It’s no secret that royal and postage stamps often go together, but sometimes the results are a little more fun than others. Here’s a round up of some royal stamps that stand out, regardless of whether you are a stamp collector or not (I most definitely am not, though many attempts at stamp collecting were made in my youth).
First up is the delightful young princesses of the Netherlands. A series of stamps was issued in 2012 featuring the 3 daughters of King Willem-Alexander and Queen Maxima of the Netherlands. Catharina-Amalia, Princess of Orange (she goes by Amalia) is next in line to be Queen followed by Princess Alexia and Princess Ariane, the youngest.
By the way, this photograph was released earlier this month to mark Princess Amalia’s 11th birthday of December 7th.
She posed with her two sisters as well – their parents refer to them as ‘the triple A’s.
Crown Princess Frederick, Crown Princess Mary & Prince Christian
We have another young future ruler next. Princess Christian, the future King of Denmark, made his stamp debut at the age of 14 months with his parents. The three of them are wearing Greenlandic costume (Greenland is an autonomous country within the Kingdom of Denmark0. Mary’s colourful outfit was a wedding present she’d received back in 2004 . This stamp is part of a charitable fundraising program in Denmark that dates back to 1921.
Queen Elizabeth II
Royal Mail released this sweet stamp to mark Queen Elizabeth II’s 80th birthday in 2006. 8 stamps were issued, one for each decade, and each featured an informal photograph.
I love this one, too. It was taken during a relaxed moment on the Royal Yacht Brittania in 1972.
Crown Prince Haakon & Crown Princess Mette-Marit
A little more on the formal side, these stamps were released in celebration of Crown Prince Haakon and Crown Princess Mette-Marit’s 40th birthdays in 2013 (they were born just under a month apart). The series also included a shot of Crown Princely Family as well as one of the King of Norway with his son and granddaughter.
Here’s a bit of a closer look at the family photos (apologies that they are so tiny!)
Our post awhile back on the art of royal signatures was such a hit that we thought we’d branch out and talk about royal monograms. There are just so many to choose from that we haven’t rounded up ALL of them but instead have focused on the ones that are most interesting to us.
Hopefully they’ll be the ones that are most interesting to you, too.
Diana Princesss of Wales
Let’s start with Diana, Princess of Wales
Her monogram really stands to me since the cursive D reflects her loopy (for lack of a better word) handwriting.
Here is a sample of her writing on a KP notecard. See what I mean?
And because we’re all over this stuff, check this out. While Diana was living at Coleherne Court in the days before she became engaged to Charles, she has personalized stationary with the apartment’s address and phone number. She really appreciated proper stationery and must have really have loved that D with the coronet!.
Kate is up next.
The Duchess of Cambridge
I can’t help but wonder how this went down…did Catherine/Kate have a few monogramoptions presented to her before she settled on this monogram? Or was it more of a “here you go, this will be your monogram” situation? Whatever the case, it seems like that would have been a fun and surreal moment. And she got the same type of crown as Diana.
The monogram has already shown up on this special bracelet which is reported to be from Camilla thought that has not been officially confirmed. I like to think that it was a gift from Charles to both the “C” ladies in his family since the other side of the charm has Camilla’s monogram.
While we’re at it, here’s the signature Catherine has been using. Must be strange to suddenly not have to sign with a last name, right?
On to the Swedes!
King Carl Gustav
The royal family of Sweden has grand monograms that are done in gold.
Queen Silvia seems to have a double S going on, perhaps because her maiden name was Sommerlathe?
Victoria & Daniel’s Joint Monogram
This is lovely.
And be still our hearts, Princess Estelle has her own webpage and monogram. Of course!
Obviously she needed a monogram to go with her mini Order of the Seraphim:
That looks like a sprightly crown on top of that M! Her hubby doesn’t get one since he declined the title of Prince…
but Princess Leonore’s monogram was revealed at the same time as her christening, which took place on Sunday June 8, 2014. Like her cousin Estelle, Leonore now has her own page as well. Check it out here.
Oh, and Princess Leonore got her own mini Order of the Seraphim as well!
Here’s a better look.
Prince Carl Philipe
They got both the C and the P in there which must have taken some time to sort out!
Royal Family of Norway
Crown Princess Mette-Marit
Double M! Love it so much we’ll ignore the rest of the Norwegian royals and move along to the Danes, ok?
Royal Family of Denmark
The Royal Family of Denmark have done a good job at making the monograms cohesive.
Mary & Frederik’s joint Monogram:
Prince Joachim of Denmark:
This has got to be the most modern looking one of the bunch. Love it:
Note how the M is different from Princess Mary’s ‘M’. Details, details!
