Today marks the 10th Anniversary of the Death of Princess Lilian of Sweden, who died on this day in 2013! The Welsh Actress who waited 30 years to marry her Swedish Prince and became a beloved member of the Swedish Royal Family, Princess Lilian possessed a spectacular collection of heirloom jewels, the highlight of which was her Boucheron Laurel Wreath Tiara!
When Prince Gustaf Adolf of Sweden married Princess Margaret of Connaught at Windsor Castle in 1905, she received this striking Boucheron Diamond Laurel Wreath Necklace, with a dangling diamond pendant as a wedding gift from Queen Sofia of Sweden, the grandmother of the groom. The versatile piece could be worn as a single strand necklace, a double strand necklace, and a tiara.
Crown Princess Margareta was only pictured wearing the Boucheron Diamond Laurel Wreath Necklace once, soon after her marriage, in Swedish Court Dress with the Connaught Diamond Tiara.
When Crown Princess Margareta of Sweden tragically passed away in 1920, she left the Khedive of Egypt Tiara to her only daughter, Queen Ingrid of Denmark, while the elder brother, Prince Gustaf Adolf, inherited the Connaught Diamond Tiara and Aquamarine Kokoshnik Tiara, Prince Sigvard received the King Edward VII Ruby Tiara, and Prince Carl Johan a Diamond Necklace, while Prince Bertil inherited the Boucheron Diamond Laurel Wreath Necklace. Prince Bertil was in a relationship with Lilian Craig for over three decades, choosing his duty to the Throne and Royal Family over losing his status and position by marrying a commoner. However, Lilian was pictured wearing the Boucheron Diamond Laurel Wreath Necklace at some point in the late 1960s.
By the 1970s, Lilian was accepted as an unofficial member of the Royal Family and began wearing the Diamond Laurel Wreath Necklace as a Tiara, most notably for the Wedding of the Duke of Anjou and Cádiz in 1972, King Gustaf VI Adolf’s 90th Birthday Banquet in 1972, the Wedding of Princess Christina of Sweden in 1974, and also for the Wedding Gala of King Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden in 1976.
Eventually, Prince Bertil and Lilian got married at the end of 1976, and a few days later, the new Princess Lilian wore the Boucheron Diamond Laurel Wreath Tiara for the King’s Dinner for Nobel Laureates at the Royal Palace of Stockholm.
While Princess Lilian wore several other Tiaras from the massive Swedish Royal Collection, the Boucheron Diamond Laurel Wreath Tiara remained a favourite over the years, being worn for countless State Banquets, Nobel Prize Ceremonies, and Representation Dinners, almost always with Queen Josefina’s Diamond Stomacher Necklace or Crown Princess Margareta’s Egyptian Necklace.
After Prince Bertil’s death in 1997, Princess Lilian remained an active member of the Royal Family and continued to wear the Boucheron Diamond Laurel Wreath Tiara for State Banquets, like the Jordanian State Visit to Swede in 2003, and the annual Nobel Prize Ceremony, which Princess Lilian continued to attend until she decided she was too old in 2006, and her health began to fail.
When she wrote her memoirs, which were published in 2000, Princess Lilian stated that the Boucheron Diamond Laurel Wreath Tiara would be inherited by Crown Princess Victoria, which happened upon the Princess’ passing in 2013 at the age of 97.
A few months later, Crown Princess Victoria wore Princess Lilian’s Laurel Wreath Tiara with Queen Josefina’s Diamond Stomacher Necklace for the Wedding of her younger sister, Princess Madeline of Sweden.
It took a few years for Crown Princess Victoria to wear Princess Lilian’s Laurel Wreath Tiara again, first for King Carl XVI Gustaf’s 70th Birthday Banquet in 2016, and then it began to be worn more frequently, like for the King’s Dinner for Nobel Laureates in 2016, Representationsmiddag in 2017, and the King’s Dinner for Nobel Laureates in 2017.
The piece has become a favourite in recent years, and Crown Princess Victoria wore the Laurel Wreath Tiara for the King’s Dinner for Nobel Laureates in 2018 and Emperor Naruhito’s Enthronement Banquet in 2019, as well as at the King’s Dinner for Nobel Laureates in 2019.
More recently, the Laurel Wreath Tiara has continued to be Crown Princess Victoria’s favourite tiara, being worn for four out of her eight Tiara appearances last year; at the Representationsmiddag at the Royal Palace of Stockholm, Princess Ingrid Alexandra’s 18th Birthday Banquet, the second Representationsmiddag at the Royal Palace of Stockholm, and also the King’s Dinner for Nobel Laureates. There is no doubt we will continue to see this Royal Heirloom for years to come!