Today, Cote de Texas sponsor Karen Sugarman Designs is offering a fabulous giveaway. And it all has to do with Elizabeth Taylor! Yes! Elizabeth Taylor. But let’s start at the beginning of the story – there’s always a story. Karen Sugarman designs one of a kind, couture jewelry – with a twist. She’s been a long time sponsor on Cote de Texas – and I am a huge fan of her work. I think it’s so gorgeous – and unique. Here’s a necklace I have from Karen:
It’s a beautiful piece made of freshwater pearls and stones. I think it’s stunning. I love my necklace so much that for Christmas, Ben and I got one for our sister-in-law:
Shannon’s necklace is similar to this one – it’s like mine, but with darker red stones that go better with her coloring. Beautiful, right?
This antique watch on a necklace caught my eye on Karen’s web site. I love the way she styles her designs – with décor items, like these antique books.
I’ve always adored this one with shells and a beautiful cameo. It would be so pretty in the summer!
Besides necklaces, Karen makes earrings and bracelets and she specializes in jewelry for brides. Most of her work is custom and one of a kind. All the pieces she has previously made for clients are shown on the web site for inspiration when designing your own piece.
Recently Karen contacted me with great news about one of her new designs – her necklace was going to be in a movie! It’s an interesting story she tells – all about Elizabeth Taylor:
Elizabeth Taylor’s famous diamond ring, auctioned off at Christie’s.
Recently, Christie’s auctioned off the famed jewelry collection of the late actress Elizabeth Taylor. Taylor had a love of expensive stones that was shared by her husband, actor Richard Burton. He gifted her with stunning pieces that over time were worth a king’s ransom. The auction took place late last year and is said to have broken all records – the final total was more than $137 million. Three of the biggest items were gifts from Burton: the Taj Mahal diamond (a 40th birthday gift) and the 33.19 carat diamond ring – shown above. The pearl and diamond necklace “La Peregrina” – sold for $11.8. Burton paid only $37,000. for it. Amazing.
Just a few of her famous diamonds. The diamond necklace was sold in 1978 to fund a hospital in Africa. She is wearing the diamond ring, which it is said, she wore every single day.
Not all the jewelry auctioned at Christie’s was made of diamonds. This necklace received a lot of press because of its uniqueness and provenance and its chic look. Called the Opera Token Necklace, this was a gift from the famous costume designer Edith Head. Made of antique ivory opera tokens from the 18th and 19th century, the necklace was valued at $1,500 to $2,000 but was auctioned at $314,500.00!! The tokens are made of ivory and encircled in gold.
One person who was enraptured by the token necklace was sponsor Karen Sugarman. She wasn’t alone – other jewelers were looking for ways to recreate this stunner – but Karen really surpassed them all with her own design:
Karen Sugarman’s own Ivory Opera Token Necklace!!
AND…here is the necklace Karen is now offering for sale! DYING!!! I want one sooo badly!! DROOL!!!! The really neat thing about this necklace is the buyer can customize the tokens to reflect their love of operas, ballets and symphonies. The original necklace and Karen’s design features 13 tokens, BUT you can order as few as 1 token, 3 or more – (odd numbers only.) These scrimshaw tokens are made of pre-ban ivory and are hand lettered.
The back of the necklace shows the seat and box numbers.
You can choose from one, three, or more tokens – 13 is the maximum. I wonder if you could order this in a bracelet size? It would make such a cute charm bracelet too.
Karen made this special necklace for her mother in law for Mother’s Day. It was customized with her beloved Boston Symphony Orchestra on it.
Now, the story gets even more exciting for Karen!
Her husband’s cousin is directing the Lifetime Movie “Liz and Dick” starring Lindsey Lohan as Elizabeth Taylor and Grant Bowler as Richard Burton. Since Karen had just completed the famous Elizabeth Taylor Ivory Token Necklace, the director showed it to the Costume Designer, Salvador Perez who chose to put it in the movie! Karen was told there were 66 costume changes in the movie, so, it’s always possible the necklace will end up on the cutting room floor but – Karen is thrilled just for the chance.
Liz and Dick is being filmed now, and here is Lindsey Lohan dressed up as Elizabeth. The resemblance is striking for a red haired girl with freckles! She really has channeled the actress.
Here, the two stars of Liz and Dick recreate a famous photograph of the two lovers. Lohan really looks exactly like Elizabeth here!
Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor fell head over heels in love while filming the movie Cleopatra. Both were married to others and their romance was a major Hollywood scandal. The movie Liz and Dick will recreate their passionate affair.
This photograph taken of the couple kissing was what alerted the world to their love affair. Today, few stories match this one for the paparazzi storm it created.
The couple were madly in love and unable to stay apart, despite both being married to others. Eventually they wed and their marriage lasted 10 years, but broke up due to Burton’s alcoholism. They reconciled a year later and married again - which lasted only one year. After their second divorce, Burton was quoted as saying: 'If I live to be a hundred, I'll always love that woman.' So romantic!!! He doted on Elizabeth, buying her the famous jewels and even a yacht, The Kalizma – named after their three daughters – Richard’s Kate, Elizabeth’s Liza, and Maria, the adopted daughter of Richard and Elizabeth.
Here in the movie Liz and Dick, Lohan recreates famous scenes aboard the Kalizma.
Filming is taking place on this yacht – a look alike of the vintage Kalizma.
Here, the actors act out a heated argument on the movie set of the Kalizma.
The actual yacht – the Kalizma, a beautiful vintage boat built in 1907. Gorgeous. Can you imagine owning this???? Burton bought it mainly so that they could bring their dogs to Europe and not have to worry about the strict quarantine laws. Today, the yacht has been renovated and looks different with an additional center story added.
The lovers sailing on the Kalizma.
The boat was later sold to a billionaire who spent three years renovating it.
Look at the portals on the left. The wood is incredible.
Dining Room, before the renovation.
Notice the carved wood at the back corners.
Charming porcelain sink in this cabin. Notice the carved headboard.
Before the latest renovation.
Today, the Kalizma is known as My Kalizma and has been totally updated and restored. There is even a hot tub on the boat.
Same dining room chairs.
That carpet???? Oh well. My Kalizma is available for rent – but you have to be Oprah to afford it! Still, I love the romance of the vintage yacht and I can’t wait to see “Liz and Dick” to see how they portray the inside of the cabins.
I tried to find a picture of Lohan in costume wearing the Karen Sugarman’s Ivory Opera Token necklace, but no luck yet. There are only a few photographs of Lohan in costume that have been released, so hopefully she’ll be wearing it one scene.
Another necklace from Karen Sugarman Designs web site.
In honor of Karen's stunning new Ivory Token necklace, Karen Sugarman is offering a giveaway for Cote de Texas readers!
The giveaway is a $250 gift certificate for use of any item on her web site or towards a custom design piece. In order to enter – you must first go to Karen Sugarman Design’s web site – look around and come back here to comment and tell me what your favorite piece is. Be sure to look under the Past Jewelry Designs to see even more pictures of custom pieces. The web site is HERE.
Besides leaving the comment of your favorite design, if you are a member of Facebook, please visit her Facebook page and “Like” it. HERE.
The contest runs until Friday night at 11:59 pm.
Remember – to enter: visit the Karen Sugarman web site and leave a comment telling me your favorite design. And “Like” her Facebook page. That’s it!
A huge thank you to Karen for this most generous giveaway.
Now I’m going to go BEG Ben to buy me that Ivory Token necklace!!!!! He probably won’t!!