THE UNIFORMS OF ROYALTY (III) The Queens of Romania

Royal clothing has always fascinated both the public and collectors. Romfilatelia continues the series of postage stamps dedicated to this theme, through the issue The Uniforms of Royalty (III). The Queens of Romania, which will enter into circulation on Tuesday, September 15th, 2020.

The dress rules for the crowned heads are very strict, and various materials used to make them, must fall within the standards of decency. However, some queens of Romania sometimes went out of the norms of the time, noticing themselves visibly with the fashion approached abroad.

Queen Elisabeta (1843-1916) used to say that: “The dress you wear is not unimportant. It gives you life!” The Queen’s clothing was often regarded by relatives, or by guests, as true celebrity daring. The white tunic dresses were covered with not exactly royal jewellery, but large-sized fantasies, as well as all sorts of unexpected lace and embroidery. Under a rich coat of fur, the Queen wore a loose garment of very dark red velvet, which looked rather like a dressing gown to be worn inside the house, adorned with mottled embroidery, at the waist with a cord of fine silk, which looked rather like a string. She wore small-brimmed hats with a veil to which she fastened her pince-nez.

Queen Elisabeta was amazed by the fashionable outfits of the West and the traditional Romanian folk costume. She was photographed in Romanian blouses, promoting, with her image, the Kingdom of Romania.

Queen Marie (1875-1938) managed to impose her own clothing style, and in many of the photos we see her in outfits that seem much lighter than those of other sovereigns of the time, but also more avant-garde, which addresses the illustrated fashion of the years 1880-1918, which was naturally due to her numerous visits to Paris. To make the dresses, Queen Marie, as well as her daughters, turned to the famous French fashion designers: Jean Patou, Paul Poiret, Redfern, Cheruite and last but not least Gabrielle Chanel.

The traditional folk costume were also appreciated by the Queen, bit it stylized and modernized, without woresed its specific charm. One of the Queen’s favourite jewellery pearl necklace, which also matched the folk costume.

Queen Marie often appeared in military uniforms, but also in nurse uniform, during the World War I.

Queen Elena (1896-1982) a descendent of the Royal Family of Greece, was enchanted to promote authentic Romanian traditions, her photographs in folk costumes being famous at the time. After the proclamation of Mihai as king, in 1927 and 1940, she held the capacity as Queen-Mother, accompanying her son in elegant outfits, inspired by the fashion of the time. Queen Elena’s tiara, with Greek motifs, was a remarkable accessory, being honour on special occasions by Queen Ana and by Her Majesty Margareta, Custodian of the Romanian Crown, too.

Queen Ana (1923-2016) was discreet both in public life and in clothing. Her less attention to fashion and gala outfits was inherited from her mother, Princess Margaret of Denmark, who used to say: “I don’t dress, I cover myself”. In an interview in 2008, Queen Ana said that she preferred to take care of the house, and the idea of protocol did not tell her anything. But modesty is the reason why Queen Ana except to remember a period of World War II, when she wore with pride and respect the uniform of the free French military forces, being decorated with the French War Cross.

On the four stamps of the issue are illustrated the Queens Elisabeta (Lei 1.90), Marie (Lei 3.30), Elena (Lei 5) and Ana (Lei 19), dressed in ceremonial attire, with ornaments and tiaras.

Romfilatelia thanks the House of Her Majesty the Custodian of the Crown and the Peles National Museum for the documentary and photographic support granted to the achievement of this postage stamps issue.