The embellished Gianni Versace gown worn by Princess Diana, above, in a 1991 photo shoot by her official photographer Patrick Demarchelier. The images of Diana wearing the gown were used on the cover of the November 1997 “Harper’s Bazaar Diana A Tribute to a Princess” issue and in “Diana: The Portrait” by Rosalind Coward. The figure-hugging shimmering blue-green silk gown with a décolletage neckline is embellished with gold tone studs and pyramids, and encased faceted glass in shades of blue topaz, aqua marine, and white in a geometric and swirled motif. The interior is silk lined with hand finishing and an Atelier Versace label. Atelier Versace is the Haute Couture line of The House of Versace and indicates one-of-a-kind pieces. The gown was acquired directly from Versace as being worn by Princess Diana and was originally on a hanger that read “Lady Diana.” Reportedly this is the first gown Gianni Versace designed for Princess Diana. It was sold accompanied by a copy of the magazine.
The exquisite piece – which is thought to be the first dress Donatella’s brother Gianni Versace crafted for Diana – went up for auction on 26 June in Beverly Hills, California…with an eye-watering minimum price tag.
Bidders were invited to place offers starting at $30,000, but it was already estimated that it would sell for between $60,000 – $80,000. Diana’s Versace floor-sweeping maxi was sold by Julien’s Auctions, a company based in Beverly Hills that specialises in selling items from some biggest stars in history. And it’s not the first time the dress has been in the public eye since the death of Prince William and Harry’s mum in Paris on 31 August 1997.
It was displayed at the the Versace exhibition at London’s Victoria & Albert Museum back in 2002. The event celebrated the career of Gianni from 1946 – 1997.