It's tiaras all the way down!
June 4, 2018 9:52 PM   Subscribe

A gallery of royalty (not Hollywood Royalty, actual royal family sorts) gathered for a gala of their own set, Prince Frederik of Denmark's 50th birthday party. Not just women, but men... see how actual royals dress when they go out ot party!

Most of the dresses, IMO, are truly striking. The weird pseudo-military appearance of many of them men seems to me to be wasting an opportunity to dress equally stunningly.
posted by hippybear (52 comments total) 7 users marked this as a favorite
 
Bonus: this isn't the UK Royal Family. We've all seen those plenty across the years.
posted by hippybear at 9:53 PM on June 4, 2018


Look at all those strong chins and attractive hairlines!
posted by rhizome at 10:11 PM on June 4, 2018 [2 favorites]


Ah, all the epaulettes, piping, sashes, badges, tiaras, and jewels. Behold real people, a whole lot of them, dressing like this!
posted by limeonaire at 10:35 PM on June 4, 2018 [1 favorite]


The great tragedy of my life is that I would totally rock the obscure European royalty look, but because I am not royalty everyone would be like "Nice Halloween outfit!"
posted by LarryC at 10:55 PM on June 4, 2018 [10 favorites]


Imagine how different it would look if 1066xit passed and all the British upper class were repatriated to France ....
posted by hank at 11:00 PM on June 4, 2018 [1 favorite]


I love tiaras! If I did "make-a-wish," I'd ask for a mirror and access to Queen Elizabeth's jewelry box for an afternoon.
posted by shoesietart at 11:30 PM on June 4, 2018 [4 favorites]


The Greek royal family is really weird. As in, they haven’t had a monarchy since 1973, and they first got one in 1863 by borrowing a younger sibling of the Danish royal family. So, they all get to be called Prince(ss) of Greece and Denmark, except in Greece where they aren’t royalty anymore. So.. how come this doesn’t result in a diplomatic incident between Greece and Denmark, or Greece and any of the other European countries with royals that still recognize the Greek-royalty-in-exile?

I guess it just seems a bit audacious of them to keep calling themselves “of Greece”, particularly down the generations. And they would get to wear the Tiaras anyhow because they are all “of Denmark” already.
posted by nat at 12:24 AM on June 5, 2018 [5 favorites]


So.. how come this doesn’t result in a diplomatic incident between Greece and Denmark, or Greece and any of the other European countries with royals that still recognize the Greek-royalty-in-exile?

Because nobody involved sees royalty as in any way actually meaningful or important? It'd be like having a major diplomatic incident between France and the USA because of the whole "freedom fries" nonsense - it d be fucking stupid, and nobody in a position of any influence views piffling bollocks like that as important.
posted by Dysk at 12:32 AM on June 5, 2018 [5 favorites]


As you might guess there's some limited amount of legal wrangling related to whether they have a surname or not and stuff like that, becoming less and less relevant as time goes on. Their chief function by now is as an idiot detector: you can tell someone's an idiot if they take the "royal" part seriously.
posted by each day we work at 1:14 AM on June 5, 2018 [1 favorite]


Aren't titles more or less for sale these days? OK, you probably couldn't buy a 'Prince' but 'Baronet' and 'Lord' are certainly to be had.

Myself, I can only claim to be master of my own domain. *coughcough*
posted by From Bklyn at 2:01 AM on June 5, 2018


Fred's wife is our Mary (Australian girl) - they met at the Sydney Olympics, in a pub. Mary made him cry with her birthday speech to him.

I see that Joachim's ex-wife and current wife were both invited. How very civilised.

Those blue ribbons look significant, don't they?
posted by b33j at 2:02 AM on June 5, 2018 [7 favorites]


Remarkable bird, the Norwegian Blue, idn'it, ay? Beautiful plumage!
posted by Thella at 2:57 AM on June 5, 2018 [2 favorites]


I rented a stand up paddle board down by the beachfront in Manly, Sydney, just last week. The guy who hired it out to me was Princess Mary’s previous boyfriend.
posted by Jubey at 3:35 AM on June 5, 2018 [4 favorites]


It’s amazing how quickly a feather in a hat makes us forget where all that wealth came from.
posted by sonascope at 3:47 AM on June 5, 2018 [12 favorites]


Previously: Danish royal family painting that resembles a V.C. Andrews novel cover.
Also Previously: Prince Henrik, consort to Queen Magrethe, is a grumpy man
posted by Alison at 3:58 AM on June 5, 2018 [2 favorites]


These sashes pretty much don’t go with anything, do they?

