28 October 2011

A Very Special Tiara Friday: The Golden Poppies

Halloween is upon us, lovelies. Do you celebrate in your nook of the world? (You should, you know. Socially acceptable occasions to wear tiaras whilst walking down the street are few and far between.) In honor of this most ghoulish and costume-filled holiday, I thought we’d forgo our usual Friday flashback and instead take a look at one of the creepiest tiaras out there (if you ask me, at least).
BOO! Heh. Yes, that's right, we're celebrating with our most costume-prone queen and her most costumeish tiara. Well, actually, you know what: “tiara” is debatable. What should we call it? How about “unidentifiable skull ornament”?
Popularly named the Golden Poppies, this is an example of modern design and experimentation with materials that features excellent craftsmanship and yet results in a dubious final execution. Queen Margrethe commissioned this from Danish artist Arje Griegst in 1976, and with her creative streak I think there can be no doubt she had a hand in the appearance.
The flowers themselves are made from thinly hammered plates of 21 carat gold. Each flower has baroque pearls inside and 4 diamond-tipped stamens. The design is a very literal translation of a garden flower, including moonstones and aquamarines on the leaves to represent dewdrops and insects depicted in pearls, crystals, opals, moonstones, and diamonds crawling about. It is often said that there are also tiny lights involved, to illuminate the flowers. Oh, yeah, and it’s a parure to boot: earrings and necklace included, because you can never get enough garishly bright gold.
Queen Margrethe wearing only a few of the poppies
The thing is, the flowers themselves aren’t so bad. (Except for the insects. You lost me with the insects. Ew.) They can be detached from their headdress and worn on their own, just a few at a time. It’s when they all get together that things get creepy.
Margrethe in the full flowered headdress
See now, they no longer look like flowers to me. I see a cluster of dish television receptors, a set of toy teacups, crawling insects (hey, the designer started it), or some sort of knowledge-sucking device straight from the alien warlords. Creepy, I tell you. Maybe this would have been a better fit for an April Fools’ Day celebration, since ol’ Daisy obviously has a sense of humor. And this little practical jewelry joke is her personal property, by the way, so she can leave it to whomever she pleases. What do you think, kids: Mary in the poppies someday? Oh, giggles.

What say you: creepy or no? Do you have a different pick for the Creepiest Tiara title?

Photos: BilledBladet/Rex/Bodilbinner