A huge increase in online bidding helped the Fine Jewellery sale at Woolley and Wallis to realise over £2.1m on 15th July.
“For a number of reasons, the recent lockdown has driven some of our regular buyers online,” explained Jewellery specialist, Marielle Whiting, “but we have also seen a high number of brand new private clients engaging with our auctions for the first time.”
Bidding across both platforms used by the Salisbury auctioneers (WoolleysLIVE and The Saleroom) was up by 70% from January, with a similar increase in the number of telephone lines booked.
The increase is being attributed to new working patterns leaving people with more time to engage in auctions, plus a rise in disposable income as people see holidays and social occasions cancelled.
“The rise in the number of private buyers is pushing up prices for jewellery dealers,” continued Whiting, “but it’s great news for the market and reassuring for our vendors that the market has not been adversely affected by coronavirus.”
A number of fancy (coloured) diamonds provided some of the sale highlights, with a five carat vivid yellow diamond ring (lot 2263) selling for £93,750, and a yellow diamond pendant with Indian provenance (lot 2262) reaching £81,250. A pair of Georgian diamond earrings (lot 2222) exceeded expectations to sell for £33,750, while a diamond monogram brooch relating to a former Russian Tsarina (lot 2223) fetched £27,500.
Elsewhere in the sale, eleven lots by iconic British designer, Geoffrey Rowlandson, proved a sell-out success, totalling £13,300, and an Art Nouveau enamel plique à jour bracelet by Spanish jewellers Carreras (lot 2258) reached £62,500.
“These are all high quality, wearable pieces,” said Whiting. “The prices reflect the quality of the stones, including the natural colour of the fancy diamonds, but because of their intrinsic value these are also being viewed as investments. Whenever there is any economic uncertainty the price of jewellery tends to escalate as buyers turn to what they view as a more reliable investment, and I think we can see that reflected in the results of this sale.”
Entries are now being consigned for the next Jewellery sale on 12th November. To consign please contact the department on 01722 424586.
* All prices quoted include buyer’s premium at 25%.