I have meaning to do a post about this for a while now, but never took the proper pictures for it. I really needed them to go along with the story.
About eight or ten months back, I was checking out at the Salvation Army and eyeballing the little rack of jewelry they had out on the counter. I found a really pretty charm bracelet, I think it was marked $2.99 and was looking it over in line. I looked for a signature and saw "AK" on the toggle and thought, oh ok this is a piece of Anne Klein costume jewelry from the 80's, maybe I'll just put it back. But it was really, really pretty so I kept it anyways.
Six months later, I remembered that it was hanging on my jewelry rack (a four tiered trouser hanging thing that holds about 30 pounds of stuff) and thought I might wear it for a day and then put it on Etsy. That's when I looked at the signature again and it hit me; it was stamped 18k and it had an artist's signature right next to that!!! After freaking out, I went and weighed it and the sucker is about 65 grams! I decided to hang on to it for a little while because the price of gold is going up and I wasn't sure where I would sell it
and how much it was worth.
A few months ago, I ran into an antique dealer buddy of mine at an estate sale and was telling him about the piece. He said that based on the style/ signature it could be a Line Vautrin piece or at least a good reproduction and that I should take it right to Sotheby's. I checked out her jewelry and the style didn't really match but it so happens that my old co-worker's husband is the former head of Sotheby's London so he took it into the NYC office for me for appraisal. They said that indeed, it was a copy of a much older style and they couldn't identify the signature but it was definitely 18k gold and worth its weight in it.
After wearing it a few times and doting on how beautiful it is for the last few months, I decided to put it up on ebay. Yes, I would love to keep it but having a big savings account is more imprtant when you are laid off. We'll see what the closing bid goes for, I am pretty nervous!