What's It Worth? Up, up and away in my beautiful Cartier

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Long before the extremely popular Balloon Bleu Cartier watches made today, Cartier, Tiffany and many others made Montgolfier items. Watchmakers, craftspeople and jewelers made items in the form of balloons. Tiffany made some, but Cartier was a huge maker of these specially named Montgolfier pieces, in honor of the brothers who practically invented the hot air balloon. These highly collectible items are rarely seen today.

The Montgolfier era of collectibility typically spans from the 1820s to the 1930s.

This small pin with vibrant, untreated Burmese pigeon blood rubies and tiny diamonds is made of platinum and is signed and numbered by Cartier. While the platinum is worth less than $100, we were excited to find this piece and offered the doctor’s estate a princely four figure sum. We were quickly offered a healthy profit of 50% from a Chicago collector of Cartier. This is another good example of the value added by terrific design, historical references and the power of Cartier’s signature. As an addendum, I am having a hard time prying this pin out of Katrina’s hands; it may very well end up in her “private collection.”

Sigh.

Always buying vintage Cartier, Tiffany, Van Cleef & Arpels, and Elizabeth Locke jewelry. We make house calls.
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