Originally, this article was planned to take a look at the Thai Royal Tiaras ahead of the Coronation of King Vajiralongkorn of Thailand tomorrow, but on May 1st, the King announced his marriage to the new Queen Suthida, increasing the chances that we might see one of these glittering Tiaras very soon, which have gone unworn for a few years as Queen Sirikit’s health deteriorated! Here are some of the pieces we can hope to see worn by the Thai Royal Ladies-
The versatile Diamond Fringe Tiara, which can be worn on in a open ‘halo’ or a coronet form, as well as a necklace, is one one of the oldest pieces in the Thai Royal collection, thought to date from Queen Saovabha Phongsri, whose husband, King Chulalongkorn acquired many gifts during his travels in Europe. The Tiara was first pictured on Queen Rambhai Barni in the 1920s, and usually worn as a necklace by Queen Sirikit until the 1970s, when she started regularly wearing the piece as a Tiara, most recently during the Swedish State Visit in 2003.
Made by Van Cleef & Arpels for Queen Sirikit in the early 1960s, this modern Diamond Tiara was originally worn as a necklace, hence why it wraps around the head, and has been a favourite of Queen Sirikit over the decades for a plethora of important State Visits and Galas. The largest diamonds can also be replaced by sapphires.
Another piece made by Van Cleef & Arpels in 1960, this Tiara was inspired by the design of a traditional Thai diadem, set with large yellow diamonds, with a central section that can be removed and worn separately as a bandeau or bracelet. The Tiara was frequently worn during King Bhumibol Adulyadej and Queen Sirikit’s Tour of Europe and the United States in the 1960s, and was regularly worn afterwards, also being loaned to Princess Bejaratana and Princess Soamsawali. Click HERE for more.
The modern Diamond Floral Bandeau Tiara features large central blossom, that has convertible diamond and ruby settings, and while the maker is not known, it might also come from Van Cleef & Arpels. The Tiara was frequently worn during King Bhumibol Adulyadej and Queen Sirikit’s long Tour of Europe and the United States in the 1960s, but disappeared after that, and might have been remade into the diamond necklace tiara, which appeared around that time.
This striking, large tiara featuring distinct modern diamond floral designs, probably from Van Cleef & Arpels as well, was worn by Queen Sirikit in the 1980s, notably for a portrait and the Spanish State Visit. Looking at the wrap-around design, the Tiara might be able to be worn as a necklace as well, though it hasn’t been seen for years.
An antique and traditional Thai Tiara made of gold and rose cut diamonds, Queen Sirikit only wore her Coronation Tiara twice, at her Coronation and once in the 1960s, and it is unknown if it still exists.
Queen Sirikit also owns a Sapphire Parure that includes a necklace with a detachable pendant, a pair of earrings, and a flower brooch. The Parure was also worn with the Sapphire version of the Diamond Necklace Tiara, most notably for a British State Visit, but has also been worn with other Tiaras or just by itself.