Art Deco Emerald & Diamond Ring

Value (2008) | $70,000 Auction$90,000 Auction

GUEST:
It's an inherited family heirloom from my mother-in-law. I opened the box with this, and it was such a gorgeous emerald, I mean, it just really caught my eye, and I've been wearing it, I love it, and I'm very fortunate that my husband is an only child, because he can't wear it.

APPRAISER:
Have you ever had it appraised? Do you have any idea of the type of value...?

GUEST:
I did. We had to have it appraised for the estate when she passed away, and that appraisal, if I remember it, was 1991, was, like, $15,000. And, um, of course, the appraiser, he was so taken with it. He said the diamond baguettes were unusually long.

APPRAISER:
Right.

GUEST:
And he said, "Boy, I'd love to have that and take it apart and whittle it into little pieces." I said, "There is no way I could ever, ever allow that to happen to that piece."

APPRAISER:
I'm glad you didn't give in to temptation and have him take the ring apart. A little bit about the ring. It's a beautiful, beautiful example of Art Deco jewelry.

GUEST:
Mm-hmm.

APPRAISER:
And it would be from the 1920s, 1930s. It also has the quintessential center stone in terms of the shape. It's what is called a sugarloaf cut. So it's like a four-sided pyramid that's like a big dome. And this has been done to maximize the color of the emerald. It's also unique to the Art Deco period. The other beautiful aspect, apart from the incredible color this stone has, is, as you mentioned, there are these beautiful baguettes on the side. These are what are called bullet shapes, because they're pointed at one end.

GUEST:
Mm-hmm.

APPRAISER:
There are rectangular baguettes here, but the real detail that I think is quite extraordinary is where they've put these beautiful hexagonal-cut diamonds. And once again, you can see that it has this beautiful dome. It reflects the quality of the green. And this really is a true emerald green. We really can't tell where it was made. There are no hallmarks or signatures on the piece.

GUEST:
Mm-hmm.

APPRAISER:
Although I would venture to say it's probably an American piece. The stone is definitely from Colombia. It's really what we call top crystal material. It's absolutely clean, perfect color, has everything that you would want a ring that's this special to have going for it from this period.

GUEST:
Yeah.

APPRAISER:
The Art Deco market has become very, very strong in the past ten years, and especially a type of ring like this is highly, highly coveted by collectors and people who want exceptionally fine pieces.

GUEST:
Mm-hmm.

APPRAISER:
And I would say that this piece, in the right conditions, at auction would bring anywhere between $70,000 and $90,000.

GUEST:
Whoa!...

APPRAISER:
Yes.

GUEST:
Oh, my gosh!

APPRAISER:
That's why I'm really glad you didn't break it apart.

GUEST:
Oh, there's no way! Oh, my gosh, Peter. Thank you so much.

APPRAISER:
Well, thank you for bringing this great Art Deco emerald ring in to the Roadshow today.

GUEST:
It really is special. I'm afraid to wear it now.

APPRAISER:
No, enjoy it. That's what your mother-in-law would have wanted.

GUEST:
Right. She would have.

Appraisal Details

Appraiser
Peter Jon Shemonsky Fine & Antique Jewelry
San Francisco, California
Appraised value (2008)
$70,000 Auction$90,000 Auction
Event
Palm Springs, CA (June 07, 2008)
Form
Ring
Material
Diamonds, Emerald

Executive producer Marsha Bemko shares her tips for getting the most out of ANTIQUES ROADSHOW.

Value can change: The value of an item is dependent upon many things, including the condition of the object itself, trends in the market for that kind of object, and the location where the item will be sold. These are just some of the reasons why the answer to the question "What's it worth?" is so often "It depends."

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