08 December 2017

Investiture at Windsor Castle

The Queen held an Investiture at Windsor Castle.
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Wow, we can actually sorta see a brooch here, at an investiture! But apparently that's not enough, as we still have disagreement.

07 December 2017

HMS Queen Elizabeth Commissioning, Scripture Union Anniversary, and Audiences

The Queen attended the Commissioning Ceremony of aircraft carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth in Portsmouth. Her Majesty was accompanied by The Princess Royal, Commodore-in-Chief of HMNB Portsmouth.
Royal Navy/MOD Crown Copyright 2017

Purple, Anne in uniform, and Her Maj’s usual delight around these sorts of events. That’s a top notch engagement for you. 

Royal Navy/MOD Crown Copyright 2017

Amethysts make it even better! They’re the cherry on top of this outfit. The grape on top of this outfit, perhaps we should say. 



December 6: The Queen attended Scripture Union's 150th Anniversary Service of Celebration at St Mary's Church, Islington. 
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Not so entirely certain about the red and gold of the Grima Ruby Brooch against this hot pink, on the other hand. 



December 6: The Queen held audiences at Buckingham Palace. 
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And here we have the Cambridge Pearl, doing an admirable job of sticking out despite the heavy floral on this dress. Plus, a triplet moment! She coincidentally coordinates very well with the Nigerian High Commissioner George Adesola Oguntade and Mrs. Oguntade.

05 December 2017

The 2017 Diplomatic Reception (and a New Loan for The Duchess of Cambridge)

The Queen hosted the annual Diplomatic Reception at Buckingham Palace. The Prince of Wales, The Duchess of Cornwall, The Duke of Cambridge, and The Duchess of Cambridge were among those present. 

It doesn't look like we're getting lucky again this year with a proper group shot inside of the palace like we did last year - you'll remember that pictures from inside this event are rare - but we do have a glimpse inside the cars carrying the other members of the Royal Family to the party. We've got some loans from The Queen, including a new loan, so we'll cover it here: 

The Duchess of Cornwall 
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Solid repeats for Camilla for the evening, as we've seen both this dress and this jewelry combination on more than one past occasion. 

Camilla will have worn the Royal Family Order of Queen Elizabeth II, though it is obscured by her cape in the car   
Riband of the Royal Victorian Order, certainly accompanied by the Star and Badge which can't be seen here


The Duchess of Cambridge 
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We have another new loaner for Kate, a diamond collet (rivière) necklace! This necklace must be a loan from The Queen, who has several of these collet necklaces in her collection. I am THRILLED to see her wearing one of these luscious necklaces! They're a) gorgeous and b) so versatile. The little black dress of (massive diamond) necklaces. She paired this with the tiara and earrings she's worn before.

 Cambridge (or Queen Mary's) Lover's Knot Tiara 
Collingwood Pearl and Diamond Earrings (from the private collection of the late Diana, Princess of Wales)
Diamond Collet Necklace

(A note on the necklace: While some will try to make a determination on which specific diamond necklace this is, I'm not likely to follow suit without official confirmation. Judging the size of a stone from one wearer to the next is a problem because the scale changes, and these necklaces can be changed in length by altering the number of stones to suit a new wearer. There are a lot of variables.)

01 December 2017

The Queen Mother’s Cartier Bracelet Quintet and Bandeau

The Queen Mother’s Cartier Bracelet Quintet and Bandeau

This set of five Cartier Art Deco bracelets were given individually as presents from King George VI, then Duke of York, to his wife, Queen Elizabeth, then Duchess of York and later Queen Mother, for birthdays and Christmases in 1923-25. The diamond bracelets have different colored baguette centers: one ruby, one emerald, one sapphire, and two diamonds. There are two diamond bracelets and five total, although only four are pictured above and this set is often referred to as a quartet rather than the quintet that it is.

