home

HERMES BIRKIN BAG SELLS FOR $64,800 AT DOYLE NEW YORK'S AUCTION OF COUTURE, TEXTILES & ACCESSORIES ON APRIL 20, 2005

Two Centuries of Fashion History by the World's Legendary Couturiers

On Wednesday, April 20, 2004, Doyle New York held an auction of Couture, Textiles and Accessories showcasing two centuries of fashion history. Offering an extensive selection of dresses, suits and ensembles, the sale also included important costume jewelry, handbags and accessories, as well as American, European and Asian textiles. Highlighting the sale was an extraordinary Hermes black crocodile Birkin bag that sold for an astounding $64,800. Comprising a total of 377 lots, the sale achieved a strong $460,080 with 82% sold by lot and 91% sold by value.

SINGLE-OWNER COLLECTION OF HERMES HANDBAGS
Attracting strong international interest at the auction was a single-owner collection of eleven luxurious handbags by Hermes, most in immaculate condition. The highlight of the collection was a breath-taking black crocodile Birkin that had been customized with a clasp and lock featuring over 14 carats of pave diamonds set in white gold. The object of an extraordinary amount of interest during the exhibition, the handbag also attracted intense competition among telephone bidders at the auction, sending the bag soaring over its pre-sale estimate of $25,000-35,000 to reach $64,800. Other Hermes bags from the same collection attracted similar competition during the sale. These included an Hermes royal blue ostrich Birkin bag that sold for $15,600; an Hermes Etrusque crocodile Kelly bag that sold for $13,200; an Hermes black crocodile Kelly bag that sold for $12,000; and an Hermes anthracite crocodile Kelly bag that sold for $10,200 -- all over their pre-sale estimates. 

COUTURE
Highlighting the couture section of the auction were, interestingly enough, the oldest and the most recent offerings in the sale. An opulent velvet and fur trimmed trained kimono by John Galliano was the most recent item in the sale. Made of ivory silk velvet, it had been stenciled with mauve peonies, lined in white sheared mink, and trimmed in rare Russian lynx. It dated only to 1998, yet it fetched a strong $6,000 at the sale. The oldest lot in the auction was a charming 1815 aqua silk American Empire redingote discovered in a trunk in Savannah, Georgia. This dress had originally belonged to Julia Clark Taylor (1799-1846). Portraits of her parents in law, William and Mary Elizabeth Clayton Miller Taylor, painted by John Wesley Jarvis, hang in the Colonial Dames Georgia Headquarters, housed in the Andrew Low House in Savannah. This American rarity sold to a New York bidder for $5,100.

Another highlight of the Couture section was a vibrant pink strapless draped gown of silk chiffon by Jean Desses. Several years ago, Doyle New York auctioned a similar 1960 draped gown by Desses in canary yellow silk chiffon. Subsequent to the auction, that gown was chosen by actress Renee Zellweger to wear as a presenter to the annual Academy Awards ceremony, and she won kudos from the international fashion media for her extraordinary choice. Competitive bidding at the April 20 sale sent the vibrant pink gown well over its pre-sale estimate to reach a strong $5,700.  

Other outstanding pieces in the couture section included designs by Jacques Fath consigned by a New York Lady. A bouffant dress of black lace over blush pink silk tulle sold for $4,500; a silk two-piece evening dress comprising a black silk voile blouse and an emerald silk floor-length skirt also sold for $4,500; and a black taffeta two-piece dress with a fitted blouse and voluminous skirt sold for $3,600. >From the same collection were two dresses by Marcel Rochas that proved popular at the sale. An ivory strapless dress of lace patterned chenille with a black velvet ribbon crossover sold for $3,600 and a stunning emerald velvet gown with an affixed silk taffeta stole and matching velvet gloves sold for $3,300. Property from other owners included designs by Balenciaga, Gres, Paquin, Oleg Cassini, Thea Porter, Fortuny, Dior, Jay Thorpe, Geoffrey Beene, and Yves Saint Laurent, among many others.    

COSTUME JEWELRY
Featured in the costume jewelry section of the auction were opulent creations by Iradj Moini. Highlights included an extravagant rhinestone and colored glass necklace modeled after peacock feathers and a rhinestone pendant choker with a faux pearl teardrop pendant. Both pieces sold over their estimates at $3,300 each. Also by Iradj Moini was a triplet necklace featuring strands of faux rubies, sapphires and amber together with rhinestones and faux baroque pearls. It sold above its estimate at $2,040.

