Catherine Walker’s evening dress and jacket, 1989
Better known as Lady Diana Spencer’s “Elvis” dress
Silk with oyster pearls and sequins, embroidery by S. Lock Ltd.
I think this gown deserves its own page, for various reasons.
This outfit was commissioned for an official visit to Hong Kong by the Princess of Wales. The designer chose pearls because ‘they seemed so appropriate for a visit to the Orient’.
The dress was bought by Lynda Rae Resnick (she and her husband Steward own the Franklin Mint Company) at a Christie’s auction in 1997 for £81,203 ($151,000) (click here to see the dresses sold at that auction – the pages have a ‘next 10’ link at the bottom, in case you should miss it – this particular dress was Lot 78 and can be seen on this page), and eventually, it ended up in the Victoria & Albert Museum in London.
Here’s another page with V&A pictures of that gown, back then, obviously still in one display with the Cloé dress, which can be found on my “1920 – modern” clothing page. The dress now has its own display, though.