Wednesday, December 31, 2008

2009! Resolve to be Stylish

Before we even get started, I have to link you directly to Portero's holiday customer service hours and closings over the next few days. Check here to make sure that there are no surprises when it comes to a purchase.

Now, back to fashion.

I've been looking through the runway shows for Spring 2009, and some fantastic looks immediately popped out at me. After then searching Portero's vast inventory, I was able to choose a collection of fabulous items that will make you perfectly on-trend for the upcoming season. We highlighted them all on this week's homepage -- just in time for the new year. Want to create a whole new you for 2009? Here's a few no-fail ways to capture a designer look while saving money:

Oversized Necklaces. The image above is from Vera Wang, a woman who truly loves her statement necklaces. She personally owns a large collection of costume and vintage pieces, and she sent many of her models down the runway with designs that were dramatic in scale.

Printed Totes. While every lady loves a supple leather handbag, this might just be the season for alternate materials. Eye-catching prints adorned many totes on the Spring '09 runway, like this Miss Sixty ensemble. This leaves room for unusual bags in your wardrobe, whether painted canvas or brightly-colored embroidery.

Bold Bracelets. Marc Jacobs overloaded his models with thick bangles, and this is a look that will gain steam throughout the year. You can choose the style that works for you, whether natural materials like wood or more heavily-adorned gemstone pieces.

Modern Bohemian. While Anna Sui, above, is the master of this genre, other designers like DVF are getting in on the look this season. Dress up a similar outfit with a pair of dangly earrings accented with gemstones. These styles are not too refined, but they also aren't over the top.

Customer Service holiday hours:

December 31st from 8 AM to 1 PM

Live Chat
Telephone 877-307-3767

Portero’s offices are closed:
January 1-2

As a result, our shipping cut off times during the holiday weeks are provided below:

Week of December 29 – All orders paid by 1:00 p.m. ET, Monday, December 29 through Wednesday, December 31 will ship the same day. Orders paid after 1:00p.m. ET, Wednesday, December 31 will ship on Monday, January 5.

images via

Friday, December 26, 2008

Post Christmas Clearance Sale

Here is one more reason to spread holiday cheer: Portero's Post Christmas Clearance Sale!

Take advantage of these stylish savings now through January 1st.
Starting bids like this won't last long so be sure to act now for free
shipping on orders over $1,000.

View All Clearance Watches up to 64% off
View All Clearance Jewelry up to 68% off
View All Clearance Bags up to 85% off
View All Clearance Housewares up to 50% off

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Treat Yourself

The holidays are finally upon us! Now that you've shopped for everyone else, maybe it's time to take a minute to think about treating yourself. Luckily, the prices are right on Portero--we are offering up to 75% off designer goods in all categories.

If you want to shop for the best values possible, it's now even easier. We've formatted the site to show you the percentage of savings on every single item: Even on the list pages, your savings are clearly marked. Plus, if you want to browse specific categories by savings, that's a snap as well. Trying to find your best bet in bracelets? Click the 'bracelet' tab on your left, and then click 'best values'. This will sort the site by the biggest percentage off.

There are some great deals to be had: How about these Gurhan 24k Yellow Gold Medium 2.24 ctw Diamond Matrix Stud Earrings? At a whopping 72% off, they are timeless studs with a whole lot of personality. Another classic piece is this Mikimoto 18k White Gold Cultured Pearl Cocktail Ring. Coming in at 62% off retail, this is a piece that will stand the test of time.

To shop by category and savings, click the links below to get started:

Best Value Earrings
Best Value Rings
Best Value Necklaces
Best Value Bracelets

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Ferragamo Event!

While it's fun to purchase a designer 'it' bag -- one that the magazines have pronounced the must-have of the season -- I think it's far more chic to score an accessory that will stand out from the crowd. Enter this week's Ferragamo event, a selection of rare, collectible and exotic accessories. From gorgeous python boots to winter white ostrich travel accessories, these are pieces that will make you the envy of every fashionista.

I am particularly taken with the selection of gorgeous alligator bags in a wide variety of colors: Forget trends; these are chic totes that will last a lifetime.

