John Moran Auctioneers’ Spring Jewelry and Luxury Auction Dazzles Buyers, Delights Sellers • Sell-through rate of 98% confirms strong market for fresh-to-the-market property from estates and private collections
• Jade and coral prove some of the evening’s biggest-ticket items, outperformin
News-Antique.com - Jun 24,2014 - Altadena, CA—On May 20th John Moran Auctioneers once again hosted their semi-annual HQ Fine Jewelry and Luxury Auction at their headquarters in Altadena, CA. Buyers, one third of whom bid through one of three available online bidding platforms, were evidently thrilled by the wide array of offerings, buying 98% of the 324 lots, and consigners were likewise pleased with the competitive prices they paid. Among the selections of fine jewelry filling the majority of the catalog, buyers found practical, wearable pieces with character, while the great finds and hidden gems among the group lots of costume jewelry sold later in the evening kept them firmly attached to their seats for the duration of the four-hour sale.
Fun rings with character and style certainly drew a lot of attention during the preview. One such piece, a curious carved shell cameo ring dating to circa 1890, featured a male mask depicted in frontal and left and right profile views simultaneously. Initially estimated to realize $600 -$800, it incited some friendly competition, ultimately going home with a floor bidder for $1680 (all prices include 20% buyer’s premium). Another late 19th century ring, designed in the coveted Renaissance Revival style with a central baroque pearl flanked by two female ship’s mastheads, wooed bidders with its siren’s song to a $9000 price tag, well over the $1500 - $2500 estimate).
A number of gorgeous diamond rings tempted those looking to make a statement with sparkle. One offered midway through the sale featured an impressive central 8.54-carat diamond, graded G color and SI1 clarity and set in platinum. Conservatively estimated to sell for $90,000 - $110,000, it realized $204,000.
Jade and coral certainly made a splash at the May 20th auction. A coral, diamond and gold necklace centered by a smiling, 18K-gold dragon’s head set with diamonds and colored gemstone eyes earned a formidable $15,600 (estimate: $6000 - $8000). A collection of jewelry featuring gold bracelets, earrings, and pendants set with jade and coral incited a bidding war among absentee and floor buyers, ending only when a floor buyer raised his paddle at the $3000 mark (estimate: $600 - $800).
Big names were also well represented and much appreciated. Possibly the most anticipated lot was an assembled set of hexagonal-cut amethyst and circular-cut diamond jewelry, comprising a brooch by Jean Schlumberger and a matched pair of ear clips by David Webb. These spectacular pieces found a new home with a floor bidder for $19,200, comfortably surpassing the estimate of $8000 - $12,000. Always a crowd favorite, animals also performed well. A Van Cleef and Arpels lion brooch fetched $3600 (estimate: $1500 - $2500). A set of Cartier jewelry, comprising a gold “LOVE” bangle, complete with gold-toned screwdriver, and a classic ‘’rolling’’ ring, inspired a number of bidders to leave absentee bids, however the victor was a determined online buyer who paid $4612.50 (estimate: $1000 - $1500).
Decidedly, the most anticipated luxury accessory offered was the ostrich skin Hermes Kelly bag in the desirable camel hue with