Gold prices are soaring round the world – and that means any golden gems you have gathering dust at home could deliver a welcome windfall, writes Charles Hanson.
And if you happen to have a charm bracelet you really could be in the money as five charm bracelets appeared in the sales top 10 in Hansons Auctioneers’ February jewellery auction. They soared above estimate and sold for prices ranging from £1,160 to £820. For example, a 9ct gold charm bracelet with 16 charms sold for £1,160.
Gold is rising in price at the moment as investors fear the US economy may tumble back into recession. So, now really is a good time to sell.
If you want to find out the value of your gold – or any jewellery – Hansons offers free jewellery valuations every Tuesday (9.30am-4.30pm) and Friday (9am-5pm) at its saleroom in Heage Lane, Etwall, Derbyshire.
Our team of jewellery experts - Kate Bliss, David Byrne, Helen Smith and Isabel Murtough - always find it particularly satisfying when they spot a gem destined to be given away, or even scrapped.
For example, in our February auctions lot 207, a hardstone cameo ring set in 18ct gold (pictured), was spotted languishing in a box of costume jewellery. Its owner thought it was of little or no value but it made £1,100 at auction from a guide price of £100. In the same box of costume jewellery was a silver and opal Arts and Crafts ring which made £220 in our 20th Century Design Auction.
We’re delighted to achieve strong prices for our clients and help quality jewellery gain a new lease of life.
One fascinating piece recently consigned was an Italian cameo brooch made out of volcanic lava. It dated back to circa 1850 and received an estimate of £300. Wealthy Victorian travellers on the Grand Tour of Europe adored items like this. When you look at the workmanship, you can see why.
Another piece to dazzle our experts is an 8.5 carat diamond ring (pictured). We rarely see diamonds so large and it’s difficult to source them now. With an estimate of £30,000 to £50,000, it’s destined for our Spring Fine Art Jewellery Auction. Like gold, diamonds are sought after at the moment. Demand is growing with worldwide sales up by 4% in 2018.
Vintage watches are also flying at auction. In our December Fine Art Auction, a rare circa 1970 Tudor Rolex ‘Montecarlo’ steel wristwatch sold for £51,100.
We love pocket watches, too, here at Hansons. One just unearthed, a superb silver pair case pocket watch by Stripling of Lichfield, dates back to 1780. It has an estimate of £500-700.
To arrange a free jewellery valuation, please email Hansons' head of jewellery Helen Smith: [email protected]