30 May 2013

Tiara Thursday: The Swedish Aquamarine Bandeau Tiara

While we wait to see what tiara Princess Madeleine will chose for her wedding day, let's travel back to her first tiara appearances as a young princess, in her very first tiara: the Aquamarine Bandeau.
The Swedish Aquamarine Bandeau Tiara
A petite tiara if there ever was one, this piece focuses on its large central aquamarine stone, surrounding it with delicate bands of diamonds on either side. It's a low profile, bandeau form, prone to disappearing in a hairstyle today but perhaps originally intended to be worn across the forehead. Supposedly it originates with Queen Louise of Sweden (1889-1965), the second wife of King Gustaf VI Adolf, Lady Louise Mountbatten, and it's not hard to imagine her wearing it in that fashionable style during the 1920s.
Princess Désirée
The tiara really enters our radar with those fashionable Haga Princesses, the sisters of King Carl XVI Gustaf, in their tiara-wearing heyday, when they nearly cleaned the vaults out of tiaras suitable for a younger lady. But the tiara didn't make a big impression even then, and wouldn't until it graced Princess Madeleine's head.
Princess Madeleine
The Aquamarine Bandeau was given to Princess Madeleine by her parents, the King and Queen, for her 18th birthday, and can be seen in her earliest tiara appearances. Eventually she moved on, adopting the Modern Fringe Tiara as her current favorite, and the bandeau was seen less and less.
Video: Nobel Prize Awards Ceremony, 2000, Madeleine's first time attending
Madeleine's use of the tiara makes complete sense to me; this is a tiara to grow from. It is a starter piece, for the years when a princess is so young that the larger tiaras are out of place. This tiara gets a lot of hate and a lot of labels as a classic "Cyclops tiara" for its large central stone, but I've never minded it. For a young princess, it can work. (And in my opinion it's certainly better than the one Crown Princess Victoria received for her 18th birthday...but that's another story for another day.)

How do you think this rates as a "starter" tiara?

Photos: Scanpix/Sjobergbild/Getty Images