14 January 2016

Tiara Thursday: The Tiaras of Queen Sonja

As King Harald prepares to mark 25 years on the throne, a tiara retrospective is in order for his queen.

Unlike many of her peers, Queen Sonja's shift from crown princess to queen was not accompanied by new access to the family's most important tiaras. There was no need, you see; Sonja had been wearing the big guns of the Norwegian royal family since her marriage. With a widowed father-in-law on the throne, Crown Princess Sonja handled the first lady duties from the start, tiaras included. Additions to her collection have given her some added variety along the way, but her favorites hold firm.

(As always, we've covered basically all of these, so click the name for more.)

Cathrine Wessel, Det Kongelige Hoff
Seen on Queen Sonja for some of her most important tiara occasions, this is her biggest tiara, and it also seems to be a favorite.

If you ask me, this is the prettiest tiara at her disposal, but maybe she doesn't agree or maybe it's not that comfy, because it doesn't seem like she chooses this one as often as others. (Or maybe I just feel its absence on a greater scale. You know how it goes.)

Sølve Sundsbø / Det kongelige hoff
This pearl and diamond tiara, on the other hand, is seen regularly. It comes with two size options; Sonja most often wears the larger size (shown above), and the smaller size has been worn by her daughter and daughter-in-law. And if you've read my post on its history, you know that it's not really Queen Maud's tiara...not today, at least. This is a replica, created for the family after the original was stolen in an armed robbery while it was in London for maintenance.

Originally a diadem made for Queen Alexandra with alternating fleurs de lys and diamond crosses, wearing it in its current form (with or without a set of crosses on top) seems an exercise in making something with all the symbolism of a crown look like, well, not a crown. A hard task, and one not often successfully completed.

Said to have been a 60th birthday gift from her husband, this is another flexible tiara with options to feature all diamonds, red-orange topaz, or green tourmaline, plus earrings and necklaces to match. It's not a favorite of many, but it suits Sonja's style and it comes in handy for events such as less formal state banquets abroad.

Another reported gift from King Harald, this tiara is no longer worn by Queen Sonja. She has passed it on to Crown Princess Mette-Marit.

And there are others:

Which tiara do you think Queen Sonja wears best?