Monday, October 30, 2006

Camilla's jewels?

Just when we thought that things were smooth sailing for Camilla, controversy has reared its head yet again. This time its about jewelry.

It seems that Camilla wearing jewels is big news. Her engagement ring came from the collection of the late Queen Mother. She wears tiaras from the collection of Her Majesty Elizabeth II and stop the presses! One would think that the only thing to top her wearing these tiaras is if she were granted the Royal Family order, which is at the personal discretion of the sovereign.

I've mentioned in a previous blog posting that I think wearing jewellery previously owned is bad luck. Just my personal picadillo. I might however revise that notion if I were lent some of the fabulous royal jewels of priceless provenance. However, Camilla is in a different situation than I am. As the wife of the sovereign she will be entitled to wear whatever happens to be in the royal collection, including pieces formerly worn by Diana herself. As the wife of the heir to the throne, she needs to look the part. As the wife of the Prince of Wales, shouldn't she, of all people, wear a jewel with the Prince of Wales feathers?

The original owner of the jewel in question, was Queen Alexandra, who as Princess Alexandra, wife of the future King Edward VII, received this pendant as a wedding gift in 1863. Now admittedly Queen Alexandra was a much beloved figure. Did we see people up in arms when the piece was worn after her death by Diana? No, because it was entirely appropriate for her to wear it. As is the case with Camilla.

When will people stop seeing Camilla as encroaching on the memory of Diana? Or stop denying Camilla a legitimate place in the royal family?

© Marilyn Braun 2006


Susan Helene Gottfried said...

I never saw Camilla as a Diana replacement, and I think if she wants to wear the jewels, well, gosh darn it, let her! I bet some of them look spectacular on her, too!

Anonymous said...

Jewellery and family are an amazing combination for getting people emotional, aren't they? I rather suspect the bad luck in jewellery is inheriting the emotional family history of a piece, which means that all Camilla has to do is choose very carefully and she'll be fine.

My favourite Royal pieces are the ones John lost in the Wash. Hey, I'm a Medievalist - I'll allowed to yearn after Medieval lost jewels :).

Harbormaster said...

I can't say that a discussion on who is wearing what jewelry has ever come up in my life experience. I would suppose the articles were meant to be worn and sounds there are many options to choose. Hope they get some use out of them :)

Anonymous said...

Ooooh I love antique jewellery. I can't see anything wrong with wearing estate jewellery if you have permission BUT I confess I'm a Camilla-hater. In many ways I admire her for hanging in there and for getting on with her own life and holding her head up high against opposition.

In fact I am revising my opinion it's not Camilla I dislike, it's her jug eared hubby!!!

Peggy K said...

I think gillian has it right. Camilla is going to have to choose the pieces she wears carefully. Even though it doesn't necessarily make logical sense, on an emotional level it just seems like it would be tacky to wear a piece of jewelry closely associated with Dianna.

Anonymous said...

A commenter on the Daily Mail story you linked us to noted that it isn't the same piece of jewelry, it's similar, but different indeed.

With that many pieces of gorgeous jewels floating around, that there can be two pieces looking so similar that wearing one or the other causes controversy, it becomes obvious that the sentimental value we non-royals place on our family heirlooms is probably quite a different concept for a royal family.

If it didn't remind Camilla of Diana then by all means, the woman should wear it without grief!

Anonymous said...

I think the reason people may see it differently with Camilla is because while Camilla does have a right to wear these jewels since she now is a member of the Royal family, she wouldn't have that place in the family if she had bowed out of the picture a long time ago, once Charles married Diana.

Anonymous said...

Marilyn, this may not pertain so much to this post, but anyways...

Being a middle aged american male, I must admit my knowledge on royalty is nil. I know pretty much nothing about them, aside from what the tabloids here in the states run on a weekly basis.

That said, I never fail to come here and read in fascination on just how much royalty is out there these days, and must admit, the writing style helps. The fact that you are able to suck in this old clueless guy on a regular basis is a feat in itself!

Keep up the good work!

Marilyn Braun said...

Thanks Casey! :o)

Yes Karen, the pieces do look rather similiar so it's possible that it may not even be the same jewel. I have a book on royal jewels and I've seen two pendants that do look awfully similiar. I think this is just an example of looking for any reason to cut Camilla down.

Suzanne, I agree that Camilla 'owes' her current position to not bowing out once Diana entered the picture. There will always be people who will hold that against her. However, life goes on, Diana is dead and Charles seems happy. The jewels are there to be worn and for certain pieces she's the most appropriate person to do, although I wouldn't advise her to start wearing any of Diana's old tiaras -that would be pushing her luck!