Clair L. Watson, Director

AUCTION
Wednesday, April 20, 2005 at 10am

NEXT AUCTION
Late Fall 2005

LOCATION
Doyle New York, 175 East 87th Street, New York, NY 10128

INFORMATION
Clair L. Watson, 212-427-4141, ext. 603, couture@DoyleNewYork.com

CATALOGUE
Printed Catalogue: Subscriptions Department, 212-427-4141, ext. 257, subscriptions@DoyleNewYork.com
The online catalogue will be available prior to the auction. Please check back.

MEDIA CONTACT
Louis LeB. Webre, Vice President, Marketing and Media, 212-427-4141, ext 232, louis@DoyleNewYork.com
Images and interviews are available upon request.

A SELECTION OF AUCTION HIGHLIGHTS


HERMES HANDBAGS FROM A SINGLE-OWNER COLLECTION




Lot 1244
Hermes Black Crocodile Birkin with Pave Diamonds 
French, 2002
Silver hardware, blind stamp G, original covered lock and keys, after market 174 pave diamonds on front of each 14 kt. white gold closure plate and 310 on additional lock in H motif, total 14.11 cts. G color, VS clarity, diamonds approx. 0.02 and 02.5, H design on lock 02.5 to 3.0, 13 1/2 x 10 1/2 x 6 inches, marked: Hermes/Paris/Made in France.
See Absolute, Spring 2005, p.21.
Sold to a New York bidder for $64,800



Lot 1243
Hermes Royal Blue Ostrich Birkin Bag 
French, 2003
Gilt-metal hardware, covered lock and key sheath, blind stamp F, 13 1/2 x 11 x 7 inches, marked: Hermes/Paris/Made in France.
Sold to an East Coast bidder for $15,600





Lot 1247
Hermes Etrusque Crocodile Kelly Bag 
French, 2002
Rigide, gilt-metal hardware, optional shoulder strap, covered lock and key sheath, blind stamp 5R, 11 x 9 x 4 1/2 inches, marked: Hermes/Paris/Made in France.
Sold to a New York bidder for $13,200


Lot 1245
Hermes Black Crocodile Kelly Bag 
French, 2002
Rigide, gilt-metal hardware, blind stamp G, covered lock and key sheath, 13 x 10 x 5 inches, marked: Hermes/Paris/Made in France.
Sold to a California bidder for $12,000



Lot 1239
Hermes Anthracite Crocodile Kelly 
French, 2002
Gilt-metal hardware, optional shoulder strap, blind stamp F, ll x 9 x 4 1/2 inches, marked: Hermes/Paris/Made in France.
Sold to a New York bidder for $10,200

COUTURE


Lot 1164
Galliano Opulent Velvet and Fur Trained Kimono 
Fall 1998
Ivory silk velvet ground stenciled with large mauve full and bud peonies, lined in white sheared mink, each pelt fully dropped, and trimmed in rare Russian lynx belly at sleeve and collar, one size, labeled: John Galliano/Paris.
Sold to a New York bidder for $6,000



Lot 1046
Jean Dessès Vibrant Pink Draped Gown 
French, early 1950s
Silk chiffon, the strapless sheath diagonally ruched and draped releasing into floating panel at right waist with self bow, boned bodice, weighted hem, taffeta lining, size 4, labeled: Jean Desses/Rd.Pt. Champs Elysees/Paris/5455.
Sold to a California bidder for $5,700





Lot 1006
Rare Aqua Silk Taffeta Empire Redingote 
American, circa 1815
Brocaded with floral sprigs and vertical stripes in shades of coral pink, green and white, self band belt with ruched flowerheads at center front closure, short puff sleeve over long slender sleeve, attenuated high band collar, creme silk Norwich faux buttons at central front closure, sleeve cap and ruched band at wrist, creme soutache trim, creme silk lining, hook and eye closures, shoulder to hem 52 inches, belt 26 inches, no label.
Note: This dress belonged to Julia Clark Taylor (1799-1846). Portraits of her parents in law, William and Mary Elizabeth Clayton Miller Taylor, painted by John Wesley Jarvis, hang in the Colonial Dames Georgia Headquarters, housed in the Andrew Low House in Savannah.
Sold to a New York bidder for $5,100


