Today marks the 115th Anniversary of the Birth of Queen Marie José of Italy, who was born on this day in 1906! The Belgian Princess who became the last Queen of Italy, Queen Marie Jose possessed the vast jewellery collection of the House of Savoy, and an outstanding example of that were the Savoy Knot Brooches we are featuring today!
Two spectacular diamond clips forming the ‘Savoy Knot’ in an Art Deco Style, these Diamond Brooches, which can be worn separately or together, were ordered by Crown Prince Umberto of Italy at the time of his wedding to Princess Marie Jose of Belgium in 1930, from the celebrated Italian jeweller, Filippo Chiappe. The Savoy Knot is the symbol of the House of Savoy which ruled from 1003 to 1946.
Crown Princess Marie José wore one of the Chiappe Savoy Knot Brooch for a famous series of portraits taken in the 1930s, along with two of her other wedding gifts, Queen Margherita’s Musy Tiara and her Savoy Knot Chain which was also ordered from Chiappe.
The Savoy Knot Brooch was also worn for a variety of other Official Portraits, including a family portrait taken in 1934, soon after the birth of Crown Prince Umberto and Crown Princess Marie José’s first child, Princess Maria Pia of Savoy.
A notable appearance when both of the Savoy Knot Brooches were worn was a few years later, after the abolition of the Italian Monarchy, when Queen Marie José paired them with Queen Margherita’s Musy Tiara for the Wedding Ball of Princess Maria Pia and Prince Alexander of Yugoslavia at the Palace Hotel of Estoril in 1955. The Chiappe Savoy Knot Brooches were inherited by Queen Marie José’s children and while they have not been worn or auctioned, they were photographed a few years ago, likely for the Jewellery of the House of Savoy Book by Princess Maria Gabriella of Savoy and Stefano Papi. Lets hope they, like the recent appearance of the Chiappe Savoy Knot Chain, make a reappearance soon!