The Saphire parure was a gift of King Willem III to his wife Queen Emma in 1881.
The design is probably by the famous jewelery-designer Oscar Masin who also worked for the Paris jewelery-firm of Mellerio.
|Original design of 1867 with diamonds in place of the sapphires|
Oscar Masin was a master-jeweler who worked/designed for several jewelery-houses. The original design of the tiara is already drawn up by him in 1867 but it was 1881 when it actually came to making and delivering this tiara.
On the 14th of December 1881 the large tiara was delivered to the Dutch Royal House also together with a second frame (for a much smaller setting for using only the top row of 27 diamonds from the big Tiara) and also with two huge diamond and sapphire bracelets.
|Tiara design of 1881.|
The 31 sapphires came from kashmir and the 655 brilliant-cut diamonds used for this tiara came from the Jagers-Fontein-Diamonds-Mine in South-Africa.
The setting is partly done with "pampille en tremblant" a technique used often by Oscar Masin and which he perfected.
This technique is to put diamonds (in their setting) on very small movable springs that bring out the most of the sparkle of the diamonds! Because of this the sapphire tiara and also the small other tiara that can be made with another frame have a great capacity to catch the light because of the little movements due to the small springs with which the diamonds are attached.
In 1928 the tiara was totally renewed when (identical to the original design) a new frame was made by the dutch jewelery-company "Van Kempen en Vos" in The Hague. The old frame was made of gold and the new much lighter frame was made with platinum.
The design of the necklace looks a lot like the tiara's design and is of later date but made to match the tiara. The big pendant of the necklace is nowadays often worn as pendant on a bow-pin and that makes it a brooch now, often worn by both Queen Beatrix and Princes Margriet.
The tiara was worn by HM Queen Maxima of the Netherlands on 30 April 2013; the Inauguration of King Willem-Alexander.
The Orange-Nassau Family has lots of sapphires in their possession even one of 163 carats (to compare: the biggest sapphire in the front of the Tiara is 44 carats). Several of these were originally bought by Queen Anna-Pavlovna (wife of William II of the Netherlands) who loved saphires!