Queen Camilla’s fashion tribute to the late Queen Elizabeth

She wore a beloved family heirloom at her latest overseas engagement.

Queen Camilla is paying tribute to her late Mother in law, Queen Elizabeth II, wherever she can with her recent choices of royal accessories. It was only a few weeks ago, the Queen consort was seen attending a dinner held at Mansion House in London, with Elizabeth’s tiara sat firmly on her head.

Now, Queen Camilla has been seen wearing Queen Elizabeth’s brooch, and its history is almost as impressive as its shine.

On October 31, 2023, King Charles and Camilla touched down in Kenya. For the first day of their royal tour, Camilla was seen sporting a white Anna Valentine mid-length dress, but it was the accessory people noticed. Adorning her chest was a shell-shaped diamond brooch, worn often and fondly by Queen Elizabeth.

Covered in diamonds, the scallop inspired brooch has a pearl detail in its centre, and exudes sophistication with its diamond fringe. According to diamond expert Maxwell Stone, the precious badge is worth a staggering £30,000 (roughly $56,874 AUD).

Although the accessory is as regal as a brooch could get, its history indicates it didn’t come to be a royal heirloom until the mid 1900s.

Created in 1919, the jewel was designed by British aristocrat Lord Courtauld-Thomson which is why it is now known as the Courtauld Thomson Scallop-Shell Brooch. It was then given to his sister, Winifred Hope Thomson.

The Queen Mother wore the brooch to several royal engagements.

Winifred held onto the brooch until 1944, when she gifted it to the Queen Mother as a symbol of her admiration. Her hopes for the diamond jewel was that it would be “passed from Queen to Queen of England”, and that is exactly what happened.

Adored by the Queen Mother, the brooch was well worn to many royal engagements, including her 100th milestone birthday. Upon her passing it was given to Queen Elizabeth who wore it often; most notably at the unveiling of her mother’s statue, and at her appearances at the Royal Ascot in 2011, and 2019.

Now, the royal heirloom has landed with Camilla. The Queen consort was first seen wearing the broach at her own Royal Ascot appearance this year, and has now proven its sentimental value by pinning it to her outfit in Kenya.

Charles and Camilla’s royal visit to Kenya is their first to a Commonwealth country since his coronation, and coincides with Kenya celebrating 60 years since their independence. Kenya was also where the late Queen Elizabeth began her reign in 1952.

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