METAL: 18k (750) yellow gold and platinum (850) (French assay marks)
RUBIES: circular rubies with approximate total weight of 16.50-20.50 carats
DIAMONDS: circular diamonds with approximate total weight of 5.50-6.50 carats
DATE: 1964
MARKS: signed Van Cleef & Arpels, maker's marks (Péry & Fils, Van Cleef & Arpels) on each element, each element is numbered

SIZE/DIMENSIONS: 18.2 to 22.5 cm with pompon x 2.5 cm (worn as a bracelet), approx. 45.0 cm x 1.5 (worn as necklace), 4.5 x 1.6 cm (tassel)
GROSS WEIGHT: 143.6 grams
A true masterpiece of ingenuity and one of the most innovative pieces of jewellery ever created, the Van Cleef & Arpels "Zip" necklace is an iconic design with a rich and intriguing history.

The legend begins in the 1930s, when the Duchess of Windsor, then known as one of the most elegant and fashionable women in the world and a loyal client of the House, asked Renée Puissant, daughter of Estelle Arpels and Alfred Van Cleef and the House's Creative Director between 1926 and 1942, to create a piece of jewellery inspired by the zipper to be worn with her evening dresses. This request suggested a long and complex design process requiring patience and tenacity from the atelier.

Although the patent for the design was filed in 1938, it was not until 1951 that Van Cleef & Arpels presented its first "Zip" necklace. Capturing the spirit and style of the 1950s, the "Zip" necklace is not only a beautiful and versatile piece of jewellery, but also a stunning technical achievement. The top part of the necklace can be detached and the remaining section can be reassembled to form a bracelet, leaving the gold tassel hanging off one side. This versatility brings a sense of play to the design of Haute Joaillerie.
Very few of these iconic jewels were made in the 1950s, a fact that explains why the few examples offered at auction are highly sought after by collectors.

Still in high demand more than seventy years after its creation, the ability of the "Zip" necklace to stand the test of time is testament to its innovative and iconic design.

M. Petit, Van Cleef & Arpels, Reflets d'éternité, Paris, Editions du Cercle d'Art, 2005, plate 208 and 209 for a similar necklace.
E. Possémée, Van Cleef & Arpels, L’Art de la Haute Joaillerie, Paris, Editions Les Arts Décoratifs, 2012, p.159 for a similiar necklace.
S. Raulet, Van Cleef & Arpels, Paris, Editions du Regard, 1986, p.235 for a similiar necklace.
X. Barral, Van Cleef & Arpels, Timeless Beauty, Editions Xavier Barral, 2012, p.125 for a similar necklace.
Special notice
Please note this lot is the property of a consumer. See H1 of the Conditions of Sale.
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