Established in Dallas in 1976, Heritage Auctions is the largest auction house founded in the United States. A privately owned company that now has offices throughout the US and in Europe, Heritage Auctions is the largest auctioneer of collectibles in the world, combining live internet bidding and proxy bidding with traditional floor auctions, for an unprecedented level of participation in their auctions. In 2016, they boasted over 900,000 registered online bidders.
In addition to collectibles, Heritage is one of the largest and most respected auction houses that handles fine jewelry. With a mission statement that includes the claim that “unbiased information can and should be available to all,” Heritage Auctions prides itself on its transparency, integrity, and expertise.
Their recent addition of four respected jewelry experts to their team has made the fine jewelry department one of the largest in the firm. The success of Heritage Auctions as a trusted auction house for fine jewelry is measured in both the quality and the quantity of the pieces they offer at auction.
Fine jewelry sales in 2016 set a new house record, exceeding $12 million in total sales. Many single-owner collections helped push the totals high, including a selection of jewelry from the private collection of Shirley Temple Black. Among the many jewelry items offered from her collection was a Tiffany & Co. diamond and platinum brooch that had been worn by both Ms. Black and her mother Gertrude.
The heavily jeweled piece featured full-cut diamonds weighing a total of 5.25 carats, partially framed by baguette-cut diamonds weighing approximately 1.75 carats. The 2¾ inch by 1 inch piece was set in platinum, and sold for $250,000. Another of the items from her collection was a gift from her father—an 8.3 carat diamond and platinum ring which sold for $137,500.
An Art Deco style diamond, ruby, and platinum bracelet given to a young Shirley Temple by the actor Bill “Bojangles” Robinson fetched $40,000, and another stunning piece, described as a “Fancy Intense Yellow Diamond, Diamond, Platinum Ring” by Oscar Heyman Bros. sold for $37,000.
Other notable pieces from 2016 included a spectacular 11.72 carat Kashmir sapphire and diamond ring, set in platinum. The cushion-cut sapphire measured 12.37 x 10.78 x 8.45 mm and showed no gemological evidence of heat treatment, and no clarity enhancement.
Surrounded by a spiral of baguette-cut diamonds weighing nearly one carat, this stunning ring commanded $670,000 at auction. Another Tiffany piece, a Paraiba tourmaline, diamond, platinum ring accompanied by a 2008 Tiffany & Co. appraisal of $135,000 sold for $250,000. The breathtakingly beautiful 5.39 carat, oval shaped tourmaline was flanked on either side by half carat triangle shaped diamonds, set with teardrop shaped prongs.
In addition to valuable jewelry items, Heritage Auctions has also been privileged to sell some tremendously valuable individual stones. In 2012, Heritage offered a 9.26 carat emerald-cut diamond of the exceptionally rare type IIa. Measuring 13.45 x 11.11 x 6.96 mm, this marvelous stone carried a GIA lab report stating D in color, Internally Flawless clarity, and was sold for $902,500.
Another unmounted diamond offered in 2014 was similarly impressive. A pear shaped stone, this exceptionally large diamond measured 23.35 x 15.12 x 9.33 mm, and weighed 19.73 carats. With a lab report stating G color, VS2 clarity, the fantastic diamond sold for $965,000.
Most recently at Heritage’s Spring Fine Jewelry Signature Auction for 2017, the house realized a tremendous total of $3,173,738 in net sales from over 400 bidders. Notable pieces from this recent sale included a captivating Kashmir sapphire, diamond, pink gold ring that sold for $175,000. The modified, sugarloaf-shaped sapphire cabochon weighing 12.70 carats was set in 14k pink gold with rhodium finished accents, with single cut diamonds accenting the featured stone.
Another beautiful ring that sold this spring was a Cartier diamond set in gold. This exceptional jewelry item featured a stunning, 3.01 carat round brilliant-cut diamond measuring 9.05 x 9.13 x 5.77 mm, enhanced by full-cut, channel set diamonds on the top of the 18k gold shank. The GIA report on the center stone stated E color, VVS1 clarity, and the piece sold for $77,500.
By far the most valuable jewelry item sold by Heritage was an Art Deco diamond ring by J.E. Caldwell that sold for $1,650,500. This phenomenal piece featured a natural fancy blue marquise-shaped diamond, enhanced by baguette and single cut diamonds.
The featured stone measured 17.49 x 7.54 x 4.26 mm and weighed 3.50 carats. Set in platinum that bears the marks “JEC & Co.”, the GIA lab report on the main stone indicated Natural Fancy Blue color, VS1 clarity, along with a diagram indicating that the clarity is potentially Internally Flawless. A note in the condition report stated, “The word ‘Exquisite’ fails to define this piece.”
How to Sell Your Estate Jewelry & Diamonds Today
If you don’t have the time to auction your expensive estate jewelry or large diamond, call Diamond Estate Jewelry Buyers today for a fair and generous cash offer. We provide free verbal appraisals, with no obligation to sell your jewelry, diamonds, and gemstones.