Tomorrow (May 24) a 30 bead amber necklace with an estimate of £700-800 is to be offered at Nottingham auctioneer Mellors & Kirk.
In Bristol on June 8 Bristol Auction Rooms is offering three butterscotch amber necklaces and a quantity of loose beads. Two of these necklaces are estimated at £200-300.
Demand from Asia has lifted the price of necklaces in recent years. The orange-butterscotch coloured amber is most valued by Chinese buyers and, according to Buddhist tradition, it is associated with good fortune.
On May 23, Cheshire's Capes Dunn hammered down a graduated amber necklace at £7700 while on May 4 Sheffield Auction Gallery sold a graduated butterscotch 40 bead amber necklace at £2700, against a £200-300 estimate.
Only the best examples of natural untreated beads in the butterscotch colour attract top prices at auction.
Recent top prices were set at Gorringes of Lewes on March 21 when a single strand of graduated amber beads with a gross weight of 334 grams sold to an online bidder at £16,000 and a string of 27 beads with a weight of 188 grams sold at £8000 online.
An even higher price per gram was bid at London Auctions in Chiswick on March 27 for an exceptional natural amber bead necklace comprising 47 polished beads of varying size up to 36mm, on a single string. Weighing 235g, it hammered down at £14,400.
It isn’t just amber necklaces that are selling well. Earlier this month, Tennants’ sale of Vintage Costume, Textiles, Dolls & Teddy Bears a collection of five amber parasol handles sold at £4500 – 90 times the lower estimate.