If you don't know much about the man behind the brand, let's take a closer look at the life and work of Salvatore Ferragamo. Born in Italy in1898, he found his calling at just nine years old when he made his first pair of shoes for his sisters to wear on their confirmation day. After emigrating to the United States, he quickly found his place in Hollywood as "Shoemaker to the Stars" when he started his made-to-measure custom business. Not willing to settle for the status quo of movie productions, Ferragamo moved back to Florence and began to dabble in more serious innovation. In fact, his unusual approach to footwear spawned both the wedge heel and the cage heel, and he designed for women including Audrey Hepburn and Marilyn Monroe.

Although Ferragamo died in 1960, his legacy lives on. This special collection of authentic, rare Ferragamo goods upholds the most important parts of couture design: unmistakable quality, beautiful craftsmanship and a flair for the dramatic.

To shop our collection of Ferragamo Exclusives, click the links below.

Salvatore Ferragamo Exclusives - Rare Collectible Exotic Accessories

Salvatore Ferragamo Red Alligator Sholder Tote Bag

Salvatore Ferragamo Rare Apple Green Alligator Tote

Salvatore Ferragamo Rare Apple Green and Red Alligator Tote Bags

Monday, December 15, 2008


Starting today, Portero will be offering 10% off starting prices in all categories -- from handbags to watches, jewelry to art. This is your chance to score timeless designer goods at a fraction of their retail price by merely using promo code EXTRATEN at checkout. We've also made our savings more apparent by clearly showing you the percentage off retail at the very top of each auction page.

If you're shopping for gifts, don't forget to refer to our handy Holiday 2008 Shipping Schedule. Just place your order by the dates listed and Portero will take care of the rest.

Customer Service holiday hours:
Dec. 22-24: 8:30-5:00pm
Live Chat
Telephone 877-307-3767

A sale this good can't last forever (in fact, it only lasts seven), so start your bidding today.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

For the Recession Warrior

There was an interesting article in The New York Times magazine last month that evaluated the New Oxford American Dictionary's choice for word of the year. They often pick something that is ultra current and of-the-moment, and this year's pick was hypermiling, defined as an “attempt to maximize gas mileage by making fuel-conserving adjustments to one’s car and one’s driving techniques.”

The author of the story, William Safire, didn't agree with that choice. He much preferred 'frugalista', a term meaning “a person who lives a frugal lifestyle but stays fashionable and healthy by swapping clothes, buying secondhand, growing own produce, etc.” That word certainly struck a nerve with me, especially after seeing the benefits of purchasing pre-owned designer goods on Portero.

The term frugal often has negative connotations, but in this recession culture, it becomes a bit of savvy. It might seem frivolous to some to buy a pricey brand-name watch or handbag in hard times, but for others, it's economical to purchase something for oneself or a loved one that will become an heirloom one day. Especially when you can save thousands of dollars while doing it.

That's why this week's homepage centers upon the unbeatable savings that Portero offers all year long, and especially now at the holidays. We've created a gift guide that features classic, timeless pre-owned designer goods that are investment pieces rather than bargains that won't even make it to next holiday season. With starting prices at up to 85% off, these are our lowest prices of the year. Shop by gender or price--either way, the savings remain the same.

Shop for Him
Shop for Her
Under $500
Over $10,000

Monday, December 8, 2008

Biggest Price Drop Ever! Event

This week at Portero is all about extra savings. Dropping prices even further is particularly significant for us because our auction starting prices are already dramatically reduced from retail on a daily basis. Want the details? Our Biggest Price Drop Ever! event starts today and runs through Thursday (just three days means you need to act fast) and features a limited selection of merchandise perfect for holiday gift giving.

We took 20% off of already reduced starting prices on a selection of jewelry, watches and handbags. Then, to make shopping simple, we created event pages that show you each item and exactly how much you can save. These designer goods are definitely priced to move, and big price reductions mean the competition could be fierce.*

Sales like this don't last long, so click each category below to start saving:

Click here to see pre-owned designer watches
Click here to see pre-owned designer jewelry
Click here to see pre-owned designer handbags

* Want to get it right now? Beat other bidders to the punch by paying a small premium to end the auction early.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

12 Days of Christmas Part 2

We've been saving up some of our big guns for the 12 Days of Christmas, so there are some BRAND NEW just-launched items up for grabs right now. While some are certainly splurges, you'll see that the savings are pretty substantial. Plus, if you're like me, you often appreciate one spectacular gift much more than a bunch of presents that won't be around long into the new year.

To highlight some of the best and the brand-new...

