We thought it would be fun to ask a few questions to our jewellery specialist, Jennifer Pardoe FGA DGA, about her personal thoughts on jewellery and the industry…
Q: Are you more of a new or pre-loved jewellery girl?
A: I like both. Of course it is always nice to be bought something brand new which is especially for you. However, buying from auction offers a huge financial saving so provided you can find the piece you are looking for, this would now be my preference. Also, you find things at auction that aren’t offered in the shops – for example it could be a piece of antique jewellery or it could be something that was created bespoke which you wouldn’t have thought of yourself.
Q: Describe in 3 words your perfect ring…
A: Sparkly but subtle!
Q: What piece of advice would you give someone choosing an engagement ring from auction?
A: I always stress look at the ring first and the paperwork later. It’s important to actually like the diamond itself rather than just buying something based on its grading report. Another piece of advice investment wise, would be to buy the single biggest diamond you can afford. But at the end of the day, all that matters is that the person receiving it likes it, so I would definitely try and figure out their style and the design that they would prefer before buying at auction. Walk past a couple of jewellers or attend some auctions (what excuse you use for why you’re attending is completely up to you!).
Q: As well as diamonds, what are popular engagement ring stones?
A: The majority of engagement rings I value for auction are solely diamonds but it is down to personal preference. Fashion driven trends have made a few coloured stones popular, for example recently padparadscha sapphire rings have been experiencing an uplift due to Princess Eugenie’s engagement ring.
Q: What are your top 5 jewellery must haves?
- A thick bracelet, a statement piece but goes with any outfit. Lot 83, Jan 18, H £170
- A pair of diamond stud earrings, classic and timeless. Lot 53, Feb 18, H £2800
- A pair of fancy party earrings, a splash of colour and glamour. Lot 14, Dec 16, H £950
- A novelty piece of jewellery, so cute! Lot 8, July 18, H £3700
- A dress ring, when you just need that extra sparkle. Lot 28, Sept 19, H £600
Q: If I wanted to get someone valued, how do I go about it?
A: Call me on 0121 455 8042, we can put a date in the diary for you to bring in the item to be valued for auction. Should you wish to sell the item, we can consign it to auction on the day.
Q: Any tips on looking after jewellery?
A: Different gemstones require different attention so it is always advisable to research cleaning methods for each individual gemstone. In general, harder gemstones like diamond, sapphire and ruby can be cleaned in warm water with a soft brush. In terms of storage, don’t put two diamond rings close together as they will scratch each other. I would also recommend keeping an eye on the claws holding any gemstones in place, over time gold does wear away and gemstones can become loose.
Q: I’ve never been to an auction; how does it work?
A: You can register to bid with us via our website or by popping along to our reception. You will be given a unique bidding number which you can use any time you bid with us. It is important with auctions to always view the items you are interested in and make sure you are happy with its condition (all items at auction are sold as seen). During an auction stick your hand in the air when you want to bid and the auctioneer will acknowledge you. Have a price in mind that you don’t want to pay above and always beware ‘auction fever’!!
Q: Last question, if you could wear one piece of jewellery for the rest of your life, what would it be?
A: That’s a really difficult question! I think it would have to be a pair of earrings – I always feel ready to face the day when I’ve got a pair of earrings in!