A Collector’s Guide to Appraisals

No one wants to consider the unthinkable – like theft, damage or loss – happening to a prized possession, but the reality is that these things happen. Whether you own fine art, jewelry, antiques or even classic cars, having a current appraisal is an important component of collection care.

An appraisal is an opinion or statement of value. It provides the necessary documentation to substantiate the existence, condition and value of your collection. An appraisal can serve to inform a sale or a donation of a collectible item or help settle an estate. It will also help ensure that a valuable item is insured to its current replacement value, thereby providing protection against market fluctuations and value loss. Continue reading

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New Year’s Resolutions: Top 5 Tips for Managing Your Art Collection

January is here and so are New Year’s Resolutions! Whether or not you have set any new goals, this is a great time of year to review your collection management practices. To help you get started, here are five tips, as well as some resources to help you put your plans into action. Continue reading

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Beauty is in the Buyer’s Heart:
Why Jewelry Auctions Can Be Unpredictable

In the world of jewelry, no matter what the industry deems to be a fabulous example of a great stone, the market ultimately determines its value. When I was taking my GIA courses, I remember learning how the beauty and color of a stone ultimately depends on the buyer’s preference. While having industry-related benchmarks that determine a stone’s value is important, none of that matters if the buyer doesn’t perceive it the same way.

This became apparent on November 15, 2017, when “The Raj Pink” diamond failed to sell at Sotheby’s Geneva auction. This was the world’s largest known fancy intense pink diamond and it was expected to sell between $19.8 million and $29.8 million. The bidding stopped at $14 million, and the stone didn’t sell. Continue reading

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Sapphire: The Stone of Romance and Royalty

Sapphire, the birthstone for the month of September, is a beautiful gemstone that comes in a wide array of colors with the most popular being blue. Indeed, it is widely held that the word ”sapphire” is derived from the Latin word “Saphirus” and Greek word “Sapheiros,” both meaning blue. Others believe the name sapphire is derived from its association with the planet Saturn as it can be roughly translated to mean “Dear to the planet Saturn.”

Sapphires are primarily mined in Madagascar, but can also be found in Eastern Australia, Eastern Africa, China, Sri Lanka, Thailand and Montana. At one point in time, Madagascar produced more than half of the world’s supply of sapphires. Continue reading

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A DIY Guide to Creating a Home Inventory

Hoping that your home will never be affected by water damage, fire or theft won’t lessen your risk. If catastrophe strikes, consider how difficult it would be to recall every possession that you own. That’s why proactively taking a home inventory is so important. Continue reading

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Peridot: The Evening Emerald and Gem of the Sun

Peridot’s beautiful olive green color has subtle variations, but, unlike most gems, it is only found in one color. And it is due to that unique green color that it is known as the “evening emerald.” It is also serves as the birthstone for the month of August.

Peridot is the gem variety of the mineral olivine. Peridots, like diamonds, are unique in that they are the only gemstones that are brought to the earth’s surface through volcanic activity. An idiochromatic gem, the green color is determined by the stone’s chemical composition, and the depth of the tone of green depends on the iron content. Most peridots are yellowish green, so it’s not surprising it is also known as the “gem of the sun.” However, the most desirable color is green. Any hint of brown tones represents a lower quality peridot.
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Art – Inside and Out – Protecting Outdoor Sculpture

Art is now more frequently being displayed and enjoyed both inside and outside of the home. If you invest in outdoor sculpture, developing a solid plan for protecting art that is constantly exposed to the elements should be a priority.

However, it can be challenging to find an ideal balance between the sculpture and outdoor conditions. Key items to consider include construction, materials of the object, location and maintenance of the space itself, professional installation, conservation and maintenance.
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Life, Liberty & The Pursuit of Rubies

The month of July conjures up the idea of simmering days, the freedom of summer vacation, and patriotism in the U.S. with 4th of July celebrations culminating in spectacular firework displays countrywide. Appropriately, July birthstone is the fiery red ruby, which symbolizes life, courage, passion, and protection. Continue reading

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Big, Bold, Beautiful: Takeaways from the JCK Las Vegas Jewelry Show

Most people go to Las Vegas to try their luck at the slot machines and take in a show. When my colleague and I make our annual pilgrimage to Sin City, it’s to surround ourselves with the most gorgeous jewelry in the world. From June 5th to June 8th, JCK hosts its annual jeweler’s wholesale show, where jewelry store owners and major department store buyers converge to see and buy the latest jewelry trends. Over 2,000 vendors showcase loose gemstones, watches, finished pieces of jewelry, and everything the jewelry trade needs to create and sell their merchandise. Continue reading

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The World’s Most Valuable Earrings

The most expensive earrings in the world sold at Sotheby’s Magnificent Jewels & Noble Jewels auction last month for $57 million – and they don’t even match!

A stunning pink pear-shaped diamond matched with a flawless blue pear-shaped diamond, both suspended by two beautiful white diamonds, were known as Apollo (blue) and Artemis (pink)—after the twin brother and sister who are among the most widely venerated of the Ancient Greek deities. Continue reading

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