There are people who are really crazy about diamonds, rubies, and other gemstones. They buy jewelry from everywhere in the world, they get it heritably or somebody makes a gift for them. So who are they? Let's make it clear!
Queen Elizabeth II
The first very famous jewelry collector is Queen Elizabeth II. She inherited her jewelry collection as a successor to the Crown and also from her father, King George VI, who presented a diamond and sapphire necklace and earrings, known as the Victorian Suite of Sapphire and Diamond set on her wedding day. In her spectacular private collection that is situated in the room below the Buckingham Palace are gathered the treasures of all times: the Timur Ruby, a 352 carat spinel inscribed with the names of the Mughal emperors who are considered to be its previous owners; cuts of the Cullinan diamond, the largest rough diamond ever found. The largest cuts of Cullinan Diamond decorate the Crown Jewels of the UK. Cullinan, I or 'Star of Africa' in the Head of Sovereign's Sceptre with Cross and the Cullinan II is on the Imperial State Crown. Queen Mary also gifted Queen Elizabeth a brooch which was made from Cullinan III and IV and according to rumors it was named 'Granny's chips' by Elizabeth the Queen.
The other pretty woman who was in love with everything that sparkled is Elizabeth Taylor, the wife of Richard Burton and who wrote a book: Elizabeth Taylor “My Love Affair With Jewelry”. She collected a great amount of jewelry for her whole life. Her collection was sold at Christie's auction in New York in 2011 and attracted the world's attention. This collection included jewels from such famous brands as Bvlgari, David Webb, Cartier и Van Cleef & Arpels and was sold for $95.5 million. One of the most famous pieces of jewelry from her collection was the 16th-century pearl - La Peregrina. It was owned by Mary Tudor, the first Queen of England. Later the pearl became an element of Cartier’s diamond and ruby necklace which was sold for $9.6 million. Richard Burton made other treasury presents for Elizabeth, for example, an almost flawless emerald cut Krupp diamond ring, a Van Cleef & Arpels ruby and diamond ring of 8.24 carats, and also a 'perfect' red ruby that was gifted for her by the lovable husband on the Christmas Eve.
Sarah Frances Croker-Poole
If you married the Prince, you can also have your own diamond jewelry collection, just like Sarah Frances Croker-Poole. She was the fashion model and debutant before she married Prince Karim Aga Khan IV, the spiritual leader of Ismaili Muslims and one of the richest men in the world. When she became the Princess, she was immediately gifted with original jewelry pieces from Boucheron and Cartier. But we need to admit that this marriage didn’t last very long and after the couple divorced here came the question: to who belongs the jewelry collection of the Princess. Prince Karim assumed that the jewels had to stay with the Aga Khan family. But Sarah Frances wanted the pieces to be auctioned off in order for her to start a charitable foundation. The Princess won the court and all her treasures were auctioned through Christie's Geneva. The most expensive jewelry piece sold for $27 million was the Begum Blue, a blue heart-shaped diamond of 13.78 carats that was set in the center of a necklace with 41 smaller heart-shaped diamonds.
Wallis Simpson is known not only as of the woman for whom King Edward disengaged from his throne, but also as a great jewelry collector of all times. During the 35-years marriage with Duke of Windsor she gained a spectacular amount of jewelry pieces among which there was Cartier charm bracelet with “handwritten” Prince’s engraving, a custom Van Cleef & Arpels ruby, and a diamond necklace (a gift on her 40th birthday) which was later sold for $2.5 million, a custom made Cartier diamond and onyx panther bracelet. They said that this bracelet was sold to Madonna for $5.7 million.
Lily Safra, a widow of a billionaire banker, Brazilian philanthropist, and a passionate jewelry collector had a soft spot for the American jewelry designer Joel Arthur Rosenthal who found the fine jewelry house JAR in Paris. In 2012 she auctioned 18 pieces of this jewelry collection that turned out to be the largest quantity ever put up for auction. At the Jewels for Hope, auction lady Safra sold more than 70 jewelry pieces that included a 34.05 carat rectangular-cut diamond ring, a 32.08 carat cushion-cut Burmese ruby adorning a Chaumet ring, and earrings that have 19 carat pear-cut diamond each. Auction proceeds reached almost $38.2 million and were given to charity in the name of The Lily Safra Foundation.
There are more famous and passionate diamond and gemstone jewelry collectors nowadays. And we would like to share the information about them in our next article. Just let us now if you like such facts about the treasury world?