The American-born socialite, philanthropist and collector of art, furniture and design was the former wife of Sir Evelyn de Rothschild. The couple, who had three children — Anthony, David, and Jessica — were married in 1973 and divorced in 2000.
The jewels will be offered alongside silver and tableware from de Rothschild’s collection in a wider sale that is set to take place at Dreweatts’ headquarters in Berkshire, England on March 8 and 9. The auction will also be livestreamed.
James Nicholson, deputy chairman and international head of jewelry, silver and watches at Dreweatts, said de Rothschild had a taste for “breaking boundaries” and described her “a true champion of modern design who supported upcoming designers and artisans, which is demonstrated by the exciting pieces offered.”
Among the highlights is a modernist gold colored disc necklace by the pioneering American jeweler and sculptor Irena Borzena Ustjanowski, known artistically as “IBU.” Her works are on display at the IBU gallery at the Palais Royal gardens in Paris. The disc necklace carries an estimate of 4,000 pounds to 6,000 pounds.
A Boucheron pink sapphire and ruby ring topped with a coiled serpent and set with circular cut rubies and pink sapphires will also go under the hammer. The serpent’s eyes are set with cabochon emeralds and the tip of its tail features a cut black diamond.
The piece is signed Boucheron, the name of the jewelry house founded in 1858, when Frédéric Boucheron opened his first boutique under the arcades of the Palais Royal, and later in Place Vendôme, in Paris. The jeweler is now owned by Kering. The ring carries an estimate of 2,000 pounds to 3,000 pounds.
A lapis lazuli and gold colored necklace attributed to the contemporary British designer Jacqueline Ryan, one of de Rothschild’s favorite styles, is also part of the sale.
Dreweatts said the necklace found a suitable wearer in de Rothschild, “who was inventive in her style, affording her a place on the best-dressed list, even though she always refused to be photographed.” The necklace carries an estimate of 1,500 pounds to 2,000 pounds.
Up for sale is a necklace by the Algerian designer Taher Chemirk, who designed for Ralph Lauren before turning his hand to jewelry. The necklace features azurite crystals, a pair of brilliant-cut diamonds, cornelian and agate.
Chemirk collaborated with labels such as Yves Saint Laurent, Balenciaga, Hermès and Chloé, and several of his pieces are held in the permanent collection of the Musée des Arts Décoratifs. The necklace is estimated to fetch 700 pounds to 1,000 pounds.
The jewelry auction comes just a few months after Christie’s held an online sale of de Rothschild’s art, furniture and some of her jewelry. The Dreweatts sale is focusing on de Rothschild’s modern jewels, tableware and silver.
Dreweatts auctioneers was established in 1759 and is a top auction house in the U.K. Its main sale room is Donnington Priory in Newbury, Berkshire. It also has a central London showroom in St. James’s.