10 Most Expensive Necklaces Ever Sold

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The earliest known piece of jewelry is a necklace dating back 25,000 years. The simple design is made of fish bones and was found in a cave in Monaco. Although the owner of this necklace is unknown, historians say early jewelry was often worn with the hope of protection against bad luck and illness.

As the years went by, things like diamond cutting became easier and more precise. Although initial cutting techniques of the 14th century don’t offer as much precision as modern techniques, the ability to control the shape of precious stones opened up a world of possibilities, especially when it came to making necklaces.

Today, necklaces have a huge price range — but it’s not hard to find some designs that sell for thousands. In some cases, jewelers incorporate enough precious and rare materials that their final necklace costs millions.

These are the top 10 most expensive necklaces in the world.

  1. Zsa Zsa Gabor’s Diamond Necklace
  2. Estimated Value: $1.5 million
    Materials: Diamonds and other precious materials
    Interesting Fact: The diamonds in this necklace earned top-notch quality ratings
    Unique Feature: Diamonds weighing as much as 8.07 carats.
    Zsa Zsa Gabor’s Diamond Necklace
    photo source: forbes.com

    Actress Zsa Zsa Gabor is iconic for a lot of reasons, but her love of high-end fashion and jewelry is definitely one of her most defining characteristics.

    For anyone who loved Zsa Zsa’s sense of style, the chance to buy one of her necklaces is probably pretty exciting — if you can afford it at least. According to reports, one of Zsa Zsa’s necklaces from jeweler Harry Winston was available for sale in 2017 for an estimated $1.5 million.

    The necklace itself features 45 round brilliant diamonds weighing a total of 66 carats. Those are some big rocks.

    Did you know?

    Zsa Zsa Gabor reportedly said, “I never hated a man enough to give him his diamonds back.” She’s also quoted as saying she “never met a diamond” she didn’t like.


  3. The Star Ruby and Diamond Necklace
  4. Estimated Value: HKD 20,525,000 (about $2.6 million USD)
    Materials: Rubies, diamonds, and gold
    Interesting Fact: These rubies have a distinct star effect
    Unique Feature: 13 marquise-cut diamonds
    The Star Ruby and Diamond Necklace
    photo source: christies.com

    In 2020, Christie’s auction house sold a beautiful ruby and diamond necklace for a whopping HKD 20,525,000 — or about $2.6 million. The gorgeous jewelry features prominent touches of red rubies alongside marquise-cut diamonds. Although details about the piece are limited, it’s clear that the Star Ruby and Diamond Necklace is a stunning example of expensive jewelry.

    Beyond 13 marquise-cut diamonds, this necklace features two pear-shaped rocks, circular-cut diamonds, gold, and other luxury details.

    Christie’s estimated the necklace would sell for at least HKD 18 million, but the final price shot way past HKD 20 million.

    Did you know?

    The wealthy buyer of this necklace is anonymous.


  5. The Chrysler Diamond Pendant
  6. Estimated Value: $5 million
    Materials: Diamonds and platinum
    Interesting Fact: This necklace was owned by Thelma Chrysler Foy
    Unique Feature: 43 pear brilliant-cut diamonds
    The Chrysler Diamond Pendant
    photo source: christies.com

    The diamond in this necklace was once owned by Thelma Chrysler Foy, the daughter of American automotive and railroad executive Walter Chrysler. Thelma was known for her elegant style and taste for luxury fashion — which she could afford given the wealth of her family.

    Among Thelma’s estate was a gorgeous diamond that has since been used to create a necklace. The beautiful piece sold for just over $5 million in June 2021, ranking it among the most expensive necklaces ever sold.

    Beyond this necklace, a large part of Thelma’s iconic wardrobe was donated to the Metropolitan Museum of Art after her death in 1957.

    Did you know?

    The first person to own Thelma’s diamond after her death was Harry Winston.


  7. Red Scarlet by James W. Currens
  8. Estimated Value: HKD 39,860,000 (about $5.1 million USD)
    Materials: Oval rubies, pear-shaped diamonds, platinum, and gold
    Interesting Fact: This necklace is dated October 16, 2012
    Unique Feature: Signed with a maker’s mark
    Red Scarlet by James W. Currens
    photo source: christies.com

    Christie’s auction house calls this stunning jewelry a “superb ruby and diamond” necklace.

    Titled the Red Scarlet, this necklace was designed by James W. Currens around 2012. The expensive piece features a lot of luxury materials, including 26 oval rubies and pear-shaped diamonds set in platinum and 18-karat gold.

    The Red Scarlet was sold in 2012. Christie’s estimated the necklace would fetch at least HKD 28 million, but it ended up going for way more — about $5.1 million USD.

    With such a steep price tag, Christie’s made sure to verify the quality and weight of the precious materials in this necklace. That meant the winner got a copy of a report from The Gemological Institute of America verifying the necklace’s authenticity.

    Did you know?

    The red gems in this necklace are called “pigeon blood red.”


  9. Leviev Yellow Diamond Pendant
  10. Estimated Value: $10 million
    Materials: 77.12-carat diamond and other precious materials
    Interesting Fact: This diamond was found in the mines of diamond tycoon Lev Leviev
    Unique Feature: A rare yellow diamond
    Leviev Yellow Diamond Pendant
    photo source: thejewelleryeditor.com

    Of all the precious stones in the world, yellow diamonds are among the rarest and the most expensive.

    This example of a coveted yellow diamond was found in the mines of diamond tycoon Lev Leviev. The rare rock was carefully polished and sculpted before getting placed alongside other precious materials to form the Levieve Yellow Diamond Pendant.