Countess Alexandra is the former wife of Prince Joachim and we have some more juicy on the Countess that you can read here.
When she and Joachim divorced, not only did she get to keep her diplomatic passport and the title of countess, but she also gets to use this delightfully regal monogram:
It’s interesting to note that this monogram is a downgrade from her original. When she was Princess, she was given this monogram with the closed crown to use (on the left). After the divorce, the monogram was revised to the open crown (on the right).
Before we move along, I recently found these pictures of the then Princess Alexandra at Schakenborg Castle, her home with Prince Joachim. These gates were a gift from the Queen. Joachim now lives there with Princess Marie so the gates were changed to their joint cypher. More about that here.
Alexandra and Joachim outside those lovely gates.
Principality of Monaco
Prince Albert & Princess Charlene
Lord only knows what the deal is with these two, both they have used a joint monogram since the wedding. As far as we can tell from their official website, Princess Charlene does not have her own. Their website was recently given a sorely needed upgrade, and you can check it out here.
During the wedding celebrations, the monograph was everywhere!!! Case in point:
Princess Grace of Monaco
Grace Grimaldi got two G’s in her monogram.
Well that’s it for now. Anyone else share our interest in royal monograms? Hope so! 🙂
For the London 2012 Olympics we had fun reviewing all of the royals who came out to cheer on their fellow countrymen and today we wrap up the Sochi Olympics with more of the same. What’s not to love? This is an event where even Kings and Queens have to wear credentials in the venues, jump up and down waving flags, and wear olympic uniforms.
Princess Charlene & Prince Albert
We’ll dive in with Charlene and Albert who were both there at the beginning of the games (and before this whole thing started to get attention). Take a good look at La Princesse Charlene’s credentials, which give her access to ALL venues. Not too shabby!
They showed up at skiing where Albert showed of his Olympic gloves.
This guy like them, too.
Afterwards, they congratulated Arnaud Alessandria of Monaco.
The Princess Royal
Moving on, Princess Anne joined other IOC members and met with Vladimir Putin before the opening of the games.
She paid a visit to the Athlete’s Village as well. Gotta say, those uniforms look very smart.
PS Why doesn’t Zara stage a hair intervention?? WHY?
King Carl XVI Gustav and Queen Silvia of Sweden
The King and Queen of Sweden paid a short visit to Sochi and cheered on their fellow Swedes from February 14th to 16th. The visited the athlete’s village, watched the Swedish country relay team scoop of two gold medals, and took in some hockey, figure skating, and curling. Here they are meeting with Swedish figure skating champion Alexander Majarov before his competition where he ended up placing 14th and scored a personal best.
Naturally, they also got the traditional picture in front of the olympic flame.
We can’t not mention that the King and Queen first met at the 1972 Olympics in Madrid, where Silvia Sommerlath was working as an interpreter for the Olympic Organizing committee and participated in the medal ceremonies. See?
Crown Prince Haakon, King Harald V and Queen Sonja of Norway
The winter Olympics are definitely Norway’s thing, so Crown Prince Haakon paid a visit from the 10th to the 14th of February (boo! Princess Mette-Marrit stayed home).
Flashback: Here’s Prince Haakon lighting the Olympic flame to declare the 1994 Winter Olympics in Lillehammer, Norway open.
The King and Queen came out later and stayed from the 17th to the 22. They flew the flag watching a biathlon event.
Hey, did you know that King Harald was an Olympian himself? Yep, he was on the Olympic Sailing team at the Tokyo ’64 games, the ’68 Mexico City Games, and finally at the ’72 Madrid Games. Much more on the Norwegian royal’s Olympic history is in our post here.
Hold on to your hats, I’ve saved the best for last. King – and Queen Maxima paid a visit to Sochi near the beginning of the games and they did not disappoint. Our favourite and most enthusiastic cheerers were decked out in orange and out in full force .
They showed up at the village riding orange bicycles.
They felt their athlete’s pain while watching speed skating.
And, just as we’ve come to expect, they really got into it when things were going well.
Oh, the joy.
This time we didn’t have the little princess’ enthusiasm which was a bummer. They must have had to stay home for school. Remember this? Heck, one little princess (Princess Ariane, I believe) was waving Maxima’s orange coat around. Can you see her?
Here are some more great pics of Maxima getting into the spirit of things. As is to be expected, Princess Anne was much more sedate and Tim Laurence and the King didn’t want to get too cozy it would seem.
Well, that was fun. Any other favourite Olympics moments to share, royal or otherwise?
