It seems that as Princess Kate’s titles and roles in the royal family grow and change so does her tiara of choice. The Princess of Wales has become synonymous with the Lover’s Knot Tiara, wearing it for over two dozen events and engagements, with her most recent appearance with the headpiece being in November, at the State Banquet.
For the Annual Diplomatic Corps Reception on Tuesday the royal instead went with the Lotus Flower Tiara. The shiny tiara fit perfectly with Kate’s long-sleeved floor-length gown by Jenny Packham, with the royal channeling the festive spirit with the deep red, sequin-embellished dress.
Kate also wore two brooches for this special occasion, one of them featuring an enamel portrait of a young Queen Elizabeth II wearing an evening dress surrounded by a diamond frame atop a yellow ribbon.
This brooch, most often worn on the left shoulder, has a special meaning as it shows that the wearer has been welcomed into the Royal Family Order, most senior order of knighthood in the British honors system, with only the Victoria Cross and the George Cross outranking it.
This honor was first introduced back in the 1800s by George IV, and is bestowed upon female members of the Royal Family by the monarch, as women in the royal court were not able to receive the same commemorative medals as the men.
Of course fans were most impressed by the sparkling diamond tiara. Once owned by Queen Mother and often worn by Princess Margaret, the Lotus Flower Tiara is estimated to be worth £4million.
But that is only one of many elegant and expensive tiaras that the Royal Family own.
Here are just a few.
The Lotus Flower Tiara
Queen Elizabeth (The Queen Mother) took inspiration from her mother-in-law when she had the Lotus Flower created. The tiara is actually a refashioned Garrard necklace that she received from her husband, the future King George VI, on their wedding day in 1923.
The diamond and pearl tiara gets its name from the lotus flower (or papyrus leaf) because of its similar look. It was passed down to Princess Margaret, and was actually of favorite of hers, before being given to Kate.
QUEEN MARY’S DIAMOND BANDEAU TIARA
The tiara that was worn by Meghan Markle on her wedding to Prince Harry back in 2018, is an Art Deco-style bandeau tiara, with 11 diamond sections and floral diamond clusters centered around the County of Lincoln Brooch.
The brooch it features was originally a wedding gift for Queen Mary and dates back to 1893, with the tiara being made later on in 1932 for her. It was given to Queen Elizabeth II in 1953, who then lent it to Meghan for her wedding day.
Elegantly crafted back in 1914 for Queen Mary by the House of Garrand, the Lover’s Knot is stooped in royal history. Taking inspiration from a Gothic Revival tiara first owned by her grandmother, Princess Augusta of Hesse, the piece is a real marvel, impressing anyone with its elegant craft, height and assortment of pearls and diamonds from the family’s own vault.
According to the Court Jeweler, when Queen Mary had this stunning piece commissioned, she ‘sacrificed a tiara from her own jewelry collection, the Ladies of England Tiara, to make it.’
After the death of Queen Mary in 1953, the tiara was passed on to her granddaughter, Queen Elizabeth, with it becoming her go-to tiara throughout the Fifties, before switching to some more modern pieces.
The monarch lent the piece to Princess Diana for her wedding day as a wedding gift, however in a shocking twist, Diana broke royal protocol and instead wore the Spencer Tiara. Later on she would wear it for several royal engagements.
After she divorced Prince Charles, Diana was asked to return the family heirloom, despite being allowed to keep some of her royal jewels. The tiara was thought to be locked up in the Buckingham Palace vaults, up until 2016, when Princess Diana’s daughter-in-law, Kate Middleton, wore the shiny headpiece for the first time at that year’s annual diplomatic reception, and so a new era for the tiara began. For that event she combined the tiara with a red Jenny Packham dress.
THE CARTIER ‘HALO’ TIARA
On 29th April 2011 William and Kate finally tied the knot at Westminster Abbey. Looking absolutely stunning in her now-famous lace gown by Sarah Burton for Alexander McQueen, Kate finished off the look with a cascading veil, wispy bouquet and a special debut tiara.
The Princess of Wales was loaned a Cartier tiara by Queen Elizabeth for her big day. The Cartier ‘Halo’ tiara features 1,000 diamonds, and was first chosen by King George VI as a gift for his wife, the Queen Mother. Eight years later, he gave the tiara to the Queen to mark her 18th birthday.
The headpiece dates back to 1936, with the story being that King George VI asking Cartier to create something special for his wife, using 739 brilliant-cut diamonds and 149 baguette diamonds.
It then became a ‘beginner’ tiara of sorts, due to its slightly smaller frame, with Princess Margaret being especially fond of it when she was young, while the last royal it was lent to before Kate was Princess Anne sometime in the 1970s for several public appearances.