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Golden Age of Hollywood up for auction

Tuesday, March 14, 2017 - 01:55

Pieces of costume jewelry designed by Eugene Joseff and worn by iconic Hollywood stars like Vivien Leigh, Elizabeth Taylor and Marilyn Monroe, are going up for auction in Hollywood. Rough Cut - no reporter narration

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ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION) Jewelry worn by some of the most iconic stars of the Golden Age of Cinema are going under the hammer in November at Julien's Auctions in Los Angeles. However, the lots up for auction, which were worn by the likes of Elizabeth Taylor, Marilyn Monroe, Katherine Hepburn and Errol Flynn, are not your usual jewelry lots. "It's very different from a conventional jewelry auction in the sense that it's all costume jewelry," said Julien's Auctions jewelry specialist Isabel Yeo. "This is the first time that a 700 piece collection from Joseff has come to auction. All the jewelry was worn by celebrities, some worn by multiple celebrities so just buying a piece of this isn't like buying a diamond necklace from Cartier, you're actually owning a piece of Hollywood memorabilia." The items all come from Eugene Joseff, a costume jeweler to the Hollywood studios who, according to the auction house's press release, supplied 90 per cent of all jewelry worn on screen in the 1930s and 1940s. He set up the company Joseff of Hollywood until his death in a plane crash in the late 1940s. "Joseff made so much jewelry and he loaned it to the studio in the sense that's what made it interesting," said Yeo. "One piece of jewelry could have been worn by Vivien Lee, one could have been worn by Maureen O'Hara and some of them could have been worn by both of them, so what makes it really interesting is that it was all beautifully handmade. He had a special technique of making the jewelry in that it reflected the glare of the harsh studio lighting in Hollywood and that 'special sauce' as he called it is still unknown to everyone. It's still a secret family recipe so that technique of making jewelry is no longer in existence and everything that you see here is all we're going to have." Because the jewelry was on loan, the collection has remained mostly intact. Items of interest include Vivien Leigh's necklace and Clark Gable's cigar case from 'Gone with the Wind', Marilyn Monroe's earrings from 'Some Like it Hot' and a belt worn by Elizabeth Taylor in 'Cleopatra.' "A lot of people look at costume jewelry like it's just costume," said Yeo, adding "These could have all been diamonds in the way he put in the work and the craftsmanship and interesting soldering and just the way he put the work into it, it's almost the same as fine jewelry." The full set of lots will be put on public display from early November and the auction is slated to take place on November 17th and 18th.

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Golden Age of Hollywood up for auction

Tuesday, March 14, 2017 - 01:55