Christie’s held their sale of Film Memorabilia yesterday and included as lot 22 was Edith Head’s design for a pink cocktail dress worn by Audrey Hepburn in “Breakfast At Tiffany’s”.
The sketch reminded me of when I found the original pink dress from this sketch in a bedroom in Hoboken, New Jersey. In 2007, I was sent to a gentleman’s flat in Hoboken, the gentleman had recently died and it was well known that he was a collector of Hollywood costumes. The flat was, shall we say, in a poor state of repair, and the owner of the costumes stored them all stacked up on a guest bed. There was no paperwork with the costumes and very few had the original lot tags so we had to carry out a lot of detective work, contact all the auction houses from where the gentleman had made his purchases, locate original auction catalogues and try and piece together the puzzle.
This pretty pink dress was eluding me, I didn’t recognise it and neither did any of the leading costume archivists I contacted. After the third visit to the flat, I found a bunch of old film stills and amongst them was a photograph of Audrey Hepburn wearing the little pink dress. This narrowed it down considerably so we started to watch all of Audrey Hepburn’s films to try and work out which film the dress made an appearance in and there it was - in Breakfast At Tiffany’s! The detective work paid off when the dress made an astonishing $192,000 at Christie’s, New York. It just goes to show how important research is in the memorabilia market - in this case, it made the difference between a few dollars for an unlabelled dress and $192,000 !
Follow this link to view the dress at Christie’s.