Ever since Netflix’s The Crown began depicting Queen Elizabeth II’s reign, our nation was swept with royal fever, an obsession that intensified as the world watched America’s sweetheart, Meghan Markle, walk down the aisle to live out her real-life fairy tale with Elizabeth’s grandson, Prince Harry. There is something reassuring and calming about the royal’s enduring presence in pop culture. Perhaps because in times of chaos and uncertainty (which 2019 seems to have had no shortage of) tradition can offer us solace in nostalgia’s warm embrace for a simpler time. But, in all of our idealizing, it is so easy to let the person behind the crown fade behind the enormity of their image, a tendency The Crown has gone to great lengths to resist. We thought we’d follow suit, in honor of our new merchandise featuring the lovely Queen Elizabeth II.
Elizabeth Alexandra Mary, named after her mother, was born April 21st of 1926 in London, UK, where she was educated privately at home. Her father, King George VI, ascended to the throne when she was just ten years old, to replace her uncle, King Edward VIII, who abdicated the throne. Eager to get involved, Elizabeth began taking on her own royal duties, first serving in the Auxiliary Territorial Service. In 1947, at the ripe age of twenty-one, Elizabeth was wedded to Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh. Together, they had four children: Charles, Prince of Wales; Anne, Princess Royal; Prince Andrew, Duke of York; and Prince Edward, Earl of Wessex. At twenty-five years of age, Elizabeth assumed the crown and became the head of the Commonwealth after her father’s passing. She still holds this position to this day, and at an astounding 93 years of age, she is the longest-living and the longest-reigning British monarch, as well as the longest-serving current head-of-state.
No stranger to controversy, Elizabeth has faced criticism the majority of her career. First, for the disillusion of her children’s marriages, and infamously, for her ostensible lack of sympathy following her daughter in law, Princess Diana’s, tragic death. Throughout all the drama, Queen Elizabeth never lost her composure, or the nation’s support for the monarchy, during turbulent times, and stands as a beacon of stability, traditional values, and grace.
As Canadians, Queen Elizabeth has little involvement in the legislation of our country, but she remains a vital figure within our national culture. Beyond the formalities, we all have a soft spot in our hearts for all things royal (perhaps it’s our lingering childhood fantasies are to blame). But as guilty pleasures go, we figure there are worse things to indulge in. Add a regal flare to your life and celebrate our Queen (or your latest binging of The Crown’s depiction of her on Netflix) with our new mugs (great as décor or for your regular coffee consumption), enamel pins (cute on a bag or favourite blazer), and ornaments (not just for Christmas time—would make a great addition to your book shelf).
Long Live the Queen!