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Entries in christies jewelry auction (3)

Book Review: Christie's The Jewellery Archives Revealed

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Have you ever dreamed of going into the vaults and archives of the infamous, world-renowned auction house Christie's?! I feel like I dream about that on a daily basis and although I've never gotten my chance, author Vincent Meylan may hold the key to unlocking that door with his latest book called Christie's The Jewellery Archives Revealed. In it, he chronicles some of the most headlining jewelry auctions--from British Royalty jewels, to Elizabeth Taylor's collection, and everything in between. Mr. Meylan had insider's access to the Christie's archives to research for this book, where he brings hundreds of color illustrations, including more than 100 original documents reproduced just for the pages of this tome. 

The history behind Christie's is even more extensive than what I thought--with their first sale being on December 5, 1766! It is interesting to read that during this revolutionary time, the events that took place may have actually benefited Christie's because so many people of royalty were being sent to the guillotine. Chapter two has quite the attention-grabbing title of "Murdered Queens." The extensive stories behind each historical piece are quite fascinating, and I am thoroughly enjoying the paintings of the royals as well as photos of the jewels which illustrate the book. It gives you insight into European royalty as well, including history and intriquing stories behind many of their ill-fated lives. 

Chapter 11 is a favorite, titled "Diamonds are Christie's Best Friends," it chronicles a few of the top-selling, biggest, rarest and most stunning diamonds to ever grace Christie's auction floor. This chapter opens up about how mysterious and extensive their diamond sales were over the past couple centuries. The earliest diamond consignments reveal not much on where they came from...and in the same breadth, where did they end up once sold?  A trio of rubies, for example, went up for auction in 1891. The weight and rarity of any one of these, if they were to resurface, would shatter any record ever set. So astonishing.

Aside from the last chapter, it is noteworthy to check out the Appendix. It lists significant names of pieces/collections that went up for auction by year, starting with the year 1767. It is a great, quick reference as well as a "who's who" amongst those who sold pieces through Christie's.

The auction world is quite mysterious, legendary and totally unique. It is one of my favorite parts of my jewelry hobby. This book encompasses all this and more, and should you find yourself daydreaming of all the jaw-dropping jewels that once passed through Christie's auction house--you might want to buy yourself this book to know exactly how incredible they truly are!

To purchase your own copy of Christie's The Jewellery Archives Revealed, click below:

The New York Sale: Christie's October Jewels Auction

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Just took a look at Christie's eCatalogue for their New York Jewels Sale in October.  There are a lot of outstanding pieces of jewelry in the upcoming sale--like the Bvlgari Blue, some amazing JAR pieces, many huge diamond rings, and the Vanderbilt diamond necklace. The impeccable diamond necklace (above) features detachable pear-shaped diamonds, all set in platinum.  Below is the JAR violet ring crafted in pink sapphire. Below that is a cat's eye chrysoberyl ring designed by Oscar Heyman and Brothers mounted in 18k yellow gold and platinum. And the Bvlgari Blue, one of the rarest blue diamonds to date (vivid blue), is set to be sold at Christie's. The ring is projected to go for $15 million! Take a look at some of the highlights from the catalogue, and if you are enticed check out the entire 400 page spread.

 

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Christie's Jewels The New York Sale, Results

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The New York Sale at Christie's Auction House was this past Thursday, April 22, 2010.  The sale featured some amazing, once-in-a-lifetime jewelry, like the above Emerald Brooch once belonging to Catherine the Great as well as a large 39.55 carat cushion cut diamond ring once owned by Emperor Maximilian.  The results are up, where you can view them online--every piece of jewelry that was auctioned off has a picture, description, estimated price, and the actual price it brought.  Not only is all this information very interesting, but it can also educate you with jewelry terms you may not know since Christie's does a great job describing each piece, right down to the cuts of each stone.  

The Catherine the Great Emerald brooch features a hexagonal-cut emerald, within an openwork two-tiered rose-cut diamond surround, bordered by old mine-cut diamonds, mounted in silver-topped gold, mid 18th century.  It sold at Christie's for $1,650,500.00  

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Above is the Emperor Maximilian Diamond ring!  It is 39.55 carats, cushion cut, I color and VS-1 clarity, with a strong blue fluorescence.  It sold at Christie's for $1,762,500.00

Here are some results of other pieces that I found of interest:

 

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I thought this Art Deco bracelet is gorgeous. It is circa 1930 and features a cabochon cut sapphire, diamonds, and rays of calibre cut sapphires extending out from the center in a neat design. The bracelet is said to have once belonged to King Zog of Albania. It sold for $35,000 jadechristies

These jadeite and diamond ear pendants from Tiffany & Co. sold for double the highest estimate! They certainly are beautiful, with the carved jadeite drops. Price realized: $12,500 christiesbrooch

This Art Deco brooch circa 1925 is so stunning! It features a striking combination of french cut rubies, onyx, and diamonds set in platinum. Christie's sold this piece for $11,875

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Christie's Auction house website, link to catalogue for 4/22/10 sale, follow Christie's on Twitter!