Fortunately, these pictures ended my dream of bringing back the sash as an accoutrement before that dream had fully formed.
posted by GenjiandProust at 4:24 AM on June 5, 2018 [1 favorite]


Im imagining the epic tantrums, backroom conversations, sniping and griping, sucking-up-hint-dropping and asking versus guessing that goes on at soirée like that.
posted by nikaspark at 4:35 AM on June 5, 2018


Re: Prince (Consort) Henrik being a grumpy old man

He was later diagnosed with dementia.
posted by bouvin at 4:40 AM on June 5, 2018


I find the absence of the British royal family to be diplomatically glaring, while Brexit is in the air. I wonder if they were not invited, or whether it was their's to decline. Attending would say, "we're still friends", it seems to me.
posted by Goofyy at 4:54 AM on June 5, 2018 [3 favorites]


Fred's wife is our Mary (Australian girl)

And daughter of one of my lecturers from uni. Always weird to remember that when I see photos of her.
posted by rory at 5:08 AM on June 5, 2018 [3 favorites]


This was fun! Great post! :)
posted by Dressed to Kill at 5:16 AM on June 5, 2018 [1 favorite]


the absence of the British royal family to be diplomatically glaring

I have the impression they were not invited. Maybe this is not so much a state occasion as a friends and family thing that just happens to include multiple royals? On the other hand, the Spanish royals were invited, but declined.
posted by Segundus at 5:19 AM on June 5, 2018 [1 favorite]


The weird pseudo-military appearance of many of them men seems to me to be wasting an opportunity

They're play-acting a time when they had the ability to start wars and send people to their deaths. It's a nostalgia thing.
posted by clawsoon at 6:03 AM on June 5, 2018 [5 favorites]


the absence of the British royal family to be diplomatically glaring

That group of European royals is pretty chummy, so I wasn't surprised that Charles/Camilla or Edward/Sophie weren't there.

For those really into the crowns & gowns, The Royal Order of Sartorial Splendor has you covered. Here is her coverage of what was worn. And a few more tidbits about the party.
posted by kimberussell at 6:04 AM on June 5, 2018 [4 favorites]


It's a nostalgia thing.

...which is to say, none of this is weird at all. The women are dressing in embroidery reminiscent of the time when they could make the poor put millions of hours into making the royals look pretty instead of using those hours to create things for themselves and their families, and in diamonds that their soldiers killed for and their miners dug for. They're play-acting a time when they could grind people up to make themselves look and feel good.

Glorification of this stuff gives me the heebee-geebees. The history here is truth-and-reconciliation stuff, not something to celebrate.
posted by clawsoon at 6:25 AM on June 5, 2018 [10 favorites]


So is the identical blue sash everyone was wearing the royal equivalent to a reentry wristband at a rave?
posted by sammyo at 6:32 AM on June 5, 2018 [7 favorites]


Prince Joachim of Denmark looks like a dad that is just having a blast by being included in the cosplay.
posted by sammyo at 6:35 AM on June 5, 2018


Amazing how many Americans have such strong feelings on the history of the Danish royal family.
posted by Dysk at 7:01 AM on June 5, 2018 [6 favorites]


Prince Joachim offends me for leaving his hat on. The other gentlemen clearly knew better.
But, sammyo, perhaps you are closer to the point: It's about that silly foppish feather, and he thinks it's as silly as anyone else, so he made sure everyone got to enjoy the laugh.
posted by Goofyy at 7:10 AM on June 5, 2018


Dysk: Amazing how many Americans have such strong feelings on the history of the Danish royal family.

