Thursday, May 1, 2014

Dream Jewels: Barbara Hutton's Jadite, Ruby and Diamond Necklace

I was completely and totally taken with a beautiful strand of milky clear jade beads with a diamond and ruby clasp that had belonged to Barbara Hutton and was recently acquired by Cartier

Barbara Hutton's Jadeite Necklace recently acquired by Cartier.  Photo from Cartier.

And if I had a spare $27.44 million, honey, I would have been on the phone to Hong Kong bidding against Cartier for them.  Alas, I do not have the $27.44 million or the necklace...  But hopefully Cartier will exhibit the necklace and I can go see it, close my eyes and imagine I am wearing it.  It looks so beautifully tactile in the photos, I can just imagine how wonderful those cool green jade beads feel against the skin...

I am sure you know the story of the poor little rich girl Barbara Hutton, the Woolworth heiress who was born into great wealth, liked fast men and an extravagant lifestyle, burned through an enormous fortune and died poor, living in a hotel with $3,500 in her bank account.

According to Cartier, the necklace was a gift from her father in 1933, when Hutton married the first of her seven husbands, Prince Alexis Mdvani.  In 1934 Hutton commissioned from Cartier the current clasp which is set in yellow gold with calibré-cut rubies and baguette-cut diamonds.

Barbara Hutton at the Metropolitan Opera House in New York in 1933 wearing the jade necklace.

She also commissioned from Cartier a ring to match.  

love, kisses and keep on dreaming, Juliana

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