Van Cleef & Arpels 18k Yellow Gold Mother-of-Pearl Alhambra Necklace & Earrings Set. This set is featured on our homepage (and above) and is the perfect choice for the lady in your life who knows what style and substance is all about. This is a classic design that can be worn day and night.

Signed Joan Miro Espriu Series Plate 7 (Blue Half Moon) Engraving in Etching and Carborundum. This 1975 limited edition (7 of 50) engraving is by Spanish abstract surrealist Joan Miro. Perfect for the art lover who has a keen sense of history.

Hermes 30cm Barenia Alligator Birkin Bag. The mother of all handbags, this gorgeous Birkin is in pristine condition and will undoubtedly last forever. Skip the waiting list entirely and save money by bidding now!

To check out all of Portero's favorites for the 12 Days of Christmas, click right here.

To link directly to each day, click below:

6 Statement Necklaces
5 Golden Rings
4 Bewitching Birkins
3 Diamond Watches
2 Modern Prints
1 Vintage Gucci Train Case

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Monogram Madness

I was just alerted to the fact that Portero recently received a big selection of Louis Vuitton monogrammed bags and luggage. (These are sure to go fast so start your bidding now!)

Did you know that the LV monogram was actually introduced way back in 1896? Considering its age and heritage, it's really no surprise that the LV logo has become something of an icon of high-end handbags and fashion. These pieces are perfect gifts because they never go out of style and the signature canvas is really quite indestructible.

If you're looking for something a little more unique, why not take a look at a few of Portero's limited edition pieces:

Louis Vuitton Limited Edition Olympe Cirrus Show Bag. Made from winter white lambskin, I love the vintage-looking clasp closure that has been updated with faceted balls.

Louis Vuitton Blue Lizard & Jewelled Special Edition Les Extraordinaires Collection Clutch. Part fashionista and part urban cowgirl, this wristlet contains the signature logo, lizard and rhinestones.

Louis Vuitton Limited Edition Monogram Ostrich Snake Lizard Macha Waltz Show Bag. Exotic but totally ladylike, this handbag merges uptown and downtown chic.

Click right here to see our entire selection of Louis Vuitton monogrammed handbags and luggage.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Pretty in Platinum

I just received a beautiful set of brand new images from Platinum Guild in the mail and had to share them. I love seeing innovative wedding designs, and these three from a few of the world's top jewelers allow you to think a bit outside the box in terms of the standard old bands and engagement rings.

The faceted bands above are by Boucheron, and I really like their modern edge. Perfect for a couple that appreciates contemporary lines, the small diamond accents can work for either a man or a woman.

I've also always been fascinated by tension settings, like the one above by Niessing. Known for its experimental designs since 1873, Niessing really perfected the art of placing diamonds in metal without prongs or bezels. Based on a scientific formula, this Square S platinum ring is certainly a conversation starter.

Finally, my favorite unusual engagement ring is the Conversion, above, by Van Cleef & Arpels. Set with pear-shaped fancy blue and white diamonds, this is a total stunner. Instead of having a stone that sits right on your ring finger, these spectacular diamonds rest beautifully on either side. Swoon.

If you're looking for an unusual engagement ring, what about this unique piece from Buccellati? Other women prefer colored gemstones over diamonds, and this gorgeous vintage platinum Cartier ruby ring fits the bill perfectly.

Images courtesy Platinum Guild

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

12 Days of Christmas

Are you ready for the holidays? These days, once you hit Thanksgiving, Christmas is nearly in full swing. Now that Portero has culled such a massive inventory of beautiful designer merchandise, we had to come up with a great way to highlight some of our favorite items perfect for holiday gift giving.

Our solution? The 12 Days of Christmas. This week's Part 1 features some of our most enticing jewels, watches, handbags and housewares, and next week will bring you even more perfect presents. Whether you're shopping for yourself or someone you love, choosing any one of these pieces means not only a beautiful item but great savings.

Want a peek into my personal wish list? I have a few favorites among the 12 days--here they are and here's why:

Temple St. Clair 18k Yellow Gold Blue Moonstone Sapphire Diamond Swing Earrings. I am totally enamored with these beautiful drops. The moonstone is a bit mysterious while the sapphires make the blue tint pop.

Marc Jacobs Runway 2006 Dark Green Python Leather Collectors Stam Bag. Python and tortoiseshell in one bag? Sold. The mix of rich textures and patterns on this ultra-chic bag make it a standout.

