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A Guide To The Queen's Jewellery Collection & Other Royals

While Hollywood stars have always had enviable jewellery collections, they are pretty measly when you compare their collections to that of royalty. Living as a royal means you are constantly surrounded by opulence and luxury. Who could forget Cleopatra and her penchant for enchanting green emerald jewellery or Louis the 14th and his impressive collection of bejewelled diadems, crowns and swords? The family heirlooms of history’s high and mighty are enough to put your grandmother's pearls or your great aunt’s brooch to shame. But while most royals and dignitaries boast a hearty selection of crown jewels that have been handed down to their ancestors for centuries, none are perhaps as legendary as the British monarchy's famed jewellery collection. 

With a collection that dates back to the early 16th century, the British Royal Family is synonymous with their hefty jewellery. With around 300 pieces in Queen Elizabeth II’s collection alone, a further dozen in the Princess Diana’s and many more owned by some of the lower ranking royals, the items in the British Royal Family’s collection are pretty much as famous as they are. From tiaras once worn by the Queen’s grandmother, Queen Mary and the bespoke diamond jewellery crafted from pieces sported by Prince Albert to the Duchess of Cambridge’s lust-worthy diamond and sapphire engagement ring. In honour of Queen Elizabeth II becoming the world’s longest reigning monarch, we are unpacking our favourite pieces from the Queen's jewellery collection and other royals within the British Monarchy

British crown jewels | Queen Elizabeth's Jewellery Collection

Overview:

Queen Mary’s Lover’s Knot Tiara


As one of the most influential royal families in the world, it only makes sense that they would claim ownership on an array of tiaras, diadems and crowns. One of the go-to hair accessories for the royals at their overly extravagant events is the
Lover’s Knot Tiara. Set in silver and white gold jewellery, the Lover’s Knot tiara consists of over 19 hanging teardrop-shaped pearls. The tiara is also adorned with over 180 carats worth of pear-shaped and brilliant-round cut diamonds which we guarantee makes this piece no less easy on the neck.  Commissioned by Queen Mary in 1913, the fabulous tiara was designed by Garrad, the official jeweller for the crown at the time. It was eventually handed down to Mary’s granddaughter Queen Elizabeth II and would let Diana, the Princess of Wales wear its own occasion and is now known to lend it to the Duchess of Cambridge. 

Margaret's Five-Row Pearl Choker 

 
 
 
 
 
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Pearl jewellery is symbolic of elegance, wisdom and perfection, so it should come as no surprise that there are plenty of pearl-adorned pieces in the British Royal Family’s jewellery collection. Pearl necklaces in particular have been a favourite among not only the older royals, but some of the younger ones as well. Queen Elizabeth II’s glamorous younger sister, the late Princess Margaret was known to sport an extremely stylish pearl choker. Boasting five rows of pearls and an art-deco-inspired diamond clasp that was originally a brooch owned by her grandmother Queen Mary, Margaret was given the choker to commemorate her 18th birthday. The piece was clearly beloved by the spare heir as she was frequently spotted wearing it and often accessorised it with matching pearl bracelets and earrings. Following her death in 2002, the piece was sold at auction for a whopping £276,800 (around $488,000 Australian dollars). 

Get Princess Margaret’s pearl choker look with this exquisite white and black freshwater pearl necklace.

Princess Diana’s Engagement Ring

 
 
 
 
 
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Arguably, the most famous pieces of royal jewellery (bar the crown jewels) is Princess Diana’s diamond and
sapphire ring. Given to her by the Prince of Wales Charles following their engagement in 1981, the ring is one of the most widely-recognised engagement rings in the world. Boasting a rare blue 12-carat oval sapphire that is surrounded by 14 round-cut diamonds on an 18ct white gold solitaire band, Lady Diana is said to have hand selected the gemstone engagement ring due to its resemblance to her own mother’s engagement ring and because it complimented her doughy blue eyes. The ring is said to only have cost Charles around £28,500, although, experts argue today that it would be pretty much priceless due to its famous owner. Designed by Garrad, the ring now lives on with Kate Middleton, the Duchess of Cambridge who received the ring when Prince William proposed to her at the tail end of 2010.  The future Queen Kate is also known to wear a matching pair of sapphire earrings and a sapphire pendant to emphasise her eye-catching ring.

Get Princess Catherine’s sapphire and diamond look with this remarkably similar 2.70-carat sapphire and diamond ring. 

Queen Mary’s Diamond & Ruby Earrings

 

 
 
 
 
 
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The royals are known for their love affair with coloured
gemstone jewellery and naturally, that love extends to ruby jewellery. The July birthstone, rubies are often associated with wealth and prosperity and as a result, are a favourite among many members of the Royal Family past and present. One royal that was particularly known for her adoration of ruby jewellery was Queen Mary, so much so that the former queen even received a pair of stud earrings adorned with the luscious red stone from her husband Kind George V as a 59th birthday present. Featuring an oval vibrantly coloured ruby that is surrounded by nine brilliant round-cut diamonds in a design that is similar to Lady Diana’s engagement ring. Following Mary’s death, the ruby earrings were inherited by her granddaughter, Queen Elizabeth II who is known to sport these earrings with a ruby necklace as well as two ruby tiaras. 

Get Queen Mary’s diamond and ruby look with these yellow gold naturally enhanced ruby and diamond stud earrings. 

