Style is paramount on the royal stage, and Maxima of the Netherlands certainly stepped up to the plate on Tuesday as she became Queen. The Argentine-born blonde was impeccably turned out as she took to the royal palace's balcony in a pale pink satin gown with intricate shoulder detailing and a skirt in embroidered silk. Maxima had called upon Belgium fashion house Natan, which has long been favoured by the European royals, to custom-make her all-important dress. Her daughters Amalia, Alexia and Ariane were also dressed in the brand's designs.
CLICK ON PHOTO FOR FULL GALLERY
Speaking to reporters last week, the creative director of the label, Edouard Vermeulen, spoke about the new queen. "She's undoubtedly a woman of our times," he said. "She's active, enjoys fashion as well as her role in the family and the nation. "She has this Latin charisma and amazing smile that have made her extremely popular," he added. "She was born for the role." Maxima's style triumph comes just one day after she wowed the world in a stunning red Valentino gown at the state dinner. It was no surprise that the beautiful blonde had called upon the Italian fashion house for this important occasion - Valentino designed her wedding gown and has remained one of her favourite designers ever since - but more astute fashion fans and royal watchers were surprised to recognise the dress.
Maxima had already worn the creation once in 2008 at a Gala Party hosted by Queen Elizabeth II to celebrate the 60th birthday of her son Prince Charles. The gown was a fitting choice - the bright red hue meant the Argentine-born royal was able to inject some of her vivacious personality into the proceedings, all while giving a nod to the Dutch flag. She paired the number with a beautiful rose-cut diamond Bandeau Tiara. The headpiece, that Beatrix's mother Queen Juliana had commissioned to be made for her grandmother Queen Emma, sparkled with 27 old mine diamonds set a single graduating row on a light platinum frame. Cascading blonde curls , a shimmering necklace and matching accessories completed the look. Dressed in a smart black suit with a grey waistcoat and tie, Willem-Alexander appeared to his people for the first time as their monarch. By his side was Queen consort Maxima, who waved to the thousands of well-wishers. With tears in her eyes an emotional Princess Beatrix, who reigned for 33 years, then gave a brief address. "Today I leave room for a new generation," said Beatrix. "My son now assumes responsibility for this new role." The Netherlands' new king then spoke as the crowd cheered and applauded. As her son spoke, Beatrix held hands with daughter-in-law Maxima for support.