A Matched Pair
I recently had the good fortune to acquire these Cartier diamond clips. Their story is as intriguing as the jewels themselves. You see, they were sold to me by none other than the granddaughter of Irving Berlin, one of America's most important songwriters. So this isn't simply a story about jewelry; it's a story about devotion.
Berlin, a Belarusian Jewish immigrant who grew up selling newspapers on the Lower East Side of New York, fell in love with and married Ellin Mackay, the Irish Catholic granddaughter of a telegraph mogul. The marriage forbidden by Ellin's father, they eloped. Though Irving had already risen to fame, an elopement between a Catholic socialite and a Bowery newsboy - no matter how famous he had become - bordered upon scandalous.
In spite of the vast differences in heritage, the pair were ferociously in love and were married until her death parted them in 1988. And, though he grew up hard and lived modestly for a man of his wealth, Irving always loved to give his wife beautiful gifts.
You see, sometimes, a perfect match is as straightforward as these exquisitely crafted Cartier clips Irving gave Ellin back in the 1930s.
And sometimes, it is quite the opposite.