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Holiday treasures at Sotheby's New York: Unwrap magnificent jewels this December
A Superb Ruby and Colored Diamond Ring. Centering an oval-shaped ruby weighing 8.11 carats, framed by oval-shaped diamonds of yellow hue, the band further pavé-set with round diamonds of yellow hue. Estimate $2.5/ 3.5 million. Courtesy Sotheby’s.

NEW YORK, NY.- Just in time for the holidays, Sotheby’s Magnificent Jewels sale is set to take place on 4 December. Leading the sale is a rare and mesmerizing pear-shaped 10.62-carat Fancy Vivid Blue Diamond, estimated at $20/30 million. In addition to diamonds and gemstones of the very highest quality, the event will showcase signed jewels with extraordinary provenance, headlined by the collections of Barbara Sinatra, Margaretta “Happy” Rockefeller, and several distinguished private collections. Open to the public on 30 November, the sale will be presented alongside Sotheby’s exhibitions of Important Watches and Lady Blue Eyes: Property of Barbara and Frank Sinatra.

Property from a Distinguished Private European Collection
A Highly Important Fancy Vivid Blue Diamond Ring
Weighing 10.62 carats, VVS1 clarity
Estimate $20/30 million

Over the centuries, blue diamonds have evoked more mystery and enchantment than those of any other color, eliciting a passion among collectors that can lead to obsession for one of the scarcest materials on earth.

The present diamond exhibits a pure blue hue and boasts a saturation so remarkable as to achieve a Fancy Vivid rating by the Gemological Institute of America (GIA). The stone’s exquisite pear cut accentuates its exceptional saturation, placing it in a rareified category among the world’s greatest colored diamonds.

• An Impressive Diamond Ring, Harry Winston
Weighing 51.52 carats, F color, Internally Flawless
Estimate $3.5/4.5 million

• An Important Diamond Ring
Weighing 25.03 carats, D color, Flawless
Estimate $2.9/3.5 million

• An Important Fancy Intense Purple-Pink Diamond and Diamond Ring
Weighing 2.76 carats, Natural Color, VVS1 clarity
Estimate $1.3/1.6 million

• Property from the Collection of Charlotte Ford
Pair of Diamond Pendant-Earclips, Harry Winston
Weighing 9.63, E Color, VS2 clarity and 7.66 carats, D color, VS2 clarity
Estimate $500/700,000

"Being Mrs. Frank Sinatra took some getting used to, but my romantic husband went out of his way to make me feel loved and cherished every day, taking the time to express his feelings. He turned every day into Christmas."

Sotheby’s will be offering a spectacular selection of Barbara Sinatra’s personal jewelry collection. The collection reflects her dynamic lifestyle with Frank, from daytime gold pieces by Marina B. worn at Palm Springs lunches and tennis events to the ultra-glamorous diamond and gemstone pieces by Van Cleef & Arpels that she wore at award shows, concerts and social engagements with Frank and their friends. Many of the pieces were fashioned to Barbara’s personal specifications by her jewelers of choice, and a number of them were picked out and gifted to Barbara by Mr. Sinatra himself, who enjoyed surprising his wife with luxurious jewels and gemstones no matter the occasion. The collection is highlighted by a series of ‘Mystery-Set’ jewels by Van Cleef & Arpels, including a Pair of Ruby and Diamond Pendant-Earclips (estimate $100/150,000), a Ruby and Diamond Bracelet (estimate $150/250,000) and a Diamond Bracelet (estimate $80/120,000).

The group is led by an emerald-cut 20.60-carat Diamond Engagement Ring, which according to her memoir, was given to her at a pivotal moment in the couple’s four year courtship (estimate $1/1.5 million). Frank threw two huge jewels onto the bed and told her to pick one. Once her chosen stone had been set, he dropped it into her glass of champagne, but he still hadn’t proposed – until she made him choose which finger to put it on. Mrs. Sinatra remarks in her memoir, “I loved the romanticism of it all – the flowers, the size of the stones, placing my ring in a glass of champagne. A born performer, that was the only way he knew to show what was really in his heart.”


• A Superb No-Heat Burmese Ruby and Colored Diamond Ring
Weighing 8.11 carats
Estimate $2.5/3.5 million

• An Exceptional No-Heat Kashmir Sapphire and Diamond Ring
Weighing 16.46 carats
Estimate $1.3/1.8 million

• An Exceptional No Oil Colombian Emerald and Diamond Ring, Tiffany & Co.
Weighing 12.03 carats
Estimate $1/1.5 million

Catharine Becket, Head of Magnificent Jewels, New York, commented: “We are pleased to be presenting our second annual “impossible collection” of iconic jewels in our Magnificent Jewels auction. The pieces featured in this collection each possess a number of characteristics that qualify them iconic status: rarity, authorship, provenance, artistry, and of course, significant gemstones. It is an assemblage of jewels that represents connoisseurship at the highest level, with designs favored by notable Royals, Hollywood starlets, It Girls and other glamorous women. Highlights include an incredibly rare ruby, sapphire and diamond ‘Plumes’ necklace designed by Jean Schlumberger for Tiffany & Co., an enchanting star sapphire, sapphire, emerald, and diamond ‘Panthère’ clip-brooch by Cartier, and a masterfully-crafted moonstone, sapphire and diamond pendant-necklace designed by Louis Comfort Tiffany.”

This December, Sotheby’s is privileged to offer jewels from the collection of Happy Rockefeller. From a prominent main-line Philadelphia family, her life was infused with a generous spirit of volunteerism; starting in the war years as a driver for the Women’s Volunteer Service, later on numerous campaign trails for Nelson, as an outspoken advocate for breast cancer awareness, as President of the Board of the Saratoga Performing Arts Center, and finally, as an official delegate to the United Nations. As a woman in the public eye, Happy was always appropriate, and this attentiveness was carried through to her jewelry: bold, gold jewels for daytime and formal diamond jewels for evening.

Happy’s collection bridges the high glamour of the 1960s and the playful exoticism of the 1970s, revealing a collector who enjoyed jewelry and appreciated the process of curating. Like the artworks she acquired with her husband, Nelson Aldrich Rockefeller, there is an appreciation for sculptural forms, as seen in her tumbled sapphire and emerald bracelet, as well as in her openwork gold bead pieces. The centerpiece of the offering is a stunning group of jewels by Van Cleef & Arpels – many of which were created especially for Happy by “special order.” The result of this collaboration is a selection of jewels that are cohesive, visually-interesting and truly one-of-a-kind.

The December sale also features a treasure trove of jewels from the Property of A Prominent American Philanthropist. Composed of 39 pieces, the collection represents decades of innovative design from some of the most sought-after jewelers including Cartier, Tiffany & Co. and Van Cleef & Arpels. Leading this distinguished group are two stunning diamond creations by Van Cleef & Arpels: An Elegant Diamond ‘Boreal’ Necklace (estimate $800/1.2 million) composed of over 121-carats of diamonds, and a Pair of Diamond Pendant-Earclips (estimate $600/800,000). The collection is completed by a Van Cleef & Arpels Ruby and Diamond suite, featuring a ring, earrings, brooch, bracelet and necklace.

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