Skipping along, Princess Mette-Marit and Prince Haakon were in London for the start of the games, and are shown here ready for the Opening Ceremony:
They were at several events with their family. That’s Princess Ingrid on the left with her brother Prince Sverre Magnus.
The Spanish Royals
The Spanish royals did their fair share of cheering, too. Here they are during the Spain’s basketballgame against Russia:
The Queen was there, too:
Princess Charlene and Prince Albert of Monaco
Now I think we’re coming to a true highlight. As you may recall, we’ve been a bit concerned about Princess Charlene after that rather dreadful interview with CBS, so we were happy to see her looking very spirited while cheering on the South African swimming team. She was a member of the South African swim team for the Sydney Olympics, and here she is when Chad le Clos won the gold in a major upset for Michael Phelps who ended up with silver.
It was awesome.
A tearful moment with mom and pop le Clos:
High Five for that:
Near the end of the games, we had another royal greeting when Prince Albert sat behind the Duchess of Cambridge
Which leads us to the British Royals…
The British Royals
Naturally, they were out in full force. Let’s boil down some key moments. First of all, let’s give it to the Queen for her involvement in the Opening Ceremony:
Would have been nice if she’d cracked a smile, but what can you do:
Kate and William were very enthusiastic cheerers:
But Prince Harry was really my favourite to watch…
…especially when he got out his camera at women’s volleyball:
It has been confirmed that Crown Prince Haakon and Crown Princess Mette-Marit will be at the Opening Ceremony in London next week. Woot woot!
The Norweigian Royals are yet another Royal Family with a long history with the Olympic Games. Like the Spanish Royals, they are excellent sailors, so let’s start with the 1928 Olympics where some Royal Olympic history was made. Here we go…
1928 Amsterdam Summer Olympic Games
At these games, which we spoke about on our recent post on the Dutch Royal Family’s involvement in the Olympics, Prince Olaf (King Harald’s father) won the Gold medal in the six meter event. This makes him the first Royal to win an Olympic Gold medal.
Kudos to Olaf!
1952 Oslo Winter Olympic Games
The first of two times to date that the Olympics were held in Norway was in 1952 when the capital city of Oslo hosted. The Opening Ceremonies took place on February 15, which just happened to be eight days after King George VI of England died, leaving Princess Elizabeth as Queen. This was marked with flags at half mast during the ceremony.
Another notable part of the ceremony was that the Games were officially opened by Princess Ragnhild, which was a first time that a woman had done the honours. Her grandfather King Haakon VII was meant to do it, but he was in London for the King’s funeral service.
Four decades later, Crown Prince Harald, now King Harald V of Norway, carried his country’s flag during the Opening Ceremony and competed in sailing. Here he is helping to lower a sailboat into the water during the Games:
And that wasn’t the end of his Olympic career…
1968 Mexico City Olympic Games
The Crown Prince also competed in the1968 summer games…
1972 Munich Summer Olympic Games
…and again during the 1972 Summer Olympics.
1994 Lillehamer Winter Olympic Games
These Games were the second time that Norway has hosted the Olympics. The Royal Family was very involved in the festivities and arrived at the Opening Ceremonies in this delightful sleigh. What a winter wonderland:
Here is a shot of them during the ceremony. Prince Haakon has aged well, eh?:
King Harald had the job of declaring the games open and Crown Prince Haakon lit the Olympic flame.
Here’s another view. He must have been boiling next to that big flame:
Fun Fact: During these games, Norway walked away with the most medals of any country with a total of 26. Ten were gold, 11 were silver, and 5 were bronze.
2006 Torino Winter Olympics
Skipping along, Prince Haakon attended the Games, and is photographed here looking chummy with Prince Frederick of Denmark. They were watching curling:
2008 Beijing Summer Olympic Games
King Harald and Queen Sonja made it to these games and flew the flag for Norway:
2010 Vancouver Winter Olympic Games
The King and Queen also attended the 2010 Winter Olympics and certainly suited up for the cold mountain air:
Prince Haakon attended these games as well:
2016 Youth Olympic Games
The next Youth Olympic Games will be held in Lillehammer in 2016. Prince Haakon is sitting on the committee for these Games.
Well that brings us to now…four more sleeps until the Opening Ceremony in London!
We’ve rounded up some royal page boys, flower girls, and bridesmaids over the years for this three-part series. After all, who doesn’t love a royal wedding? There are oodles of royal attendants and we’ve tracked down a few rarely seen photos to add into the mix.
Princess Elizabeth of York
We’ll start with the Queen. The then Princess Elizabeth was a flower girl and bridesmaid many times over the years. We haven’t been able to locate pictures for each occasion, have been able to collect a nice overview.
