Seller Story: Irene Zelinsky, Greenwich, CT


“My parents were collectors. Everybody in our family was always told, when you buy, buy the best. But it wasn’t just about paying top price for pieces; we did a lot of traveling to find things. We worked with people who knew it, with dealers. I was a collector of American furniture, and then I started to get more into eclectic things, more contemporary.

But we’ve moved to a new house, and it’s totally different. It happens to be more towards the American Deco period, so that’s why we’re selling these things. The house that these pieces came from was a very traditional house, designed by Alan Greenberg, who was a foremost architect of the American style.

Collecting is really having an eye, and being able to know what pieces we wanted to live with. Our house was very eclectic: we had a lot of contemporary art, and a lot of traditional art. There is, for instance, one particular piece that we thought it might be a Greuze, and if it were a Greuze it would be worth several million dollars. It’s a woman, in a round frame. The frame is the original, still. You can unhook the painting from the frame, because it’s just nailed in. That’s such a major piece. And with that we hung contemporary pieces of art. I really believe in mixing everything.”

Seller Story: Irene Zelinsky, Greenwich, CT
Seller Story: Irene Zelinsky, Greenwich, CT
Hermès "Selles A Housse" Silk Scarf

Hermès "Selles A Housse" Silk Scarf

Final Bid:
$200
Chanel Clip-On Dangle Earrings

Chanel Clip-On Dangle Earrings

Final Bid:
$325
Antique Walter Scott Novel Collection

Antique Walter Scott Novel Collection

Final Bid:
$210
Silk Chanel Sundress

Silk Chanel Sundress

Final Bid:
$210
Hermès Equestrian Shirt Dress

Hermès Equestrian Shirt Dress

Final Bid:
$242
Yellow Stripe Upholstered Chair

Yellow Stripe Upholstered Chair

Final Bid:
$65
14K Yellow Gold Coral and Leaf Cocktail Ring

14K Yellow Gold Coral and Leaf Cocktail Ring

Final Bid:
$450
Copy Oil Painting on Canvas After John Frederick Herring Jr

Copy Oil Painting on Canvas After John Frederick Herring Jr

Final Bid:
$245
Duncan Phyfe Style Double Pedestal Drop Leaf Desk

Duncan Phyfe Style Double Pedestal Drop Leaf Desk

Final Bid:
$325
Depose 18K Yellow Gold Diamond Brooch

Depose 18K Yellow Gold Diamond Brooch

Final Bid:
$632
Women's Missoni Dress

Women's Missoni Dress

Final Bid:
$75
Ornate Gilt Dresser Box with Porcelain Portrait

Ornate Gilt Dresser Box with Porcelain Portrait

Final Bid:
$275
Snakeskin Bruno Magli Heels

Snakeskin Bruno Magli Heels

Final Bid:
$21
Duncan Phyfe Style Chest of Drawers

Duncan Phyfe Style Chest of Drawers

Final Bid:
$46
Hand Painted Porcelain Urns

Hand Painted Porcelain Urns

Final Bid:
$151
Hand-Knotted Indo-Persian Area Rug

Hand-Knotted Indo-Persian Area Rug

Final Bid:
$170
Christian Dior Haute Couture Sheer Blouse

Christian Dior Haute Couture Sheer Blouse

Final Bid:
$80
18K Yellow Gold Mesh Bracelet with Dyed Green Chalcedony Stones

18K Yellow Gold Mesh Bracelet with Dyed Green Chalcedony Stones

Final Bid:
$2,691
Framed Offset Lithograph Movie Poster of John Wayne's "McQ"

Framed Offset Lithograph Movie Poster of John Wayne's "McQ"

Final Bid:
$35
Pair of Scallop Upholstered Lounge Chairs

Pair of Scallop Upholstered Lounge Chairs

Final Bid:
$75
18K Emerald and Diamond Necklace

18K Emerald and Diamond Necklace

Final Bid:
$825
Hepplewhite Style Walnut Veneer Pull-Out Desk

Hepplewhite Style Walnut Veneer Pull-Out Desk

Final Bid:
$677
Vintage Hermès Shirt

Vintage Hermès Shirt

Final Bid:
$102
14K Yellow Gold Jadeite and Multi-Strand Cultured Pearl Bracelet

14K Yellow Gold Jadeite and Multi-Strand Cultured Pearl Bracelet

Final Bid:
$535
Vintage Chanel Patent Leather Handbag

Vintage Chanel Patent Leather Handbag

Final Bid:
$725
14K Yellow Gold Cultured Pearl and 1.40 CTW Ruby Dome Ring

14K Yellow Gold Cultured Pearl and 1.40 CTW Ruby Dome Ring

Final Bid:
$350
Hepplewhite Style Inlaid Demilune Console Table

Hepplewhite Style Inlaid Demilune Console Table

Final Bid:
$600
1930s Arthur Wood & Son Octagonal Imari Biscuit Barrel

1930s Arthur Wood & Son Octagonal Imari Biscuit Barrel

Final Bid:
$133
14K Yellow Gold Bangle

14K Yellow Gold Bangle

Final Bid:
$550
Vintage Emilio Pucci Dress

Vintage Emilio Pucci Dress

Final Bid:
$251
Vintage Victorian Style 14K Yellow Gold and Gold Tone 45.20 CT Amethyst Floral Brooch

Vintage Victorian Style 14K Yellow Gold and Gold Tone 45.20 CT Amethyst Floral Brooch

Final Bid:
$331
Manolo Blahnik Mules

Manolo Blahnik Mules

Final Bid:
$101
Chanel Red Leather Flap Bag

Chanel Red Leather Flap Bag

Final Bid:
$1,701
LM Hof Mantel Clock

LM Hof Mantel Clock

Final Bid:
$91
Valentino Silk Cocktail Dress

Valentino Silk Cocktail Dress

Final Bid:
$221
Silver Plated Decor and Tableware Including Godinger

Silver Plated Decor and Tableware Including Godinger

Final Bid:
$114
14K Yellow Gold Chain Link Necklace

14K Yellow Gold Chain Link Necklace

Final Bid:
$2,255
Prada Leopard Print Cowhide Pumps

Prada Leopard Print Cowhide Pumps

Final Bid:
$146
Hermès "Profile" Silk Scarf

Hermès "Profile" Silk Scarf

Final Bid:
$305
Antique Mahogany Side Table

Antique Mahogany Side Table

Final Bid:
$110
Shop More From This Sale
Seller Story: Irene Zelinsky, Greenwich, CT

There’s some gorgeous furniture in the sale. Any favorites?

There are two red chairs that came from Partridge, a big dealer, one of the most expensive and top dealers.. They’re in prime condition, and such beautiful chairs. And there’s a mirror that’s American—with a finial on the top, a gold finial. Those are really the high-end pieces.

Tell us about the clothes!

I sold a lot of my vintage Chanel collection to Sotheby’s years ago, but I kept some, and there’s just not space in the new house for it now. I was in the vintage clothing business; really not to sell, just to collect. I traveled to Paris, traveled all over, collecting Chanel and other designers. These are really authentic, from the 1940’s.

What about the chest of drawers that is actually a desk?

That was a family piece. It was my mother’s; my mother got that when she was in Europe. It looks like a chest of drawers, but when you open it up, it opens to a desk. It’s the most beautiful piece; that comes actually from one of the best cabinet makers, who goes back to the 18th century. It’s handmade; it’s beautiful; it’s in impeccable condition. It’s one of the best pieces in the collection.