Agreed. It's like some random group of non-Americans - Italians or Koreans or somebody - suddenly got interested in how nice the uniforms looked on people play-acting Confederate armies and started posting about it on Metafilter. This is a strain of unreflective neo-reaction that I never expected to see here.
posted by clawsoon at 7:11 AM on June 5, 2018 [4 favorites]


Dysk: Danish royals have demonstrated some serious nobility in the 20th century.
posted by Goofyy at 7:13 AM on June 5, 2018 [1 favorite]


the time when they could make the poor put millions of hours into making the royals look pretty

Yeah but hey, I think there are people in America who could buy and sell this lot, and who may not have come by their wealth through working really hard at an honest craft.
posted by Segundus at 7:17 AM on June 5, 2018


Dysk: Danish royals have demonstrated some serious nobility in the 20th century.

Wow cool. What else can you tell me about the country I come from.
posted by Dysk at 7:20 AM on June 5, 2018 [4 favorites]


Agreed. It's like some random group of non-Americans - Italians or Koreans or somebody - suddenly got interested in how nice the uniforms looked on people play-acting Confederate armies and started posting about it on Metafilter.

I'm not sure I see much nuance or understanding of context on either side of this argument...
posted by Dysk at 7:22 AM on June 5, 2018


Dysk: I'm not sure I see much nuance or understanding of context on either side of this argument...

So far I'm not seeing much of an argument, just me yelling at clouds. :-) As I understand the context: Denmark's royalty didn't support as much colonizing, enslaving or oppressing as other royal families, and they quit sooner, but they did try their noble best before being pushed aside by the British, Dutch and others. As with most of the royal families who survived the world wars, the people who live in their domains now are generally happy with them. Now, they mostly play-act times when Europeans were happy to oppress, enslave and colonize the rest of the world and go to war with each other, when people felt proud of themselves as ethnic Nations with glittering royalty... whoops, sorry, I lost my nuance again. :-)
posted by clawsoon at 7:41 AM on June 5, 2018 [3 favorites]


Given the heated comments I was expecting jewel-encrusted brocades or something. At least on the womenswear side it doesn't look much different from some Hollywood celebrity gala thing, despite the post title.
posted by inconstant at 7:42 AM on June 5, 2018


Amazing how many Americans have such strong feelings on the history of the Danish royal family.

To be fair, when a student brought her Danish grandfather to visit the library and my US university, and he and I started chatting, by the third sentence we were discussing the Schleswig-Holstein Question and mid-19th Century European Nationalism, so it's not like I can't have any feelings or thoughts on the matter....
posted by GenjiandProust at 7:51 AM on June 5, 2018 [1 favorite]


The blue sashes indicate that the wearer is a member of the Order of the Elephant, Denmark's highest Order of Chivalry, making them honorary knights, to be simplistic (and probably mildly inaccurate).

The royal families have their own orders. When you're a member of one royal family and you visit another family for a formal occasion, you wear the highest sash/chain/medal that you've been given by that family. If you don't have any, you wear the orders of your own family, which is why the Liechtensteins were wearing different sashes.

So, cliques within cliques!
posted by kimberussell at 8:01 AM on June 5, 2018 [10 favorites]


I don't know about the anti-royalist stuff. Every time I feel a bit republican, I remember that an obvious contender for Danish President would be Danish war criminal, Bush-*ss-licker and NATO chief Anders Fogh Rasmussen, and that the price for keeping a president seems to be the same as that of having royals. At least the royals have learnt from an early age to be polite and to mourn when innocent people are killed. (+the costumes are fun).
Frederik seems to have made it his life's ambition to be a good dad and convince the Danes to exercise more. That's all OK with me.
posted by mumimor at 8:24 AM on June 5, 2018


I've probably just been worrying too much about the alt-right lately. "Bloodlines" are a big part of all that's nasty in this world right now, and hereditary royalty is the nucleus of the idea that some people are better than others because of their bloodlines. "It's just a joke, it doesn't mean anything" has been one avenue for the alt-right to spread its influence; "it's just fashion, they don't have any influence anyway" is a way to make neo-reaction seem harmless.

I have a Queen, too, and she's been fine as far as queens go. But everything about how she ended up in that position and why she deserves to be there is not good.

If we want to have fashion shows with purely celebratory framing, why not have them about people whose position isn't so problematic?
posted by clawsoon at 8:32 AM on June 5, 2018 [2 favorites]


Not to derail, but doesn't it seem like the younger royals, across Europe, are speaking out against the far right (and not least bloodline rubbish) as much as their limited speech allows them?
posted by mumimor at 9:09 AM on June 5, 2018 [1 favorite]


If we want to have fashion shows with purely celebratory framing, why not have them about people whose position isn't so problematic?

