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BEST of the BEST 2014 | Style |Jewelry | Vintage: Siegelson

  • Jill Newman

In the high-stakes vintage-jewelry market, Lee Siegelson has proved to be a master, having assembled an inventory of some of the most beautiful and collectible pieces of the past century. Of particular note are several items he acquired from one of Cartier’s most fruitful periods, the mid-1920s, when the discovery of Tutankhamen’s tomb triggered a worldwide fascination with all things Egyptian. The Parisian jeweler answered the call of its clients by crafting exquisite Egyptian-revival pieces, some of which incorporated actual artifacts from the ancient kingdom on the Nile. Prime examples of this genre that are now in Siegelson’s possession include this 1922 Cartier art deco Egyptian-revival sautoir with coral, onyx, turquoise, and diamonds, and this 1926 Egyptian belt-buckle brooch— made of faience, enamel, sapphires, and diamonds—once owned by Linda Lee Thomas, the wife of Cole Porter. (212.832.2666, www.siegelson.com)