The rhinestone-encrusted gown worn by Marilyn Monroe as she sang “Happy Birthday” to President John F. Kennedy sold Thursday evening for $4.81 million at an auction in Los Angeles.
The dress was sold at Julien's Auctions in Los Angeles on Thursday with the winning bid coming from ‘Ripley's Believe it or Not’.
The custom-made Jean Louis gown, which features more than 2,500 hand-stitched diamonds had a pre-sale estimate of £2.42m, but went on to become the most expensive dress ever sold at auction.
First auctioned by Christie's in 1999, the Jean Louis dress went to the late business mogul Martin Zweig for $1.3 million.
"Marilyn Monroe singing 'Happy Birthday Mr. President' is certainly one of the most famous impromptu performances in American history," said Darren Julien, president and CEO of Julien's Auctions.
"Tonight was one of the most important moments in our history as a company. We were incredibly privileged to have had the opportunity to offer this amazing dress from the most legendary screen star of all time."