To begin, Elizabeth took part in the wedding of her cousin once removed, Princess May of Teck, to Henry Abel Smith back in 1931. Princess May was the daughter of Prince Alexander of Teck and Princess Mary Adelaide of Cambridge.
How cute is this posed photograph:
Three years later in 1934, the future Queen also took part in the November wedding of her uncle the Duke of Kent to Princess Marina of Greece. She is seated at the bottom left of the photograph below.
Looks like she’s got a floral head-piece on and check out those sleeves! Hmmm…do you think her dress is tucked away somewhere? I hope so. She looks like a sugarplum fairy.
The following year, she repeated her duties for the 1935 wedding of Prince Henry, Duke of Gloucester to Lady Alice Scott. That’s Princess Elizabeth seated on the left below.
Side Note: The bride’s dress, as well as those of her attendants, was designed by royal couturier Norman Hartnell. He later designed both Princess Elizabeth’s and Princess Margaret’s wedding gowns. We have some posts on him coming soon.
Here’s a close up of the bride and groom on the Buckingham Palace balcony with Princess Elizabeth in the background:
Now we’re skipping ahead eleven(!) years. The photo below is from when Princess Elizabeth (far left) was a bridesmaid for the Hon. Patricia Mountbatten and Lord Brabourn in 1946. The wedding was held in Romsey Abbey in Hampshire. That’s Princess Margaret on the far right and Princess Alexandra of Kent is in the centre:
Princess Margaret of York
Now that we got that peak of Princess Margaret, let’s jump to her role as bridesmaid when her sister married Philip Mountbatten on November 20, 1947.
Such a gorgeous dress:
Doesn’t the little fellow out front look like a young Prince Charles? That little guy is either Prince William of Gloucester or Prince Michael of Kent. Does anyone know which?
We’ll take a moment now to skip over to the future Princess of Monaco. That little girl in the front of the photo below (which I apologize is very small) is a young Grace Kelly. She was the flower girl for a family friend and wore a little bonnet with her dress. Cute!
All right, time for the next generation of British royals. Just like her mum, Princess Anne was asked to be a bridesmaid numerous times.
She was an attendant for Lady Pamela Mountbatten’s wedding to David Hicks in January 1960. The wedding took place in Romsey Abbey just like her mum’s wedding did (which we reviewed above). Lady Pamela is Prince Philip’s first cousin. Apparently it snowed quite a bit that day and until Princess Margaret’s wedding came to be, this wedding was dubbed ‘The Wedding of The Year.’
Here’s a candid of that event. Looks like they are getting themselves sorted for a group photograph:
Here’s a close up of the group shot that was taken that day. Prince Charles was seated next to Princess Anne:
We can get a better look at her tiered dress here:
Princess Anne also did the honours for Princess Margaret’s 1960 wedding to Antony Armstrong-Jones.
Love this candid shot of her en route. Anne was nine years old here:
Princess Anne is standing next to her aunt in this group photo:
For enquiring minds, the other attendants were Marilyn Wills, 12, daughter of Maj. and Hon. Mrs. John Wills; Annabel Rhodes, 8, daughter of Mr. and the Hon. Mrs. Denys Rhodes; Lady Virginia Fitzroy, 6; daughter of the Earl and Countess of Euston; Sarah Lowether, 6, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. John Lowther; Catherine Vesey, 6, daughter of Viscount and Viscountess de Vesci; and Lady Rose Nevill, 9, daughter of the Marquess and Marchioness of Abergavenny.
And, to end, Princess Anne was also a bridesmaid for Princess Alexandra of Kent in 1963. Love this candid shot:
We’ll have many more royal bridesmaids and page boys in our next post. In the meantime, do tell us if you have any favourites so far…
Crown Prince Haakon of Norway, heir apparent to the throne of Norway, first met Mette-Marit Tjessem Hoiby through friends in 1999 when they were both attending Norway’s largest rock festival, the Quart Festival.
When the public caught wind of the relationship, there was quite a bit of public outcry since Mette-Marit was an unwed mother who was known to have been involved in the rave scene. Making matters more difficult, the father of her son was convicted of drug related offences. Not exactly “future Queen material” to many Norwegians.
Despite all of the controversy, Haakon and Mette-Marit decided to move into an Olso apartment together along with her young son. This was quite a departure from tradition to say the least, and Prince Haakon admitted that the decision had been hard on his father the King. However, this all turned out to be a careful strategy set up to help introduce Mette-Marit to royal life. A few months after the couple moved in together, they announced their engagement.
