Pogey bait

¡Tiara! ¡Tiara!

When I got married I wasn’t at all interested in tiaras.  Mostly this is because most of the ones available at the time looked too much like pageant tiaras.  I’m not really a pageant girl.

Now, if I’d been able wear a good replica of one of these historic tiaras, I would have been all over the idea!

This one may be my favourite.  Oooh!  It’s so sweet and delicate and floral!

Tiara, 1910-29, Met

And we all know my weakness for laurel leaves, so of course I love this one.  It’s just so simple.

Tiara, laurel wreath, 19th c. MFA Boston

This one may be even better.  It has laurel leaves, neoclassical influence, and a cameo.  I’m in love!

Tiara wreath, 1815, V&A

The cameo is a little manly though.  I’d prefer a more feminine picture, like this one.  In addition to the pretty image, I love the turquoise and pearls, and the slight asymmetry of the central motif.  Plus that wirework is so delicate!

Tiara, pearls, date unknown, MFA

The silver filigree work on this one is just gorgeous, and of course, many of the Scandanavian countries still have a strong tradition of brides wearing this type of tiara.

Tiara, Norwegian, J. Tostrup, 1872, Met

For something really different, what about this fabulous coral tiara?  Wouldn’t it be amazing at a beach wedding?  Coral was really popular in the 19th century, and symbolised good luck and health.  Of course, global coral stocks aren’t so healthy these days, so the only ethical way to wear coral would be to wear a vintage piece like this.

Tiara, Phillips Brothers, 1860-70, V&A

Another common 19th century tiara material that is really unusual these days is black jet or black cast glass.  I can’t say it is my thing, but I would love to see a replica of one of these on a modern bride.  If you couldn’t afford jet, cast glass (also called ‘Vauxhall glass’, after the famous pleasure gardens) was a cheaper alternative to jet.

Tiara of cast glass, Bohemia, 1880-90, V&A

For another ‘cheaper’ tiara, what about this cast gold and chrysoprase glory?  If for no other reason I’d love it because it had chrysoprase.

Tiara, England, 1830, cast gold & chrysophrase, V&A

Of course, cast gold is still gold, so for an actually cheaper alternative, the Victorian’s used a lot of cut steel.  Very pretty, very sparkly, but not that expensive.

Tiara, cut steel, ca. 1900, MFA

And for the cheapest tiara of all, this mid-20th century theatre tiara puts the biggest smile on my face.  It’s so adorable and witty and fun!  I can just imagine a sort of Alice in Wonderland wedding with the bride in this.

Tiara of diamantes & false pearls, Hugh Skillen (Costumier), 20th c

If cheap really isn’t your thing, how about a truly sumptuous diamond tiara?

Floral tiara of diamonds, 1835, V&A

Queen Anne's lace diamond and pearl tiara, 1850, V&A

*Swoon* I think I might have to rethink my attitude towards diamonds!  I’d wear either of these in a heartbeat!  Heck, if I had one of these, I’d wear it EVERY day!

Floral diamond tiaras have a strong link to weddings too.  Queen Victoria’s bridesmaids all wore diamond wreaths in the shape of wheat ears.  I don’t think any of us can afford to deck out our bridesmaids in diamond wreaths these days though!


Comments are closed.