Thursday, 30 June 2016

Letizia welcomes Michelle Obama to Madrid

Queen Letizia of Spain with the US First Lady, Michelle Obama, in Madrid
(photo casareal Twitter)

Queen Letizia of Spain and the First Lady of the United States of America, Michelle Obama, joined forces today to promote education for girls. The Spanish queen welcomed Mrs Obama to Madrid for an event linked to the Let Girls Learn Initiative which the First Lady set up alongside her husband. President Barack Obama. And both made speeches on the importance of education for girls and women.

Pearls for June: Spain

Queen Sofia of Spain in an official photo wearing one of the three pearl tiaras belonging to the Spanish Royal Family

We started this look at the birthstone of June with a Spanish tiara and we're ending with more of the same. There are three pearl diadems worn by the royal ladies of Spain, all with different characters and histories. This hat trick of headwear includes some unusual pieces and a very grand tiara that never fails to impress. Here is another set of pearls for June.

Kate on the up in June 2016

No wonder she's smiling, June 2016 has been a big success for the Duchess of Cambridge
(photo credit: Ascot Racecourse TV still)

It started and ended with evening dresses, took in hats and updos in between and ended with the firm conclusion that if she carries on like this no one will be accusing the Duchess of Cambridge of being workshy again any time soon. Kate has been everywhere this month with a run of high profile engagements and appearances at some of the most important royal events of the year. Here's a look back at Kate in June 2016.

Sweden's royals welcome the summer

Sweden's Royal Family on National Day 2016

We all love a photo of the Swedish Royal Family in traditional dress they clearly do as well for that is the image that they have chosen to place on their website as summer gets under way.

Wednesday, 29 June 2016

The Royal Headlines, June 29th 2016

King Felipe and Queen Letizia of Spain during their visit to Pamplona on June 29th 2016
(photo Casa Real Twitter)

We've had a very green dress, a very green shirt and an emotional Crown Princess and that's before we get anywhere near the cars. It's been an octane fuelled day for the royal houses of Europe - here are the headlines from June 29th.

Harry's royal concert

Prince Harry and Joss Stone listen to the Basotho Youth Choir practising for the special concert held at Kensington Palace on June 28th 2016
(photo Kensington Royal Instagram)

He's always been the on trend brother. While William does sensible trousers and lunges at polo matches, Harry holds concerts. Full scale, full on, here it is just enjoy it concerts. Yep, this prince from Wales has been charming at full volume again as he turned Kensington Palace into a music venue and the hottest ticket in London this June all at the same time with a concert for his charity, Sentebale. And he got up on stage too. Somebody stop him. Actually don't, this is fun.

Tuesday, 28 June 2016

Pearls for June: the Cambridge Lover's Knot Tiara

The Duchess of Cambridge in the Cambridge Lover's Knot tiara in December 2015
(photo ITV still)

It was her big surprise of 2015. The Duchess of Cambridge had just got everyone thinking she was a two tiara kind of girl when she showed up at the diplomatic reception just before Christmas last year wearing a very famous diadem indeed. And while there are plenty of sparkles in this tiara, it's best known for the creamy pearls that dominate its shape and frame. No wonder Kate of Cambridge chose the Cambridge Lover's Knot Tiara for her big night out.

Monday, 27 June 2016

8 royal updos for June

The Duchess of Cambridge with one of the many updos she wore in June 2016
(photo credit Kensington Palace Instagram)

It's been the month of the updo. Maybe it's all the hats, maybe it's the warm weather but it's hard right now to find a royal lady that hasn't shown us a stunning swept up hair moment in the last month. As June comes to an end, here are 8 great royal updos.

Sunday, 26 June 2016

Pearls for June: the Netherlands

Queen Maxima of the Netherlands in one of the pearl tiaras of her royal house
(photo Erwin Olaf)

As June comes to an end and its creamy birthstone prepares to give way to something altogether more vibrant, we reach the Netherlands and literally a vault full of pearls to enjoy. There are three tiaras featured here, a kind of Goldilocks and the Three Bears version of Pearls for June with a baby diadem, a middle sized one for mums and a daddy of a tiara that is about as royal as you can get. Here are some more Pearls for June, courtesy of the Netherlands.

