Auction round-up: December's designer discoveries
Fashion fans will be spoilt for choice at this month's specialist sales taking place around the country
High-end fashion and accessories are big business at auction, with designer pieces commanding a premium at salerooms up and down the country. But there are bargains to be had too and auction houses are ideal for sourcing unique Christmas gifts or covetable pieces to add some extra sparkle to your seasonal partywear. Here is our pick of the best auctions taking place this month – and some of the most prized items on offer.
Chiswick Auctions is holding its Designer Handbags & Fashion Sale on 7 December. Among the lots of highly collectable handbags are a Chanel Gilt Python jumbo double-flap bag from 2011 (£2,500-£4,000), a burgundy Louis Vuitton Alligator GO-14 PM cross-body bag from its Rare and Exceptional Collection (£6,500-£8,000) and a rare almost-new Hermes Birkin Rouge H in shiny midnight-blue crocodile with a deep-red trim (£35,000-£45,000).
Alternatively, two days later you could head to Birmingham-based Fellows for its ever-popular Designer Collection Sale. Highlights this month include a Chanel black-and-white lambskin Camellia handbag (£240-£340) and (pictured above) a limited-edition Louis Vuitton suede and Swarovski crystal-embellished Monogram Rose Strass Theda PM (£800-£1,200).
Fellows is also holding an Antique & Modern Jewellery Sale on 8 December, with lots from the likes of Cartier and highlights including an 18ct-gold and onyx Alhambra necklace by Van Cleef & Arpels (£700-£900).
Designer accessories can likewise be found at Lyon & Turnbull's Select Jewellery & Watches Sale at its Glasgow gallery on 6 December. Items on offer include an exquisite Boucheron diamond necklace (£7,000-£9,000) and a Breguet lady's rose-gold and diamond set-watch (£10,000-£15,000).
One of the biggest events on the fashion-auction calendar is the biannual Passion for Fashion Sale from vintage specialist Kerry Taylor Auctions. The next one takes place on 12 December, at its Bermondsey showroom in London, and features the finest in haute couture and cutting-edge designer pieces as well as significant historic dresses.
Interesting lots include a dazzling Gianni Versace bejewelled catsuit from 1989-1990 (£6,000-£10,000) and an Alexander McQueen "Hieronymus Bosch" weave dress from AW10/11's Angels & Demons collection (£8,000-£12,000). Among the accessories are a dark-brown lizard-skin Constance bag from the 1980s (£3,000-£5,000) and (pictured above) a black Fjord-leather Kelly bag from 1995 (£1,500-£2,000), both by Hermes.
For those looking to make a significant investment, the sale will also feature some exceptional dresses from the wardrobe of Princess Diana, including a purple Bruce Oldfield crushed-velvet evening gown (£50,000-£70,000) worn during an official visit to Portugal in 1987.