Take a glimpse at the Rare Styles of New York’s Auction Preview Week

Last week, as you can tell from my previous articles, I went auction preview hopping in New York City. It was a fantastic week of storied and iconic jewelry (read more) but as usual during the week before the rocks go on the block, I found myself awed by quite a number of single lots that will go on sale at Bonhams in New York and London, at Christie’s in New York and at Sotheby’s in New York and Geneva. So get your paddles or absentee bids ready for a few of these jewels that span different time periods. I have chosen pieces that distinctively represent the Georgian period from the Rococo influences to Portuguese styles, signed jewels from the Art Deco movement and some majestic pieces that date from the early 19th century through mid century, owned by prior nobility. Additionally, I’ve included gemstones that made my heart flutter as I held them up close and personal. I might have preferred to show them by time frame but to keep it simple; I have chosen to show them by Auction and lot number.

From The Sotheby’s Magnificent Jewels Sale, New York

Lot 107


This demi-suite in person is lightweight and like silk to hold which is unusual for a piece designed during the retro period. It also lies perfectly on the necklace and was owned by the last queen of Egypt, Queen Narriman.

Decription: 18K Gold, Citrine and Diamond Necklace and Bracelet, Sterlé, Paris

The necklace and bracelet of stylized wreath form, the bracelet enhanced by a gold link tassel, set with numerous pear-shaped citrines and one heart-shaped citrine, accented by round and single-cut diamonds weighing a total of approximately 11.00 carats.

Estimate: US $125,000-$175,000

Lot 246

A wonderful representation of a three-dimensional machine age bracelet.

Description: Platinum, 18K White Gold, Aquamarine, Sapphire and Diamond Bracelet, Mauboussin, Paris

Centering an emerald-cut aquamarine weighing approximately 45.00 carats, within a scrolling panel set with round and baguette diamonds weighing approximately 8.70 carats, completed by cone-shaped links set with round sapphires, length 6 inches, signed Mauboussin, Paris, with French assay mark and French maker’s mark for Verger Fils; circa 1940.

Estimate; US 30,000 — 50,000

From The Sotheby’s Magnificent Jewels and Noble Jewels Sale, Geneva

Lot 259


Throughout the 18th through mid-20th century—convertible jewelry created at least two looks in one—as in this Cartier example. 

Description: Pair of sapphire and diamond clips/bangle combination, Cartier.

Each clip of floral design set with oval and cushion-shaped sapphires highlighted with brilliant-cut diamonds, may be worn as a bangle with an additional fittings to be worn as separate clips. Signed Cartier, French assay marks, case signed Cartier.

Estimate: US  $79,000-139,000

Lot 344


Talk about statement necklaces. This one is red-carpet ready!

Provenance: From The Collection Of A Roman Princely Family

Description: Sapphire and diamond necklace, circa 1880. Set with cushion, oval and pear-shaped sapphires highlighted with cushion-shaped, circular, single-cut and rose diamonds,

Estimate: US $300,000-500,000

Lot 357

Every woman should own a rivière. This particular one is awe-inspiring.

Provenance: Formerly in the Collection of Anna Murat, Princess de Poix (1841-1924), Thence by descent.

Description: Impressive diamond rivière, mid-19th century. Composed of a graduated line of pinched-collet-set circular-cut and cushion-shaped diamonds. Fitted case signed Janesich.

Estimate: US $800,000-1,400,000


Lot 374



This Lacloche bracelet proved to be love at first sight for me. I spotted it while still walking over to the case that held it and then when I wrapped it around my wrist, it felt delicate and as airy and heavenly as it appears  Then there is the masterful openwork and creation of the roses from my most treasured stone, rubies and the story which hit my sentimental spot when I read that the bracelet stayed in the family of the man who originally purchased it.

Provenance: This bracelet was purchased at the Exposition internationale des arts décoratifs et industriels modernes in Paris in 1925 by the grandfather of the present owner.

Description: Attractive and rare ruby, onyx and diamond bracelet, Lacloche, circa 1925. Of open work design, decorated with rose motifs set with cabochon rubies and onyx, and millegrain-set with circular, single-cut and rose diamonds. Signed Lacloche, French assay mark. Accompanied by a photocopy of the original drawing, stamped Anc. Etabts Lacloche and dated 27 Oct. 1925.

Estimate: owner. US $300,000-500,000

In the Sotheby’s Magnificent Jewels and Noble Jewels catalog, it states that The ‘Apollo and Artemis Diamonds’ are the most important earrings ever to appear at auction. They are being sold individually but “when considered as a pair, they enter a class of their own.”

Lot 377

Description: The pear-shaped fancy vivid blue diamond of truly outstanding color and purity weighing 14.54 carats, mounted as an earring with a pear-shaped and a brilliant-cut diamond, post fitting. Accompanied by GIA report stating that the diamond is Fancy Vivid Blue, Natural Color, and Internally Flawless.