Saturday, 25 June 2016

The Royal Week in Numbers

One week, so many royal stories to enjoy and take in. We've had glitter, awards, ballet and crowns this week and that's just for starters. Here are some of the highlights of the past seven days - it's the Royal Week in Numbers.

Pearls for June: Denmark

Queen Margrethe of Denmark in the Pearl Tiara that only she is allowed to wear

These pearls really pack some punch. Apart from being huge and rather beautiful, they are part of a tiara that is traditionally reserved for the Queen of Denmark alone. And given the magnificence of the Poire Pearl Tiara, that's not too much of a surprise.

The Royal Wardrobe: keeping it long

The Duchess of Cambridge in sparkling form during a night out for one of her charities

It was all about keeping it long this week in the Royal Wardrobe. From evening gowns to trouser suits, there was plenty of covering up going on in the most royally glamourous way possible. Five outfits stood out - it's just for fun and there is a poll to pick your favourite on the main page or you can add you own choice at the bottom. Here's the Royal Wardrobe for this week.

Friday, 24 June 2016

Sophie steals the style title

The Countess of Wessex topped this week's poll in the Royal Wardrobe
(photo by Holger Motzkau 2010, Wikipedia/Wikimedia Commons (cc-by-sa-3.0), CC BY-SA 3.0,)

It was a winner of an outfit. The Countess of Wessex always brings her A game to Royal Ascot and this year was no different. Sophie gave us several stunning looks at the race meeting but this coral and cream confection was a favourite and won the poll at a canter.

Norway's three generations

Three generations, one crown

It is a photo for the history books. To mark the 25th anniversary of the accession of King Harald V of Norway, a special picture of him with two future monarchs of the country has been released. But this is no ordinary three generations photo. For Harald, Haakon Magnus and Ingrid Alexandra stand in front of the crown regalia of their country in Trondheim, seat of Norwegian royalty in centuries past.

Thursday, 23 June 2016

Queen's Sonja's floral crown

Norway's royal women wear crowns of flowers of a special day for King Harald and Queen Sonja

Twenty five years ago today, she walked into Nidaros Cathedral in Trondheim dressed all in white as she and her husband were blessed as King and Queen of Norway. Sonja returned exactly a quarter of a century on, still all in white, for a special ceremony marking her and her husband's silver jubilee. There was no coronation that day in 1991 but on this special anniversary, Queen Sonja later appeared in a crown of flowers. It was a fitting end to a happy day.

Luxembourg's National Day celebrations

The Grand Duke and Duchess of Luxembourg with the Hereditary Grand Duchess during the country's National Day celebrations
(photo RTL still)

It's been pretty hot in Luxembourg recently which meant that the country's royals have been out celebrating National Day in very warm weather. If Stephanie and Claire looked ever so slightly flushed, don't get overly royal baby excited. With the thermometer hitting 30 Celsus, pink cheeks were de rigeur. The royals enjoyed all the traditions of this annual event and all with bigger crowds than usual. 

Pearls for June: Luxembourg

There are some pearls in there - Stephanie of Luxembourg in a very unusual tiara
(photo By Frankie Fouganthin - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wiki Commons)

The ladies of Luxembourg have a lot of tiaras to choose from and among them are two diadems decorated with pearls. One is grand and does the whole classic diamond and pearl mix thing. The other is more discreet and mixes the pearls with a more unusual stone.  Settle back and enjoy Luxembourg's contribution to pearls for June.

Kate's dinner date

The Duchess of Cambridge has been attending a dinner for one of her charities
(photo British High Commission, New Delhi via Flickr)

Take a lovely summer's evening, add in a grand stately home, mix in a list of glamourous guests and finish with a royal appearance and you have a night to remember. The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge attended a gala dinner for Kate's charity, East Anglia Children's Hospices last night, to say thank you to many of the people involved in its Nook Appeal. And it was a night to remember.

Wednesday, 22 June 2016

Royal Headlines, June 22nd 2016

Queen Letizia paid tribute to Queen Sofia of Spain at an event marking her work on June 22nd 2016
(photo casareal Twitter)

A little bit of art, a touch of football and a huge crowd that will take some beating this week at least. It's been a busy day for royalty across Europe - here are the royal headlines from June 22nd 2016.

