Tuesday, June 4, 2024

Sotheby’s Signed Jewels Auction Falls Short of Expectations

The recent signed jewels auction at Sotheby’s in New York, boasting iconic pieces from renowned brands like Cartier and Bulgari, didn’t quite meet the lofty expectations set by the auction house.


On March 7, Sotheby’s showcased over 200 pieces in its “From the Vault: Exceptional Signed Jewels” sale, managing to accumulate approximately $8.4 million in sales, according to reports from Sotheby’s.


However, the auction saw only 51 percent of the lots finding buyers. Notably, the lot with the highest pre-sale estimate was withdrawn, although Sotheby’s declined to provide specific reasons for this decision.

Among the disappointments were several top lots failing to attract bids. Notable among these was an 18-karat white gold Asprey necklace and earrings set adorned with fancy vivid yellow round diamonds, which had a pre-sale estimate ranging from $2 million to $3 million.

Six out of the top 10 lots, projected to fetch high prices, remained unsold. These included a Harry Winston platinum and diamond necklace with a pre-sale estimate of $800,000 to $1.2 million.

Not all was gloomy, however. The top-selling lot was a 41.02-carat cut-cornered rectangular modified brilliant-cut fancy intense yellow diamond ring, fetching $1 million, well within its estimated range.

Following closely was a Van Cleef & Arpels “Zip” necklace and earclips set from the 1950s, crafted in 18-karat gold and platinum and set with diamonds, which sold for $482,600, staying within its pre-sale estimated range of $400,000 to $600,000.

Next in line was a Bulgari “Serpenti” necklace set with round diamonds and pear-shaped diamond eyes, which sold for $406,400, also within its estimated range.

Another highlight was a “mystery set” ruby and diamond clip-brooch from Van Cleef & Arpels, fetching $215,900, within its pre-sale estimated range.

The auction also featured classics like the Cartier Panthère cuff bracelet, adorned with round diamonds, emerald eyes, and an onyx nose, which sold for $114,300, within its pre-sale estimate.

Despite some lots exceeding expectations, like the Schlumberger for Tiffany & Co. necklace, which sold for $101,600, surpassing its pre-sale estimate by a considerable margin, the overall outcome fell short of Sotheby’s hopes.


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