Estimate: US$ 38,000,000-50,000,000

Lot 378

Description: The pear-shaped fancy intense pink diamond of natural color weighing 16.00 carats, mounted as an earring with a pear-shaped and a brilliant-cut diamond, post fitting. It too is accompanied by GIA report, stating that the diamond is Fancy Intense Pink, Natural Color, and VVS2 Clarity.

Estimate: US$ 12,500,000-18,000,000

From The Bonhams Fine Jewelry Sale, New York

Lot 2

The design of this necklace is representative of the late Victorian era when Queen Victoria came out of mourning. It has the natural motifs of the earlier romantic period.

Description: An Antique Diamond And Natural Pearl Necklace, circa 1885.

Designed as graduated openwork sections of old mine-cut diamonds in a floral motif, enhanced by rose-cut diamonds, suspending a natural semi-baroque pearl; estimated total diamond weight: 30.00 carats; mounted in silver and silver topped 14k gold.

Estimate: US$ 25,000 – 35,000

Lot 132


The Art Deco clip brooch has come back into style and they also seemed to come out of estates and safes to make a strong showing at the auction houses. From geometric to the more the more sculptural looks of the 1930s, in all diamonds or set with precious gemstones like this exquisite Cartier example.

Description: A Fine Ruby And Diamond Clip Brooch, Cartier, circa 1935.

Of geometric design, centering a marquise mixed-cut ruby, weighing 3.54 carats, amid an openwork pavé-set frame of round brilliant-cut diamonds, with baguette-cut diamond accents, further enhanced by six round cabochon rubies, topped with sugarloaf rubies and square-shaped diamonds; signed Cartier, no.7173; estimated total diamond weight: 5.15 carats, mounted in platinum

Estimate: US$ 300,000 – 400,000

From The Bonhams Fine Jewellery Sale, London

Lot 7

These Portuguese necklaces of the Georgian time period are extremely rare,. This is one of the best that I have seen in a long time.

Description: An Early 18th Century Gold And Diamond Necklace, Portuguese

Designed as a series of ribbon-bow motif links suspending a girandole fringe, the central larger girandole with an additional foliate link, and set throughout with table and rose-cut diamonds in closed-back collet settings. In original fitted case by Franklin, 37 Duke Street, London
US$ 13,000 – 19,000

Lot 29


A creative example of a tiara that transforms into three separate brooches. The ingenuity of design creates fittings which convert the emerald and diamond regal piece.

Description: An Emerald And Diamond Tiara, first half of 20th century.

Composed of three flower head motifs, mounted en tremblant, the largest to the centre, set throughout with old brilliant-cut diamonds and pear-shaped emerald stamens, the three flower head motifs detach to form separate brooches, diamonds approximately 30.50 total carat weight.
Estimate: US$ 15,000 – 19,000

From The Christie’s Magnificent Jewels Sale, New York

Lot 327



It’s so rare to find a pair of matching bracelets. They were often split to give to different members of a family. These are also completely evocative of the time period. Additionally they were designed covert to be worn as a choker. Every aspect of these bracelets makes it an epic lot.

Description: An Important Pair Of Art Deco Diamond Bracelets, By Cartier
Each composed of three independent circular, navette, marquise and baguette-cut diamond lines, intersected by pavé-set diamond sculpted motifs, circa 1930, mounted in platinum, may also be worn as a choker of 13¼ ins.
Each signed Cartier, nos. 8410, 8354, 822

Estimate: USD 700,000 – USD 1,000,000

Lot 23 

A perfect example of jewelry that breaks the mold of expectation. 

Description: A Pair Of Art Deco Diamond And Enamel ‘King Of Hearts’ And ‘Queen Of Hearts’ Clip Brooches, By Cartier
Each with a painted face and body in red, white, black and blue enamel to the diamond crown, depicting the king and queen of hearts, circa 1935. French assay marks for platinum and 18K gold. Each signed Cartier, Paris.

Estimate: USD 15,000 – USD 20,000

Lot 57

These early pendeloque styles are dream earrings for all Georgian jewelry lovers.

Description: A Pair Of Antique Diamond Ear Pendants
Each suspending a pendant designed as a pear-shaped rose-cut diamond openwork plaque, to the diamond bow spacer and oval-shaped old-cut diamond cluster surmount, circa 1780, mounted in silver and gold.

Estimate: USD 10,000 – USD 15,000

Lot 328


A bracelet that combines feminine elegance with sophisticated pared down lines culminating in a bracelet that borrows elements from previous times and works them into the modern lines of Art Deco.

Description: An Elegant Art Deco Sapphire, Diamond And Seed Pearl Bracelet, By Cartier
Centering upon a square-cut sapphire, weighing approximately 35.53 carats, flanked on either side by twin baguette-cut diamonds, circular-cut diamond rectangular links and calibré-cut sapphire spacers, joined to the six-strand seed pearl bracelet, enhanced by a clasp of similar design, circa 1925, mounted in platinum. Signed Cartier.

Estimate: USD 600,000 – USD 800,000

Photos courtesy of ©Sotheby’s ©Christie’s ©Bonham’s

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