Forms were developed that imitated an increasingly mechanical age while settings of small stones took precedence over the expense of big rocks.
Van Cleef & Arpels was particularly innovative throughout the 1930s – a decade that included the creation of the Minaudière and the ‘Serti Mystérieux’ or ‘mystery setting’ technique, which Van Cleef & Arpels perfected and patented in 1933.
To seamlessly pavé-set diamonds onto a three-dimensional platinum scroll – as seen to this corkscrew curl ribbon brooch, c.1935, offered by Bonhams (27.5/25/20/14.5% buyer’s premium) in London on November 12 – is a highly complex technique. When worn on a lapel or hat trim it cleverly creates the illusion of being threaded through fabric.
Name of the dame
Signed and numbered 43843 with French assay marks, it also gained further appeal with the identity of its former owner, one Dame Joan Collins. The actress, 87, parted with five pieces from her extensive jewellery collection at this sale.
She made more than £200,000 for a children’s charity, with this brooch bringing £98,000 (estimate £15,000-20,000).