The famous red sweater with sheep designs worn by Princess Diana in 1981 was auctioned for US$1.1 million (around R$5.36 million at current prices), Sothebhy’s announced last Thursday (14), who organized the online sale.
The piece, known as “Black Sheep” for the only black sheep among several white ones, was one of the most emblematic worn by Diana.
The auction house extended the sale for a few minutes, due to the flood of offers that in 15 minutes went from US$ 190 thousand (R$ 926 thousand reais) to US$ 1.1 million.
According to Sotheby’s, it is the highest price ever achieved for a piece of clothing that belonged to Princess Diana — it surpasses the “Infanta” style ball gown, worth US$604.8 thousand (R$2.9 million), sold in January—and the highest price paid for a sweater at auction.
“Striking pieces of clothing and accessories, which have belonged to and been worn by some of the most famous personalities in the worlds of fashion, cinema, music and politics, each have their own unique story in the long history of fashion”, declared the director of Sotheby’s Fashion and Accessories, Cynthia Houlton.
The price exceeded the estimated value of US$50,000 and US$80,000 (R$243,000 and R$389,000) when put up for sale in the Fashion Icons collection, which includes other pieces that belonged to the princess who died in a car accident. car in Paris, on August 31, 1997.
In the same session, the black dress with a beige ruffle worn by Diana in Wales in 1985 was sold for US$381 thousand (R$1.857 million), well above the expected value of US$80 thousand to US$120 thousand (R$ 389 thousand to R$ 584 thousand).
In June 1981, shortly after her engagement to then-Prince Charles, Diana wore the sheep sweater created by then little-known designers Sally Muir and Joanna Osborne, who three years earlier had opened the Warm and Wonderful knitting atelier.
The success of the slightly childish sweater launched them to fame, inaugurating a style that is still current with pieces that dress royalty and quickly become a trend.
Weeks after Diana was photographed wearing the blouse, the designers received a letter from Buckingham Palace reporting that the piece had been damaged on one of the sleeves and whether it could be repaired or replaced.
The designers opted for the last option and sent him a new one. The princess’ private secretary, Oliver Everett, sent them a letter of thanks.
The two letters were part of the sale of the sweater.
In 1983, the Princess of Wales returned to wearing the blouse, combined with white trousers.
The model’s creators believed that the first piece used by Diana had been repaired and sent to another customer. In March 2023, however, Joanna found her in a box in an attic.
According to photographs from the auction house, the piece sold has several holes in one sleeve.
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