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Walt Disney fashioned a bracelet from his Oscar statuettes

In the realm of Hollywood legends, Walt Disney’s name shines brightly, revered for his pioneering contributions to the world of animation and filmmaking. Yet, amidst the plethora of accolades and achievements, there exists a shimmering relic that encapsulates the essence of his unparalleled legacy.

In the early 1960s, Walt created a gold bracelet for his wife, Lilly, that represented the Academy Awards that he’d won up until that time.

With the 96th Academy Awards right around the corner, fine jewellery experts at Steven Stone have delved into the enchanting story behind the iconic accessory that’s a testament to Walt’s enduring impact on the silver screen and beyond.

How many Oscars did Walt Disney win?

Walt Disney won a total of 26 Academy Awards during his lifetime.

Having won twenty-two competitive Academy Awards from a total of fifty-nine nominations, Walt holds the record for most wins and most nominations for an individual in history.

Walt Disney was awarded several Academy Awards posthumously, including an honorary one in 1968 for his outstanding contributions to the motion picture industry and ‘Best Animated Short Film’ for ‘Winnie the Pooh and the Blustery Day’ in 1969.

Since Walt’s passing in 1966, the Walt Disney Company has continued to be a major player in the film industry and has won numerous Academy Awards in various categories.

The Bracelet

Each year, an Oscar winner is allowed to request a miniature statuette for each award that they’ve won. Sitting at one inch tall, they’re made by a Beverly Hills jeweller under exclusive license from the Academy.

Crafted from 18K gold, each miniature statuette is engraved on the bottom with the name of the honoree, the film that it honours and the year that the film was released.

In the early 1960s, Walt intended on creating a necklace for his wife that was adorned with the minature statuettes presented to him. However, when Lilly expressed her preference for a bracelet instead, the charms were incorporated into a new design.

Fashioned with 20 miniature statuettes, Lilly proudly wore the bracelet on a regular basis.

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“In the realm of Hollywood legends, Walt Disney’s name shines brightly – and so does the bracelet that he had made for his wife in the early 1960s.

Celebrating his Academy Award wins, the 18k gold bracelet features 20 miniature statuettes. Sat at 1 inch tall, each statuette is engraved on the bottom with the name of the honoree, the film that it honours and the year that the film was released.

The bracelet served as a profoundly sentimental gesture, expressing gratitude to his wife for her pivotal contribution to his success. Throughout their marriage, Lily offered Walt unwavering support, insightful feedback and the encouragement needed to pursue his visionary dreams.

Assigning a value to such a historically and sentimentally significant piece is a challenging task, but I’d estimate it to be worth approximately $100,000 (£80,000).”

Where is it now?

During her later years, Lilly passed the bracelet down to one of her granddaughters, who cherished it dearly.

Regrettably, the bracelet disappeared after some time, seemingly taken by an individual with access to the family residence. It wasn’t until several years later that the bracelet was rediscovered, in the Los Angeles area.

Today it can be seen on display at The Walt Disney Family Museum in San Francisco, alongside some of Walt’s Academy Awards.

If you’re looking for some jewellery inspiration, why not take a look at our full collection? Whether you’re after a necklace osome diamond earrings, we’ve got you covered. We also have a vast range of engagement and wedding rings.

If you don’t see anything that takes your fancy, we also offer a bespoke service, where our designers will create a unique piece of jewellery that ticks all the boxes.

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