Jewels to Shine in Upcoming ‘Golden Age’ of Hollywood Auction

AuctionsMar 27, 2023

Jewels to Shine in Upcoming ‘Golden Age’ of Hollywood Auction

The Kruse GWS Auctions sale will include the replica “Taj Mahal” necklace Elizabeth Taylor made with Avon as well as a costume piece Marilyn Monroe wore.

20230327_1-Hollywood Auction Marilyn Monroe.jpg
This rhinestone necklace worn by Marilyn Monroe is up for auction at Kruse GWS Auctions’ upcoming “Artifacts of Hollywood” sale.
Los Angeles—Kruse GWS Auctions will showcase impressive costume jewelry from legendary stars of Hollywood’s “Golden Era” in its upcoming auction, including Marilyn Monroe, Elizabeth Taylor, Audrey Hepburn and Ava Gardner.

“The Artifacts of Hollywood” sale is highlighting the personal collections of some of the era’s most glamorous women, as well as iconic musicians like Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Janis Joplin and Whitney Houston.

The auction will feature a variety of personal memorabilia, including jewelry, clothing, purses, shoes, movie props, and more.

These are a few of the auction’s most interesting jewels.

Marilyn Monroe’s Rhinestone Choker Necklace
The 15-inch necklace, seen at the top of the article, was owned and worn by Marilyn Monroe. It’s made of silver with round- and cushion-shaped rhinestones.

It comes from the collection of her personal hairstylist, Sydney Guilaroff, who worked at Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer studios for more than 40 years on more than 1,000 films, said the auction house.

Guilaroff was the first hairstylist to receive an on-screen credit in a film and was a confidante to many of the day’s stars, including Monroe, Greta Garbo, Joan Crawford, and Hepburn.

A number of celebrity-worn jewels from his collection are heading to the upcoming auction.

In a provenance letter, the late hairstylist wrote, “Marilyn gave me this costume ‘Weiss’ multi-shaped rhinestone choker necklace around 1954. No one has worn it since Marilyn.”

Albert Weiss was a notable costume jewelry designer, getting his start at costume jewelry manufacturer Coro in the 1930s before starting his own company in 1942, which is still around today.

There were no pre-sale estimates given for any of the items up for auction.

There are other jewels said to belong to Monroe up for sale, including another rhinestone necklace and a pair of rhinestone drop earrings.

Elizabeth Taylor’s Avon “Taj Mahal” Necklace

This necklace was given to Elizabeth Taylor in the early 1990s by cosmetics company Avon just before the company announced they would be partnering on a jewelry collection.

Well known for her outstanding jewels, Taylor helped the brand create costume replicas of some of her most famous pieces.

This necklace is the prototype for the reimagining of her “Taj Mahal” diamond necklace. She wore it for an Avon photoshoot.

The real “Taj Mahal” necklace, a gold, ruby and diamond Cartier creation Richard Burton gave to Taylor when she turned 40, sold for $8.8 million in 2011 as part of Christie’s record-setting sale of Taylor’s massive jewelry collection.

Taylor’s collection became the most popular of all Avon jewelry lines, continuing to sell well on secondary websites at high markups, said the auction house.

“The collection took nearly three years, as Elizabeth Taylor scrutinized every piece to make sure it was of the best quality,” it said. “Taylor had a hand in every facet of the manufacturing process and production to create the replicas of her cherished jewelry pieces.”

The necklace is accompanied by a seven-page letter from her friend, Ken Studdy, to whom Taylor gifted the piece in 2010.

Studdy said Taylor wore the necklace many times, including to dinner with Michael Jackson.

He said, “Taylor would regularly wear this necklace in replacement of her original as her Lloyd’s of London insurance policy stipulated that the necklace could only be worn for a select number of days each year and that she had to be followed by a team of armed guards, similar to the policy for her famous Taylor-Burton Diamond.”

Greta Garbo’s 1950s Rolex ‘Precision’ Watch

The star’s 9-karat yellow gold Rolex “Precision” watch, in working condition, is up for sale.

The back of the case is engraved with her initials, “GG.”

The watch’s provenance letter is courtesy of the son of Swedish watch collector Hjalmar Mattison.

Translated from Swedish, it reads, “It is hereby certified that this Rolex watch with ‘GG’ engraving belonged to Greta Garbo. My father Hjalmar Mattison worked as an accountant for a well-known director at Dramaten who was a close friend with Garbo, and through him managed to buy Garbo’s watch in the 1980s, meaning only a few years before Garbo passed away.”

Elvis Presley’s Many Jewels

Elvis Presley has a number of jewels up for sale at the upcoming auction, including multiple rings and a necklace.

