An important ruby and diamond bracelet, probably Van Cleef & Arpels, circa 1935. Sold 349,000 CHF at Sotheby's Geneva, 14 november 2007, lot 375A. Photo: Sotheby's.
The supple bracelet composed of three rows of cushion-shaped and oval rubies, interspersed with geometric plaques set with circular-cut and baguette diamonds, to an openwork clasp designed as a stylised buckle and similarly-set with diamonds, length approximately 180mm, unsigned.
The popularity of this type of bracelet amongst the fashionable set of the 1930s is confirmed by the presence of similar examples by Van Cleef & Arpels in the jewellery collections of The Duchess of Windsor and Mme. Hélène Beaumont. Both of these bracelets and a third were sold at Sotheby's Geneva, respectively on 2nd April 1987, lot 87, 18th May 1994, lot 522 and 17th November 1998, lot 68.
A fashion periodical Excelsior Modes in 1937 commented on the use and combination of rubies and diamonds, noting what a fine display they made under artificial light; indeed the gems set in this bracelet with their rich glow, make the perfect jewel to be worn at night.