A royal tweet treat

A birthday like no other - and it all ended with a tweet
(photo BBC TV still)

There are millions of messages sent on Twitter every day but not many are signed Elizabeth R. That regal name was placed in a most modern manner at the end of a message of thanks from the Queen in a tweet sent by Elizabeth II herself. And it immediately won a place in the history books, a digital document to add to the pantheon of parchment and paper that has been signed by monarchs in centuries past. This is the queen of tweets.

Tuesday, 21 June 2016

Baby William at the Lindo Wing

Prince William makes his first public appearance in the arms of his father, Prince Charles

A whole country waited up to hear news of his birth. On this day in 1982, William Arthur Philip Louis of Wales was born at the Lindo Wing at St Mary's Hospital, Paddington and instantly became the most famous baby in the world. And when Charles and Diana brought their son home the following day, the world watched as the second in line to the throne made his first appearance.

The Queen Adelaide

Queen Adelaide, wife of William IV

There are quite a few people who wouldn't be able to say what they were doing tonight if it wasn't for the queen consort who was learning to become a dowager on this day in 1837.  If you're a regular at one of the ten or so pubs in England that rejoice in the name of Queen Adelaide then tonight might be the night to raise a drink in honour of the woman who's head is no doubt swinging just above yours on a painted sign.

Monday, 20 June 2016

The five royal weddings gowns of Sweden

Princess Lilian of Sweden on her wedding day

They are the five wedding gowns of the modern royal house of Sweden and now they will all be seen together. A special exhibition of the dresses worn by four princesses and a queen and linked to some of the most famous royal love stories in modern Europe will take place in Stockholm this autumn to mark the 40th anniversary of the marriage of King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia. And it promises to be a total treat.

The beginning of the age of Victoria

Queen Victoria ascended the throne on June 20th 1837
(picture Wiki Commons)

This time last year, June 20th marked the anniversary of the start of the longest reign in British history. In 2016, it is the anniversary of the beginning of the second longest rule by a British Monarch. The historical goalposts have moved but the beginning of the age of Victoria is still a moment in time worth remembering.

Sunday, 19 June 2016

Royal Wedding Tiaras: the Cameo Tiara of Sweden

It is a tiara fit for a queen and with a romantic history that makes it ideal for weddings. The Cameo Tiara of Sweden is linked to a woman whose royal love story is among the best known in history and it has become indelibly linked with regal romances in modern day Sweden. The Cameo Tiara was worn on June 19th 1976 by Silvia Sommerlath as she said 'I do' and became Queen of Sweden and exactly 34 years later her first daughter wore it for her own wedding as she began a family that will form the basis of the Bernadotte dynasty in years to come. But its history is as fascinating as its unusual appearance.  This is a very special tiara.

Royal Wedding Dresses: the Countess of Wessex

Edward and Sophie in an official wedding portrait taken on June 19th 1999

She was a discreet royal bride at a relatively low key wedding. But the bridal gown of Sophie Helen Rhys-Jones has stood the regal test of time better than many. As she became Countess of Wessex, the bride wore a gown inspired by history that looks as good now as it did on June 19th 1999 when she walked into St George's Chapel, Windsor. Here's a lookback at the Sophie's royal wedding dress.

Prince William's Father's Day Message

The Duke of Cambridge with his son and daughter - he has written a special Father's Day message as part of his campaign to shine a spotlight on mental health issues

The Duke of Cambridge has chosen to send a special message to fellow dads on Father's Day. While there may well be breakfast in bed and a rather messy homemade card or two for William on this special day, his thoughts are also on a subject he has been very vocal on the past few months. The Duke of Cambridge is appealing to fathers to treat mental health as seriously as physical health as they help their children grow and develop.

Saturday, 18 June 2016

The Royal Wardrobe: summer arrives

Princess Charlene of Monaco on a sunny summer's evening in Monte Carlo
(Photo Palais Princier Facebook)

Summer is here. Never mind the rain, the umbrellas and even the rain macs that have made an appearance this week. There was enough sun and sparkle through the past seven days to ensure the Royal Wardrobe was filled with summer. From golden gala gowns to Ascot hats to remember, here are five of the best looks from the week just gone.

The Royal Week in Numbers

The Crown Prince and Princess of Denmark at Royal Ascot this week

So many royal events this week, how do you keep track of them all? How about numbers. With debuts and jubilee events and official visits going on just about everywhere, here's a quick catch up of some of the regal stories of the past seven days - it's the royal week, in numbers. 