Patek Philippe For Tiffany & Co. Calatrava 18k Yellow Gold Self-Winding Men's 5026 Watch. If my budget allowed, I would buy this watch for my fiance in a heartbeat. The legendary partnership between Tiffany and Patek makes this piece a real collector's item, and the black face and yellow gold is a truly dapper combination.

To see the full list of the 12 Days of Christmas, click right here.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Look of the Day: Nicole Richie

I love this gorgeous blue vintage YSL dress that Nicole Richie chose to wear as host of UNICEF’s 2008 Beverly Hills Snowflake Lighting ceremony this past Saturday, November 22. Not too fussy and not too boring, the v-neck and wide waistband is a universally flattering silhouette.

I also really like the bold geometric necklace she chose to pair it with (from her own House of Harlow 1960 line). Statement necklaces don't always need to be all about shimmer and sparkle--sometimes shape and size can be just as important. If you want to go fashion-forward like Nicole, here are a few good necklaces to consider for the holiday party season:

Marni Runway Blue Brown Black & Grey Resin & Horn Choker Necklace

Yves Saint Laurent Golden Faux Malachite Slice Collar Necklace

Marni Orange Resin Natural Horn Brown Satin Ribbon Necklace

Image by WENN/Wild Bunch

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Special Offer: 10% Off

With the holidays just around the corner, Portero is offering a special 10% discount now through November 30, 2008. Forget tricky promotions: All you have to do is enter NOVTEN at checkout to receive valuable savings. Want even more incentive? Free shipping and insurance will be applied automatically upon checkout for orders over $1,000.*

*Click here to learn more about this special offer.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Finding Fabergé

It's auction season, and Sotheby's London is offering up an intriguing set of objects by Russian jeweler Carl Fabergé on November 24. Part of a sale called "Imperial & Royal Presents", a fabulous set of Fabergé housewares and trinkets will be on the block. (See above, Lot 20, a two-colour gold and guilloché enamel bell push, workmaster: Michael Perchin, St. Petersburg, 1899-1903)

Even if you don't know too much about Fabergé, you probably know about his famous jeweled eggs made from precious metals, gems and enamel. The original egg collection contains 69 spectacular creations made between 1885 and 1917. Of those, 50 are known as "Imperial Fabergé Easter eggs", and were made for Czars Alexander III and Nicholas II of Russia. The egg below was made in 1899 and is known as the Boquet of Lilies Clock.

The Sotheby's sale contains picture frames, sniff boxes, vesta cases, paper knives, compacts and pill boxes. The most expensive item listed is a Fabergé silver-gilt pearl and enamel heart shaped photograph frame enclosing a miniature of Empress Maria Fedorovna, circa 1890, est. $90,000 - $120,000.

To search Portero's selection of Faberge jewelry and housewares, click right here.

Top image via Sotheby's, Second image via Wikipedia Commons by Stan Shebs.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Winter Holiday

I'll be the first to admit that I'm not a fan of cold weather. In fact, the only way I like it is if I'm indoors looking out on a snowy day while sitting in front of a fire. That's why I love taking warm weather winter vacations (or even just looking through this season's fabulous resort collections!) to get away from it all.

Even though there are plenty of neutrals to be seen, for me, resort is all about color. Designers weren't afraid of bold, vibrant hues on the runway--it's like delicious eye candy after wearing so much black and gray. A big trend was also hats and head accessories ranging from chic visors to oversized headbands. For example, take a look at Marc Jacobs' take on a silk wrap dress, above. The color screams vacation, and I like pairing it with multicolored gemstone cuffs. Copy this look perfectly with this Jewel of Ocean 18k White Gold Diamond Multicolor Sapphire Bracelet.

I also LOVED this sweet little coat from Diane von Furstenberg. She used stripes all throughout her collection, and this canary yellow and white coverup is one of my favorites. Note the bold black and white headpiece. Graphic black and white accessories are a perfect fit for colorful ensembles--something like this Mary Norton Black & White Acrylic Rhinestone Louisa Clutch could travel anywhere.

Finally, here's a gorgeous green shift by Michael Kors with matching head scarf. He decided to pair his simple silhouettes with oversized ethnic jewelry reminiscent of a '70s look. Yellow gold and beaches just go together perfectly, and I think that this Bvlgari 18k Yellow Gold Turquoise Cabochon Chain Necklace & Ring Set would make any vacation better--it feels utterly Capri!

