One Of The Most Famous Headbands Ever Was Not A Headband
Royalty has always been a trendsetter for bridal headband fashion, as the tiaras worn by some of the most famous brides in the world invariably inspire brides-to-be with their own wedding fashion.
Arguably the greatest example of this was the late Princess Diana, in no small part because of her influence on fashion in general.
The Spencer Tiara, worn by Lady Diana Spencer on her wedding day and for many other events throughout her life, is one of the most famous parts of a wedding outfit that included one of the most famous wedding dresses of all time and one of the most famous engagement rings of all time.
The floral patterns of gold and diamond were historic and timeless, and many tiara designs in the decades since that wedding have followed a similar style and aesthetic.
However, one of the most famous headbands she would ever wear was never actually intended to be one.
Queen Mary’s Choker
Princess Diana was an avid collector of jewellery but two of her favourite pieces came from the collection of Queen Mary. The first was Queen Mary’s Lover’s Knot, a tiara of diamonds and pearls that was given to her by Queen Elizabeth II as a wedding gift and is now regularly worn by Princess Catherine.
The other was an Art Deco-inspired diamond and emerald choker that was also loaned to her by the Queen as a wedding gift but would become one of the most famous headpieces she would ever wear.
In 1985, Princess Diana would visit Melbourne Australia along with her then-husband Prince Charles (now King Charles III).
Whilst getting ready for the dinner in a similarly iconic teal evening gown, Diana apparently tried to pull the choker over her head rather than wait for an assistant to clasp it around her neck, which caused it to get caught on her nose despite her best efforts.
Apparently, the Canadian diplomat Victor Chapman convinced her to wear it as a makeshift bandeau instead, describing the style as “young and fun”.
It was this headpiece that was the star of some of the most famous pictures of Diana, especially when it came to her relationship with Charles.
The pictures of them dancing together have built up an aura of melancholy around them; they were some of the happiest pictures of the two together.
However, someone who was absolutely not happy with Diana was Queen Elizabeth herself.
Whilst she was happy for Diana to show it off, she did not like that Diana wore a family heirloom as a headpiece, with a royal commentator alleging that the Queen was very irritated once she had seen the way it was worn herself.
Ultimately, it has gone down as one of her most famous fashions, alongside her pearl necklaces, her sapphire engagement ring and the infamous revenge dress, and has been replicated and reinterpreted in the decades since that happy night, and indeed her tragic death in 1997.
The choker itself has been worn by Princess Catherine, albeit not ever as a headband.