Palladium Brooch Earns $300K at Sotheby’s

New York City designer Raymond Yard was famous for his precise craftsmanship and high-quality gemstones—qualities found in abundance in this spectacular sapphire, palladium, and diamond brooch. The circa-1950 bauble, which sold at Sotheby’s New York City on Sept. 24 for a cool $290,000 more than its low estimate, employs another Yard signature: “The majority of the gems in Yard’s colored pieces were white, which made any color in the piece pop out even more,” says Bob Gibson, president and owner of the ­Greenwich, Conn.–based Raymond C. Yard firm. Yard’s choice of palladium was probably the result of restrictions on platinum during and after World War II. Though Gibson was surprised by the towering final price, he attributes the allure to the brooch’s innate beauty: “People are wanting jewelry that’s just a pleasure to look at—jewelry that’s greater than the sum

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