The Queen Mother, as Duchess of York, wearing the bandeau (left) and the bracelets (right)

Mounts to turn three of the bracelets into a bandeau to be worn in the hair were added from Cartier in 1925. The Queen Mother wore the bandeau through the early 1930s, and the bracelets haven’t been seen as a bandeau since. She also regularly stacked the bracelets on one wrist. (A frequent question: what necklace is she wearing in the bandeau picture above? It’s impossible to tell what stone that is, thanks to the black and white, but she did have a sapphire and diamond chain necklace made in 1929 and this could be it. It is unknown whether that necklace is still in existence.)

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The Queen wears one ruby and one diamond bracelet, 1977

The bracelets are now in the collection of The Queen. She was spotted wearing the diamond and ruby bracelets as early as the 1970s, so it’s not known for certain when exactly she received them from her mother. She also loaned the ruby bracelet to The Princess of Wales for a tour of Australia in 1983*.

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The Princess of Wales wears one ruby bracelet, 1983

The Queen still wears these bracelets. She may get more use out of them for private events, since she has certain sets of jewelry she likes to wear together and most of her tiaras have other preferred bracelets, but that’s my hunch and nothing more.

Read more about these bracelets and bandeau at Order of Splendor.

*With thanks to Franck.

Appearances: 
18 May 2017: Dinner at The Ivy

30 November 2017

Visit to West Sussex

The Queen visited Canine Partners and Chichester Festival Theatre during her visit to West Sussex.
Royal Family

Any visit with puppies is a good visit, this we know.



(And the slight hiccup with the posy delivery just makes it better.)

Royal Family

I suppose we could also say that any day with the Jardine Star is a good day too, while we're at it.

28 November 2017

Lunch for the German President and Audiences at Buckingham Palace

The Queen, accompanied by The Duke of Cambridge, hosted a lunch for The President of the Federal Republic of Germany, Mr. Frank-Walter Steinmeier, and Mrs. Elke Büdenbender, at Buckingham Palace. Also today, The Queen held audiences at Buckingham Palace.
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I'm not saying I don't miss seeing Prince Philip more often, but it is kind of fun to watch them spin the big wheel of family members to see which one gets to accompany Her Maj for the day. Prince William's obviously the perfect choice here, since he and his family visited Germany earlier this year.

ITN screencap

The big wheel of brooches landed on the Saskatchewan Tourmaline Flower today! I love this one for these heavily textured pink suits, it stands out so well.

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In fact, it's practically leaping off her shoulder in these audience photos, which made me laugh. IT'S ME, GUYS, THE PINK ONE! (Obviously I have also included this pic because I'm happy to recognize any and all caped visitors. This fabulous lady is Mrs. Al Nahar, wife of the Ambassador from the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, Mr. Omar Barakat Mnawer Al Nahar.)

22 November 2017

Audiences at Buckingham Palace

The Queen held audiences at Buckingham Palace.
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Back to the brooch guessing game it is.

20 November 2017

The Duchess of Cambridge Wears the Four Row Japanese Pearl Choker

Another loan debuted...

The Duchess of Cambridge, with The Duke of Cambridge and Prince Harry, joined other members of the Royal Family and friends for a dinner celebrating the Platinum Wedding Anniversary of The Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh at Windsor Castle.
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The Duchess of Cambridge has worn The Queen's Four Row Japanese Pearl Choker for the first time! This piece was commissioned by The Queen to use a collection of cultured pearls given to her by the Japanese government. It was also loaned to Diana, Princess of Wales during her marriage, and has been worn infrequently by The Queen, primarily during the 1980s and 1990s.

The Duchess also wore the Collingwood Pearl and Diamond Earrings this evening, which were a wedding present to the late Diana, Princess of Wales from Collingwood Jewellers and were in her private collection. Kate debuted those at the Spanish state banquet earlier this year.

This necklace is a good loan for Kate. While pearl necklaces aren't a signature jewel for her, she wears several pairs of pearl earrings and has use of two tiaras with pearls from The Queen's collection, plus other pearl jewels. So perhaps the Windsor fondness for pearls will continue to grow...

