Princess Estelle’s christening: live blog post

Crown Princess Victoria and Prince Daniel with Princess Estelle flanked by godparents (left to right) Prince Carl Philip, Anna Westling Söderström, The Prince of Orange, Crown Princess Mary of Denmark and Crown Prince Haakon of Norway. Photo: Bruno Ehrs/The Royal Court.

Crown Princess Victoria and Prince Daniel with Princess Estelle flanked by godparents (left to right) Prince Carl Philip, Anna Westling Söderström, The Prince of Orange, Crown Princess Mary of Denmark and Crown Prince Haakon of Norway. Photo: Bruno Ehrs/The Royal Court.

10:49 AM: One hour and ten minutes until the christening. Guests start arriving in ten minutes.

11:09 AM: Archbishop Anders Wejryd was just a guest in the SVT studio. He did not reveal anything. Guests are arriving all the time but SVT choses to focus on studio chat and old footage from the wedding etc. Former prime minister Göran Persson and wife Anitra Steen just went in, current Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt is now interviewed.

11:13 AM: SVT continues with studio chat, quite annoying to miss the guests arriving with elegant and colourful suits and hats on the ladies. One former prime minister is missing today, Social Democrat Ingvar Carlsson who is not in the country.

11:19 AM: Belgian milliner Fabienne Delvigne already yesterday announced on her website that two of the royal female guests, Princess Máxima of the Netherlands and Princess Mathilde of Belgium, will wear her creations.

11:31 AM:More studio talk, no focus on the guests. The church is filling up now, only most prominent guests left. It seems the media has leaked the embargoed media info on the sponsors/godparents of Estelle. The list circulating gives The Prince of Orange (Prince Willem-Alexander of the Netherlands), Crown Prince Haakon of Norway, Crown Princess Mary of Denmark, Prince Carl Philip and Anna Westling Söderström (Prince Daniel’s sister).

11:33 AM: Sofia Hellqvist, Prince Carl Philip’s girlfriend, and Chris O’Neal, Princess Madeleine’s boyfriend, have arrived a while ago. The guests have to have taken their places at 11:45.

11:43 AM: Fantastic so see so many wonderful hats! In two minutes all but the most prominent royal guests have to be seated.

11:47 AM: The Royal Chapel really comes to its right on a day like this. The chapel, designed by Carl Hårleman, was finished in 1754, is characterized by the ideals of the French rococo. The Prime Minister and Speaker of Parliament with wifes just arrived.

11:47 AM: Princess Märtha Louise and Ari Behn arrive.

11: 48 AM: Hereditary Grand Duke Guillaume and Countess Stéphanie de Lannoy arrive.

11:49 AM: Crown Prince Frederik of Denmark, Crown Princess Máxima of the Netherlands and Princess Madeleine of Sweden arrive.

11: 50 AM: The Duke and Duchess of Brabant, Philippe and Mathilde arrive.

King Carl XVI Gustaf’s sisters arrive followed by Dorrit Mousaieff, wife of Iceland’s president, and Finland’s president Sauli Niinistö with wife.

11: 52 AM: Queen Margrethe of Denmark and the Prince Consort arrive. Prince Henrik was not on the official guest list released yesterday.

Prince Daniel’s parents, Ewa and Olle Westling, followed by King Car XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia.

11:54 AM: Everyone stands as King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia enter and take their seats.

11: 55 AM: The Crown Princess Couple arrive with little Princess Estelle followed by the godparents/sponsors The Prince of Orange (Prince Willem-Alexander of the Netherlands), Crown Prince Haakon of Norway, Crown Princess Mary of Denmark, Prince Carl Philip and Anna Westling Söderström (Prince Daniel’s sister).

11:56 AM: Prince Daniel carries Princess Estelle into the chapel. They make a reverance to the royals. The godparents/sponsors follow and do the same.

