27 November 2010

Adding some sparkle to your life

I have just held some of the most exquisite jewels that once belonged to the Duchess of Windsor. My heart was racing. If you are a biographer, you can’t get much closer to your subject - or at least to this particular subject - than handling jewels she once owned and wore, even trying them on for size. (They fitted me rather well, actually) This jewelry blazed forth to the world not just that Wallis was rich but that she had exquisite taste and was in the vanguard of modern design. She may have been stripped of the royal initials HRH that most lawyers believed were her due but no one could stop her wearing a ruby crown above a diamond heart with emerald initials, a gift from her husband. It is now on offer again to the highest bidder, and, judging by the crowd looking at the jewels with me, there are plenty of women hoping their man will prove as devoted a jewel buyer as the Duke of Windsor.

Twenty three years after the historic sale of almost all the Duchess of Windsor’s jewels, 20 pieces from that sale will be re-auctioned on Tuesday 30th November. For the past few months the exquisite objects have been tempting buyers around the world and now they are on display again in London. These highly personal pieces with their intimate inscriptions may never again be seen. There may never again be collectors like the non royal WE - Wallis and Edward.You have just three days left to see them. Hurry.

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