PASADENA, Calif. – John Moran Auctioneers’ May 2, HQ Jewelry Auction is set to impress, blooming with gorgeous jewels freshly gathered from estates and private collections. Diamonds, colored gemstones, pearls and more make up the 250 lots of antique, vintage and retro pieces, including Victorian, Edwardian and Art Deco, and creations by top makers such as Van Cleef & Arpels, Cartier, Tiffany, Vedura, Ippolita and Tacori.
LiveAuctioneers.com will provide Internet live bidding. Watches, luxury goods, costume jewelry and exquisite decorative items for the home complete the rich array, which will be presented in two sessions. Every price point is represented, though the level of quality is consistently high throughout the expertly vetted selection.
A pearl necklace by Harry Winston features an 18K gold and diamond centerpiece set with a spectacular Ceylon sapphire. The rectangular-cut stone measures an astonishing 24 carats. Sapphires of this size are a rarity, and this stone is further distinguished by its rich, velvety hue and its virtual lack of inclusions. The necklace is the sale’s top lot by value, carrying an estimate of $70,000-$90,000.
Moran’s is also delighted to present two wonderful pieces by Verdura: a whimsical camel brooch, the camel’s body set with a large baroque pearl and topped with a crown made from a yellow sapphire (estimate: $8,000-$10,000) and a lion’s paw-shell brooch / necklace (estimate: $10,000-$15,000). The latter is based on one of Verdura’s best-known designs, after the original made for Millicent Rogers in 1940, consisting of an actual shell set with lines diamonds to imitate sea foam. The present brooch includes sapphire cabochons whose deep blue color dramatically complements the orange of the shell. Duke Fulco de Verdura was one of the most important jewelry designers of the 20th century, responsible for many innovative looks that today, 35 years after his death, remain modern classics. His career was set in motion in 1925, when he met Coco Chanel at a party given by his good friends Cole and Linda Porter. After a few years working for Chanel, during which he firmly established himself as a favorite of society luminaries and celebrities and created several iconic designs, such as the Byzantine-inspired Maltese Cross cuffs that Chanel made a trademark element of her own look, Verdura settled in America, opening a shop in New York in 1939. Though he sold the business in 1973, five years before his death, his name remains synonymous with joyful exuberance and timeless glamour, his designs as sought-after as ever.
Several other items in the sale stand out for their distinctive designs or antique charm, among them:
– A sinuous Art Nouveau diamond and platinum pendant necklace (estimate: $2,000-$3,000);
– A late Edwardian platinum ring set with three cultured pearls ($1,500-$3,000);
– An adorable 18K gold tiger brooch, his eyes set with a sapphire, his collar set with a line of diamonds, one foot set with a larger diamond (estimate: $400-$600);
– An antique diamond and platinum lorgnette, circa 1900 (estimate: $4,000-$6,000);
– A simple but stunning jadeite cabochon and diamond ring (estimate: $8,000-$12,000).
Buyers will also find high-quality jewelry box staples such as diamond solitaire rings (including a 4.40-carat rectangular-cut estimated at $18,000-$22,000), diamond line bracelets, and emerald, sapphire and diamond earrings and brooches, and a selection of women’s and men’s watches. The latter category is headed by a limited edition Vacheron Constantin 18K white gold automatic wristwatch offered for $20,000-$30,000. A 1920s Audemars Piguet diamond and platinum wristwatch lends an elegant dash of Art Deco style, for an estimated $2,500-$4,500.
Luxury items include crystal minaudiéres and other accessories by Judith Lieber, vintage Louis Vuitton trunks, and several classic Hermes silk scarves from the 1950s forward. A selection of exquisite small decorative items encompasses a Tiffany & Co Art Deco nephrite jade eight-day desk clock, and several antique Continental boxes, including German and French mechanical singing bird boxes, glass paperweights from Baccarat, Perthshire and Whitefriars and American makers Paul Stankard and Rick Ayotte, and a large collection of fanciful boxes, frames and fish figurines by Jay Strongwater.
This will be the second of Moran’s “HQ” sales, so-called because they are conducted at Moran’s headquarters in Altadena, rather than at the company’s usual larger venue, the Pasadena Convention Center. John Moran’s headquarters are located at 735 W. Woodbury Road, Altadena, CA 91001.
The sale is scheduled to begin at 3 p.m. PDT on Tuesday, May 21. The catalog can be viewed by visiting www.JohnMoran.com.
Consignment inquiries are always welcome. Interested parties are encouraged to contact John Moran Auctioneers directly at: firstname.lastname@example.org or 626-793-1833.
View the fully illustrated catalog and sign up to bid absentee or live via the Internet at www.LiveAuctioneers.com.
ADDITIONAL LOTS OF NOTE