    The final product has an estimated value of $10 million. That price covers the massive 77.12-carat rock and all the luxury of an ultra-rare necklace.

    Did you know?

    The yellow diamond is really the centerpiece of this beautiful necklace — which makes sense. These rocks (technically called Fancy Vivid yellow diamonds) are extremely rare. In fact, just one out of every 16,500 diamonds mined fall in this exclusive category.


  11. The Peacock Necklace
  12. Estimated Value: $14.9 million
    Materials: Royal blue sapphire and diamonds
    Interesting Fact: The sapphires in this necklace are very rare due to mine depletion
    Unique Feature: 21 cushion-shaped sapphires
    The Peacock Necklace
    photo source: thevalue.com

    In November 2018, a rare and expensive sapphire necklace sold for nearly $15 million at a Christie’s auction in Hong Kong. The beautiful jewelry was crafted using sapphires from Kashmir. Sapphires from that region are extremely rare due to mine depletion dating back to the 1800s.

    Beyond rare sapphires, this necklace features complementary diamonds in an alternating pattern. The design itself gets its name from the deep velvet blue of the sapphires, which resemble peacock feathers.

    The winning bid for this necklace was placed via telephone, marking the third item at the 2018 auction to surpass HKD 100 million.

    Did you know?

    Kashmir sapphires were discovered when a landslide revealed sapphire-bearing stones in 1881.


  13. The Heart of the Ocean
  14. Estimated Value: $20 million
    Materials: Diamonds and other precious materials
    Interesting Fact: This necklace is based on one from the movie Titanic
    Unique Feature: 15-carat blue diamond
    The Heart of the Ocean
    photo source: costerdiamonds.com

    Titanic has a lot of iconic characters, sets, and props, but the necklace worn by Rose is probably the most famous piece of jewelry from the film.

    In the movie, Rose’s necklace doesn’t actually feature a diamond. The prop is made from cubic zirconia and white gold — so it’s not worthless, but it’s nothing compared to the recreation designed by Harry Winston.

    With the popularity and success of Titanic, Winston designed a reproduction of Rose’s necklace to be worn by actress Gloria Stuart at the 1998 Academy Awards. Unlike the prop, this necklace was crafted around a real, 15-carat blue diamond.

    Estimates say this beautiful design is worth $20 million.

    Did you know?

    Celine Dion, who sang Titanic’s iconic credit song My Heart Will Go On, also wore a recreation of Rose’s necklace. Celine’s version was heart-shaped and valued at around $2 million.


  15. Barbara Hutton’s Necklace
  16. Estimated Value: $27.4 million
    Materials: Jadeite beads, platinum, and gold
    Interesting Fact: This necklace was owned by Woolworth heiress Barbara Hutton
    Unique Feature: The jadeite beads are described as “highly translucent”
    Barbara Hutton’s Necklace
    photo source: katiecallahanandco.com

    The Hutton-Mdivani Jadeite Necklace is sometimes called the most famous necklace in the world. The stunning piece was a wedding gift given to Barbara Hutton in 1933 by her father (who just so happened to be one of the richest men in America at the time).

    Today, the Hutton-Mdivani Jadeite Necklace is worth an estimated $27.4 million. After selling at a Sotheby’s auction in 2014, the expensive design went into possession of the Cartier Collection.

    The beads on this necklace are all over 15mm in diameter and each was carefully carved from the same boulder. The clasp is made of 18-karat gold with diamond accents.

    Did you know?

    Jade of this quality does not usually produce beads over 10mm in diameter, so this necklace is a rare find in the world of ultra-expensive jewelry.


  17. L’Incomparable
  18. Estimated Value: $55 million
    Materials: Rose gold and diamonds
    Interesting Fact: The diamond centerpiece of this necklace was found by a girl in the Democratic Republic of the Congo
    Unique Feature: Asymmetrical design mimicking leaves on a vine
    L’Incomparable
    photo source: thejewelleryeditor.com

    Known simply as “The Incomparable,” this ultra-expensive necklace features a diamond found by a young girl in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. The girl reportedly gave the diamond to her uncle, who sold it to local diamond dealers. Eventually, the diamond made its way to the top of the high-end jewelry market and became the centerpiece of L’Incomparable.

    Beyond the 407-carat focal point, L’Incomparable boasts 91 white diamonds positioned like leaves on a vine. Altogether, the necklace is valued at $55 million, making it the second-most expensive necklace in the world.

    Did you know?

    L’Incomparable made its debut in 2013 at the Doha Jewelry and Watch Exhibition.


  19. A Heritage in Bloom
  20. Estimated Value: $200 million
    Materials: 11,551 diamonds and precious metals
    Interesting Fact: This design is inspired by Chinese culture
    Unique Feature: 24 D-color internally flawless diamonds
    A Heritage in Bloom
    photo source: thejewelleryeditor.com

    A Heritage in Bloom is the most expensive necklace in the world.

     

    With a price tag of $200 million, this necklace is by far the most expensive in the world and one of the most expensive pieces of jewelry ever created. The stunning piece was designed by Wallace Chan, a Chinese jeweler.

    The design itself centers around an incredible 104-carat diamond that Chan carved out of a larger stone called Cullinan Heritage. That stone produced 24 more gems, which were also incorporated into A Heritage in Bloom.

    Beyond the stunning diamond centerpiece, A Heritage in Bloom features 600 pink diamonds, 72 jades, and several other ultra-expensive materials.

    Altogether, it took 22 jewelers 47,000 hours to complete A Heritage in Bloom.

    Did you know?

    This incredible necklace looks stunning, but it’s also a feat of engineering. A Heritage in Bloom was made to be disassembled and restructured into 27 unique combinations, letting the wearer decide which version they like best.

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