To search our Portero's Resort picks by category, click below:

Images via

Monday, November 17, 2008

Museum of Arts and Design

If you live in or are planning to visit New York City in the coming months, why not swing by the Museum of Arts and Design? Right in Columbus Circle, the museum is currently showing an exhibition called Elegant Armor: The Art of Jewelry that will run through May 31, 2009.

According to the Museum: "The Art of Jewelry presents innovative pieces of contemporary art jewelry from our permanent collection, dating from the 1940s to the present. The works on display range from the subtle to the flamboyant, from the purely geometric to the organic, and from narrative to sculptural works that extend the limits of the human body. The exhibition presents the major themes, materials and techniques that make contemporary jewelry visually exciting and intellectually stimulating."

One of the unusual pieces in the collection is the bracelet above by Peter Chang (1986). Made of acrylic, polyester, PVC and found objects, I love the snakeskin-like appearance and the donut shape. Another visionary piece is the cocktail ring below by Ruth Radakovich (1969). Constructed of 14-karat gold and titanium, it is both organic and futuristic.

If you're in town next week, the Museum is presenting a free daylong public program dedicated to contemporary studio jewelry on Nov. 22. It will introduce visitors to the leading trends, techniques, and processes in the field of jewelry design through artist demonstrations, and discussions.

Photos by John Bigelow Taylor

Thursday, November 13, 2008

AGTA Spectrum Awards take 2

As promised, I wanted to show you a little more from the AGTA Spectrum Awards. I have been noticing that high-end designers are trending toward the unique pairings of colored gemstones. Forget about 'matchy matchy–these are often times unexpected and delightful color combos that let unusual precious stones shine.

For example, take the cocktail ring by Christopher Duquet above. The platinum ring features a 5.08 Padparadscha Sapphire accented with yellow pear-shaped diamonds and diamond pavé. Padparadschas are rare and expensive sapphires originally mined in Sri Lanka that have an amazing orangey-pink glow.

I also loved the simple yet eye-catching pair of earrings by Samuel Getz, above. The 18-karat white gold earrings contain mint-green Beryl center stones accented with diamonds and yellow sapphires. It's always fun to realize just how much colored gems cover the rainbow of colors out there.

Portero features a huge range of gemstone jewelry, and many of the pieces have captivating color combinations. Here are a few of my favorites:

Jeri Cohen 18k Gold Orange & Green Tourmaline Teardrop Diamond Earrings
Temple St. Clair 18k Yellow Gold Pink Tourmaline Peridot Ring sz 6
Jewel of Ocean 18k White Gold Diamond Multicolor Sapphire Bracelet

Images courtesy AGTA

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Portero is celebrating the 22nd installment of one of the greatest movie franchises in history this week. From martinis to Aston Martins to tuxedos, the likes of the world's favorite secret agent haven't been in doubt for decades. Another of his passions? Timepieces.

In the earlier film adaptations, a Rolex Submariner was worn by Sean Connery, George Lazenby, Roger Moore, and Timothy Dalton. Pierce Brosnan's and Daniel Craig's takes on our hero have both worn the Omega Seamaster.

I had a chance to see a preview of the film on Monday night, and if you're a fan of action, you won't be disappointed. The chase scenes are breathtaking and the overseas locations dazzle in both beauty and scope. Want to have a little piece of moviemaking history? Shop our superb selection of Seamasters to feel a bit like an action hero even while at home.

Shop all Omega Seamasters
Search all Omega watches
Buy Steuben martini glasses

The James Bond character and marks are not associated with or sponsored by Portero...but we welcome him to shop with us.

Cartoon by Simon Ellinas - Caricatures and Cartoons.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Friday Eye Candy: Spectrum Awards

One of my favorite editor events of the year is the viewing of the AGTA Spectrum Award entries, which just happened last week. Basically, I get to be in a room with hundreds of pieces of gorgeous colored stone jewelry. I can ogle, try them on, and just generally swoon.

If you don't know what the Spectrum Awards are, let me explain: The competition, created in 1984, honors, recognizes and promotes designers and lapidaries in the United States and Canada whose work utilizes colored gemstones and cultured pearls. It is hosted by the American Gem Trade Association, and the results are quite spectacular.

