In Antiques Magazine, March 2002, page 40, “Report from Europe”,
there is an article and two pictures of tiaras. One tiara diamonds and
the other diamonds and what looks like Persian turquoise. Beautiful.
There is a book mentioned: “Tiaras Past and Present: A history of
Bill in Vista where the street light will be off for another year.
The politicians are keeping the citizenry in the dark.
Dan, I have never made a tiara but I know that you asked this
question before so I will tell you what I would do. I would go to the
library and look at old photos of the British monarchy to get some
idea of what others have done. Once I had a grasp of basic shapes, I
would start cutting paper patterns and trying them on and seeing what
they look like in a mirror. I assume that you are male and are not
intending to wear it yourself. This is where you have to either use
your imagination or talk your wife/partern/mother/sister into
modeling for you. I would probably use wire and not sheet for the
I just used google images and it showed 20 pictures out of 5000.
That would be quicker than the library.
for more help, you need to tell us more detail. How old is the
person who will wear it, what is the hair style, what metal do you
plan on using and how long will it be worn? (I wouldn’t want to wear
something heavy and hard on my head for very long.)
I have been collecting info and pictures on crowns and tiaras for
some time. There was a good article in the May 2001 issue of JCK
magazine, A Family Tree of Tiaras. It also references a book titled
"The Tiara-A History of Splendor" by Geoffrey Munn. At $90 and
recently laid off, it will have wait a while.
I used this article to make a silver tiara patterned after the
"victor’s laurel" pictured at the top of page 142 of the article.
Hammering out all the leaves, assembling, and mounting the beads (I
used turquoise beads) took 19 hours and over 2 ounces of silver.
These things are serious metalworking! I used a fold-forming
technique to make the leaves. (Thank you Charles! ) There will be a
picture of this piece on my website which should be up next week. I
will let the list know when this happens.
I have a few rhinestone tiaras in my rhinestone/costume jewelry
collection, and some day hope to make a tiara, too.
For inspiration, I refer you to this website on the Iranian crown
jewels. All of the pieces are pretty fantastic, but there are
several tiaras/crowns designed by Harry Winston in the 50’s for the
last Shah. These are apparently still on display at a bank in
Tehran. These tiaras were made from "loose just lying
around in the treasury.
Another amazing tiara/crown is at the Smithsonian. Napoleon
presented it to the Empress when their son was born, I believe. The
original emeralds have been replaced by Persian turquoise.
The Smithsonian Hall of Gems and Minerals is one of my favorite
places in the universe. I grew up in DC, and we went to see the
newly donated Hope Diamond in the late 50’s. Maybe this was the
start of my interest in gemology and minerology.
Any recommendations about other collections of gems and minerals
around the country, that some of you love? I’ve heard there’s a
lapidary museum in Chicago and that the New York Museum of Natural
History has a collection, but I haven’t seen either of these.