Sotheby’s logged one of its most successful jewelry auctions ever this week amid global coronavirus lockdowns.
The auction house marked its best sell-through for an online jewelry sale, selling 97 percent of lots from its Jewels Online auction that wrapped on Wednesday. The sale realized $739,375, far surpassing its highest total estimate of $671,600.
Sotheby’s says that half of the auction’s lots exceeded their highest estimate and that it received bidders from 32 countries with an average six bidders per lot. Approximately 22 percent of the auction’s buyers are new customers for Sotheby’s and half of all bids were placed through mobile devices.
The biggest sale was a pair of ruby earrings by Michele Della Valle that realized $25,000 — far more than the lot’s high estimate of $7,000. Sotheby’s says that the sale’s lots by David Webb, Tiffany & Co. and Verdura all saw 100 percent sell-through rates.
A Paloma Picasso chunky green peridot necklace designed for Tiffany’s realized $12,500 — approximately six times its highest estimate of $2,000. A pair of Verdura Byzantine ear clips originally thought to take between $5,000 and $7,000 sold for $13,750.
Sotheby’s global head of online jewels said of the sale in a statement: “In this unprecedented moment, collectors were determined to compete for beautiful jewels in Wednesday’s sale, which earned our best sell-through rate to date for any online jewelry auction. Bidders — many new to auction — responded to our well-curated offering of signed jewels, including pieces from famed American makers like David Webb, Verdura and Tiffany & Co. that we offered at accessible price points.”