the usual array of not-hats and tiaras, plus some surprises up their sleeves. Surprise #1 (which was not really a surprise because it was announced in advance, but work with me here): Princess Madeleine and Chris O'Neill stepped in for Crown Princess Victoria and Prince Daniel, who are on holiday with their family.

Click to enlarge. Photo: Kungahuset.se
For the arrival, Princess Madeleine repeated her perplexing Giambattista Valli dress (if I could just get past the feeling that she hastily slung her headphones around her neck when they interrupted her pre-event study session, I might be able to find the lovely floral dress beneath). Princess Sofia went simple in white and delivered Surprise #2: a version of the Ole Lynggaard gold brooch Crown Princess Mary wore to King Carl Gustaf's birthday dinner last year in her hair. It's definitely an improvement as a hat alternative instead of a tiara alternative (because nothing's preferable as a tiara alternative, duh).

And then there was Surprise #3: Queen Josephine's Amethyst Tiara on Princess Sofia!
More! Exclamation! Points!! Sofia's on a role: this is her third new pick from the family vault (and her fourth tiara overall), after giving us two different tiaras during the Nobel festivities. This has always been a tricky tiara to style because it has such a large circumference. It sits pretty high and is tilted pretty far back here to compensate, and I really do think it looks splendid on her. I'd probably find it splendid on anyone, but that's beside the point.

As if that weren't enough, Princess Madeleine delivered my other favorite colored stone tiara from the Swedish family, the Swedish Aquamarine Kokoshnik Tiara. She wore it with aquamarine and diamond earrings from her personal collection (the aquamarine stones can be swapped for pearl pendants).

Temperley London dress (h/t to Heaven)
She wore a new gown from Temperley London, with gathered sleeves and a cut out back. My mind immediately flashed back to Queen Silvia's sleeveless gown from the Nobel Prize ceremony in 1979, which made me wish that this one had ditched the sleeves too, at least for a gala occasion. They'd be great without the orders and stuff.

Kungahuset.se
Last but not least, the Pronger (a.k.a. the Nine Prong Tiara) was present and accounted for. I cannot see Queen Silvia's dress without remembering the glory of it paired with the Leuchtenberg Sapphires at the Nobel ceremony in 2012, but I've always been the greedy sort.

Check out a full gallery from the banquet here.

20 February 2017

Monday Tidbits for February 20: Verdicts and More

Headlines from Spain headline our Tidbits this week:

--A Spanish court handed down verdicts on Friday in the lengthy trial of Infanta Cristina - one of the elder sisters of King Felipe VI - and her husband, Iñaki Urdangarin. It's a scandal that has plagued the whole royal family for several years. The Nóos case accused Urdangarin and his business partner of using their Nóos Institute sports foundation to obtain no-bid government contracts, and of channeling the profits through tax havens for their own personal use. Infanta Cristina was found not guilty of tax fraud complicity. Urdangarin was found guilty of several counts of tax fraud and corruption and was sentenced to six years and three months in prison. Both must pay fines. The King stripped Infanta Cristina of her Duchess of Palma de Mallorca title in 2015; the family has been living in Switzerland since 2013. [El País, New York Times]

--The Danish royal family hit the slopes in Switzerland for a little vacation, so Crown Princess Mary shared some photos she took of the kids. [Facebook]
HRH the Crown Princess/Kongehuset

--A major new dress exhibition opens at Kensington Palace on February 24. Diana: Her Fashion Story tracks the fashion journey of Diana, Princess of Wales and her image as we approach the 20th anniversary of her death. [Guardian]

--King Harald V turns 80 on February 21, and with Queen Sonja turning 80 herself in July, celebrations lie ahead. (The government will hold a gala dinner for the couple in May!) They've kicked things off by releasing a new series of photos of the royal couple and their family. [ParisMatch]

--And finally, over at the Jewel Vault: a little bit of green and a whole lot of orange.

Coming up this week: State visits in Sweden and Spain will await our judgment...

Tidbits is your spot for topics we haven't covered on the blog. Please mind the comment policy, and enjoy!

17 February 2017

Royal Outfit Grab Bag of the Day: February 17

A feast of leftovers to round out your week:

Queen Máxima attended a dinner last week during the annual working visit she and King Willem-Alexander make to Germany.
I see you trying to distract me with your magnificent diamond necklace, Máxima, but it will not work: I know you're sporting a formal jumpsuit with an elastic waist. It may have a cape back and it may be Valentino, but still. I see you.
Valentino Cape-Back Silk Jumpsuit, per ModekoninginMaxima
Most of their trip was solid repeats for our Máx, which is why we haven't paid the trip much attention here. ParisMatch has a gallery of every outfit she wore in Germany, should you be so inclined.

Princess Madeleine opened the 'Room for Children' at the Southbank Centre's 'Imagine' Children's Festival in London on Tuesday.
I guess I haven't had the opportunity to yell about SHOOTIES much lately, so...there's that. (SHOOTIES - the caps lock is important - is my generic term for any boot-ish thing of this nature that chops the line of the leg in such a brutal fashion, you see.)
Miu Miu boots worn with a Vilshenko blouse and a Valentino skirt, per Swedish Royal Fashion
All of these pieces have great potential. Let's try again. In three separate outfits, pretty please.

Queen Letizia and King Felipe attended the 'El Valor Economico del Espanol' conference on Monday.
PALATE CLEANSER. (Kind of a familiar palate cleanser, actually. Anybody else remember Queen Rania during her 2015 trip to Spain? I suspected it would be better without Rania's distracting shoe choice,and so it is.)