In Depth

Auction round up: July's sparkling sales

Treasure hunters will be dazzled by the array of fine watches and jewellery on display at regional UK auction houses throughout the month

Bidding on jewellery and other covetable pre-owned items at auction needn't be a daunting experience for first-time buyers. Whatever your budget, there are relative bargains to be found. Why not head to one of the UK's many specialist auction houses and see for yourself? 

Designer jewellery and watches are in plentiful supply this month. First up, on 13 July, there's a sale of Antique & Modern Jewellery at Birmingham-based Fellows. Precious lots include a Bulgari 18ct gold and diamond 'Spiga' necklace (£4,000-6,000) and a  'Happy Spirit' chain pendant from Chopard (£4,000-6,000). Fans of Art Deco, meanwhile, will be drawn to a stunning hanging brooch (£5,000-7,000), which features two highly desirable stones – an oval Burmese sapphire and a Colombian emerald.

Fellows is also holding a watch sale on 25 July. Among the high-end lots is an 18ct white gold ladies' Cartier Pasha watch (£5,000-7,000) and a gentleman's Audemars Piguet stainless steel Royal Oak Quantieme Perpetual bracelet watch (£12,000-18,000), but the key find here is a rare example of a Rolex Oyster Perpetual GMT Master bracelet watch (£20,000-30,000), featuring an original Bakelite rotating bezel (replaced with metal in later models) that's still in excellent condition.

Woolley & Wallis in Salisbury also has some fine examples of haute horology at its Jewellery & Watches sale on 20 July. One highlight is a ladies' steel and gold Jaeger LeCoultre Reverso Duetto wristwatch with red leather strap (£2,000-3,000). On the jewellery front, there are some rare and wonderful pieces, such as an early 20th century leaping pig brooch (£4,000-6,000), formed from natural baroque pearl and featuring rose-cut diamonds and rubies.

On 19 July, Lyon & Turnbull is holding an auction of Jewellery, Silver and Watches at its Edinburgh saleroom. Lots include a Boucheron mid-20th century curb link bracelet (£2,000-3,000), a cultured pearl and hematite set necklace (£400-600) and a selection of emerald jewellery (pictured top) with estimates ranging from £250 to £600.

Staying at the more modest end of the scale, Chiswick Auctions' Affordable Luxury: Designer Handbags & Fashion sale on 18 July will include pieces from many renowned luxury brands at pleasingly accessible prices. You'll find perfect summer travel accessories, such as a Hermes orange and cream Cannes PM canvas tote bag (£280-320) and a Louis Vuitton monogrammed Keepall 50 holdall (£350-400). Jewellery picks include a Hermes geometric enamel bangle (£120-180).

Finally, for something a bit different, head to Lincolnshire-based Batemans, which has a collection of sought-after treasures at its Fine Art, Antiques and Collectables auction on 1 July, including several valuable artworks and some interesting wines and whiskies. But the most exciting lot has to be a beautiful 22ct gold egg by Garrard & Co (£10,000-15,000), commissioned by Cadbury's during the 1980s as part of its nationwide Conundrum treasure hunt. Finely engraved with exquisite enamel decoration, this unique, 323.6g objet d'art is a true collector's item.

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