Royal Ascot 2016: Day Four

The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh arriving on day four of Royal Ascot

The Friday of Royal Ascot always feels a bit more relaxed. The excitement of Ladies Day is over but there are still two more days of fun to look forward to. As usual, this year saw a smaller royal presence than earlier in the week but there was still plenty to enjoy as the Ascot carriages arrived.  Here are the royal arrivals from day four.

Friday, 17 June 2016

Pearls for June: Norway

Princess Martha Louise of Norway in her family's pearl tiara

June is all about pearls and just about every reigning house in Europe has a stunning set of those to show off. Norway's regal jewellery box holds an impressive and intricate tiara featuring pearls which has a history that takes in the foundations of a new monarchy and an armed robbery. This one isn't just about sparkling pictures.

Sweden's dancing King and Queen

Stand by everyone, the King of Sweden is about to throw down some moves
(photo TV4 Nyheterna still)

Maybe it was a night off from baby duties that did it but the Swedish Royal Family was so happy they literally danced out of the Polar Music Awards last night. Carl XVI Gustaf started things off with his consort, Silvia, more than happy to join in. Meanwhile, their children, Victoria and Carl Philip, looked on in surprise before deciding to join in. It was the night of the dancing king and queen.

Mary takes the style title

Crown Princess Mary of Denmark in this week's favourite look

It was all about marvellous Mary in this week's Royal Wardrobe and that was before we even knew she was heading to Ascot. The Crown Princess of Denmark topped the poll for best look of the week with a magical moment of mauve worn in Copenhagen. The shoes weren't too bad either.

Royal Ascot 2016: Ladies Day

The Queen on Ladies Day at Royal Ascot 2016

After all the excitement of debuts from Crown Princess Mary of Denmark and the Duchess of Cambridge on day two of Royal Ascot, we then had to get through Ladies Day. And while there weren't quite as many royals to see on day three, there was still plenty to enjoy.  This is Ladies Day 2016.

Thursday, 16 June 2016

A royal christening in Sweden

Prince Alexander of Sweden will be christened after the summer holidays

Prince Alexander's christening will take place on September 9th 2016. The announcement was made today by the Swedish Royal Court. 

Royal Ascot 2016, Day Two

The Duchess of Cambridge at Royal Ascot where she made her first appearance yesterday

It was a day of debuts and we're not just talking duchesses here. While Kate made her long awaited Ascot first appearance, so did another royal couple and they got just as many people excited. Crown Prince Frederik and Crown Princess Mary of Denmark were also guests at the famous race meeting and took part in the famous royal coach procession. Here's a look back at Royal Ascot 2016, Day Two.

Wednesday, 15 June 2016

William on Attitude

The front cover of Attitude magazine featuring the Duke of Cambridge

It's a milestone moment. The Duke of Cambridge is featured on the cover of Attitude, the first time a senior royal has been on the front of a gay magazine. William has been talking to the magazine about ending bullying linked to sexuality and he had a clear message - don't put up with intimidation. 

Prince Nicolas at one

Prince Nicolas of Sweden in a portrait for his first birthday

Nicolas Paul Gustaf of Sweden is one. The eldest grandson of King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia was photographed at his family home in Stockholm for his first birthday.

Royal Ascot 2016: Day One

The Queen on Day One of Royal Ascot 2016

It was grey and drizzly and then the carriages arrived. Sometimes Royal Ascot is pure sunshine, sometimes, like yesterday, it's grey and damp. But you can't beat a royal procession for putting a smile on everyone's faces and beneath the seemingly never ending rain of June 2016 that's just what happened yesterday. Royal Ascot is under way.

Tuesday, 14 June 2016

What the Windsor Women Wore: the Patron's Lunch

The Duchess of Cambridge at the Patron's Lunch on the Mall, June 12th 2016

Just about everyone else was wearing ponchos or rain coats but as the Queen's official birthday celebrations came to an end, the women of the House of Windsor made like it was summer and went all bright and beautiful on us. There were all kinds of sunny outfits on show as the party weekend finished - here's a look back at what the Windsor women wore to the Patron's Lunch.

