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A diamond single-stone ring, by Piaget. Photo: Bonhams. 

LONDON.- A white diamond ring by Piaget is the star of Bonhams Fine Jewellery sale at New Bond Street on 30th April. 

The marquise-cut diamond, weighing 8.97 carats, has been graded as D-colour - the top colour grade for white diamonds. At VVS2, it is also of excellent clarity. The diamond has been classified by the GIA - the world's premier diamond-grading laboratory - as Type IIa, meaning it is chemically pure. Diamonds of such high quality and large size are extremely rare and the present lot is offered with an estimate of £250,000-£350,000 (US$ 410,000 - 580,000). 

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A diamond single-stone ring, by Piaget. Photo: Bonhams.

The marquise-cut diamond, weighing 8.97 carats, signed Piaget, ring size P, maker's pouch and case. Estimate £250,000 - 350,000 (€300,000 - 420,000).

Accompanied by a report from GIA stating that the diamond weighing 8.97 carats is D colour, VVS2 clarity. Report number 6157978380, dated 11 March 2014.

Accompanied by an additional letter from GIA stating that the diamond has been classified as Type IIa.

Accompanied by a copy of an insurance valuation from Piaget stating that the diamond weighing 8.96 carats is D colour, F clarity, dated 23 October 1981.

Another top-quality diamond in the sale is a round brilliant-cut weighing 5.00 carats which has also been graded by the GIA as D colour, VVS2 clarity, Type IIa. It carries an estimate of £120,000-180,000 (US$ 200,000-$300,000).

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A diamond single-stone ring. Photo: Bonhams.

The brilliant-cut diamond, weighing 5.00 carats, within a six-claw setting, ring size M (sizing band). Estimate £120,000 - 180,000 (€150,000 - 220,000)

Accompanied by a report from GIA stating that the diamond weighing 5.00 carats is D colour, VVS2 clarity. Report number 6157995429, dated 18 March 2014.

Accompanied by an additional letter from GIA stating that the diamond has been classified as Type IIa.

A dazzling Fancy Yellow diamond weighing an astonishing 24.59 carats is another of the highlights. The step-cut diamond ring is offered with estimates of £150,000-£250,000 (US$ 250,000-$410,000).

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A diamond single-stone ring. Photo: Bonhams.

The step-cut diamond, weighing 24.59 carats, ring size I. Estimate £150,000 - 250,000 (€180,000 - 300,000)

Accompanied by a report from GIA stating that the diamond is Fancy Yellow, natural colour, VS2 clarity. Report number 6167006526, dated 25 March 2014.

Among the fine-quality coloured gems in Bonhams' sale is a Colombian emerald ring of exceptional colour, weighing 10.49 carats, which is estimated to sell for £150,000-£200,000 (US$250,000-$410,000).

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An emerald and diamond ring. Photo: Bonhams.

The octagonal step-cut emerald, weighing 10.49 carats, between triangular-cut diamond shoulders, diamonds approximately 2.00 carats total, ring size M (sizing band). Estimate £150,000 - 200,000 (€180,000 - 240,000)

Accompanied by a report from Gübelin stating that the emerald is of Colombian origin, with indications of insignificant clarity enhancement. Report number 14010200, dated 30 January 2014.

A fabulous ring set with a cushion-shaped Burmese sapphire weighing 22.18 carats, mounted between two demi-lune-shaped diamonds, is offered with estimates of £175,000-£200,000 (US$290,000–330,000).

 

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A sapphire single-stone ring. Photo: Bonhams.

The cushion-shaped sapphire, weighing 22.18 carats, between demi-lune-shaped diamond shoulders, ring size O. Estimate £175,000-£200,000 (€210,000 - 240,000).

Accompanied by a report from SSEF stating that the sapphire is of Burmese origin, with no indications of heating. Report number 72214, dated 9 January 2014.

For connoisseurs of period jewellery the sale offers a chance to own a rare "Orange Tree" brooch made by Cartier Paris in 1914. This tiny jewel – one hundred years old – exemplifies early 20th century quality and innovation.

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A rock crystal and gem-set "Orange Tree" brooch, by Cartier, 1914. Photo: Bonhams.

The umbrella-shaped miniature orange tree rendered in frosted rock crystal, backed in green foil, enhanced by foliate engraving, with three cabochon ruby "fruits", the buff-top calibré-cut citrine trunk with cabochon emerald foliage at its base, in a shaped-onyx, old brilliant and single-cut diamond pot with opposing stylised bird-head handles and circular onyx castors, diamonds approximately 1.00 carat total, signed Cartier, numbered, partially-struck maker's marks, French assay marks, length 3.3cm, maker's pouch. Estimate £15,000 - 20,000 (€18,000 - 24,000)

Provenance: Gifted to Elizabeth Corbett on her wedding day in 1941 by Lady Jean Ward, granddaughter of Darius Ogden Mills, US financier and philanthropist and once the richest man in California.
Direct descent to the present owner.

