Rare Blue Diamond Sells at Bonham’s for £2,685,000 in Fierce Bidding; Andrew Grima Jewellery Achieves Top Prices

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The pear-shaped diamond, weighing 4.03 carats, was widely admired by potential buyers around the globe and became the subject of a fierce bidding frenzy before it finally went under the hammer, selling to Graff Diamonds for $853,203 price per carat.

Staying with coloured diamonds, the second headline lot also attracted interest from Bonhams’ clients during its preview in London, Geneva, New York and Hong Kong. The Fancy Coloured Diamond brooch dates from the mid-20th century and sold for £725,000. 

 

The brooch comprised a total of four Fancy Coloured diamonds: a square step-cut Fancy Gray-Blue diamond, weighing 4.83 carats, two Fancy Dark Brown-Greenish Yellow step-cut diamonds, weighing 2.51 carats and 2.38 carats respectively, and a pear-shaped Fancy Pink Diamond, weighing 1.90 carats. 

The second highest value lot sold during the sale was  A Kashmir sapphire single-stone ring, weighing 9.61 carats.  The octagonal step-cut sapphire has no indications of heating and went under the hammer for £845,000, equating to $112,600 price per carat. 


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White diamonds, a staple of any fine jewellery sale, also performed well in the September sale.  Estimated at £80,000-£100,000, An old marquise-cut diamond single-stone ring, weighing 4.61 carats, D colour, VVS2 clarity, potentially flawless, sold for £118,750 against its pre-sale estimate of £80,000-100,000.

Jean Ghika, Head of Jewellery, Bonhams UK & Europe, said: “Our top lots performed extremely well with global buyers vying for the prize lots.

“The blue diamond and Kashmir sapphire both achieved strong hammer prices, demonstrating discerning collectors will always seek out the best examples when it comes to fine gemstones.” 

The overall sale total was £7,615,375 with 93 per cent lots sold by value.

White glove sale for Andrew Grima at Bonhams

Flying in straight from America after taking the Bonhams Fine Jewellery sale in New York Bonhams Global CEO Matthew Girling started the London auction with the sale of the largest private collection of jewellery designed by Andrew Grima ever to come to auction. 

The charismatic Anglo-Italian jeweller was regarded as one of the 20th century’s most daring and imaginative designers.  He was the go-to society jeweller for royals, celebrities, socialites and artists throughout the Swinging Sixties and Seventies and his earliest clients included HM The Queen, The Princess Margaret, Jackie Kennedy Onassis and Bond Girl Ursula Andress.  Today, collectors of his work include fashion designers Marc Jacobs and Miuccia Prada.

Fifty-five pieces of Grima jewellery became the subject of bidding on the telephones, online and in the saleroom at Bonhams New Bond Street and every lot sold.  The collection achieved a final selling price of £817,750.

Star performing lots from the sale included:

Watches

An 18 carat gold and citrine wristwatch, ‘Teak’ from the “About Time” collection by Andrew Grima, 1970, sold for £32,500, eight times its pre-sale estimate.

A gold, citrine and diamond watch/bangle, ‘Cerini’, no 80 from the “About Time” collection by Andrew Grima, 1969, sold for £22,500. 

A gold, pink tourmaline watch bangle, ‘Greenland’, no 15 from the “About Time” collection by Andrew Grima, 1970, sold for £35,000.

A gold and green beryl ‘stepping stones’ watch bracelet by Andrew Grima, 1972, sold for £27,500.

‘Pencil shavings’ brooch

A gold and diamond ‘pencil shavings’ brooch by Andrew Grima, 1968, sold for £17,500 against its pre-sale estimate of £4,000-6,000.

Earrings

A pair of gold and amethyst pendent earrings by Andrew Grima, 1971, part of the “Rock Revival” collection, sold for £30,000 against their pre-sale estimate of £6,000-8,000.

Rings

A diamond-set ‘Bark’ ring by Andrew Grima, 1980, sold for £15,625, 10 times its pre-sale estimate of £1,500-2,000.

An 18 carat gold, amethyst, emerald and diamond ring by Andrew Grima, 1995, sold for £16,250 against its pre-sale estimate £4,000-6,000.

Necklaces

A gold and diamond necklace by Andrew Grima, circa 1966, sold for £46,250 against its pre-sale estimate of £4,000-6,000.

A gold, bolder opal and diamond pendant/necklace by Andrew Grima, 1972, sold for £60,000 against a pre-sale estimate of £20,000-30,000.

An 18 carat gold, citrine and diamond necklace by Andrew Grima, 1974, sold

for £50,000 against its pre-sale estimate of £15,000-20,000.

Emily Barber, Department Director, Bonhams London, said: “It has been a privilege to sell this seminal collection of jewellery by Andrew Grima and we are delighted with the phenomenal success of the sale. 


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“Each piece is simply extraordinary and distinct in terms of its design, quality and originality and buyers are drawn to Grima’s work because of its bold, cutting-edge design and the fact that his pieces were often unique.” 

Signed Jewellery by Cartier Performs Well

Bonhams auctioned a number of signed pieces of jewellery by Cartier during its sale. These included:

An Art Deco Sapphire and Diamond necklace/bracelet combination, signed Cartier, circa 1925, sold for £167,000 against its pre-sale estimate of £60,000-70,000.

A pair of Art Deco diamond clip brooches by Cartier, circa 1935, which went under the hammer for £75,000.

An emerald and diamond bracelet by Cartier of alternating step and octagonal-cut emeralds, accented to either side by brilliant-cut diamonds, sold for £75,000.

Bonhams is the UK market leader for fine jewellery at auction (in terms of value and volume). 

Bonhams sells more jewellery lots each year than any other international house and has more dedicated jewellery auctions annually.

Bonhams New York Fine Jewelry sale takes place on 4 December 2017 and Bonhams Hong Kong Rare Jewels & Jadeite takes places on 29 November 2017.

About Bonhams

Bonhams, founded in 1793, is one of the world's largest and most renowned auctioneers of fine art and antiques, motor cars and jewellery. The main salerooms are in London, New York, Los Angeles and Hong Kong, with sales also held in Knightsbridge, Edinburgh, Paris, San Francisco and Sydney. With a worldwide network of offices and regional representatives in 22 countries, Bonhams offers sales advice and valuation services in 60 specialist areas. For a full listing of forthcoming sales, plus details of Bonhams specialist departments, please visit bonhams.com

About Andrew Grima

Andrew Grima was one of a handful of British designers who revolutionized jewellery in the early 1960s. Unlike most of his contemporaries,  he didn't learn his trade at art school, being entirely self-taught and having never worked at the bench. He considered being a pure designer to be an advantage; his ideas were never confined by technical ability, only by imagination.

By the mid 1960s Grima had become the doyen of British jewellery design - the Royal and society jeweller of the day. He is the only jeweller to have been awarded the Duke of Edinburgh Prize for Elegant Design and his service to industry was recognized with The Queen’s Award for Export. He won the De Beers Diamonds International Award (the Oscars of jewellery design) a record 13 times and, in 1969, was commissioned by Omega to create one of the most outrageous and daring watch collections ever made.

Today Andrew Grima is recognized as one of the great modernist jewellery designers of the 20th century; perhaps the most influential of the post-war period.  His work can be seen in the collections of the Victoria & Albert Museum and the Worshipful Company of Goldsmiths.

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