From the 1950s through the 1970s, Harry Winston was the world’s most prominent jeweler and his boutiques were the destination of choice for royalty, Hollywood stars and business moguls alike. Proclaimed 'The King of Diamonds', Harry Winston handled the world's most famous jewels including the Indore Pears, the Hope Diamond, the Porter Rhodes and the Jonker.In 1944, the concept of the diamond wreath necklace came to Mr. Winston as he returned to his Scarsdale, New York estate on a snowy December night. He was mesmerized by the majesty and simplicity of the holly that adorned his door. The manner in which the leaves created the wreath, with branches barely seen beneath, enchanted him. Mr. Winston revolutionized diamond jewelry by creating a style of setting inspired by this concept. With each diamond creating the overall form of the necklace, the platinum setting is discrete and almost entirely absent when worn. The diamonds are uninterrupted by metal and reveal striking brilliance. Lot 369, once owned by Carolyn Ryan Foulke and Joanne Toor Cummings, is the epitome of this innovative design. Caroline Ryan Foulke was the granddaughter of Thomas Fortune Ryan, the financier extraordinaire. He acquired his billion dollar fortune primarily through his consolidation of the New York railway system, which predates today's subway system. He also had numerous other business ventures. Most notably, he was the largest individual owner of the Congo Diamond Fields. His part ownership of the diamond fields and his family’s relationship with the jeweler Harry Winston, sparked his granddaughter's interest and desire to acquire fine jewels.Mrs. Foulke curated her collection with excellent taste and an eye for quality. Among these treasured jewels was an iconic Harry Winston wreath necklace, the present Lot 369. In October of 1986 Christie's New York featured a Magnificent Selection of Diamond Jewelry: The Property of Caroline Ryan Foulke. The final lot of Mrs. Foulke’s collection was this diamond necklace, which sold for an impressive $902,000.Following the auction, the necklace was acquired by the elegant Joanne Toor Cummings. Joanne Toor Cummings was a patron of the arts and an avid philanthropist. During her lifetime, she made contributions to many hospitals, including the Mount Sinai Medical Center, New York Hospital and the Memorial-Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. Mrs. Cummings was also passionate about theater and performance art and supported the American Ballet Theatre, the Lyrical Opera of Chicago and countless other organizations. The Collection of the Late Joanne Toor Cummings was presented at Christie’s New York in April of 1996. True to Mrs. Cummings charitable spirit, the proceeds of the auction benefited multiple institutions including various hospitals, colleges, art institutes and theaters. This elegant necklace was the final lot sold from her collection - an exclamation point that concluded a superb assemblage of jewels.This Harry Winston diamond cluster necklace transcends the fickle fads of fashion and remains as timeless and desirable today as it was in the 1940s when the concept was first conceived. It captures the essence of Mr. Winston's innovative vision and features an exquisite selection of diamonds. Furthermore, the magnificent necklace embodies the refined sophistication of Caroline Ryan Foulke, Joanne Toor Cummings, and its current owner and Christie’s is proud to share it with collectors once again.SHOULD YOU WISH TO BID ON THIS LOT, YOU WILL BE REQUIRED TO OBTAIN A HIGH VALUE PADDLE.PROPERTY OF AN ELEGANT LADY

The tapered band designed as a series of pear and marquise-cut diamond cluster links, each enhanced by a circular-cut diamond, the three largest weighing approximately 5.31, 4.92 and 3.91 carats, 1961, 16 1/4 ins., mounted in platinum, may be separated and worn as two bracelets
With maker's mark for Harry Winston
Accompanied by seven reports dated 24 August 2017 from the GIA Gemological Institute of America stating that the round brilliant-cut diamonds, weighing approximately 5.31, 4.92, 3.91, 3.89, 3.75, 3.71 and 2.85 carats, are a variety of D, G, F and I color, VVS2 (Potentially Internally Flawless) to SI2 clarity

With three reports dated 24-25 August 2017 from the GIA Gemological Institute of America stating that the three pear brilliant-cut diamonds, weighing approximately 3.75, 3.71 and 2.85 carats, are D, G, E color, VS1, SI1, SI2 clarity, respectively
Formerly the Property of Joanne Toor Cummings
Previously sold at Christie's New York, Magnificent Jewels & Jewels from the Cummings Collection, 16 April 1996, Lot 360

Formerly the Property of Caroline Ryan Foulke
Previously sold at Christie's New York, A Magnificent Selection of Diamond Jewelry, 22 October 1986, Lot 406
L. S. Krashes, Harry Winston: The Ultimate Jeweler, New York, Harry Winston, Inc. and the Gemological Institute of America, 1984, p. 193
Sale room notice
Please note that for Lot 369 the correct weights of the three certified pear-shaped diamonds are 3.52, 2.69 and 2.60 carats.

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