05 June 2014

Tiara Thursday: The Ruby Dragonfly Tiara

The Ruby Dragonfly Tiara
Here's a tiara for your favorite insect aficionado: made of diamonds studded with rubies, the design features plants and dragonflies. The dragonflies can be detached and used as brooches, and they are set en tremblant on the tiara. They can also be reattached to the tiara at different angles, as you can see from the photo in use below. The tiara is potentially from Chaumet, likely of French make at least, and dates from around 1900. All of that puts it right at the heart of the Art Nouveau movement and with its fluid design and nature motif, it fits right in.
The Duchess of Castro
Its exact history is unknown, but it was auctioned by Sotheby's in 1999. Luckily for those of us that like to see tiaras in action, this one soon found a home in the collection of the Duchess of Castro, née Camilla Crociani. (Another auctioned piece now in her collection: the Ancona Tiara.) Married to a claimant to the headship of the House of Bourbon-Two Sicilies, she does attend some large scale European royal events, and wore this for the pre-wedding celebrations of Crown Prince Frederik of Denmark and Mary Donaldson in 2004 and for the evening ball celebrating the wedding of Prince Albert II of Monaco and Charlene Wittstock in 2011. The tiara does tend to disappear somewhat in her blond hair, but the big ruby and diamond necklace she wears with it let you know what to look for.
Long time readers will know that I am not an insect enthusiast. Far, far from it. So in this case, while I can appreciate the craftsmanship and the design, in the end I must say: Bugs = No.

Do the dragonflies sway your opinion?

Photos: Sotheby's/dpa