Tiaras in abundance and precious few sashes.
posted by sonascope at 10:18 AM on June 5, 2018 [2 favorites]


I love seeing people dressed up, beautiful, creative gowns, and I hate most of what makes it possible. Seeing what look like members of the military in fancy dress as escorts in the carriage makes me wonder how much of the expense is hidden in defense budgets.
posted by theora55 at 10:44 AM on June 5, 2018


Are the Greek Royal Family professional royals/ celebs, like the Kardashians?
posted by theora55 at 10:46 AM on June 5, 2018


Are the Greek Royal Family professional royals/ celebs, like the Kardashians?
Kind of, yes
posted by mumimor at 12:32 PM on June 5, 2018


LarryC: The great tragedy of my life is that I would totally rock the obscure European royalty look

It's not obscure just because you haven't heard of it.
posted by Too-Ticky at 1:22 PM on June 5, 2018 [1 favorite]


The weird pseudo-military appearance of many of them men seems to me to be wasting an opportunity to dress equally stunningly.

In at least a few of the cases I googled, it's not pseudo-military, they're actual military dress uniforms. It seems a lot of the time, the head of state is also granted ex officio the highest military ranks which I guess lets them parade around in admiral's or general's uniforms. Also, it seems like some of these royals do serve some time in the military (I'm assuming as per tradition) so you get little idiosyncracies like King Phillipe of Belgium's parachutist badge.
posted by mhum at 2:05 PM on June 5, 2018 [1 favorite]


Seeing what look like members of the military in fancy dress as escorts in the carriage makes me wonder how much of the expense is hidden in defense budgets.
When the royals do carriage rides, they are escorted by horse guards. These are a real military unit. But the two people on that image are part of the Royal Stables, and thus the Royal Household. Up til the 70's the Royal Stables had a public riding school in the palace, open to all city kids, but the ministry of education got it closed down because they didn't like the smell of manure in the courtyard where they were housed above the riding school horses.
Regardless, a carriage ride is nothing near a military parade, budget-wise.

In at least a few of the cases I googled, it's not pseudo-military, they're actual military dress uniforms
Yep. Frederik is a real elite soldier, with experience from the Sirius Patrol, something you can't fake. (He also has a masters in political science).

I can't believe I'm defending these people! But I guess we are living through a period in history where the comparison of royals in social democracies with an elected president in the "greatest republic on earth" comes out in advantage of the royals. When politics are really bad, it's nice to have an apolitical head of state. Someone mentioned above that the royals also did a good job during WWII, and they did, for the same reason.
Another thing is that while the focus of the international tabloids etc. are the dresses and tiaras, the focus here, and most of the spending was on two huge public events: a big national amateur running event, and a public concert in an arena that was broadcast live.
posted by mumimor at 2:57 PM on June 5, 2018 [2 favorites]


mumimor: When politics are really bad, it's nice to have an apolitical head of state.

"Apolitical" is an interesting word. It's kind of like a country's flag is apolitical, except when it isn't.
posted by clawsoon at 4:07 PM on June 5, 2018 [1 favorite]


I never knew that Denmark had such a similar Royal Guard (Den Kongelige Livgarde ) to the British (Queens Guard).
posted by unliteral at 6:08 PM on June 5, 2018 [1 favorite]


Inevitable Town & Country click: I scoff, roll my eyes, and read alllll the way to the end. (I don't regret it, either. Queen Margrethe's pink dress is so great.)
posted by grandiloquiet at 8:52 PM on June 5, 2018 [1 favorite]


Seeing the Danish Crown Prince celebrate his 50th birthday hit me right in the "I'm old" button. I've lived there off and on for three decades, but haven't paid much attention to him in the last 20+ years. In my mind, he's still the boyish prince becoming a man in the Danish special forces. A salt and pepper beard doesn't fit that mental image.

His mother, on the other hand, appears to have stopped aging sometime in the early 1990s.
posted by ga$money at 6:47 AM on June 6, 2018 [1 favorite]


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