19 November 2017

70th Wedding Anniversary Portraits

A new photographic portrait of The Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh has been released to mark their 70th wedding anniversary.
Royal Family Twitter

Big anniversaries call for new portraits, and this new one for their platinum wedding anniversary is full of symbolism. The Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh are pictured in the White Drawing Room at Windsor Castle, between Thomas Gainsborough's 1781 portraits of King George III and Queen Charlotte, who were the British royal family's previously longest married couple with a marriage of 57 years. The photograph was taken by Matt Holyoak of Camera Press, the agency that handled the Baron photographs of their wedding in 1947 as its first assignment. The Queen wore this cream day dress by Angela Kelly to the service held for their diamond wedding anniversary.

Her brooch, by jeweler Andrew Grima, was a gift from Prince Philip in 1966. Press for the photo refers to it as the "Scarab" brooch (around here, we have simply called it the Grima Ruby Brooch).

Gold Watch

Royal Family Twitter

Update: The rest of the set was released on Sunday, this time with the platinum couple posing in front of a platinum background. And with smiles!

18 November 2017

The Fifth Wedding Anniversary Bracelet

The Fifth Wedding Anniversary Bracelet
Royal Collection Trust

The fifth wedding anniversary of The Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh was in 1952, the year she took the throne. As an anniversary gift, The Duke commissioned from Boucheron a bracelet of his own design, made from gold, platinum, diamonds, rubies, and sapphires.


Philip's design includes his naval badge in the center with a diamond-set anchor, two roses set with diamonds and accented by rubies, two crosses of sapphires and a single diamond, one cross of rubies and a single diamond, and gold links designed as intertwined "E" and "P" letters.

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Diamond Wedding Anniversary Family Dinner, 2007

Occasions on which The Queen has worn this bracelet in public are rare, but she did appear to wear it during the celebrations marking their 60th wedding anniversary in 2007, at a family dinner hosted at Clarence House by The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall. The bracelet has also been displayed, and was included in an exhibition celebrating The Duke of Edinburgh's 90th birthday.

16 November 2017

Visit to Hull

The Queen visited Hull to mark its year as the United Kingdom's City of Culture. Her Majesty visited the Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy factory and formally opened the Allam Medical Building at the University of Hull.
Royal Family

New outfit alert! This is a "Stewart Parvin Air Force Blue cashmere coat over a silk print dress in Air Force blue, black and orange with a matching hat by Rachel Trevor Morgan," per the Press Association. Absolutely lovely, although a bit camouflaging during her visit to this medical facility...

Royal Family

There's no camouflaging Queen Victoria's Bow Brooch on that solid blue background, though, and that's a Good Thing. It looks great.

Royal Family

15 November 2017

Audiences at Buckingham Palace

The Queen held audiences at Buckingham Palace.
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Oh, bless, we can actually see her brooch! Ye Olde Pearl Trefoil it is.

12 November 2017

Remembrance Sunday

The Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh, accompanied by members of the Royal Family, attended the Remembrance Sunday ceremony at the Cenotaph, London. The service honors those that have died in armed conflicts.

An emotional day on an already emotional day today, as The Queen watched the Cenotaph ceremony from the balcony for the first time. With The Duke of Edinburgh by her side, they watched The Prince of Wales lead the ceremony on the ground and lay a wreath on Her Majesty's behalf.

The Prince of Wales lays the first wreath.
MOD Crown Copyright 2017
BBC screencap


MOD Crown Copyright 2017

The Duchess of Cornwall joined The Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh on their balcony. The Duchess anchors her cluster of poppies with a different brooch each year, often badges or other pieces of significance to the occasion, and that's what she did this year: the badge of the 9/12th Lancers belonged to Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother and is of special importance to Camilla because her late father was a member of the 12th Lancers.

9/12th Lancers Badge

As mentioned yesterday, we'll take a look at some of the other family members present on the other blog, still to come.

11 November 2017

Festival of Remembrance

The Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh, accompanied by other members of the Royal Family, attended the Royal British Legion Festival of Remembrance at the Royal Albert Hall, London.
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The Kensington Bow Brooch has been a regular pick for anchoring poppies at remembrance events throughout the years, but this seems to be its first appearance since this blog's been up and running. I didn't think it had been that long!



Engagement and Wedding Rings

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A couple of old favorites for The Duchess of Cornwall tonight: her Everyday Pearl Pendant Earrings,
her Four Strand Pearl Choker with Small Diamond Clasp, and a selection of bracelets tricky to make out.

