01 January 2012

Top Princess of 2011: The Nominees

2011 turned out to be quite a year for princesses. With numerous weddings, several pregnancies, fashion highs and lows, and miscellaneous other news, the royal ladies really kept the media, the bloggers and royal watchers busy. This year, I've decided to honor our tiara-ed lovelies by singling out just one as the Princess of the Year. So, where do we start? How about some nominees? (Please add your vote at the end.)


Nothing gets more attention than actually becoming a princess. Even if you already are a princess, we still love it when you find your Prince Charming and have a fairytale wedding. This year, it seemed like there was a royal wedding almost every week. Here are the top royal brides:

Photo by Hugh Burnand
HRH The Duchess of Cambridge
Without a doubt, the former Kate Middleton generated more headlines--some of them actually true!--than any other royal person. But, will that earn her our coveted Princess of the Year title?

HSH The Princess of Monaco
When former Olympic swimmer Charlene Wittstock married Prince Albert II of Monaco, she may have won her biggest competition yet: the 50-something bachelor had become really good at avoiding matrimony.

HIRH The Princess of Prussia
Born Princess Sophie of Isenburg, this German business woman married her childhood friend, Prince Georg Friedrich, who is head of the House of Hohenzollern and which means she could call herself Queen of Prussia and Empress of Germany. However, since that throne was abolished nearly a century ago, Sophie von Preussen will also do.

HM The Queen of Bhutan
At just 21 years of age, Jetsun Pema has been a Queen Consort for barely three months, but she has already impressed the world with her gracious demeanor and elegantly appropriate fashion choices on several international visits.

Press Association
Zara Phillips, Mrs. Mike Tindall
Even if she is not technically a princess, she is a granddaughter of Queen Elizabeth II, which earns her a nod on our list. This athletic beauty married her live-in love, rugby star Mike Tindall, who was then caught allegedly canoodling on an overseas junket. Still, the newlyweds could be seen holding hands as they walked to church on Christmas Day.


With so many recent weddings, it could be expected that many of our royal brides are expectant. Several new royals made their debuts or had their impending arrival announced in 2012. Here are their mamas:

Steen Brogaard
HRH The Crown Princess Mary of Denmark
Princess Mary pulled off a triple miracle with the birth of twins in January (a double joy) and losing all that baby weight in record time (the third part of the miracle). However, naming the babies Prince Vincent and Princess Josephine, may keep her out of the top five Princesses of 2011. Really? Prince Vince?

Autumn Phillips
Autumn scrapes into our list, but barely. After all, she is not a princess and she gave birth to her first child on December 29, 2010 (close enough to 2011!). However, since that daughter is named Savannah, after my home town, and is Queen Elizabeth II's first great grandchild, AND because Autumn has speedily followed with another pregnancy, she is on the list.

Paul Hansen
HRH The Crown Princess of Sweden
After struggling with an eating disorder and holding out to finally marry the man of her dreams, Princess Victoria delighted everyone with a very early announcement of her first pregnancy. She then went on to wear baggy clothes not really intended as maternity wear, but, as a gorgeous future mother and queen, she can do whatever makes her happy (for now).

HRH Princess Marie of Denmark
After just three and a half years as a princess, the French-born Marie has more than fulfilled her royal duties by providing one son, born in 2008, and preparing for the birth of another child later this month. This will bring her husband's total up to four--he has two sons from his first marriage. Despite her advancing pregnancies, Marie has kept busy fulfilling royal engagements, overseas tours and taking official portraits well into her third trimester. Hope she takes a couple of days off for the birth.


What is more adorable than a little girl? How about one that is anything but a royal brat? Here are our top royal tots of 2011:

HRH Princess Isabella of Denmark
Four years old is really the perfect age for cuteness. You are still an elfin, doll baby no matter how many funny faces you make at your siblings' christening. Little blondie Isabella makes the list for always having a good time in front of the cameras both at home and in her mum's homeland of Australia.

The British
The Lady Louise Mountbatten-Windsor
The youngest granddaughter of Queen Elizabeth II could technically be called a princess. She emerged into the limelight this year as a bridesmaid at the wedding of her cousin, Prince William. She was seen more than ever this year, including an appearance with her grandmother in an officially released photograph and on the royal walk to church on Christmas Day.


A princess can't get married, have a baby or be adorable every year, here are a few nominees who make the list for doing what they do best.

HRH The Princess Royal
No list of top princesses could ever be complete without the world's hardest working royal, Princess Anne. In 2011, she carried out 568 official engagements, despite being 61 years old and a new granny. She also was spotted wearing several outfits that first saw light two and three decades ago. So, she gets one brava for being thrifty and another for maintaining her figure.

HRH Maxima, Princess of The Netherlands
In a year that saw the youngest of her three children start school, Argentine-born Princess Maxima launched herself even more fully into her work, completing even more engagements than her husband or her mother-in-law, Queen Beatrix. Interestingly, this year, in honor of her tenth wedding anniversary, the Dutch government officially declared that when her husband becomes king, she will have the title and style of The Queen of the Netherlands.

HRH Princess Beatrice of York
While Beatrice received most of her publicity this year because of her unfortunate choice of headgear at her cousin Prince William's wedding, she actually had some genuine milestones this year, like completing the London marathon and receiving a university degree--both firsts for British royal-born ladies.


  1. Kate has the status of Princess because she is married to a Prince--just as a woman married to a Mr. is a Mrs. She is not technically "Princess Catherine," however, the royal household has said you can call her that if you want to. It is a complicated topic!