Gynomint Twins jewelry collection hits the auction block starting July 1st
The way she quit the business was epic. It was the second Sunday in July five years ago and she firesaled all of her merchandise in space HH 93 at the Rose Bowl until every last piece was gone. With the pink slip to her mid-90s white Chevrolet Safari work van in hand she sold that to seal the deal, and hitched a ride with her friend Marcy all the way home to Oceanside. Kitty Doyle had wiped her hands clean of the antique business all in one hot, summer afternoon.
“It is legendary how I retired,” Doyle laughed, adding that she had spent 20 years as a part of the flea market circuit, and had simply ran out of steam. Her biggest claim to fame was selling the estate of Earl Stanley Gardner (Perry Mason author) in Fallbrook.
Nearly five years later, she is back and it took something huge to bring her out of a life of luxurious retirement: walking on the beach, reading the latest novels and frequenting Disneyland as an annual pass holder. She is back with a bang. Kitty now has her hands on the hottest estate since Marilyn Monroe or Jackie O. The difference is, this stuff belonged to the biggest superstars ever in the antique business, and many items can be had for a little as $20.
It took 1,500 pieces of beautiful, blingy jewelry from the estate of the Gynomint Twins to breathe new life into Kitty’s antique passion. Just as she is sure that Diane and Valerie spent countless hours playing with, arranging and categorizing their jewelry, the torch, and enthusiasm has been passed on to Kitty.
She claims that she is researching, but admits that there has been a little trying on, as well.
Some speculated that this notorious collection of jewelry would have ended up in the hands of the Jewelry Idol, Connie Parente or a half dozen of the famous jewelry divas, but somehow, it was Kitty that snapped it up and the circumstances of the acquisition is all but a mystery. She had sold a couple of small items to the Gynotwins years ago, including a pair of candlesticks, but the twins were not her regulars.
In mid-May, Kitty, thrust back into the spotlight after such a long hiatus, acquired a sizable chunk of the Gynotwins jewelry inventory with some clothing and purses thrown in.
“It was really exciting to acquire this section of the estate to get me back into selling again,” she admitted. “I feel blessed that I was able to acquire this many fun things.”
Although she adamantly refused to divulge a single detail of how she came upon the inventory, a neighbor of the Gynomint Twins suspect it was their brother facilitating the liquidation of their estate. How Kitty, someone who had admittedly been out of the antique business for half a decade, became connected to the family, will remain a secret.
“Her family is very, very private and they just want to be left alone,” said Kitty.
However, those who want a piece of the bling that adorned the Gynotwins on their weekend antique adventures, Kitty will be listing pieces with fixed prices via her ebay store, Live 4 Treasures, and in auction format starting at 7:00 p.m. on July 1st.
She expects that it will take her a year to sell off the inventory, but plans to list at least 100 pieces a month until it has all been sold.
After seeing the sheer volume of the Gynotwin’s jewelry and accessory collection, she theorizes that it must have taken them between an hour and two hours to get dressed before heading out to one of the antique shows.
“Their collection was joyful and well thought out just based on the sheer volume of multiples,” she said, adding that they have more than 50 pirate heads, for example, that they would use to adorn purses, denim jackets and vests. Kitty has 22 denim jackets that are really art installations done by the girls and another dozen or so vests loaded with between 20 and 30 Disney trading pins and rhinestone brooches.
“They adorned and wore the vests and jackets and certainly spent time changing out and adding pins,” said Kitty. “They loved playing with their stuff.”
Kitty will also be offering the twins’ original “altered art” pieces.
“They made their own assemblage pieces on silk cords from inexpensive plastic pieces, sterling charms and mixed metal items,” said Kitty.
They had their necklace engineering system down to a science, she explained. Instead of dealing with metal chains and clasps that could get tangled up since they wore so many at a time, they developed a silk cord system that allowed them to easily tie and untie them.
“They really were artists who made their own ensembles,” she said.” Most of the personal necklaces that they made I plan to start out at $24.99 with no reserve and they may have $60 worth of silver charms alone.”
They also hired artists, like Lori Gutierrez of Country Roads, to design and paint pieces for them. Kitty has about a dozen pieces, including a glove form, customized by Gutierrez for the twins.
Among the items she is most excited about is the Lillian Czech Victorian Replica pieces, and not just their standard pieces which are pretty exceptional. The twins commissioned Lillian to do several dynamite Disney-meets-Victorian pieces.
“They were collecting Lillian before it was popular,” she said of the over-the-top sparkly Victorian pieces that were made starting in the mid-1970s. “The twins were big Lillian Czech collectors. They loved the perfection of these high end revival pieces.”
Kitty has hundreds of Lillian Czech bracelets, earrings, pendants and suites, but the showstoppers are the custom made pieces that “the girls” commissioned.
Kitty assures interested bidders that she will be listing one of the best custom made pieces on opening night. It is a huge Lillian bib necklace with dangling Mickey Mouse heads. She is not sure of the starting price yet, but she does plan to start the bidding on most items at well under value.
“I do not end any auctions early so everybody has a fair chance to win an item,” she said.
Kitty also has dozens of John Wind Disney charm bracelets, holiday-themed pieces, and a considerable amount of ethnic tribal jewelry, all of which will be listed over the next several months.
Although the Gynotwins were known for their love of the Disney villains, based on Kitty’s acquisition, she says they were pretty evenly balanced as far as their love for all the Disney characters: for every Cruella there is a Goofy.
“They liked the divas and the villains because they were strong and dramatic, but they are evenly balanced with the more traditional characters,” she said.
Kitty is busily preparing for the first round of auction items.
“Because it’s such a massive collection, its quite an undertaking to be able to categorize and store the items and then to prepare to sell and ship them,” she said, admitting that she has held large estate sale before, but this is the biggest collection she has ever bought outright. “It’s more complicated than it seems on the surface.”
Kitty’s inventory can be seen at firstname.lastname@example.org.