Little Badge Makes a Big Impression

Posted On: 01 Nov 2022 by Rita Kearsey

As an auctioneer people often ask me if I enjoy selling on the rostrum and the answer is of course ‘Yes I do, I love it’. The enjoyment and excitement grows depending on how well the sale is going and our most recent sale certainly turned out to be a very enjoyable couple of days for me. All the staff at the auction rooms get a real buzz when the sales go particularly well and my poor partner was more than a little overwhelmed when I arrived home late on the Thursday evening resembling a bouncy Tigger from Winnie the Pooh.

Little Badge Makes a Big Impression

Top price of the day was made by a very fine three stone diamond ring which sold for £6,500 whilst a pair of fine Chinese Kang Xi small dishes sold for £4,300. The dishes had been valued cautiously at £200/£400 by our oriental consultant, but she had warned me that she thought they would sell for far more. Chinese items are in very strong demand at present and if an item ticks all the right boxes and is in good condition then they can often leave deliberately conservative estimates far behind. My consultant had provided me with a detailed catalogue description as well as promising me that she would notify some of her contacts whom she thought might be interested. On sale day we had four telephone bidders (including some from China), but the dishes were eventually bought by a well known London dealer bidding online.

Once the ceramics and glass section was over, we moved onto the Silver, Jewellery and Watches section which is usually my favourite part of the day - as the bidding is often fast and furious. It can be quite exhausting keeping up with all the numbers flashing up on the two computer screens as well as trying to keep an eye on the buyers in the room.

A fine Victorian five stone ruby ring attracted considerable attention and sold to the trade for £3,100 whilst a selection of attractive silver Arts & Crafts jewellery also sold very well. However, I had rather a soft spot for a crudely painted metal Suffragette brooch which was still attached to it’s cardboard backing and read ‘Votes for Women’. Estimated at just £20/£40 it sold on the day for £180 – which goes to show how a cheaply made trinket (not designed to last) can become a sought after collectable antique. This example had survived in exceptional condition and probably attracted further attention due to the current wave of feminism encouraged by the ‘Me Too’ movement.