BAUBLES ON THE BLOCK: New fine jewelry auction house Fortuna will offer a slate of pricy pieces for sale Thursday. This marks Fortuna’s second auction since it was founded last year. “We are one of two action houses that only feature jewelry,” Fortuna founder and managing director Seth Holehouse said. “We’re shooting to have three to four auctions a year.”

Its latest auction will feature more than 400 antique, contemporary and estate jewelry pieces at Fortuna’s showroom at 608 Fifth Avenue in New York City, as well as by phone, through absentee bids or online at

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In addition to jewels from Cartier, David Webb, Tiffany & Co., Hermès and Van Cleef & Arpels, Fortuna is auctioning a pair of 18-karat white gold and diamond earrings from designer Helen Yarmak. Yarmak will donate the buyer’s premium, or 23 percent, of the proceeds from the sale of her earrings, which will open at $30,000. Another marquee item on the block is a 29.56-carat pear-shaped, fancy brown-yellow diamond ring on an 18-karat rose gold mounting, that will likely fetch between $500,000 and $600,000.

Sellers can choose to give 5 percent of the buyer’s premium to their charity of choice, according to Holehouse, who noted the growing demand for antique jewelry, despite the economic downturn.