Take the piece above, by Arun Bohra of Arunashi. It was one of my favorites for its delicate form and stunning colors. The cuff is set in 18-karat white gold (with a black rhodium finish) and contains spinels, Paraiba tourmalines, orange sapphires and diamonds. Below are a few more of my favorites, with captions. I'll post more next week!

By Carley McGee-Boehm. Palladium earrings featuring cuprian Tourmalines accented with black spinel and rock crystal quartz helioliths.

By Erica Courtney. 18-karat yellow gold earrings featuring Mexican fire opal and mandarin citrine accented with diamonds.

By Rina Limor. Silver bangle bracelet featuring faceted Lemon Citrine accented with amethyst and multi-colored sapphires.

Images courtesy AGTA

Thursday, November 6, 2008


Want even more incentive to bid on your favorite luxury brands at prices starting up to 80% off retail value? When you make a purchase now through November 13, 2008, you will receive Portero credit redeemable during the upcoming holiday season. A single purchase can earn you as much as $350 to use from Friday, November 14 through Wednesday, December 31. Ready to learn more? Click here to see how Portero offers you the ultimate return on your investment.

Spending tiers and credits:
--Spend between $500-$999, and receive $50 Portero credit
--Spend between $1,000-$1,999 and receive $100 Portero credit
--Spend between $2,000-$2,999 and receive a $250 Portero credit
--Spend over $3,000 and receive a $350 Portero credit

What a perfect excuse to get something for yourself, and then use your savings to buy a gift for someone else. Happy shopping!

SPEND & RECEIVE OFFER - Valid on all auctions and "Buy Now" purchases from November 6 through Thursday, November 13, 2008 at 11:59 pm ET. No adjustments to prior purchases. Portero credit issued in a promo code is valid from Friday, November 14 through Wednesday, December 31, 2008 and redeemable on Credit adjustments will be made for returned merchandise. One promo code per purchase. Total spend excludes taxes and shipping. Each promo code is valid for a one time usage and may be transferrable. Cannot be combined with any other offer. Promo code exclusions apply to all Hermes Birkins and all art in the Art category.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Urban Safari

When preparing for this week's homepage theme--Urban Safari--I was delighted to discover just how many gorgeous exotic skin handbags Portero has up for auction. From oversized travel bags to demure clutches to chic totes, there's really something for everyone.

What's interesting to me is that a lot of people think of luxurious skin bags as too mature for their tastes. But really, the new breed of exotic skins has a lot of appeal for women of all ages. From brightly colored dyes to modern shapes, a bit of croc or lizard can still be modern and fashion-forward. Take Halle Berry, above, sporting her favorite Yves Saint Laurent Tribute bag. Far from dowdy, this take on croc is utterly chic.

But another benefit of these beautiful skins is the ladylike elegance they portray. Take Jennifer Lopez, above, who radiates glamour and sophistication with her Birkin. Luckily, these bags let you have it both ways. Want to search our huge selection? Click below to get started.


Monday, November 3, 2008

Big Blue Diamond on the Block

It's exceedingly rare to see a stone like this up for auction so I had to put up a post. This amazing 35.56 blue-gray diamond will debut at auction at Christie's London on December 10. Quite a holiday gift for someone, right? Not only is the diamond incredibly high quality, but it also has a remarkable historical provenance.

Here's the story:

The diamond was presented by King Philip IV of Spain to his daughter, Infanta Margarita Teresa, as part of her dowry when she turned 13. Who was the lucky man she was to marry? It was actually her uncle Leopold I of Austria, who later became the Holy Roman Emperor. Infanta was earlier immortalized as the central figure in Las Meninas (1656, below), the most famous painting by Spaniard Diego Velázquez.

This means that the diamond has a 300-year-old royal history, a detail that makes the £10 million high estimate even more interesting. To read the full story in the London Telegraph, click right here.

Colored diamonds have become popular choices for engagement rings in the last couple of years. Here are two great examples listed right now for auction on Portero:

GIA Certified 1.09 ctw Fancy Brown-Greenish Yellow Diamond Engagement Ring sz 6.5
GIA Certified Platinum 18k Gold Yellow Diamond 3-Stone Engagement Ring sz 6

Image courtesy Christie's

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Positively Picasso

In celebration of our new and expanded art category, this week's homepage theme is dedicated to none other than Pablo Picasso (1881-1973). Portero has been lucky enough to secure more than a handful of signed and limited edition lithographs and etchings, and I thought that such beauty was worthy of notice on this little blog.