A notable highlight is a 14-karat yellow gold “TCB” ring.

The ring will be accompanied by the original 7.56-carat VS2 round brilliant diamond and a GIA report.

A cubic zirconia was set in the ring while the diamond was being graded and is the stone seen in the image above. The halo of round-cut diamonds and accent diamonds have a total carat weight of 2.25.

The ring was worn by Elvis, who then gave it to gospel singer J.D. Sumner on stage in 1975 during the first night of a concert in Asheville, North Carolina, according to a statement of authenticity from Sumner prior to his passing.

The ring has hit the auction block before, garnering $440,625 in a 2020 sale held by Kruse GWS Auctions.

 Related stories will be right here … 

The auction house shares a long story about its provenance that would certainly be of interest to fans of “The King.”

The ring also comes with a letter from his late wife, Priscilla Presley, and a letter and sketches from jeweler Lowell Hayes.

The auction house describes the ring as “a once-in-a-lifetime piece and a must have for the serious Elvis collector as a piece of this magnitude may not surface again for many decades. This is arguably the most significant and well documented piece of Elvis’ jewelry on the planet, as even Graceland has not had a piece of this magnitude.”

There is other Elvis memorabilia up for auction, including a guitar, a jacket, a pair of glasses, and sheet music.

Audrey Hepburn’s Earrings

Two pairs of earrings belonging to Hepburn are heading to the auction block, a pair of gold-tone screw-back pinwheel earrings and a pair of faux pearl clip-on drop earrings.

Both pairs were given to the aforementioned hairstylist Guilaroff. He was Hepburn’s hairstylist for “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” as well as other films.

Other items belonging to Hepburn up for auction include a gown and evening bags.

Ava Gardner’s Jewels

Guilaroff’s sizable collection also included jewelry belonging to actress Ava Gardner.

This pair of black and white rhinestone and faux pearl clip-on earrings were worn by Gardner in the 1980s, according to his provenance letter.

There is also a matching necklace and earrings set worn by Gardner. The gold-tone jewels are set with amber, brown, and green iridescent rhinestones.

No one has worn the jewels but Gardner, he said.

Jewelry Worn by Music Legends
In addition to silver-screen celebrities, the auction also will highlight legendary women in music, including Janis Joplin, Whitney Houston, Janet Jackson, and Madonna.

The auction will highlight jewels from a number of other stars, including Johnny Cash, Faye Dunaway, and Betty White.

Live bidding for the online auction begins April 8.

For more information about the auction, visit Kruse GWS Auctions’ website.

The Latest

Tiffany Venetian glass bead ear clips
TrendsMay 23, 2024
State of Jewelry Design: 3 Themes That Will Shape the Next 5 Years

Color, storytelling, and the use of nonconventional materials are the signatures of today’s most innovative and influential designers.

Inoveo Platinum
MajorsMay 23, 2024
PGI to Debut New Platinum Alloy in Las Vegas

Inoveo Platinum will be distributed exclusively by Stuller in the U.S.

Alan Hart Headshot
MajorsMay 23, 2024
Gem-A CEO Alan Hart Resigns

He is stepping down in August after eight years as CEO.

1872 x 1052 Gemolite.jpg
Brought to you by
Meet Gemology’s Next Generation Microscope: GIA® Gemolite® NXT Professional Edition

GIA®’s most advanced microscope has new features to optimize greater precision and comfort.

Rose cut arch cabochons Columbia Gem House
SourcingMay 22, 2024
State of Colored Stones: Why the Market Is More Colorful Than Ever

As prices of “The Big Three” skyrocket, supply dwindles, and focus on sustainability grows, an age of open-mindedness is dawning.

Weekly QuizMay 23, 2024
This Week’s Quiz
Test your jewelry news knowledge by answering these seven questions.
Take the Quiz
Pandora Essence jewelry
CollectionsMay 22, 2024
Pandora’s New Jewelry Collection Reimagines the Essentials

The “Pandora Essence” collection brings a contemporary and sculptural feel to staples like gold hoops and pearl necklaces.

Instore show 2024
Events & AwardsMay 22, 2024
InStore ‘Cram Day’ To Focus on Lab-Grown Diamond Education

The limited-seating learning event precedes its second annual trade show, which starts Aug. 11.

Royal Chain gold chains
Brought to you by
Record Gold Prices Have Consumers Undeterred. Here’s Why.

Despite the rising prices, consumers continue to seek out the precious metal.

