May 17, 2015

Everything you need to know about Sweden's new Princess Sofia

Everything you need to know about Swedens next Princess: Sofia Hellqvist

Next month, on June 13th, Sofia Hellqvist will walk down the isle of Slottskyrkan church in Stockholm to marry her prince, His Royal Highness Prince Carl Philip of Sweden. Her relationship with the prince and her transformation into a Princess has been everything but easy and certainly not without complications.

Sofia‘s background

Sofia Kristina Hellqvist was born on 6 December 1984 to parents Marie and Erik Hellqvist. She is her parents second born, her older sisters name is Lina and her younger sister is Sara. Sofia was born in Täby, Sweden but brought up in Älvdalen, Dalarna a small town in Sweden. She moved to Stockholm when she was eighteen years old to work as a model and a waitress.

In 2005 Sofia moved to New York to study accounting with computer application, specializing in business development at the Institute of English and Business in New York. During her time in New York she also studied to become a certified yoga instructor and taught yoga classes.

In 2010 Sofia founded Project Playground together with Frida Vesterberg. Project Playground is a non-profit organisation which main goal is to help vulnerable children and young people in South Africa. As the name of the organisation suggests, it helps young people and children by creating a safe platform and meeting place with activities and programs that are run by adults who act as leaders and role models.

Sofia worked as President for Project Playground from 2010 until April 2015 when she stepped down in order for her to be able to take on her new role as Princess of Sweden.

Sofia's journey to acceptance

Before Sofia and the Prince started dating, Sofia was semi famous in her home country after her participation in the reality series Paradise Hotel and for being a semi-nude cover model for a Swedish magazine.

The two began dating in early 2010 and in the beginning the press bullied Sofia on account of her past. She has later stated that she does not regret anything from her past, because it has help shape her into the person she is today. The press also reported on an alleged feud between Sofia and Carl Philips sister, Princess Madeleine, stating that the two did not get along and that the royal family in general did not accept her because of her past. Furthermore, there were rumors about the Royal family being on the fence because of Sofia‘s past and that she was not accepted into the family by the royal family members.

Prince Carl Philip has commented on the rumors, stating that they are simply not true and that Sofia has been welcome into his family from the beginning. Of course, there has been no official statement on that but in the annual documentary „The year with the royal family“ which aired a few months ago, (the first one Sofia was a part of) Sofia described how the royal family has made her feel welcome from day one.

When Princess Estelle was christened in 2012 Sofia was one of the guests, along with Chris O‘Neill despite the fact that neither of them were engaged into the royal family at that time. That was thought to be a clear sign that Sofia (and Chris O‘Neill) were in fact already considered family. Sofia has since then, been an active participant in family events such as Princess Lilian's funeral in March 2013, the publishing of the banns of marriage between Princess Madeleine and Chris O‘Neill in May 2013, Princess Madeleine‘s wedding in June 2013 and Princess Leonore's christening in June 2014. An even stronger indicator that the royal family loves Sofia is the fact that she was on the family photo for the publishing of the banns of marriage between Princess Madeleine and Chris O‘Neill in May two years ago and that she was one of the top people on the guest list to Princess Leonore's christening last year. If that isn't evidence enough for you, consider the fact that she has been lent clothes and accessories by her future sister in law, CrownPrincess Victoria and that Princess Madeleine trusted her with her precious daughter, Princess Leonore, during the birthday celebrations for the King in April when she could just as well have turned to Prince Daniel for help who was also standing next to her.

Sofia Hellqvist and Prince Carl Philip 

Sofia‘s new role as Princess of Sweden

Sofia has transformed in the years she has dated Prince Carl Philip. So have other girls who have been in her shoes in the past, just look at Mette-Marit and Kate Middleton. Or Charlene. Things change when you marry a prince and your style budget goes from Primark to Prada. Sofia has a simple yet good sense of style and she has been lucky enough to be able to borrow clothes and accessories from her soon to be sisters in law. She has even added a Bottega Veneta „The Knot“ in her collection, just like other princesses of Europe have. Whatever the press may say about Sofia, she is a kind and generous young lady who has dedicated many years of her live to help others. She will undoubtedly continue doing so as Princess of Sweden.

The marriage between Sofia Hellqvist and Prince Carl Philip will take place in Slottskyrkan Church on Saturday 13th June 2015. As of 13th June 2015, Sofia's official title will be Her Royal Highness Princess Sofia of Sweden, Duchess of Värmland. The event will be aired live on Swedish television.

The official hashtags for the wedding are: #kungligtbröllop2015 and #royalwedding2015

Photo: Project Playground
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