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Designer Spotlight: Van Cleef & Arpels

Knowledge of one-of-a-kind jewelry is important for any pawnshop, but for New York Loan Company, a collateral lender specializing in luxury jewelry and watches, it is essential. When jewelry from Van Cleef & Arpels is brought into their private offices located in New York’s Diamond District, whether a Zip necklace dripping in gemstones or a signature piece from their Alhambra collection, New York Loan is ready to purchase or loan based on the extraordinary craftsmanship and gemstone quality that VCA is known for.

The luxury jewellery house has a long and fascinating history that has shaped the landscape of the fine jewelry industry for over 100 years. Many jewelry enthusiasts know VCA’s designs, but may not be aware of the extensive background that made the Maison (French for house) what it is today.

Van Cleef & Arpels was founded in 1895 after Alfred Van Cleef met and fell in love with Estelle Arpels, and joined forces with his father in law Salomon Arpels to form the new luxurious company. Estelle’s brothers Julien, Charles and Louis joined the company after their father’s death, and opened their first boutique at the famous Place Vendôme in Paris. The Maison quickly became popular with socialites, aristocrats, and magnates – which prompted the opening of new boutiques in opulent resort towns Monte-Carlo, Vichy and Nice. In 1926 Renée Puissant, daughter of Estelle and Alfred became the artistic director and along with Renè Lacaze, a talented designer, they created some of the most iconic jewelry of the 20th century. Over the years European, Russian, and Middle Eastern clients came directly to VCA for their impeccable craftsmanship and style.  Princess Grace, The Queen Sofia of Spain, The Empress Farah of Iran, The Duchess of Windsor, and Princess Diana are counted among their many admirers.

Using diamonds, emeralds, rubies, and sapphires along with unique shapes the duo created pieces that delighted the wealthy and won prestigious design awards. In 1933 the jewelry house created perhaps their most iconic style – the Mystery Set is patented and only a small number of expert jewelers are able to construct the design. Other recognizable collections such as Cadenas watches, Zip necklaces, ballerina and fairy clips, and Alhambra are styles that New York Loan Company will happily purchase or loan against. These styles are in high demand half a century later not only for private clients, but pawnshops and jewelry dealers alike.

Louis Arpels married Hélène Ostrowska, an illustrious model, and moved to New York City where they established the first American branch of their store. This started long relationship with Hollywood and the American elite that continues to this day. Marline Dietrich, Audrey Hepburn, Elizabeth Taylor, Jacqueline Kennedy, Julia Roberts, and Scarlett Johansson are just a handful of the celebrities that wore or continue to wear VCA.  

New York Loan also regularly sells fine jewelry at dealer prices to the public at large.  This unique pawn shop is known for selling signed goods, including VCA, and understands that such jewelry is often purchased not simply for sentimental occasions, but also as a long-term investment.

If a client needs a large cash loan and would like to use their VCA jewelry or watch as collateral, New York Loan is devoted to offering the best possible service and takes pride in providing a secure location to store such prized goods. Please email info@newyorkloan.com or call 212-997-5626 with any inquiries.