Leading commentary on jewellery and watches
by Maria Doulton
The La Peregrina 16th Century Pearl Ruby and Diamond Necklace designed by Elizabeth Taylor with Al Durante of Cartier sold at Christie's 2011 sale of Elizabeth Taylor's jewels for US$11,842,500.
The BVLGARI Emerald Suite A Suite of Emerald and Diamond Jewelry, By BVLGARI Gifts from Richard Burton, 1962-1967 Necklace estimate: $1,000,000 – 1,500,000 Pendant estimate: $500,000 – 700,000 Ring estimate: $600,000 -800,000 Bracelet estimate: $300,000 – 500,000 Earrings estimate: $150,000-200,000
Liz Taylor's Cartier ruby and diamond bracelet, part of the suite of jewels given to her by her then-husband Mike Todd, sold for US$842,500 at Christie's New York.
The ruby earrings from Elizabeth Taylor's Cartier ruby suite sold for US$782,500.
The ruby and diamond necklace, the most impressive piece in the suite of Cartier jewels, sold for US$3,778,500.
A Charm Bracelet, with 20 assorted charms. From her teenage years through to adulthood, Elizabeth Taylor collected charms for her many bracelets.Estimate: $25,000 – 35,000. SOLD FOR $326,500
The Elizabeth Taylor Diamond, of 33.19 carats D Color, Potentially Internally Flawless Gift from Richard Burton, May 16, 1968. Sold for US$8.8million (estimate: US$2,500,000-3,500,000).
A Gold Necklace with ivory opera passes, circa 18th and 19th centuries. Fashioned from ivory theatre tokens, this one-of-a-kind necklace was owned by the Hollywood costume designer Edith Head Estimate: $1,500 – 2,000. SOLD FOR $314,500
The BVLGARI Emerald Necklace, estimate: $1,000,000 – 1,500,000. SOLD FOR $ 6,130,500
Bulgari Emerald Suite ring, known as the "Taylor Burton fiancée ring". Given to her in 1962, it was the first gift from Burton to Taylor. Its pre-sale estimate was US$600,000-$800,000, but it finally sold for US$3,330,500.
Pendant from the Bulgari Emerald suite, estimate: $500,000 – 700,000.SOLD FOR $6,587,500
The "Granny Suite" To mark the birth of her first grandchild in 1971 at the age of 39, Richard Burton gave Elizabeth Taylor this lion- themed set of Van Cleef & Arpels jewels. Ear pendants estimate: $25,000 – 35,000. SOLD FOR $266,500
A Pair of Diamond and Multi-Colored Sapphire “Ball” Ear Clips, by JAR Purchased in Paris, December 2001. JAR incorporated varying shades of sapphires to evoke the elusive hue of her eyes. Estimate: $100,000 – 150,000. SOLD FOR $602,500
The Mike Todd Diamond Tiara. An Antique Diamond Tiara, circa 1880 Gift from Mike Todd, 1957. He presented her with this antique diamond tiara, saying, “You are my queen.” SOLD FOR $4,226,500
he “Night of the Iguana” Brooch, by Jean Schlumberger, Tiffany & Co. Gift from Richard Burton, reminiscent of the newly-weds life in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. August 11, 1964 Estimate: $200,000 – 300,000.SOLD FOR $1,202,500
The Ping Pong Diamond Rings A Group of Three Diamond Rings Gift from Richard Burton for winning a game of ping-pong, circa 1970. Taylor won these from a bet on a game of ping pong against Burton. Estimate: $5,000-7,000 SODL FOR $134,500
The Prince of Wales Brooch A diamond brooch, circa 1935 From the Collection of the Duchess of Windsor Purchased by Elizabeth Taylor at auction, April 1987 Estimate: $400,000 – 600,000. SOLD FOR $1,314,500
A Ruby and Diamond Ring, of 8.24 carats By Van Cleef & Arpels Gift from Richard Burton, Christmas 1968 Estimate: $1,000,000 – 1,500,000. Early in their marriage, Richard Burton promised Elizabeth Taylor he would buy her a special ruby, with perfect red color. SOLD FOR $4,226,500
The Burton Wedding Bands Estimate: $6,000 – 8,000 These diamond-set wedding bands were given to Elizabeth Taylor by Richard Burton in 1964 in Montreal and in 1975, on the occasion of their second marriage in Botswana.