The official announcement came on December 1, 2000. Here is another shot taken that day:
Waving to the crowds below afterwards:
Prince Haakon presented Mette-Marit with a very meaningful heirloom engagement ring. The ring was originally the engagement ring of Crown Princess Martha Louise (she was Prince Haakon’s paternal Grandmother). She was born the Princess of Sweden and Norway and married Crown Prince Olav of Norway. She was quite a looker:
Here is a portrait of on the day their engagement was announced in 1929. The couple became engaged during the Summer Olympics in Amsterdam (another Royal Olympic connection! Check out or favourite Royal Olympic story by clicking here).
The ring was then passed onto Crown Prince Harald to give to Sonja Haraldsen (the current King and Queen of Norway). Interestingly, Sonja was a commoner like Mette-Marit and though there were fears that she would not be accepted as a royal, the Norwegian people quickly warmed to her. History certainly repeated itself with Mette-Marit. Here is a picture of the young couple:
In keeping with this tradition, the ring was passed onto Mette-Marit. Here it is on her finger during the engagement announcement:
The ring is very unique in design and is composed of diamonds and two crescent shaped rubies set in yellow gold.
A few days before the wedding, Mette-Marit addressed her past in a televised press conference. She was tearful when speaking about her past, and she is now well loved by the Norwegian people. To end, here is a recent portrait of the couple:
And if you’re in the mind, check out Princess Mette-Marit’s GORGEOUS wedding dress by clicking here.
As we’re sure you know by now, the Order of Succession for the British Royal Family was officially changed in October 2011 to end male primogeniture. That means that going forward, boys will not take precedence over girls and as such, if the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have a daughter before they have a son, their daughter will be Queen. Awesome.
Several of the European royals have already been on this bandwagon for awhile now, and consequently there are a few young european princesses who are in line to be crowned Queen. In this series, we will look at who these young princesses are.
Our first ‘Young Future Queen’ is seven year old Princess Ingrid Alexandra of Norway. Princess Ingrid was born to Crown Prince Haakon and Crown Princess Mette-Marit on January 21, 2004. The Crown Prince and Princess of Norway are a very interesting couple that we’ll talk about more in future posts. In the meantime, check out Princess Ingrid’s official webpage on the Norwegian Royal Family’s website by clicking here.
The Constitution of Norway was altered in 1990, changing the succession law to what is referred to as ‘absolute cognatic primogeniture.’ This meant that the eldest child of the heir to the throne, regardless of gender, takes precedence in the line of succession. The first member of Norway’s royal family this law applies to is Princess Ingrid Alexandra; her dad Crown Prince Haakon still maintains precedence over his older sister Princess Martha Louise, pictured below with her husband Ari Behn on their wedding day.
As a side note, Princess Martha Louise is quite a fun character and seems very happy for her brother to be next in line to the throne instead of her (she is fourth in line, after Prince Haakon and his two biological children). She willingly gave up the style “Her Royal Highness” when she married in 2002 and instead is now known simply as “Her Highness Princess Martha Louise.” The decision to remove “Royal” gave her more opportunity to have a professional life outside of her royal work. She still carries out royal duties, but at a reduced capacity. She is a trained physiotherapist, and in 2007 she began Astarte Education, which is focused on alternative therapy and training people to tap into their intuition and communicate with angels. You can check out her company website here.
But back to her niece! As the second in line to the throne, little Princess Ingrid likely won’t have the opportunity to go off on her own like that, but she does seem to have a very nice and somewhat normal family life. You just have to love this official portrait of her, taken on the occasion of her sixth birthday(below) and, yes, the adorable baby in the picture at the beginning of this post is the official portrait of Princess Ingrid for her christening.
Her godparents are His Majesty The King of Norway, His Royal Highness Crown Prince Fredrik of Denmark, Her Royal Highness Crown Princess Victoria of Sweden, His Royal Highness Prince Felipe of Asturias, Her Highness Princess Märtha Louise (Princess Ingrid’s aunt), and Ms Marit Tjessem (Princess Ingrid’s maternal grandmother).
Princess Ingrid served as a bridesmaid for her Godmother Crown Princess Victoria of Sweden when she married Daniel Westling in June of 2010. She’s the sweet brunette in the middle in the picture below. Love the little dresses and headbands that so nicely echoed Princess Victoria’s dress
Also love this picture of Princess Ingrid on the way to her first day of elementary school with her parents this past August:
And clearly she’s a lover of the colour pink and isn’t afraid to accesorize!
Princes Ingrid is already being prepared for her future royal role and according to the royal family of Norway’s website already takes part in official engagements, such as Norway’s Constitution Day. We hope she gets to have as normal a childhood as possible!
The next ‘Young Future Queen’ up for discussion is seven year old Princess Catharina-Amalia of the Netherlands. Hope to see you then!