4. The Cambridge Lovers Knot Tiara.
- This gem was commissioned from Garrard in 1913/1914 by Queen Mary. She modeled it off of a tiara owned by her grandmother, Princess Augusta of Hesse. It wasn’t a unique design to begin with; several others exist that are quite similar.
- Swinging pearls hang from 19 diamond arches capped with lovers knots. The piece was composed of existing jewels Queen Mary had in her collection: the dismantled Some Ladies of England Tiara, the original pearl uprights from the Girls of Great Britain & Ireland Tiara, and pearls off of a couple brooches belonging to Mary which were ultimately returned.
- Originally, the design included upright pearls on top of the arches, but Mary had them removed eventually.
- After Mary died in 1953, the tiara passed to Queen Elizabeth II. She wore it with some regularity in the early 1950s, but it eventually went back to storage as she narrowed down her favorite tiaras to the ones we see with regularity today.
- Queen Elizabeth gave the Cambridge Lover’s Knot tiara to Diana, Princess of Wales as a wedding present in 1981. Diana famously found the piece to be too heavy and headache-inducing, and often opted to borrow the lighter-weight Spencer tiara from her family instead. It was returned to the Queen after the divorce.