Sotheby's Paris is hosting two auctions this month aimed at celebrating one of the world's most long-standing and prestigious jewelry maisons: Mellerio. In 1515, the Mellerio family moved from the north of Italy to France with the intent of selling their jewelry and luxury objects. Founded in 1693, 407-year-old house has crafted pieces for royalty like Queen Marie-Antoinette, Queen Isabel II of Spain, and Queen Emma of the Netherlands.
Many pieces from Mellerio's Heritage collection—including an 18th-century cameo and ruby bracelet made by Jean-Baptiste Mellerio for Marie-Antoinette and a transformable peacock feather brooch with emeralds, diamonds, sapphires, and rubies for Empress Eugenie—went on sale June 5, with a second sale beginning June 10. The demi-parure with cabochon emeralds (shown above) was designed in 1979, but its inspiration comes from necklaces created for Empress Eugenie and the Russian Princess Zénaïde Youssoupov, and it will be included in the June 10 selection.
June 10's Paris Joaillerie auction have been pulled from Mellerio's more recent archives and will include 25 pieces all created in the last three decades of the 20th century. Between the two sales, Sotheby's will span a large breadth of designs, as well as the maison's historical impact on jewelry design, its long-standing muses of nature and ancestral home of Italy, and the house's technique of marrying different cuts of stones within one piece of jewelry.
Magali Teisseire, jewelry and watches director for Sotheby's Paris, notes that as Mellerio is a long-established jewelry maison in France, it was traditional—especially during the '40s, '50s, and '60s—for French families to frequent one house for their engagement, wedding, and anniversary jewelry needs, meaning families would create collections of pieces from one jewelry maison.
Discover the next round of offerings that would make exquisite additions to your personal collection with a first look before the auction goes live tomorrow.
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