We will have another post for Remembrance Sunday and will probably check in with the rest of the fam at the other blog next week, so stay tuned...

09 November 2017

The Diamond Swan Brooch

The Diamond Swan Brooch

It's a favorite fact included on countless lists of trivia about The Queen: Her Majesty owns all the swans in the country! More accurately stated, the Crown has rights of ownership of all unmarked mute swans in open water, a right only exercised on certain parts of the Thames and its tributaries.

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Attending the Swan Upping ceremony in 2009

The Queen's Swan Marker leads the annual Swan Upping ceremony to conduct a census of the swans on sections of the Thames. When The Queen came along to watch the Swan Upping in person in 2009, she had just the brooch for the occasion: a small diamond swan of unknown provenance. Given the Crown's well-known and centuries-long association with swans, as well as the sheer size of The Queen's collection, I find it unsurprising that such a gem exists in the royal vault. Her Majesty has at least one other swan jewel, the Double Swan Brooch, debuted in 2014.

With Sir David Attenborough for The Queen’s Commonwealth Canopy documentary
ITN

Following its usage at the 2009 Swan Upping, the Diamond Swan Brooch was worn for an appearance with Sir David Attenborough recorded for an upcoming 2018 documentary on The Queen's Commonwealth Canopy forest conservation initiative, another fitting occasion for a nature brooch. A photo of the two was released today (above).

Appearances: 
2017: Appearance in The Queen's Commonwealth Canopy documentary, to be released in 2018

08 November 2017

British Museum Gallery Opening and Audiences at Buckingham Palace

The Queen officially opened the refurbished Sir Joseph Hotung Gallery of China and South Asia at the British Museum, London.
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This is the second time this year we've seen this brooch, which is a surprise. I'm not sure I love the red stones on this pink background, though...

Royal Family


Earlier, The Queen held audiences at Buckingham Palace.
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A purple dress, a double Cullinan brooch, and a photo that shows it? It is my birthday?!

07 November 2017

The Diamond Quatrefoil Bracelet

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The Duchess of Cambridge wears the Diamond Quatrefoil Bracelet and the Diamond Pendant Earrings

The Duchess of Cambridge debuted what appears to be another piece from The Queen's jewel collection at the Anna Freud Centre Gala Dinner this evening, the Diamond Quatrefoil Bracelet. The wide diamond bracelet features multiple diamond quatrefoil motifs, the four-lobed design popular in architecture, art, heraldry, and elsewhere. Each quatrefoil outline is filled with five individual diamonds.

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The Queen Mother wears the bracelet in 1958

This bracelet is not a well-known member of the royal collection and it's easy to mistake for other bracelets, such as Queen Victoria's Bracelet. The quatrefoil-motif bracelet was worn by the late Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother; it may have been another treasure from the Greville bequest. It then went to The Queen, along with the rest of The Queen Mother's jewels on her death in 2002.

The Queen wears the Diamond Quatrefoil Bracelet at the State Opening of Parliament in 2010
Alpha Photo/UK Parliament via CC BY-NC-ND 2.0


The Diamond Quatrefoil Bracelet now appears to join The Duchess of Cambridge's growing pile of jewelry borrowed from The Queen, as Her Majesty continues to increase her loans to family members. Kate's been particularly lucky in the bracelet category, also having worn the Wedding Gift Bracelet and Queen Mary's Diamond Bar Choker Bracelet. The earrings she wore at the gala are also on loan from HM, the Diamond Pendant Earrings, and this is probably their best match yet.

With thanks to Franck for pointing out The Queen's use of the piece, and to Beth at the RJWMB for spotting it on The Queen Mother.

Appearances:
7 November 2017: Anna Freud Centre Gala Dinner (on The Duchess of Cambridge)
2010: State Opening of Parliament

Investiture at Buckingham Palace

The Queen held an Investiture at Buckingham Palace.
Telegraph screencap

Thankfully, after Her Maj's last appearance left her brooch a mystery, we get a glimpse of this one: a very sparkly Pearl Triangle Brooch! The Pearl Triangle is another brooch that's heavily favored for audiences and investitures. In fact, all of its appearances for the past year have been either audiences or investitures.


