Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother: the Tiaras of a Duchess and Queen

Hours after posting Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother: Consort of George VI, unable to let go (sadly quite normal for me), I was still flicking through the pictures I’d saved of her prior to becoming Queen when I noticed I’d missed a pretty special picture out of my post.

Duchess of York wearing the Lotus Flower Tiara, a wedding gift from the Duke of York

And there you have my gratuitous reason to share more pictures of Queen Elizabeth, the queen consort of King George VI, wearing stunning tiaras from her personal collection or those from the Royal Collection. Below she is wearing the Strathmore Rose Tiara given to her by her father on the occasion of her marriage into the royal family.

The Cartier Bracelet Bandeau, seen below, is a trio of bracelets, one central coloured band in between two diamond bands, that could also be mounted and worn as an ornamental headpiece. The original was in fact a quintet of bracelets and not seen as a tiara after the Duchess of York became queen, when she started wearing larger pieces. However, the bracelets were worn and also lent to her daughter, who wore them when Queen Elizabeth II.

Duchess of York wearing the Cartier Bandeau Tiara in 1933

Several tiaras have either been passed on to other members of the royal family as personal gifts or loaned short or long-termed from the Royal Collection.

The Oriental Circlet Tiara, above, was designed by Garrad (influenced by Prince Albert) in 1853 for Queen Victoria. On permanent loan to Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother, once she died it returned to the Royal Collection, and her daugher Queen Elizabeth II has worn it on one notable occasion, during a state visit to Malta in 2005. It was altered in the Victorian era when ownership over some of the jewels from which it was made was disputed.

The Boucheron Honeycomb Tiara was another that was favoured by the Queen Mother in her later years. It is now worn by the Duchess of Cornwall. It’s official name is the Greville Tiara, after the society lady for whom it was made. She bequeathed her jewels to Queen Elizabeth in 1942. Originally a level tiara, it has had some alterations to its height, giving extra pizazz.

The Cartier Halo Scroll Tiara was bought by the Duke of York for his wife in 1936. She gifted the tiara to her daughter, Princess Elizabeth, on her eighteenth birthday. It was worn on occasion by Princess Margaret and later her neice, Princess Anne, when young women. It was also the bridal tiara of Catherine Middleton for her marriage to Prince William in 2011.

The Lotus Flower Tiara, also known as the Papyrus Tiara, has been worn by serveral royal women. Queen Elizabeth also lent it to her older sister, Lady Mary Elphinstone for King George VI’s coronation. It was given to Princess Margaret before her marriage and she wore it regularly. Margaret lent it to her future daughter-in-law, Serena Stanhope, for her 1993 wedding to Viscount Linley. After Princess Margaret’s death, its possession reverted to the crown. It has twice been worn by Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge for state occasions.

Queen Mary’s Fringe Tiara is often confused with other fringe tiaras in the Royal Collection, hers was designed in 1919 and was given to her daughter-in-law in 1936. It was loaned to Princess Elizabeth for her marriage in 1947. It broke two hours before the ceremony, necessitating a quick fix from royal jewellers, Garrards. It was also loaned to Princess Anne for her 1973 marriage to Captain Mark Phillips.

Above is a rare sighting of Queen Elizabeth wearing the Delhi Durbar Tiara in 1947. It was made for Queen Mary in 1911 for the royal tour of India where King George V and Queen Mary were proclaimed Emperor and Empress. The emerald drops on the original design were removed by 1922. Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall’s wearing of the Delhi Durbar Tiara at her first tiara event caused an immediate furore and it has not been aired in public since. Complainers thought it far too regal for someone with her backstory, and furthermore, outshone the queen. I personally like it on her and I think it suits her hairstyle.

The Teck Circle Tiara came into the royal family’s possession via Queen Mary, along with another tiara, the Teck Crescent Tiara, that Queen Elizabeth wore on rare occasions. The Teck Circle Tiara was designed to be worn as a headpiece or as a necklace and once Queen Elizabeth retired its use as a tiara she passed it to her daughter Princess Margaret who frequently wore it as a necklace.

Queen Elizabeth wearing the Teck Crescent Tiara


Photos from Pinterest

Also, I really recommend the below for further, more detailed, information.

Source: queensjewelvault.blogspot.com


To read my post Thoughts on George VI click here.


15 thoughts on “Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother: the Tiaras of a Duchess and Queen

  1. I had no idea there were so many different tiaras. And that they are being handed back and forth to random people. I expected there to be more structure. That only a queen can wear a certain one, and not a princess.

    (Side note: “However, the bracelets were worn and also lent to her daugher, who wore them when Queen Elizabeth II.” You might be missing a word or two.)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I really wouldn’t mind an invite into the royal tiara room to have a try on of one or two!

      Thanks – I’ll check. WordPress failed at 2am and wouldn’t save anything even when I tried to post/schedule. I had to rescue it this morning.

      Liked by 1 person

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