Elizabeth Taylor: A Peek Inside the Wardrobe

Christie’s: The Collection of Elizabeth Taylor

Miss Prescott will admit that, like anyone else with a penchant for sparkly things and outré ensembles, she quite likes a rummage around someone else’s wardrobe. Just to look, mind.

So, perhaps a trip to Paris or New York is in order later this year to have a closer look at the wardrobe of the late screen goddess, Elizabeth Taylor. Yes, the whole thing is up for auction at Christie’s in December.

Let’s remember that no-one—and I am adamant when I say no-one—understood glamour in quite the same way as Ms Taylor. Yes, certainly she was sometimes a little OTT, but thank goodness, I say. There’s more than enough beige (shudder!) in this world already.

Of course, among the many, many items up for grabs are pieces we have all seen in photographs and films over the years: the daisy shorts she wore in 1971; the ostrich feather–hemmed Valentino gown she wore to the premiere of Spartacus in 1961; the costumes from Anne of a Thousand Days (below).

The rollcall of designers included in her collection include Valentino, Gianni Versace, Dior, Christian Lacroix, Gianfranco Ferré and Pucci. That must have been some speed dial.

And then, of course, were the jewels, which Rahul Kadakia of Christie’s New York describes as “The Crown Jewels of Hollywood”. Many are thanks to her husbands (some more generous than others). There are 269 pieces of jewellery in all, including a ruby and diamond set from Mike Todd, a feather diamond brooch once owned by the Duchess of Windsor, Wallis Simpson, and, among the gifts from  Richard Burton, a Cartier necklace featuring the pear-shaped Peregrina pearl (left) and, of course, the 33.19 carat Krupp diamond. (Christie’s has renamed it the Taylor-Burton diamond. Nice touch.) The wedding bands from both of their weddings are also in the auction.

In keeping with jet-setting ways of its late owner, the collection is going on tour from today, taking in Moscow, then London, Los Angeles, Dubai, Geneva, Paris and Hong Kong before resting up in New York before the big sale.

It’ll be needing a stiff martini after all those air miles.

The live auctions will be held Dec. 13 through 16 in New York. A live online auction of hundreds of everyday outfits begins on December 3–17. See Christies.com.


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