18 April 2016

Royal Visit of the Day: April 18

While we were looking the other way, Queen Máxima got herself into a spot of trouble.

She and King Willem-Alexander headed out to Bavaria last week - the Dutch royal couple make an annual working trip to Germany - and on day two, she repeated a coat first worn during the Dutch state visit to Denmark last year.
I wasn't a huge fan of this coat when we first saw it, but it was a clever bit of diplomatic dressing; the designer, Claes Iversen, is based in the Netherlands and is originally from Denmark. On this German outing, however, that diplomatic dressing turned disastrous when some interpreted designs on the coat as swastikas. (Yikes.)
Zoomin.tv screencap, see video here
Obviously, this was unintentional on the part of both Queen Máxima and of the designer, who used bits of plexiglass and hardware among other ornaments on the coat, making art out of everyday items (which isn't for everyone, but then art never is). (And it probably bears noting that - even though its resemblance wasn't intended - the swastika itself has a longer history as a positive symbol than a negative one.)

The controversy has been blown out of proportion, but it also would have been terribly easy to avoid. Considering we just spent a week discussing the intent behind a tour wardrobe, this is a prime example of why so much thought goes into such things.
nordbayern.de and Bayerischer Rundfunk screencaps, see here and here for video
At least coats come off, and this one quickly did. Throughout the visit, the couple sported pins from the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany. On her other shoulder, Máxima wore a fascinating piece from the Dutch collection, a sapphire brooch with a pair of diamond wings below it. (She wore the same brooch with another larger sapphire suspended below for the state banquet in Denmark.)

Coat controversy aside, the rest of the visit had everything you expect from your standard Máxima tour checklist. Big hat: check. Sparkle: check.
München screencap, see video here and here
I almost thought the evening dress (right, above) had a built-in sparkly collar until I came to my senses and realized that there was a diamond rivière there, because of course. This dress is different from the one she wore for the state visit to France this year, yet it is almost exactly the same. Sparkleblergh must have really been speaking to her this season.

For more: See here for a gallery from Day 1, or here for Day 2.