 

Queen Alexandra's Diamond Drop Earrings

 

 
 
 
 
 
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In the early-1960s, Queen Elizabeth began sporting a pair of classic
diamond drop earrings. Featuring a large oval or pear-shaped diamond and two smaller brilliant round cut diamonds, it was initially thought that these diamond earrings were a new addition to her collection but it was soon confirmed that they used to belong to her great-grandmother, Queen Alexandra. Queen Alexandra was allegedly given the dazzling drop earrings as a wedding gift from the City of London. They were then given to Queen Mary and the Queen Mother before eventually making their way to Queen Elizabeth II who often pairs these earrings with the various diamond pendants in her collection. The earrings would then reemerge on Lady Diana who would wear them at her wedding to the Prince of Wales in 1981.

Get Queen Alexandra’s drop earrings look with this exquisite pair of white gold diamond earrings. 

Queen Mary Adelaide's Ruby & Diamond Engagement Ring

 

 
 
 
 
 
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Continuing the British Royal Family’s adoration of brightly-coloured gemstones continues with Queen Mary Adelaide’s regal diamond and ruby ring. Set with five Burmese rubies with a raspberry red hue and 14 brilliant round cut diamonds, this unconventional gold engagement ring looks quite different from the typical engagement ring designs that are popular today. However, the art deco design was all the rage when Prince Francis of Teck gave Princess Mary Adelaide, Queen Mary’s mother in the 1800s. It was also not unusual for engagement jewellery during this time to resemble wedding rings, eternity rings or even dress rings rather than the conventional ring style that we have become accustomed to today.  Now part of the Royal Collection, the gold ring is adorned with the inscription, ‘Franz, April 6, 1866, and was given to Queen Mary following her mother’s death. It is now believed to have been in the possession of Queen Elizabeth who is yet to be photographed wearing it in public.

Channel Mary’s regal ruby and diamond ring look with this yellow gold created ruby and diamond band. 

Meghan Markle's Diamond Bracelet & The Queen's Bandeu Tiara

 

 
 
 
 
 
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For her wedding to Prince Harry in 2018, former-actress Meghan Markle was decked out in a myriad of stunning jewels to emphasise her beautiful 3.8-carat diamond engagement ring. One of the most memorable items of jewellery that Meghan sported on the day was a 10.11-carat diamond bracelet that paired tremendously well with Meghan’s bespoke off-the-shoulder Givenchy bridal gown. Made by French jeweller, Cartier, the eye-catching bracelet was adorned with a timeless 18ct white gold setting and was decorated with 104 brilliant round-cut diamonds totalling 4.5-carats as well as 52 baguette-cut diamonds that weighed around 5.61-carats. While a replica of this creation from the brand will set you back $265,000 USD, this particular white gold bracelet is likely worth much more given who has worn it. The Duchess of Sussex complimented this piece with an art-deco diamond bandeu tiara that was designed for Queen Mary but has been worn by Queen Elizabeth a number of times. 

Opt for Meghan's radiant diamond look with this elegant silver 1-carat diamond tennis bracelet.

The Queen's Emerald & Diamond Drop Earrings

 

 
 
 
 
 
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Decorated with brilliant round cut diamonds and pear-shaped emerald stones in a tassel formation, these emerald earrings are a clear favourite in the Queen’s jewellery collection as she has been spotted wearing them a handful of times. With their rich colour that is accentuated by a yellow gold setting, these earrings are a real stand out piece-particularly when the Queen pairs them with the matching tasselled emerald pendant and broach. The jewellery set was allegedly a gift from Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan of the United Arab Emirates and was first worn by the Queen in 1989. Most recently, the Duchess of Cambridge borrowed these stunning emerald-adorned gold earrings when she and the Duke of Cambridge attended a dinner thrown in their offer during their state visit to Jamacia. The vibrant hue of these earrings paired stunningly with Kate’s custom blue-green off-the-shoulder designed by go-to Hollywood dressmaker Jenny Packham. 


Get the Queen's May birthstone look with this mesmerising pair of gold drop earrings adorned with emeralds.

The Queen's Diamond Solitaire Engagement Ring 

 

 
 
 
 
 
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It is extremely rare for the Queen to wear jewellery that isn’t a family heirloom, but there is one piece that isn’t which she wears every day and it is arguably her most personal of all. Back in 1946 when she was just a mere Princess, Queen Elizabeth received a modest (by royal standards at least) 3-carat
diamond engagement ring. Set into platinum jewellery, this timeless diamond ring boasts a larger brilliant cut diamond in the centre and around 10 pave set diamonds evenly spread on either side of the stone. Phillip reportedly turned to London-based jeweller Philip Antrobus who previously worked on some diamond pieces for the Danish Prince’s mother, Princess Alice to create the elegant diamond solitaire engagement ring. One year on from Philip’s passing and the Queen is known to still rock the bridal jewellery, which remains as timeless as ever some 75-plus years later.

Get the Queen's elegant and glitzy diamond solitaire look with this stunning white gold engagement ring.

The Imperial State Crown 

  

 
 
 
 
 
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Arguably the most recognisable items of jewellery in the Queen’s impressive armoury, The Imperial Crown is set in gold, and features 2,868 diamonds, 269 pearls, 17 sapphires, 11 emeralds and four rubies, this equates to a staggering 3,025-carats. Just thinking about that number gives us a stiff neck. Created by the Crown’s go-to jeweller, Garrad in 1937 for King George VI’s coronation, replacing a crown previously designed for Queen Victoria to wear during her coronation. Worn by the Queen at her 1952 coronation following King George VI’s death, many of the stones featured in The Imperial State Crown have been in the Royal Family for centuries.

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