The BVLGARI Sapphire Sautoir by BVLGARI. Gift from Richard Burton, 1972 Estimate: $600,000 – 800,000 SOLD FOR $5,906,500
The Taj Mahal diamond, circa 1627-28, on a gold and ruby chain by Cartier, was estimated to achieve US$300-500,000 at Christie's sale of Elizabeth Taylor jewels in 2011. It eventually sold for US$8,818,500.
'The Cleopatra Mirror', a 1962 turquoise and gold mirror by Bulgari that Elizabeth Taylor acquired at the end of filming 'Cleopatra'.
Necklace from the set of Diamond and Gold “Barquerolles” Jewelry by Van Cleef & Arpels Gift from Richard Burton, 1971 Necklace estimate: $120,000 – 180,000. SOLD FOR $902,500
Elizabeth Taylor wearing the Bulgari emerald earrings that are on display at the V&A as part of the new Glamour of Italian Fashion exhibition. Photo: CORBIS.
Elizabeth Taylor wearing her Bulgari emerald suite, a gift from Richard Burton, collected over the course of many repeat trips to the jeweller on the Via Condotti in Rome.
Here is how Elizabeth Taylor wore the necklace. This photo shows her in Budapest in 1972 wearing her Bulgari sapphire sautoir with a sugarloaf cabochon sapphire of 52.72ct, a gift from Richard Burton for her 40th birthday in 1972. She later added the ring.
Christie's have revealed the main lots of Elizabeth Taylor's
jewels to be auctioned in New York this December. The sale will be
held on the 13 & 14December at Christie's in New York along
with her haute couture, accessories, art collection and
memorabilia. Where to begin with the collection of
Elizabeth Taylor's 269 jewels, the ultimate
indulgence of the glamour-puss supreme of the silver screen?
Historic, iconic, storied and even landmark have all been used to
described these jewels that are a lot more than an impressive
collection of show-stopper diamonds, garlands of emeralds and
rubies and an historically important pearl. They are as loaded with
carats as they are with intrigue, passion, caprice, whimsy,
indulgence, folly and romance - and valued in excess of $30
million. Each jewel is a titillating insight into the charmed life
and passionate love-life of one of the greatest legends of
Hollywood. From the besotted indulgence of the high-value gifts
from her lover and then twice-husband Richard Burton to the
indulgent offerings of her husband Mike Todd, each tells a
story. Take the Ping Pong rings story: at their chalet in Gstaad in
1970, Elizabeth won ten points from Richard at a game of ping pong.
Faced with the forfeit of buying her a diamond ring, he set off in
search of the smallest diamond ring but eventually the two came
home with three rings, subsequently known as the 'ping pong diamond
rings'. She wore these modest rings with the same panache as her
knuckleduster diamonds. Auction prices are bound to be frothed up
with the allure of owning a piece of Hollywood and canny Liz made
sure that her jewels were well documented. The most significant
pieces in this sale feature in a weighty coffee table tome Taylor
wrote called: "My Love Affair with Jewelry". As we can assume that
the Queen is unlikely to put her jewels under the hammer I reckon
that this will be the most exciting jewellery sale of
Hollywood royalty of the century. Read more about her love of
Bulgari jewels by clicking here and
anecdotes about her jewels by clicking here. Watch
Christie's website for the full list and images of lots.
In the meantime, catch a sight of the Hollywood diva's jewels as
they tour the world. The dates are as follows but
check Christie's website for more details and if a ticket is
needed. A portion of the proceeds of the sale and sales of select
publications will go to the Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation
(ETAF) The Collection of Elizabeth Taylor: Tour dates and locations
Moscow 15 & 16 September
London 24- 26 September
LosAngeles 13 - 16 October
Dubai 23 October Geneva 11-12
November Paris 16-17 November Hong
Kong 24-27 November New York 3-12
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