Elizabeth Taylor once stated that “Life without earrings is empty” This fabulous Chandelier pair was one of her favourites and she was photographed in these earrings more frequently than any other jewel in her collection.
Originally she found the earrings on a trip to Paris with her third husband Mike Todd, she fell in love with them and asked Todd to buy them for her. Famed for her love of diamonds Liz found these paste earrings irresistible and wore them regularly’ In her own words “I was smitten with them and wore them and wore them whenever I could”
Unbeknown to Liz, Mike Todd had the pair of earrings copied in platinum and diamonds and secretly swapped these for the paste pair. Liz immediately noticed that the earrings were different and Todd had to come clean, Liz kept both pairs.
Todd often used Cartier for his commissions but his resource for the chandelier earrings has remained a secret. Whichever jeweller recreated the diamond chandelier earrings they never come forward to claim responsibility for this magnificent work.
After Mike Todd’s untimely death Liz was photographed on many occasions wearing the chandelier earrings, even when she remarried. Although she owned some fabulous jewellery worth millions of pounds she never lost her love for the chandeliers.
On her death the earrings formed part of “The Legendary Jewels” Christie’s evening sale of Elizabeth Taylor’s in 2011. The earrings were bought by her friend and jewellery designer, Lorraine Schwartz. Schwartz later noted “I had no intention of buying the earrings, but I literally felt Liz kicking me and saying, ‘Oh just buy them.’ I knew the story she had told me about the earrings and the way she loved them. Next thing you know, I was bidding and I bought them. I am thrilled to have the jewels as a special remembrance of my dear friend Liz.