Lot 1059
Fath Black Lace Bouffant Dress 
French, 1951
Black Alencon style lace over blush pink silk tulle, slender bodice, scoop neck, boned foundation, short kimono wheel sleeve with two-tier underlay of organza wraped tulle concluding in a revealed four inch ruffle of four layers of crystal pleated tulle, the bias skirt full from dropped yoke, self covered belt at natural waistline, five layers of tulle, a buckram petticoat and pale pink silk taffeta slip stiffened with net, size 4, labeled: Jacques Fath/Paris, pencil markings W504.
See Harper's Bazaar, September 1951, p.218 for photograph by Louise Dahl-Wolfe.
Only 42 when he died tragically of leukemia in 1954, Jacques Fath was in his ascendancy. The epitome of chic, considered by many as the fashion heir apparent to Dior, his ravishing good looks and charm combined with his exquisite couture resulted in a stunning post war rise in popularity so swift Vogue likened it to a comet. He designed the costumes for the Powell and Pressburger movie, The Red Shoes, which brought his designs to the attention of American society women and Hollywood stars, including Mrs. Vincent Astor, Mrs. Thompson Biddle, Marlene Dietrich, Ava Gardner, Greta Garbo and Rita Hayworth (he designed her trousseau when she married Aly Khan), as well as the aforementioned Eva Peron.
Sold to a California bidder for $4,500



Lot 1060
Jacques Fath Silk Two-Piece Evening Dress 
French, 1950/51
Comprising a black crystal pleated silk voile blouse with set in full elbow length sleeves, black buttons at front closure, black velvet ribbon sewn bow at neck, removable ivory cotton collar and cuffs, an emerald silk faille floor length skirt falling full from small tight gathers at waistband, zip and buttoned placket closure at rear, the hem a thirteen inch applied border of black silk satin and emerald faille alternating stripes, black stiffened net petticoat, two inch wide black patent leather belt, size 4, labeled: Jacques Fath/Paris/20505.
Sold to a New York bidder for $4,500



Lot 1062
Marcel Rochas Ivory Strapless Dress 
French, 1951
Gazar woven in broad rows of lace patterned ivory chenille, eight-gore umbrella fold skirt with scalloped hem, black velvet ribbon crossover at bodice and waistband, black velvet formal gloves, size 6, labeled: Marcel Rochas/Paris/4323.
For an interesting reworking that references this design by current Rochas designer, Olivier Theyskens, see Vogue.com/Rochas Autumn/Winter 2004/5 No. 31 runway photograph.
Sold to a Midwestern bidder for $3,600



Lot 1058
Fath Black Taffeta Two-Piece Dress 
Grisette, French, 1951
Horizontally gathered and tucked, fitted blouse with round neck and black button closure down center front, elbow length sleeve with starched white handkerchief linen cuffs, voluminous skirt shaped into umbrella folds, crinoline lined, thin black leather belt, size 4, labeled: Jacques Fath/Paris.
See Harper's Bazaar, September 1951, p.157 for wool version, "outstanding success of the Paris collections".
Sold to a California bidder for $3,600



Lot 1066
Gres Paisley Print Gown 
French, 1960s
The sleeveless sheath of apple green silk tussah overlaid with bias A-line green silk organza with mauve, marigold, purple and tangerine scrolling motifs, the slash neckline and armscye trimmed with encrusted two inch band of similarly colored faceted rhinestones in various sizes, size 8, labeled: Gres/1 Rue de la Paix/Paris.
Sold to a New York bidder for $3,600



Lot 1047
Balenciaga Draped Black Chiffon Gown 

French, 1950s
The strapless fitted boned bodice with sweetheart neckline, black china silk underlay and chiffon lining, the skirt with black silk lining and controlled by six gore A-line self backed black gazar petticoat, the hem stiffened with horsehair and wire, size 6/8, labeled: Balenciaga/10 Avenue George V/Paris and tape label: 56.501(?).
Sold to a California bidder for $3,300




Lot 1061
Marcel Rochas Emerald Velvet Gown 
French, 1950/51
The slender mermaid silhouette with squared bias godet center rear hem, strapless bodice with extravagant iridescent green silk taffeta stole affixed at left, draped across bust to free fall through self knot and down right, a pair of pinch pleats at waistline, emerald green silk faille lining, matching velvet formal gloves, size 4, labeled: Marcel Rochas/Paris/4325.
Sold to a New York bidder for $3,300

COSTUME JEWELRY


Lot 1336
Iradj Moini Peacock Feather Necklace 
Rhodium plated semi rigid frame, prong set with faceted rhinestones, two feathers meeting at center front centered with green and pink glass, 26 inches, marked: Iradj Moini.
Sold to a New York bidder for $3,000



Lot 1334
Iradj Moini Rhinestone Pendant Choker 
American
Rhodium plated intertwined strands of faceted rhinestones, faux pearl teardrop pendant centering rhinestones, 15 inches, marked: Iradj Moini.
Sold to a New York bidder for $3,000




Lot 1340
Indian Ruby and Emerald Festoon Necklace 
Suspended from metallic gold cord with tassel end, 10 inches, no label; Together with a Pair of Similar Earrings.
Sold to a New York bidder for $3,000