Dutch court jewellers Van Kempen, Begeer and Vos

Dutch court jewellers Van Kempen, Begeer and Vos

Issue number 2 of the magazine Royalty is for sale in stores in the Netherlands and Flanders, and it contains some wonderful jewellery surprises which I present in an article on the jewellers Van Kempen, Begeer and Vos, better known in Holland as Royal Van Kempen en Begeer. Although most of Van Kempen and Begeer's production consisted of silver, all 3 of the companies - before and after their merger in 1919 - worked for the Dutch royal court as jewellers. While several jewels in the Dutch royal collection already were attributed to Van Kempen, Begeer and Vos, archival research revealed much, much more.

The article shows over a 100 years of close ties with the Dutch royal court as preferred jewellers, including a range of scoops. Previously it was unknown who made the engagement ring of Princess Beatrix. In the article you will find the design drawing! Same for the brooch she wore during her abdication ceremony in 2013, and the diamond and emerald bracelet often worn with the emerald parure. If you would like to know what jewellery 15 year old Queen Wilhelmina received for her birthday, you will find it in the article as well.

Royal apparatus

Van Kempen, Begeer and Vos all played an important role in the production of items belonging to the royal apparatus, the visual means employed by a monarchy. For example this pin with the combined monogram of the Queens Emma and Wilhelmina (photo courtesy of Dekker Antiquairs), the 'chiffres' to distinguish Ladies in Waiting, but also the royal standard and swords.

Column Royal Jewels

My column on royal jewels highlights a wonderful story, plus possible explanation, on why Queen Beatrix wore a rather modest tiara during her state visit to Denmark in 1984. Also I explain the particular meaning of pink topazes at the Russian court in the 19th century. Also Cartier's coffee bean jewels which Princess Grace of Monaco, and her daughter Caroline, wore are featured.

Order online

In case you're not able to buy the magazine in stores in Holland or Flanders, you can order the issue online.

Spray brooch by Jacob Vos

Jewels by court jeweller Jacob Vos are rare these days. Dekker Antiquairs, an antique jeweller close to the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam, currently offers this diamond spray brooch made by Jac. Vos & Co. While doing my research in the Van Kempen, Begeer and Vos archives I found many design drawings for spray brooches like these, but all of them had 1 or 2 flowers, while this one contains 3.

Click here for more information on the brooch, which was made in the same era Vos delivered many jewels to the Dutch court.

The research for this article was done in the Van Kempen en Begeer archives, which are located in RKD, the Netherlands Institute for Art History.



Posted on 23/02/2015 by Erik