Lempertz auction 'Hommage à Coco Chanel' almost entirely sold out

The sale 'Hommage à Coco Chanel - Vintage Haute Couture Fashion' at Lempertz Cologne on 9th February ended with a sensational total result of €170,000. Many bidders from around the world participated in the saleroom, over telephone, and via the internet, driving numerous lots far above their estimates.

The evening sale "Hommage à Coco Chanel - Vintage Haute Couture Fashion" was a phenomenal success, selling out almost in its entirety and achieving a total result of €170,000.

Core of the auction was formed by a unique private collection assembled over the course of 30 years by a Coco Chanel aficionado from Berlin. The pieces were highly sought after among bidding collectors, with the second lot - a bundle of gold and silver plated metal wheat stalks and flowers - igniting the first bidding battle in the packed saleroom. It rose ten-fold from the original estimate of €1,500 to make €15,000 (lot 2). The table basse gerbe de blé, a second edition of the coffee table formerly kept at Chanel's apartment in the Rue Cambon, also attracted numerous bidders and doubled its estimate of €3-4,000 (lot 5, €7,400).

A valet muet made from black lacquered wood and steel, produced in 2008 as window decoration for the Chanel boutique displays of the Paris-London collection, left its estimate of €400 - 800 far behind, to eventually sell to a telephone bidder in China for the impressive sum of €3,700 following a lengthy bidding battle (lot 6). A 1m high figure of a deer produced as a limited edition window decor piece for the Chanel winter collection in 1996 achieved 20 times its estimate, selling for €6,200 (lot 17, est. €300 - 400).  

The tension in the saleroom was palpable as the auctioneer called out a Robert Goossen's "Il faut aimer" necklace: Numerous pre-auction bids and fevered saleroom activity raised the unique silver-toned metal and quartz sautoir from the estimate of €600 - 800 to €2,700 (lot 42). Lot 18, a 5 litre Chanel no. 5 factice bottle, also initiated a lengthy battle of bids, which was eventually won by a saleroom buyer against a particularly tenacious telephone bidder for €3,700 (lot 18, est. €600 - 900). A pair of 1980s Chanel clip earrings with lion mascarons were also highly sought after, changing hands for €740 (lot 77, est. €150 - 250), as was a  dark blue woollen gentlemen's pea coat by Chanel, which sold to a telephone bidder for €1,700 (lot 120, est. 500 - 800).

The second part of the auction comprised 50 selected pieces from the women's fashion collections of Hermès, Dior, Saint-Laurent, and Pucci. Undisputed highlights of this selection were two Hermès Kelly bags that both rose high above their estimates. Lot 127, a never-worn black crocodile leather Sac Kelly from the 1970s, achieved the spectacular price of €21,000 (lot 127, est. €10 - 12,000). A smaller, custom-made model in pleated satin and black suede, estimated at €2,500 - 3,000, was so popular that bidders in the saleroom, via telephone, and over the internet competed for at least ten minutes to drive the piece up to €9,900 (lot 128).  

The limited edition Poupée Be@rbrick No. 989 doll, designed by Karl Lagerfeld in 2006 as window decoration for the Chanel Shops worldwide, was sold to an online bidder for €9,300 after a lengthy bidding battle against the saleroom and several telephones (lot 188, est. €2,500 - 3,000).