I particularly like that although Picasso had such a defined style, he went through an amazing number of "periods" that now distinguish his work. From the Blue to the Rose to Cubism and from sculpture back to painting, these works are now a part of art's global lexicon.

Picasso also has another interesting tie-in to our site: his daughter, Paloma. As many of you know, she is a jewelry designer who has worked with Tiffany & Co. for many years. Her contemporary designs are mainstays at the storied jeweler.

If you want to learn more about how art sells in the marketplace, there are great sites like artnet that help you with resale value and art valuation. If you become a member, you can find out about specific artists at the click of a button, like right here with Picasso.

We're pretty familiar with how Picasso saw the rest of the world, but if you're not sure how he saw himself, just take a look at this Self-Portrait (1907) for an idea:

To view our collection of Picasso artwork, click right here.
To view our expanded Art category, click right here.

Top photo by André Villers

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

The Daily Deal: 10% Off

With the holidays just around the corner, Portero is offering a special 10% discount now through October 31, 2008. Forget tricky promotions: All you have to do is enter OCTTEN at checkout to receive valuable savings. Want even more incentive? Free shipping and insurance will be applied automatically upon checkout for orders over $1,000.*

*Click here to learn more about this special offer.

Chanel, Lipstick Jungle and SeenON

If you're signed up for Portero's emails, you're already entered to win the fabulous Chanel special edition flap bag being worn on tomorrow nights's episode of Lipstick Jungle (retail value $2,650!). If not, what are you waiting for? Click right here to read all about the sweepstakes and put your name in the running.

Can't get enough of Chanel and Lipstick Jungle? We're offering another chance to live like the ladies of the cast with a great new auction. This fabulous Chanel Shiny Brown Crocodile Clutch & Six Chain Strap Shoulder Bag (pictured above) will also be worn by Nico (Kim Raver) on tomorrow night's episode (October 29 on NBC at 10/9 Central) and is up for auction right now through November 13.

Want more of the fabulous accessories and clothes seen on Lipstick Jungle? Every
week, SeenON combs the sets and stakes out the red carpet to find all the fabulous fashions seen on your favorite TV shows and stars. Never wonder who they're wearing again - just visit and start shopping.

Good luck!

Monday, October 27, 2008

Portero on CNBC

The economy is obviously THE major issue right now, and it seems silly to even think about paying retail price in the face of such hard times. CNBC's On the Money agrees, giving a great shout out to Portero last week during its Steals and Deals segment.

Want to check it out? Click right here to see exactly why Portero is making news and attracting savvy shoppers.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Go for the Gold

If you've chosen to invest in gold instead of stocks over the last decade or so, you're probably in pretty good shape. But since most of us aren't hording gold bricks in our basements, now might be the time to hop on the metallic bandwagon. Women's Wear Daily titled their Tuesday front page "Shine Up" (above) and then praised the gold trend that ruled the runways at the recent fashion shows. Inside, they showed several looks and paired them with bold gold accessories like cuffs, belts and shoes.

Designers chose to play this up in a few different ways on the Spring '09 runways: Some went for all-over gold shimmer like Monique Lhuillier (above), while others opted for accents, like Carolina Hererra (below) with her flower applique dress.

Duvall O'Steen of the World Gold Council says: “The Renaissance of gold in the fashion world shows no signs of slowing down. With the increasing value of gold, coupled with the economic concerns, gold has become a meaningful and safe investment for any jewelry wardrobe. Gold is one of the only luxury goods that never loses its beauty, its relevance, its emotional appeal or, most importantly, its value.”

Bold gold is back and bigger than ever. To start slowly, invest in pieces that will never go out of style, like these Talisman Unlimited 14k Yellow Gold Diamond Hoop Earrings or this Chanel One-of-a-Kind Quilted Gold Metallic Leather Evening Case Shoulder Bag.

Images via Women's Wear Daily and

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Fall for Gemstones

This week's homepage is not only an homage to Halloween, but also to gorgeous gemstone jewelry. With winter approaching, it seems like a nice time to inject some color into your wardrobe before the icy months hit. I think this is also a great time to wear autumnal hues like oranges, browns and yellows, so definitely take a look at the Stephen Webster cuff and Stephen Dweck necklace featured on the main site.

