Diamonds could prove to be a lot of people’s best friend in the West Midlands this month.
Bonhams, the auction house, has launched its nationwide Jewellery in June campaign and will be holding free valuation days at its sale room in Knowle.
During last year’s campaign the company saw more than a million pieces of jewellery and consigned items valued at over £500,000 in just under four weeks.
This year, Bonhams’ head of jewellery, Jean Ghika, predicts that anyone owning high quality diamond jewellery will be surprised by the change in its auction value over the last 12 months.
“Good diamond jewellery is incredibly sought after at the moment,” she said. “Currently many investors are turning away from stocks and shares to more tangible commodities like gold and diamonds. The world gold price is at a record high and at the same time we have seen a tremendous amount of growing interest in diamonds in both our national and international sales.
“In a recent fine jewellery sale in London, eight out of our top ten selling lots were diamond pieces sourced throughout the United Kingdom. One 13.68-carat diamond ring, which was estimated at £40,000, made £96,000, while another 10.27-carat ring doubled its top estimate of £35,000, to make £76,800.’
“Unlike many other areas of the economy, there does seem to be tremendous confidence in the jewellery market at the moment and we think many people will be very pleasantly surprised with the value of their jewellery, particularly for period and diamond pieces.
“In a rapidly changing market, we are trying to encourage people to get a really current valuation. Many owners of high value jewellery wear it infrequently or not at all – if it’s permanently stored in a safe or bank vault – and for some, out of sight can mean out of mind and a valuation may not have been updated for years.”
Bonhams regional jewellery specialist Tarn Harrison said: “In the past we’ve had some great finds during the Jewellery in June campaign.
“We recently sold a diamond ring in London which had been sitting in a local safe for over 20 years. We sent it to our jewellery department in New Bond Street where they discovered that this particular diamond had no internal flaws at all – which made it very rare, and it went on to sell at auction for £17,000.
“This year we are hoping to find a few more exciting pieces during this month- long campaign.”
Bonhams will be providing free auction valuations by appointment across the Midlands throughout June as well as during its specialist valuation days at Knowle on June 13, 20, and 27.