AUCTIONS – Burmese sapphire achieves three times estimate at Bonhams New York Jewels Sale

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Exceptionally rare 1930s Verdura for Chanel gem-set and enamel ‘Maltese cross’ cuff achieves double its pre-sale estimate

New York  Bonhams New York Jewelry sale on December 4 saw impressive results for exceptional loose diamonds and gemstones from important private collections including the 21-lot Stewart Blay collection. The exceptional jewels doubled the pre-sale estimate to achieve US$1.5 million against a pre-sale estimate of US$724,300. The collection included the the top lot of a loose cushion-cut sapphire of Burmese origin, weighing 11.87 carats which achieved US$660,900, three times its pre-sale estimate.

AUCTIONS – Burmese sapphire achieves three times estimate at Bonhams New York Jewels Sale

Picture courtesy of Bonhams

Another notable lot was a rare 1930s Chanel gem-set and enamel ‘Maltese cross’ cuff attributed to Verdura for Chanel, originally owned by the “First Lady of American Theatre” actress Helen Hayes MacArthur (1900 –1993). The cuff sold for US$432,300, double its pre-sale estimate.

AUCTIONS – Burmese sapphire achieves three times estimate at Bonhams New York Jewels Sale

Picture courtesy of Bonhams

The 257-lot sale made a total of US$7,362,434 with 88% sold by lot and 97% sold by value.

Caroline Morrissey, Bonhams Director and Head of Jewelry, New York, said: “The New York Jewelry sale saw impressive results for the fancy diamonds together with the exceptional collection of colored gemstones.

“The rare 1930s Chanel gem-set and enamel ‘Maltese cross’ cuff attributed to Verdura for Chanel, formerly owned by American actress Helen Hayes MacArthur, achieved double its pre-sale estimate. It was an honor to bring such a rare piece with impeccable provenance to auction for the first time.”

Highlights of the sale included:

  • A loose Kashmir sapphire of cushion-cut, weighing 3.91 carats, achieved US$343,400 more than its pre-sale estimate.
  • A three stone fancy intense blue diamond ring of 1.22 carats fancy intense blue color, VSI clarity, 0.35 carats fancy blue color, VS2 clarity, and 0.53 fancy intense blue color of VS2 clarity, sold for US$381,500.