Swarovski New York City flagship
IndependentsMay 21, 2024
State of Retail: 4 Retail Design Trends for 2024

From lighter color palettes to the integration of AR, experts offer inspiration for jewelers in need of an aesthetic refresh.

Dame Shirley Bassey’s
AuctionsMay 21, 2024
Dame Shirley Bassey’s Diamonds Are Ready for Their Encore

Sotheby’s will auction jewelry belonging to the “Diamonds Are Forever” singer in Paris this October.

National Jeweler columnist Sherry Smith
ColumnistsMay 21, 2024
Successful Vendor Relationships: A Win-Win Approach

Sherry Smith shares tips for fostering successful vendor-retailer partnerships, from marketing investment to fast-seller replenishment.

Jennifer Herold, Independent Jewelers Organization vice president
IndependentsMay 21, 2024
Jennifer Herold Promoted to VP at IJO

Herold has been with the organization for 22 years and will continue in her current role of conference director.

Studs pop-up
MajorsMay 20, 2024
Studs Opens Luxury Piercing Pop-Up in NYC

“Fancy Studs” will feature revamped branding and a new lab-grown diamond fine jewelry collection.

Nivoda executive team at table
SourcingMay 20, 2024
2 Business-to-Business Platforms Secure Millions in Funding

Nivoda and Liquid Diamonds both have big plans for the new capital.

Stuller Packaging & Displays 2024-2025 catalog
MajorsMay 20, 2024
Stuller Issues New Packaging & Display Catalog

The 2024-2025 edition features new colors and styles, as well as storytelling elements.

Elephants wading in the Okavango Delta in Botswana
SourcingMay 20, 2024
State of the Diamond Industry: Botswana Beyond Diamonds

From moringa to ecotourism in the Okavango Delta, the country and its leaders are exploring how Botswana can diversify its economy.

Rough diamonds from De Beers
SourcingMay 20, 2024
Anglo American Confirms It Is Looking to Sell De Beers

The mining giant also wants to offload its platinum business as part of an overhaul designed to “unlock significant value.”

Buccellati jewelry
FinancialsMay 17, 2024
Richemont Appoints Van Cleef & Arpels’ Nicolas Bos as New CEO

The announcement coincided with its full-year results, with growth driven by its jewelry brands.

Watches of Switzerland Mall of America store
FinancialsMay 17, 2024
Watches of Switzerland’s Fiscal-Year Sales Flat

Looking ahead, the retailer said it sees “enormous potential” in Roberto Coin’s ability to boost its branded jewelry business.

My Next Question webinar series graphic
Recorded WebinarsMay 17, 2024
Watch: Preparing for Trade Show Success

Jewelry trade show veterans share strategies for engaging buyers, managing your time effectively, and packing the right shoes.

Cartier ring-tailed lemur brooch circa 1991
AuctionsMay 17, 2024
Piece of the Week: Cartier’s Ring-Tailed Lemur

This little guy’s name is Ricky and he just sold for more than $200,000 at Sotheby’s Geneva jewelry auction.

202.18 carat fancy intense yellow diamond The Yellow Rose
AuctionsMay 16, 2024
Christie’s Holds 2 Sales Despite Cyberattack

Though its website has been down for a week, Christie’s proceeded with its jewelry and watch auctions on May 13-14, bringing in nearly $80 million.

The Allnatt yellow diamond
AuctionsMay 16, 2024
Sotheby’s Withdraws 101-Carat Yellow Diamond from Auction

Despite the absence of “The Allnatt,” Sotheby’s Geneva jewelry auction totaled $34 million, with 90 percent of lots sold.

National Jeweler columnist Lilian Raji
ColumnistsMay 16, 2024
The PR Adviser: What the Designer Should’ve Done

Lilian Raji gives advice to designers on how to make the most of great publicity opportunities.

Mothae Diamond Mine Lesotho
SourcingMay 16, 2024
Lucapa to Shed Stake in Lesotho Diamond Mine

The mining company wants to divest its 70 percent holding in the Mothae Diamond Mine in an effort to streamline its portfolio.

National Jeweler columnist Peter Smith
ColumnistsMay 15, 2024
Squirrel Spotting: Why Retailers Struggle to Fire Brands

Why do so many jewelers keep lines that are not selling? Peter Smith thinks the answer lies in these two behavioral principles.

The Argyle Phoenix red diamond
AuctionsMay 15, 2024
Red Diamond Breaks Records at Phillips Geneva

The “Argyle Phoenix” sold for more than $4 million at the auction house’s second jewels sale.


This site uses cookies to give you the best online experience. By continuing to use & browse this site, we assume you agree to our Privacy Policy