Duchess of Windsor’s Cartier Ruby Bangle

Today mark the Anniversary of the Death of Wallis Simpson, the Duchess of Windsor, who died on this day in 1986! The twice-divorced American for whom a King gave up his Throne, the Duchess possessed a massive jewellery collection of sumptuous modern pieces, which included this Cartier Ruby Bangle!

Van Cleef & Arpels Tiara | Queen Mary’s Pearl Necklace | Cartier Emerald Necklace | Cartier Ruby Bangle

The spectacular Cartier Ruby Bangle set with cushion-shaped rubies, and baguette and circular-cut diamonds set in platinum, was acquired by the former King by June 1938, and has the inscription:

“For our first anniversary of June third”

The Duke and Duchess of Windsor celebrated their first Wedding Anniversary at the Villa La Croë on the French Riviera in Antibes, a year after their Wedding at the Château de Candé in June 1937, just a few months after the former King’s Abdication.

The Duchess of Windsor most notably wore the Cartier Ruby Bangle for a series of spectacular portraits made by Cecil Beaton in Paris in 1939.

Throughout the late 1930s, the Duchess wore the Cartier Ruby Bangle on numerous occasions, usually paired with a spectacular Ruby Necklace she received as a gift on her 40th Birthday from the Duke.

While the Duke of Windsor served as the Governor General of the Bahamas during he Second World War, the Duchess of Windsor again paired the Cartier Ruby Bangle with a Diamond Collar for a portrait session made by Dorothy Wilding in New York in 1943.

One of the most iconic appearances of the Cartier Ruby Bangle came on New Year’s Eve in 1949, dancing with the Duke alongside King Peter and Queen Alexandra of Yugoslavia as the couple rang in the New Year at the Sherry-Netherland Hotel on Fifth Avenue.

Throughout the 1950s and 60s, the Duchess of Windsor usually wore the Cartier Ruby Bangle with her spectacular Ruby Tassel Necklace, reworked from the original necklace received in 1936, and Ruby and Diamond Feathers on numerous occasions.

After the Duchess’ death in 1986, the Cartier Ruby Bangle, together with the rest of her splendid jewellery collection, was sold at auction at Sotheby’s. The proceeds from the sale were donated to Pasteur Institute in Paris.

In 2021, the Cartier Ruby and Diamond Bangle came up for Auction at the Christie’s Magnificent Jewels Sale in Geneva in November 2021, and despite estimates of CHF 1,000,000 – CHF 1,500,000, the Bangle failed to sell and presumably remains with the owner.

 It reappears at public auction for the first time since the landmark auction of 1987 Jewels of the Duchess of Windsor, a sale which gained mythic status thanks to the record prices, media attention and the renewed interest it sparked towards provenanced and signed jewellery, that has persisted ever since.

Van Cleef & Arpels Tiara | Queen Mary’s Pearl Necklace | Cartier Emerald Necklace | Cartier Ruby Bangle


Van Cleef & Arpels Tiara

Queen Mary’s Pearl Necklace

Cartier Emerald Necklace

 Cartier Ruby Bangle

Source link