Queen Camilla's banquet jewelry is a touching tribute to Queen Elizabeth II and has a romantic history too

Queen Camilla's banquet jewelry is heavy with the Royal Family favorite sapphires and has an incredibly poignant and romantic history too

Camilla, Queen Consort and King Charles III during the State Banquet at Buckingham Palace on November 22, 2022 in London, England. This is the first state visit hosted by the UK with King Charles III as monarch, and the first state visit here by a South African leader since 2010.
(Image credit: Chris Jackson/Getty Images)

Queen Camilla's banquet jewelry, worn during her first official state visit as Queen Consort, was a favorite of her late mother-in-law and laden with an all too familiar precious stone.


From Princess Anne's Empress Maria Feodorovna sapphire brooch, to Kate Middleton's engagement ring, which famously once belonged to Princess Diana - it's easy to wonder why sapphires are considered the most important gemstones of the Royal Family.

Camilla, Queen Consort attends the State Banquet in honour of President of South Africa, Cyril Ramaphosa at Buckingham Palace on November 22, 2022 in London, England. This is the first state visit hosted by the UK with King Charles III as monarch, and the first state visit here by a South African leader since 2010.

(Image credit: Chris Jackson/Getty Images)

Considering the historical importance of the state visit of President Cyril Ramaphosa of the Republic of South Africa, the red carpet was rolled out and he truly received a royal welcome. Queen Camilla is known for sporting jewelry with a message behind it and her tiara of choice was the last one Queen Elizabeth II was photographed wearing. And what goes best with sapphires? Why, more sapphires of course. 

The stylish royal sported a sapphire necklace, which was among the late monarch's most beloved pieces as it was a wedding gift from her father King George VI, in 1947. The Queen Consort chose to make her own edit to the piece, leaving its main pendant out as she appears to favor a choker-style necklace above all. 

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More poignant still, as pointed out by royal favorite photographer Chris Jackson, is that Camilla's tiara of choice was the last one that Queen Elizabeth II was ever photographed in.

Queen Elizabeth II wore her George VI sapphire demi-parure and matching tiara at a Buckingham Palace state banquet back in 2016, among many other important official events throughout her reign.

Queen Elizabeth II attends a banquet at Prague Castle during a State Visit to the Czech Republic.

(Image credit: Tim Graham Photo Library/Getty Images)

All eyes were also on another royal first, as the Prince and Princess of Wales attended their first official state visit with fans excited to see another of Kate Middleton’s dresses go down in the fashion history books. State Banquets are even more exciting as they bring all the bling and although Kate Middleton can't wear Diana's tiara, despite now being the Princess of Wales - her royal highness dazzled in her adornment of choice. 

The Lover’s Knot Tiara, which originally belonged to Elizabeth II's grandmother Queen Mary, was often worn by Princess Diana at official events. This could certainly be considered to be a touching nod to both her late mother-in-law and grandmother-in-law.

Catherine, Princess of Wales and President Cyril Ramaphosa of South Africa share a toast during the State Banquet

(Image credit: Photo by Aaron Chown - Pool /Getty Images)

It wasn't only jewelry that was sending out messages as proven by the symbolism behind the flowers at the state banquet. The Royal Family revealed in a statement that the flowers were not imported internationally, and were sourced in the UK. "Final preparations are underway for tonight’s State Banquet. Arrangements featuring British-grown seasonal flowers will adorn the Ballroom," read a tweet from the official Royal Family account. More impressively still, much of the stunning floral display was grown in royal gardens! "Foliage has been sourced from the gardens of Buckingham Palace and Windsor Castle, and crab apples in Kent," read the tweet.

Aoife Hanna
Junior News Editor

Aoife is Junior News Editor at woman&home.

She's an Irish journalist and writer with a background in creative writing, comedy, and TV production.

Formerly Aoife was a contributing writer at Bustle and her words can be found in the Metro, Huffpost, Delicious, Imperica, EVOKE and her poetry features in the Queer Life, Queer Love anthology.

Outside of work you might bump into her at a garden center, charity shop, yoga studio, lifting heavy weights, or (most likely) supping/eating some sort of delicious drink/meal.