Royal fans aren’t often treated to a tiara moment, but a wedding is a surefire way to catch a glimpse at some of the royal family’s most impressive jewels.
LOOK: Royal brides had the BEST ‘something borrowed’ on their wedding days – see photos for proof
Kate Middleton and Countess Sophie are just some of the brides who have accessorised their stunning wedding gowns with glittering tiaras, each with their own special backstory. From Princess Beatrice‘s borrowed headpiece from the Queen to Princess Diana‘s family heirloom, take a look at some of our favourite tiaras of all time…
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Princess Beatrice, the Queen, and Princess Anne
For her 1947 wedding to Prince Philip, Princess Elizabeth – who would become Queen Elizabeth II – wore Queen Mary’s Fringe Tiara, consisting of 47 diamond bars using stones taken from a necklace Queen Mary had been given by Queen Victoria.
The Fringe Tiara, passed on to Princess Elizabeth’s mother in 1936, was loaned to the young Princess as the ‘something borrowed’ element of her wedding outfit. The Queen would loan the sparkling keepsake to her own daughter Princess Anne for her wedding to Mark Phillips in November 1973, and more recently to Princess Beatrice, who tied the knot on 17 July.
While some expected Princess Eugenie to wear the York tiara on her wedding day, she teamed her Peter Pilotto gown with the Greville Emerald Kokoshnik tiara, which belonged to the Queen Mother. Made in 1919, it features brilliant and rose-cut pave diamonds and six emeralds, including a large cabochon emerald at the centre. Eugenie opted to go without a veil in order to show off her scoliosis scar.
The Duchess of Cambridge
Kate Middleton married Prince William on 29 April 2011 wearing a custom Alexander McQueen gown and the Queen Mother’s Cartier Halo Tiara. The glittering headpiece features 739 brilliant-cut diamonds and 149 baguette-cut diamonds.
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Lady Gabriella Windsor
Lady Gabriella Windsor married Thomas Kingston in May 2019, and the royal bride stepped out at St George’s Chapel in Windsor Castle in a lace long-sleeved Luisa Beccaria gown. She added a diamond Russian fringe style tiara that was previously worn by her mother Princess Michael of Kent and her grandmother Princess Marina of Greece on their wedding days – but it almost fell off!
In an interview with HELLO!, Lady Gabriella explained: “Suddenly I could feel my tiara start to pull back and in those few unnerving moments I thought it would come crashing down with an almighty clunk. My little bridesmaids had accidentally wandered onto my very sheer tulle 20ft veil. I slowed down until they’d stepped off it, but then it happened again. Fortunately, my hairdresser had pinned the tiara in place and it stood firm.”
The Duchess of Sussex
As the Duchess of Sussex married Prince Harry on 19 May 2018 in St George’s Chapel, Windsor, she donned the Queen Mary Diamond Bandeau Tiara, on loan from the Queen and very rarely worn. The heirloom diamond and platinum piece was made in 1932, with the ten-diamond centre brooch dating from 1893.
The brooch was originally a gift from the County of Lincoln to the then-Princess when she married Prince George, Duke of York in 1893. The bandeau and the brooch were bequeathed by Queen Mary to Prince Harry’s grandmother Queen Elizabeth II in 1953.
For her wedding to Mike Tindall in 2011, Zara Phillips’ chic chignon was carefully held in place by her ‘something borrowed’ – the Meander Tiara lent to her by her mother, Princess Anne.
The tiara, which perfectly complemented the bride’s Stewart Parvin custom gown, originated in Greece’s royal family, with Prince Philip’s mother Alice gifting the tiara to Queen Elizabeth II on her wedding day – and the Queen subsequently passing it on to her daughter, Princess Anne. The dazzling creation consists of a brilliant cut diamond surrounded by a diamond wreath.
When she married Prince Charles in 1981, Princess Diana famously wore a stunning ivory silk taffeta gown with puffed shoulders and a billowing skirt by Elizabeth and David Emanuel.
However, she also wore the requisite finishing touch for a princess bride: a gorgeous tiara. Diana’s diamond-encrusted piece was not from the royal collection but from her own aristocratic family’s treasure trove: the century-old Spencer Tiara worn by her mother and sisters on their own wedding days.
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In 2008, Autumn Philips looked picture perfect in the Festoon Tiara borrowed from her new mother-in-law Princess Anne as she married Peter Phillips. The Princess Royal received the pretty piece as a gift in 1973 from the World-Wide Shipping firm in Hong Kong.
The Countess of Wessex
When Prince Edward married Sophie Rhys-Jones in 1999, royal enthusiasts were surprised she donned a never-before-seen tiara. It turns out the scrollwork-motif diamond band came from the Queen’s private collection. Its exact origins, however, have never been confirmed by Buckingham Palace.
In 1960, when she prepared to walk down the aisle to marry Anthony Armstrong-Jones, Queen Elizabeth II’s little sister chose a statement-making accessory for her wedding day – the Poltimore Tiara. Rather than borrowing from the royal collection according to tradition, however, glamorous Princess Margaret chose to wear this stunning creation, made by Garrard in the 1870s, which she had bought at an auction the year before her wedding.
Sarah, Duchess of York
In 1986, Sarah Ferguson tied the knot with Prince Andrew wearing a silk embroidered fairytale gown. Along with the storybook dress went her sparkling diamond and platinum tiara, with an elegant leaf motif, which was said to have been purchased from Garrards as a gift from her new mother-in-law, the Queen.
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