I couldn't let this post pass, though, without mentioning the newly released Victoria's Secret Fantasy Bra. I have a personal connection to the high-priced lingerie: I worked with one of the companies that used to design and manufacture the bra, so I have gotten to see the pieces up close and personal. I even acted as Gisele Bundchen's liaison the year she wore the bra–-I accompanied her to TV appearances, dressed her for the Victoria's Secret Fashion Show and even appeared on the Tyra Banks Show to talk about the $12 million bling.

(Photos to come! I'll post a few of me backstage at the big event.)

This year's bra was produced by Martin Katz and is worn by Adriana Lima. It's a departure from the norm because instead of the standard white diamonds, Katz created a daring black diamond and ruby look that fits in perfectly with the upcoming ode to ghosts and goblins. Set with 3,575 black diamonds (include two stunning black diamond drops totaling 100 carats), 117 one carat diamonds and 34 rubies, the fantasy undergarment is for sale for a cool $5 million.

A little shy of $5 million? Try our fantastic selection of gorgeous candy color gemstone jewelry. Shop by category to take a closer look. You'll see our savings immediately: Just compare the retail value to the current bid, and you'll see why Portero is the smarter way to buy.


Image via Victoria's Secret

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Tabloid jewelers?

It seems that more and more celebrities are releasing jewelry lines every day. I worked with Heidi Klum on her line for about a year, and now the same company that produces her jewelry--Mouawad--is partnering with Nicole Richie on a collection called House of Harlow 1960. Targeted at ladies ranging from their teens to their 30s, the fashion jewelry ranges in price from $30 to $150.

Bohemian in style, the pieces feature leather, fabric, silk strings, chains, feathers, rivets and gold-plated metal. She posed above for this month's InStyle in some of her jewels, including the huge African-inspired ring above.

Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen are partnering with a big name in jewelry for their just-released collection: Robert Lee Morris. This line (pieces above) was made to go along with their Elizabeth and James fashion line, and prices range from $65 to $700. I recently interviewed the ladies themselves at Robert's studio for a magazine (I'll post that story when it comes out!), and their pieces definitely have the bold, tribal vibe of much of Robert's designs. I particularly liked their sculptural cuffs, spiked necklaces (below) and bronze patina.

I'm glad that these women are partnering with experienced brands on their debut collections--it makes me think that they are respecting the craft and not just relying on random outsourcing. I also know that MK and Ashley are working directly with Robert on their pieces; it is in no way a collaboration just for show.

What do you think about this celebrity jewelry trend?

Thursday, October 16, 2008


Sometimes shopping can be about more than just spending. Take our Think Pink Portero Specials this week--a percentage of proceeds goes directly to the Cancer Vixen Fund, started by breast cancer survivor Marisa Acocella Marchetto. Her story is inspirational: When she found out she was sick, depression took over. But empowering herself through fashion changed her spirits and gave her the strength to fight.

To explain a little further, Marisa created the cartoon above especially for Portero. I also talked to Marisa this week to find out a little bit more about what got her through the toughest days.

Portero: How did fashion change your emotional health?
Marisa: My mom was a shoe designer, so I always thought that well-designed accessories are great pieces of beauty. I also knew that you could feel really powerful just by wearing a heel. I was going through a lot of treatment, and I needed a way to bring my spirits up, and shoes did that. Whenever I had an IV in my hand, I always wore a fabulous pair of shoes. I went from victim to vixen. Fashion to me is very powerful, it can make you feel great about yourself, and the stronger your emotional health, the healthier you are.

Portero: Why did you start the Cancer Vixen Fund and what does it do?
Marisa: When I was diagnosed, I, like many people, didn't have health insurance. Bad suddenly went to devastating. I realized that if you're diagnosed with cancer, you have a 50 percent better chance of surviving if you have insurance, and there's a 98 percent chance of survival if you find breast cancer early. I wanted to promote early detection among women and help those who don't have health insurance, and the Cancer Vixen Fund directly promotes that.

Portero: What are some actual events Cancer Vixen supports?
Marisa: For example, we're doing free mammograms for uninsured women this month at St. Vincent's Hospital in Manhattan (see poster below).

To learn more about Cancer Vixen, log on to To
shop our Pink Items, click right here.