Tiffany times two in spring jewellery sales
Diamonds, vintage emeralds and a block of silver among star lots
Tiffany diamond cluster ring at John Weldon Auctioneers (€3,000 to €5,000)
If pieces of jewellery could talk, they would have some dramatic tales to tell. Take the two Tiffany rings which are being sold by John Weldon Auctioneers on Tuesday (April 25th). Bought together in the Tiffany shop in Brown Thomas, Grafton Street for €18,726, they’re being offered by Weldon’s as two separate lots with Lot 74, a diamond cluster, carrying an estimate of €3,000 to €5,000 while Lot 75, a full eternity ring, has a guide price of €500 to €700.
“For someone to have gone off and spent €18,000 on two rings is not terribly unusual,” says John Weldon, who predicts a huge amount of interest in the two pieces. “They’ll be sold before I even start – it’s a question of where they’re going to finish up, really.”
Another big-name piece is Lot 76, an 18-carat gold Cartier flower brooch hallmarked London 1955 and weighing some 36 grams, comes with a delivery docket dated 1957. It carries an estimate of €3,000–€4,000: another potential bargain, says Weldon, who notes that a similar brooch, with matching earrings, is coming up for auction at Bonham’s of London this week – at twice the price.
With brooches going in and out of fashion at an unpredictable rate, it might be wise to invest in a piece of jewellery such as Lot 169, a striking diamond and emerald confection bearing the maker’s name Judd which, thanks to a top which folds down and a pin on the back, can be worn either around the neck on a chain or as a brooch on a lapel. It has an estimate of €1,500–€2,500.
The sale has 500 lots in total, including an array of Waterford crystal from a shop which has closed down. It will also feature a kilo bar which, though literally worth its weight in silver, may go for considerably more than its guide price of €500–€800. “We had eight of these about a year ago and one of them made €1,750,” says Weldon. “People paid for it as an antiquity and not simply a dead weight of precious metal – so it will be interesting to see how this one goes.”
O’Reilly’s gears up
Meanwhile, digital technology meets traditional artistry as O’Reilly’s gears up for its sale of more than 400 lots of jewellery, watches and silver on Wednesday (April 26th) with the launch of a brand-new website which allows viewers to search the catalogue, zoom in on images, and place bids online. “People can see the pieces up close and in detail,” says O’Reilly’s gem expert Natasha Sherling. O’Reilly’s has also launched itself on to Instagram, where its page features many of the pieces actually being worn; “it takes them out of the catalogue and into the world”, Sherling says.
Diamond solitaire rings are a strong feature of this sale, with the highest estimate of €29,000–€30,000 going to Lot 299, a three-carat solitaire stone set in platinum. Emeralds are another recurring theme: Lot 307, an emerald and diamond cluster ring, has an estimate of €17,000–€17,500 while Lot 157, an art deco emerald and diamond pendant by Hallberg of Sweden, carries an estimate of €10,000–€11,000.
“It’s coming into the wedding season, and we have lots of particularly high-quality rings and earrings, as well as accent pieces for wedding dresses – pearls, a beautiful diamond bracelet by Chanel and some really nice Cartier pieces,” says Sherling. “There are also some heavy gold bracelets, which don’t come up very often. They have a chunky retro feel and are very wearable.” Lot 227 is a ruby and diamond flexible-plaited 18-carat yellow gold cuff bracelet (€3,500–€3,700) while Lot 228 is a rose gold flexible link bracelet (€2,400–€2,600).
For a 1960s cocktail-party vibe there’s Lot 306 (€6,000–€7,000) a pair of platinum-mounted ruby, sapphire, aquamarine and diamond earrings whose delicate colour palette is perfect for early summer. At the more modest end of the pricing scale Lot 34 is a simple diamond cluster pendant on a chain in 18-carat white gold (€200–€240), while anyone with a love of horses will enjoy Lot 63, a tiny brooch which depicts a colourful enamel jockey riding a rose-cut diamond horse (€700–€750).
John Weldon Auctioneers, Cow’s Lane, Temple Bar, Dublin 8. Sale Tuesday 25th at 2pm: viewing starts Saturday 22nd at noon. See jwa.ie
O’Reilly’s Fine Art, 126 Francis Street, Dublin 8. Sale Wednesday 26th at 1pm: viewing times are tomorrow (April 23rd) noon to 4pm, Tuesday (April 25th) 11am-5pm and morning of sale (10am – 12:30pm). See oreillysfineart.com