This is a rare example of Cartier's "Orange Tree" design and was created by Cartier Paris in 1914. Although it is difficult to attribute surviving Cartier jewels to individual designers due to the firm's policy of anonymity, this small brooch, standing just 3.3cm high, incorporates a myriad of innovative design influences and technical innovations, all characteristic of Cartier's pioneering designer Charles Jacqueau (1885-1968). After joining the firm in 1909, Jacqueau guided Cartier away from the Garland Style, advocating bold colours in inventive, contemporary designs that would set it apart from its competitors artistically. Jacqueau borrowed liberally from other cultures in his design repertoire; motifs from Egyptian, Assyrian, Persian, Indian, Islamic, Japanese, Greek and Chinese civilizations were all thrown into the melting pot. His sketches from nature in the Jardins des Plantes were translated into miniature gemstone plants, earning him the nickname "Jacqueau la Fleur". Jacqueau regularly visited the Louvre and drew inspiration from the exhibits there; perhaps the painting "Madonna della Vittoria" (1495), depicting Saint Elizabeth and the little Saint John under lemon and orange trees on which birds perch, helped to inspire the "Orange Tree" line.

One of Cartier Paris' earliest "Orange Tree" brooches was made in 1913; it is similar to this example in being of two-dimensional, highly stylised form incorporating birds' head motifs, but here the similarity ends. Whereas the 1913 brooch is monochromatic, almost entirely set with white diamonds offset by a few onyx highlights, this brooch, made a year later, bursts with colour combinations and different shapes and cuts of gemstone. 1913 was a pivotal year for Cartier: Jacqueau's obsession with the bright colours in Diaghilev's Ballet Russes had reached its zenith - Nadelhoffer notes how his colleagues in the design studio playfully drew caricatures of him dressed as Isadora Duncan in billowing robes - allowing the firm to finally break free from the constraints of the Garland Style. In November 1913, Cartier showcased fifty new jewelled creations at their New York premises, which they described as "from the Hindoo, Persian, Arab, Russian and Chinese". This "Orange Tree" brooch of 1914 clearly demonstrates the new influences at play in its use of gemstones of different shape, colour, cut and texture, from the carved rock crystal applied over a green foil, to the buff-top calibré-cut citrines, and the use of shaped onyx, which had been introduced into Cartier's designs from 1910, and which lent structure and contrast to so many of its Art Deco pieces. In addition, the brooch displays the maker's mark of Henri Picq, Cartier's main workshop supplier between 1900 and 1918, renowned for their high-quality platinum and who would later execute many of the "Tutti Frutti" pieces of which the brooch is surely a very early forerunner.

See Hans Nadelhoffer "Cartier Extraordinary", Thames & Hudson, 1984, black and white photograph No 109, a similar orange tree brooch, 1913, by Cartier Paris. See also plate 11, an "orange tree" hatpin in carved rock crystal with onyx and diamond fruits, dated 1926.

Another highlights:

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A pair of natural pearl and diamond pendent earrings, circa 1965. Photo: Bonhams.

Each curving cluster surmount randomly-set with brilliant and marquise-cut diamonds, suspending a detachable natural pearl drop, measuring approximately 10.70 x 11.05 x 19.10mm and 10.30 x 10.40 x 19.70mm, with single-cut diamond cap, via a single brilliant and marquise-cut diamond connecting link, diamonds approximately 6.00 carats total, length 5.5cm. Estimate £150,000 - 200,000 (€180,000 - 240,000)

Accompanied by a report from SSEF stating that the pearls are natural, saltwater. Report number 72970, dated 6 March 2014.

Accompanied by a report from AnchorCert stating that the pearls are natural. Report number 20014259, dated 22 January 2014.

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A pair of diamond pendent earrings, circa 1930. Photo: Bonhams. 

The old brilliant-cut diamonds, weighing 5.79 and 5.87 carats, suspended from an articulated line surmount composed of baguette, square and trapezoid-cut diamonds, length 3.4cm. Estimate £50,000 - 60,000 (€61,000 - 73,000)

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A pair of emerald and diamond earrings, by Harry Winston. Photo: Bonhams.

The octagonal step-cut emeralds, weighing 12.02 and 11.72 carats, each within a border of pear-shaped and marquise-cut diamonds, diamonds approximately 6.00 carats total, signed Winston, maker's marks, length 2.5cm. Estimate £150,000 - 200,000 (€180,000 - 240,000)

Accompanied by a report from Gϋbelin stating that the emerald weighing 12.02 carats is of Colombian origin, with indications of minor clarity enhancement. Report number 14010313, dated 5 February 2014.

Accompanied by a report from Gϋbelin stating that the emerald weighing 11.72 carats is of Colombian origin, with indications of minor clarity enhancement. Report number 14010312, dated 5 February 2014.

Accompanied by a report from Gϋbelin stating that the emerald weighing 12.02 carats is of Colombian origin. Report number 9305039, dated 13 May 1993.

Accompanied by a report from Gϋbelin stating that the emerald weighing 11.73 carats is of Colombian origin. Report number 9305040, dated 13 May 1993.