12: 07 PM: Crown Princess Victoria thanked God for their child. Crown Prince Haakon of Norway. Back in her seat the Crown Princess now holds Princess Estelle.

12: 15 PM: Crown Princess Victoria rocks Estelle in her arms in the chair. “Vila glad, i din famn” (rest happy in your arms) by Kristina Lugn and Benny Andersson is sung by Elin Rombo with beautiful music by harpist Margareta Bengtson and flutist Jan Bengtson.

12:17 PM: Prince Carl Philip pours spring water from the island of Öland into the silver christening font. The silver christening font by the French sculptor Bernard Fouquet and French silver smith Francois Cousinet from the late 17th century weights 50 kilos and is made of silver from the Indonesian island Sumatra and then finished with Swedish silver from the Sala silver mine.

12:19 PM: Crown Princess Victoria hands Princess Estelle to the Archbishop who christens her before giving her back to Victoria.

12: 25 PM: After the Archbishop’s blessing and some small cries from Estelle everyone sings psalm 248 “Tryggare kan ingen vara” (No one can be safer) which is one of the most well-known Swedish psalms.

11:27 PM: Apart from Princess Estelle’s Order of the Seraphim, a crown marking the christened child’s rank is also on display in the church. They have chosen Prince Oscar’s (later Oscar II, also Duke of Östergötland) crown made for King Oscar I:s coronation in 1844. The crown is made in 1844 by Giron & Co and modelled on a previous crown for Prince Fredrik Adolf. The crown can normally be viewed at the Royal Treasury at the Royal Palace of Stockholm.

The Royal Chapel is dressed in white and light green florals, many delicate beautiful variations have been picked out by the Royal Court’s florist Claes Carlsson.

Princess Estelle carries a christening gown first used for the christening of Prince Gustaf Adolf in 1906. It has then been worn by the then Prince Sigvard, Prince Bertil, Prince Carl Johan, Princess Margaretha, Princess Birgitta, Princess Désirée, Princess Christina, Prince Carl Gustaf, Crown Princess Victoria, Prince Carl Philip and Princess Madeleine.

12:34: The Marshal of the Realm carries forward a cushion with the Order of the Seraphim. Crown Princess Victoria carries her forward to the King who attaches it on Princess Estelle’s christening gown. In 1995 the law was changed so that members of the Royal Family can receive Swedish state orders who are otherwise reserved for foreigners.

12:36: The Crown Princess family exits the church followed by royals and family. They walk slowly down the stairs.

12:38 PM: The Royal Family and godparents/sponsors pose for the public outside the gate at Slottsbacken.

12:41 PM: Salute is being fired from Skeppsholmen. After the Royal Family and godparents/sponsors have posed for the press, the chapel is slowly emptied of guests who walk down the stairs.

13:06 PM: SVT shows clips of the christening and talks about traditions in the studio at Slottsbacken. Etiquette expert Magdalena Ribbing forgot that the Order of the Seraphim is not the only order that can be awarded to members of the Royal Family since the 1995 law change; also the Order of the Polar Star is exempted in the law exception for royals.

13:14 PM: Guests are greeting the Crown Princess Couple, with Princess Estelle in a cradle behind them, going in to the reception hosted at the Bernadotte Apartments by King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia.

Princess Estelle lies in Karl XI:s cradle which is traditionally the one used for heirs to the throne. The cradle was a gift for the prince’s christening in 1655 by his maternal grandparents the Duke and Duchess of Holstein-Gottorp. The cradle is made of wood and gilded. It was last used by Prince Carl Philip who was christened as Crown Prince and heir to the throne in 1979.

The greeting ceremony takes place in Lovisa Ulrika’s audience room and the reception in the Bernadotte Gallery.

13:48 PM: SVT continues to show clips from the christening and talk to guests in the studio.

14:00: SVT now ends the live broadcast with christening glimpses. The King and Queen hosts private luncheon at the palace, but it’s over for the rest of us. Thank you for today!

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