Queen Rania and Princess Rajwa incorporate Jordanian history into silver jubilee gowns

Royal dresses worn to celebrate King Abdullah's 25-year reign rooted in country's rich culture and agricultural legacy

From left, Jordanian royal family members Queen Rania, King Abdullah II, Crown Prince Hussein and Princess Rajwa celebrate at the silver jubilee ceremony. Photo: RHC
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Queen Rania of Jordan wore a custom gown by Laith Almalouf to attend the silver jubilee celebrations of her husband King Abdullah II on Sunday.

A full-length white dress with a grey scalloped bustier, the striking piece took inspiration from her country's "agricultural legacy and cultural depth", according to the Jordanian designer.

"I am deeply honoured to have had the opportunity to design a custom couture creation for Her Majesty Queen Rania Al Abdullah to celebrate King Abdullah II of Jordan’s 25th silver jubilee," Almalouf wrote on Instagram, sharing a sketch of the piece. "The creation of the gown was a labour of love and dedication, taking around 200 hours of meticulous work. From initial meetings with Her Majesty to discuss the design, through sketching, sourcing the appropriate fabrics, pattern making, sewing and embroidery, each step was handled with the utmost care and attention to detail by skilled couturiers."

Almalouf elaborated on the inspiration for the gown, writing: "The buttons on the shirt represent Jordan’s seven-pointed star, a symbol of unity and hope. The bustier, embodying the concept of body armour, symbolises the protection and strength that Jordan has experienced over the past 25 years. The pleated skirt features hand-embroidered spikes of wheat, an element deeply rooted in Jordanian heritage. Traditionally seen in the Jordanian keffiyeh, the wheat motif symbolises abundance and prosperity, reflecting Jordan’s agricultural legacy and cultural depth.”

Queen Rania wore the dress with a pair of white gold and diamond drop earrings and the Jordanian royal family's Arabic Script Tiara, created by French jewellery and watch brand Fred. She has worn the piece several times since it was commissioned in 2005, most recently to host a banquet to celebrate the wedding of her son Crown Prince Hussein bin Abdullah and Princess Rajwa in May last year.

For the jubilee celebrations, Princess Rajwa, who is pregnant, wore a gown and cape by Saudi designer Honayda Serafi, who also crafted the gown she wore for her pre-wedding henna celebrations.

Serafi says she is honoured to be part of the jubilee celebrations. "We are proud to unveil the regal bespoke look for HRH Princess Rajwa Al Hussein, specially designed by Honayda Serafi and crafted by the skilled hands of Jordanian artisans to crown this historic occasion," adds a statement from the designer.

She reflected on the four colours of the Jordanian flag, red, green, black and white, through beaded embroidery on the dress, with shimmering shades of silver added as a nod to the jubilee year. The designer said that a "deep, pigmented red was chosen for the look, where red represents the Hashemite dynasty". She added: "This rich hue is traditionally associated with strength and passion, embodying royalty and translating the love to the land.

"The choice of this regal colour added a majestic allure and elegance to the dress, tailored in a flowing georgette fabric, mirroring HRH Princess Rajwa Al Hussein's noble yet powerful personality."

An iris flower was incorporated into the design as a "symbol of royalty, wisdom and hope". The two pieces took 120 hours to create, according to the designer, who worked with female Jordanian artisans to create the look.

Princess Iman, the eldest daughter of King Abdullah and Queen Rania, wore a dress by Anglo-Palestinian Jordanian designer Edelina Joyce.

The bespoke grey gown featured intricate cross-stitched detailing, which the designer shared close-up previews of on Instagram.

Last month, Queen Rania wore a design by Joyce for an interview with Joy-Ann Reid on MSNBC.

Updated: June 10, 2024, 4:00 PM