Jewellery Auction Shines!

Jul 18, 2021

“My absolute all-time favourite lot in the auction was the Georgian ring which sold for £1,200” comments Izzie Balmer FGA DGA, Head Valuer at Wessex Auction Rooms. “I loved the simplicity of the ring with the unusual lilac-coloured foiled central stone providing the focal point. And to think that it’s survived over 200 years is incredible”. Very little Georgian jewellery has survived over the centuries; in part due to its delicate nature, but also because, prior to the discovery of the gold, diamond and gemstone mines in the mid 19th century, gemstones were incredibly rare and valuable commodities. With the changing jewellery fashions, rather than purchasing new items, jewellery would be broken down and refashioned into the latest trends. “Our example was particularly lovely” explains Izzie. “Without removing the stone from the mount it’s difficult to say for certain if the stone is a natural lilac colour, or if the foiled backing is coloured, but the condition was fantastic. If moisture gets trapped between the gemstone and foil, the foil with degrade, creating a patchy, cloudy appearance to the stone. This one was perfectly clean, with two little rose cut diamonds gracing the delicate shoulders of the ring.”

Another fantastic and rare lot in the auction was a loose round brilliant cut diamond with accompanying GIA certificate. Weighing 0.52 carat, the stunning diamond was of the finest quality, with the very best colour D and VVS2 clarity. Only a small percentage of diamonds are as fine as this and so it was no surprise the diamond soared to £1,300. The round brilliant cut has remained the most popular cut for a diamond since it was invented in 1919. Its popularity is due to this cut displaying equal amounts of fire and brilliance: both prized qualities of a diamond – in other words, what makes it so sparkly!

Chunky gold is making a come-back with an 18ct yellow gold gate-link style bracelet selling for £1,200. With gold prices high, now is a great time to be selling any gold jewellery you may have lying around the bedroom, or forgotten at the bottom of the jewellery box.

Gents’ watches are always a popular choice at auction, with strong prices repeatedly seen. A Longines gold cased flagship automatic watch sold for £700. A gents’ Omega stainless steel automatic day date watch sold for £340 and a gents Seiko automatic navigator watch sold for £200. A Georgian pair-case fusee pocket watch, despite fairly extensive damage rocketed to £360. The tortoiseshell decorative outer case displayed painted idyllic river and cottage scene, with pique inlay and the movement was engraved with maker J Churchill of London.

It could be argued that a cup of tea really does make everything better and what better way to take your tea than being served on a silver tray. A large 1930s silver tea tray of classic form with engraved swag decoration sold for £820 and an early 1930s silver tea service sold for £560.

Not to be outdone, the coins performed extremely well, with a 2018 Lest We Forget proof sovereign set selling for £2,250. A Queen Victorian Jubilee head 1887 £5 gold coin sold for £1,700 and a Westminster Mint Anniversary Battle of Britain gold £5 proof coin sold for £1,400.

Wessex Auction Rooms are consigning for their Christmas Jewellery, Silver, Watches and Coins auction. For more information please call the office on 01249 720888 or email Izzie at