The History of The Infamous Revenge Choker

The History of The Infamous Revenge Choker

The pieces of jewellery we wear reveal a lot about who we are and what we value. Whether we realise it or not, we wear jewellery to infer meaning or bring sentiment into our life.

The symbols we are drawn to, such as the sentimentality of love heart jewellery or the meanings of different precious stones reflect a truth about ourselves that other aspects of our outfits may not, and these messages can often be subtle and coded.

In the case of the revenge choker, the message was pretty clear, angry and explicit.

On 29th June 1994, Princess Diana went to a fundraising dinner at the Serpentine Gallery in Kensington Gardens wearing what has now been legendarily called the “revenge dress”. It was designed by Christina Stambolian and had not been worn up to that point because the low-cut off-shoulder design was seen as too daring for a royal.

Along with this, she wore a pearl choker necklace, and both had a very pointed and distinct meaning. The luxurious pearl choker was a custom seven-strand necklace made from a duck-egg sapphire brooch given to her by the Queen Mother as a wedding present and is worth potentially up to £100m.

The reason for both pieces, which have since become eternally linked to Diana, Princess of Wales, was believed to be revenge.

On the very same night as that Serpentine Gallery dinner, her husband Prince Charles (now King Charles III) confessed to infidelity on an ITV interview show that attempted to rehabilitate his image compared to a woman later described as the People’s Princess.

She aimed to “look like a million dollars” and face the inevitable questions about what her eventual ex-husband had admitted on national television head-on, knowing already what he was set to admit.

It was her picture that appeared on the front page of newspapers, with headline writers opting for headlines like “Di Told You So” and The Sun’s infamous “The Thrilla He Left To Woo Camilla”.

The revenge choker would be worn several more times for the rest of her life, returning to the royal collection after her tragic death in 1997.

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