06 November 2017

The Jewels of The Crown, a Season 2 Preview

Season 2 of The Crown debuts on Netflix on December 8! A new trailer was released today, so let's dig in. (We recapped the jewels of season 1 here.)

The show stars Claire Foy as Queen Elizabeth II in her last season, before handing the throne to Olivia Colman for seasons 3 and 4. Her imaginary jewel vault gets a little wider this season, with a couple immediate additions:

The Grand Duchess Vladimir Tiara featured in season 1 in its pearl version. I don't believe we saw the emeralds last time around, but they're right up front now, along with other pieces from the Cambridge Emerald and Delhi Durbar Parure.

They're taking a stab at the George VI Sapphires and Prince Albert's Sapphire Brooch too, recreating the famous night when the Kennedys came to Buckingham Palace for dinner.

I wondered why they hadn't bothered to put Princess Margaret in the Cartier Halo Tiara last season, since reproductions of that one are so widely available, and here we go. I can't say I like this particular portrayal of Margaret so far, but it is nice to see her in a tiara she actually wore.

What other treasures await? A month to go...

Photos: Netflix

01 November 2017

Audiences at Buckingham Palace

The Queen held audiences at Buckingham Palace.
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Let the brooch guesses begin in 3...2...1...

Unidentified Brooch

25 October 2017

Audiences at Buckingham Palace

The Queen held audiences at Buckingham Palace.
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Can it really be that this is just the second time we've seen the Cambridge Pearl this year? And previously at an audience, too. Has it been sentenced to a year of hard time in the 1844 Room? I don't mind, to tell you the truth. At least it's one of the few that can usually be identified in these audiences.

24 October 2017

Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment Barracks Visit

The Queen and The Prince of Wales made a joint visit to the Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment at Hyde Park Barracks, where The Queen officially named the regiment's new drum horse, Perseus.
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And thus our monthly theme continues, with even more badges and even more horses.

Sgt Paul Randall RLC/MoD/Crown copyright 2017

Household Cavalry Regimental Badges, one for the Life Guards and one for the Blues and Royals

23 October 2017

HMS Sutherland Visit

The Queen visited HMS Sutherland, celebrating the 20th anniversary of her Commissioning, at the West India Dock, London.
PO(Phot) Owen Cooban/MoD/Crown copyright 2017
For more: Zimbio gallery.

The military visits continue but the badges take a brief break, as the Jardine Star returns from its summer vacation.

21 October 2017

British Champions Day at Royal Ascot

The Queen visited Ascot Racecourse for the QIPCO British Champions Day.
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For more: Zimbio gallery.

This brooch seems to be on Ascot duty this year, appearing during the usual summer meeting and now again for Her Maj's annual autumn day at the races. It's a nice match for this very textured coat, no?

19 October 2017

King's Troop Royal Horse Artillery 70th Anniversary

The Queen, Captain General, reviewed The King's Troop Royal Horse Artillery on their 70th anniversary at Hyde Park, London.
Corporal Dek Traylor/MoD Crown Copyright
For more: Express article, Zimbio gallery.

Horses and the military, Her Maj was right at home for today's engagement. She even got to check up on the progress of one of her former race horses, Knock Castle; she gifted the horse to the Troop in August.

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As for the brooch, no surprise here: another regimental badge.

17 October 2017

Audience at Buckingham Palace, and the 48th Highlanders of Canada Badge

The Queen held an audience at Buckingham Palace.
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Whenever there are two brooches at once, one is most likely a badge worn special for the occasion. Such is the case here, too.

Six Petal Diamond Flower Brooch (Thanks to lovely commenter Adelaide, we now have a likely provenance for this piece. Click back to read.)
Engagement and Wedding Rings 


The Queen was meeting a representative from the 48th Highlanders of Canada, so she popped on the badge she has from their regiment (which is enough her practice that we can count on it, even though we can't see it too well here). She is Colonel-in-Chief of the regiment.