8 pairs of royal red shoes

Queen Letizia in red shoes at an event last week

Suddenly, red shoes are everywhere. Those two style icons of modern royalty, Queen Letizia and the Duchess of Cambridge, have both worn red in the past week so it must be having a moment. In honour of this new regal footwear trend, here are eight memorable pairs of royal red shoes.

The Order of the Garter

The Order of the Garter procession in 1948 when Elizabeth and Philip installed as Lady and Knight Companion 

Tradition has its way and unfolds as it will. The annual Order of the Garter service took place in Windsor on June 13th, just hours after the Queen had overseen the final national celebrations for her official 90th birthday. Elizabeth II was there to lead this event which traces its origins back to the 14th century. Britain's longest reigning monarch, its oldest ever ruler, took no time to rest before ensuring that the traditions of her kingdom were upheld.

Monday, 13 June 2016

Royal Headlines, June 13th 2016

Crown Princess Mary of Denmark launches a ship on June 13th 2016

It was a busy day for Europe's royals with just about every house having a list of engagements. Here's a round up of the stories that made the royal headlines on June 13th 2016.

Royal Response to Orlando (updated)

Queen Letizia of Spain during the speech in which she paid tribute to those who were killed in Orlando

The Queen of Spain has paid tribute to those who died and were injured in the shootings in Orlando at the weekend. During a speech in Salamanca, Queen Letizia condemned the killings and said that, along with King Felipe, she believed there was only one way to counter such attacks - by standing together. Her words came as royal houses around the continent sent their condolences to President Obama and the families of the victims of the fifty people who were killed.

Royal Wedding Tiaras: Princess Sofia of Sweden

Sofia of Sweden in her emerald tiara

If there's one thing a royal bride need, it's a tiara. And like many a royal bride before her in the last twenty years or so, Sofia had none to call her own. So she got one as a gift instead.

Royal Wedding Dresses: Princess Sofia of Sweden

The wedding dress of Sofia of Sweden in all its glory in one of the official photographs

It's one of the most eagerly awaited dresses of 2015 and already part of royal history. The gown worn by Sofia Hellqvist a year ago today as she became a princess was suited the bride to perfection.  A modern twist on traditional royal with enough stand out moments to make it her own, the wedding dress of Sofia of Sweden is standing the test of time.

What the Windsor Women Wore: Trooping the Colour

The Queen in green at Trooping the Colour 2016

In case you missed it, the Queen wore green to Trooping the Colour this year. Her bright, well let's face it, very bright coat and hat is definitely the style statement of the whole birthday weekend, if not of the royal year so far. Unmissable and eye catching, it is the most memorable moment from the wardrobe used by the women of Windsor over the course of three days of celebrations for the Queen's official 90th birthday. Here's a look back at what they wore for this weekend to remember, starting with Trooping the Colour.

Sunday, 12 June 2016

The Queen at 90: a picnic in the rain

The Queen addresses the crowds in the Mall who had turned out to celebrate her 90th birthday

It was the finale of a party that began in April and which has had many highlights already. In the year the Queen turns 90 there have been plenty of celebrations but the one on the Mall on June 12th 2016 perhaps summed everything up. Tens of thousands of people joined her for a picnic. It rained but they partied anyway. Elizabeth II has made a habit of keeping calm and carrying on. On this special day, she was no different.

The Swedish State Visit to Bhutan

King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia during their State Visit to Bhutan

The King and Queen of Sweden are coming to the end of their State Visit to Bhutan - an historic trip as its the first from their country to the mountain kingdom. Carl Gustaf and Silvia might not have got as much attention as William and Kate when they visited in April but they have packed plenty into their three day visit. While day one was all about ceremonial welcomes, the later parts of the visit have touched on business, culture and art.

Saturday, 11 June 2016

Princess Charlotte's balcony debut: the photos

Princess Charlotte in the arms of her mother, the Duchess of Cambridge, makes her first appearance on the Buckingham Palace balcony

She'll be spending quite a lot of time on it. It will end up being rather familiar. But there is a first time for everything and today marked Princess Charlotte of Cambridge's Buckingham Palace balcony debut. The littlest princess of the House of Windsor made her first appearance on this famous royal platform after Trooping the Colour 2016 and although she didn't manage a wave, she gave it a good go. Here are some of the lasting images of Charlotte's balcony debut.