Taylor Swift isn’t the only one feeling bejeweled lately.
At its California Jewels sale this week, Bonhams amassed a whopping $1.5 million in sales, with several lots exceeding the initial estimates placed on them. Of note, the highest-selling piece—a platinum, sapphire, and diamond ring that hammered down for $127,500—surpassed its high estimate by four times. And a platinum, ruby, and diamond ring crossed the block for $47,360, seven times more than expected.
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“California Jewels had significant and curated private collections in the auction, such as the exquisite jewelry from J.E. Caldwell & Co., an American brand founded in 1868, who produced some of the finest examples of American Belle Époque, Art Nouveau and Art Deco designs,” Emily Waterfall, the director of Bonhams’ jewelry department in Los Angeles, said in a statement. “It is no surprise that the Art Deco pieces performed so well with their extraordinary craftsmanship and design which makes them both wearable and highly sought-after pieces of jewelry in today’s market.”
The Ruser sapphire ring features an octagonal step-cut sapphire from Sri Lanka that weighs an impressive 21.15 carats. That stone is framed by three carats of round diamonds, with additional round diamonds along the shank. Meanwhile, the ruby ring came from the Art Deco collection of J.E. Caldwell & Co., and dates back to the 1920s.
Other highlights of the California Jewels auction included a J.E. Caldwell & Co. fancy intense yellow diamond and diamond ring from the 1940s. That piece beat its high estimate by more than three times, reaching a final total of $108,450. The third-most-expensive item sold was a $64,000 platinum and diamond ring with a central round brilliant diamond weighing 3.34 carats. And a Boucheron silver-topped-gold, blue enamel, and diamond bracelet hammered down for $35,840. That accessory dates back to the late 1800s, and features floral and foliate motifs with rose-cut diamonds.
While this most recent Bonhams sale was a success for the auction house, with 100 percent sold by value, it comes on the back of one of the company’s most notable jewelry sales to date: a rare emerald and diamond Cartier bracelet that hammered down for an eye-popping $3.2 million last year. That piece similarly exceeded expectations, showing that Bonhams has a track record of presenting jewels that buyers find increasingly valuable.
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