The cap badge of the 48th Highlanders of Canada
Canadian Forces

The Queen's brooch is a platinum version of the regiment's badge, given to her in 1951 when she visited Toronto with The Duke of Edinburgh. She was photographed in it during a portrait session with  Ian Leslie Macdonald, where she also posed for a new official photo in the Maple Leaf Brooch for the 150th Anniversary of Canada's confederation. That portrait, and other interesting shots from the session (including a few of the brooches in their boxes), can be seen on the photographer's website.

13 October 2017

Investiture at Buckingham Palace

The Queen held an Investiture at Buckingham Palace.
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Let me know if you spy any video of this one for brooch purposes...otherwise, we're in the dark. Update: With thanks to the Royal Spectator, looks like this was most likely the Cullinan V.

12 October 2017

Women's Royal Naval Service 100 Project Reception and Audiences at Buckingham Palace

The Queen and The Princess Royal attended a reception to mark the centenary of the Women's Royal Naval Service and the Women's Army Auxiliary Corps at the Army and Navy Club, London.
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For more: Zimbio gallery.

The Aqua Clips took her to church on her last Balmoral weekend, and now they're taking her right back to business in London. Surprising to see them twice in a row, but more surprising they still haven't been seen all that often this year.

Royal Family

Three Strand Pearl Necklace


The Queen also held audiences at Buckingham Palace today.
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The Queen getting back to her regularly scheduled London business = us getting back to our regularly scheduled brooch squinting business. I'm pretty sure this is the Pearl Triangle. (On another note, she picked up a new treasure today: a silver pumpkin from the Cambodian ambassador!)

Pearl Triangle Brooch


Of course, while all of this qualifies as business as usual, this week brought an announcement of a break in tradition: The Queen won't be laying her own wreath at the Cenotaph on Remembrance Sunday this year. Instead, The Prince of Wales will lay her wreath while The Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh watch from a balcony above, as Camilla, Kate, and other members of the Royal Family do.

This will be a significant change but it's one I'm glad to see. Her wreath was already made lighter for her in 2016, and watching her walk backwards down the small steps at the monument after laying it was making me a little nervous last year, you know? Pass it on, and she'll still be present for it all. A good compromise.

29 September 2017

Visit to Aberdeen

The Queen opened the Robertson Family Roof Garden at the Aberdeen Royal Infirmary and visited the Sue Ryder Dee View Court Neurological Centre, Aberdeen, Scotland.
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Her Maj looked happy to be back in action today, and the feeling is mutual! This is the 2017 debut of the Sapphire Chrysanthemum Brooch, which works really well on this blue tweed.

ITN screencap

Engagements in Scotland always mark the beginning of the end of The Queen's summer break. Next month, she'll be back to London and back to her usual schedule of public engagements.

04 September 2017

Queen Mary's Thistle Brooch

Queen Mary's Thistle Brooch

A new photographic portrait of The Queen was taken in 2010 and unveiled for the Scottish Parliament in 2011, featuring The Queen wearing - for apparently the first time - a unique diamond brooch. The brooch has the appearance of a key from afar, but up close it becomes a diamond thistle with two leaves forming a wreath and a long stem.

The Queen in 2010
Shaun Murawski/Scottish Parliament

Information released with the new portrait identified the long brooch as a diamond thistle that belonged to The Queen's grandmother, Queen Mary. Despite not being worn until 2010, The Queen most likely inherited it along with much of the rest of Queen Mary's jewel collection on her death in 1953.

Queen Mary, with George V and a young Princess Elizabeth, wears the brooch in Scotland

While Queen Mary wore the brooch pinned to one of her signature toque hats, The Queen has thus far worn it only in traditional brooch style on her shoulder. Both queens have capitalized on the thistle association and worn the brooch in Scotland.

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The Queen in 2017

The brooch had to wait seven years for its next outing, at another Scottish occasion. This offers the first real opportunity to see this brooch in full detail. It's really quite beautiful, isn't it? I'd love to see it back in hat use, though that's not something I expect The Queen will ever do.

Appearances:
4 September 2017: Queensferry Crossing Opening