Princess Diana’s gowns and accessories smash auction estimates!

One of the largest ever collections of Princess Diana’s possessions to hit the market smashed estimates and sold for a total of $5.5 million, alongside other royal memorabilia, Los Angeles auction house Julien’s Auctions announced.

Composed of more than 50 items, the collection featured several of Diana’s evening gowns, suits, shoes, hats and handbags, as well as personal letters and photographs. Memorabilia that belonged to other members of the British royal family, such as Queen Victoria, Princess Margaret and the Duke and Duchess of Windsor, also formed part of the auction, which closed Thursday.

A magenta silk and lace evening gown, featuring an off-the-shoulder bodice and tiered skirt, worn by Diana twice in 1987, proved the most expensive lot of the night, selling for $910,000, more than four times its estimate of $200,000. Its designer, Victor Edelstein, also created the famous off-the-shoulder, midnight blue velvet evening gown Diana wore while dancing with John Travolta at the White House.

A pair of Diana’s emerald green satin Kurt Geiger pumps, featuring bejeweled bows on their vamps, sold for $390,000 – far above its estimated $2,000-$4,000 – while a midnight-blue tulle diamante star gown she wore several times, including to the premiere of “The Phantom of the Opera,” sold for $780,000.

It was not just the late princess’ clothes that sold for thousands of dollars. A handwritten letter thanking Maud Pendrey, a former housekeeper at the Spencer family home, for a wedding anniversary card sold for $44,450. Sent while she was pregnant with Prince Harry, Diana mentions that “with the baby arriving soon, our lives seem to be very busy, but we’d have it no other way!”

Meanwhile, a diamond watch pendant given by King George VI to his daughter Princess Margaret fetched $78,000 at the auction. It bears cipher of his father, King George V, and was made by Garrard – the jewelers who have produced several pieces for the royal family, including Diana’s sapphire engagement ring.

A pair of the Duke of Windsor’s dark green slippers, complete with needlepointed monograms, sold for $5,850, while one of Queen Victoria’s embroidered silk handkerchiefs, dating from 1840, sold for $1,625.

Source: CNN