Wisconsin Jeweler Buys Two Items at Elizabeth Taylor Auction

Yet another independent jeweler is the proud winner of items from the collection of Elizabeth Taylor.

Unlike other jewelers who attended the event in New York City, Denise Wurzel of Williams Diamond Center in Eau Claire, Wisc., placed the winning bids on two matching cuff bracelets from the auction’s online component. She declined to say how much she paid for the items.

“To me this is like someone in the computer business getting something from Bill Gates,” she says.  “I just saw the opportunity and thought it would be really cool to own a piece of her jewelry. Obviously she really appreciated jewelry and was great for the business. She was married seven times.”

The purchase has led to some publicity, including a piece on the local news. Wurzel plans to display the items in the store, and is considering planning an event around them. She may even wear them herself.

“I honestly don’t now how wearable they will be,” she says. “But I really look at this as a long term investment.”

Other independent jewelers, including Jenny Caro of Jewelry by Design and Hank Siegel of Hamilton Jewelers, now also own pieces from the Taylor collection.

In related news, the final tally of the record-breaking Taylor auction has ballooned to $156.7 million, according to a release from Christie’s. The online-only component generated more than 57,000 bids and an additional $9.5 million in sales.  

In a statement, Taylor’s son, Chris Wilding, said, “My mother always acknowledged that she was merely the temporary custodian of the incredible things she owned. Today, I think she would be happy to know that her collections will continue to enrich the lives of those who have acquired pieces.”

All sales proceeds will go to the Elizabeth Taylor Trust, and a portion of the profits generated by exhibition tickets, sponsorships, and publication sales will go to The Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation.