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Princess's 'Travolta' dress sells for £240,000

Lauren Turner

Published 20/03/2013

LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - MARCH 15: Victor Edelstein Midnight Blue Velvet Gown worn for a State dinner at the White House when Diana danced with John Travolta in November 1985 is displayed at a photocall ahead of the the 'Fit For a Princess' auction on March 15, 2013 in London, England. 10 dresses from the collection of Diana, Princess of Wales are to be auctioned by specialist Kerry Taylor. (Photo by Simon Burchell/Getty Images)
LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - MARCH 15: Victor Edelstein Midnight Blue Velvet Gown worn for a State dinner at the White House when Diana danced with John Travolta in November 1985 is displayed at a photocall ahead of the the 'Fit For a Princess' auction on March 15, 2013 in London, England. 10 dresses from the collection of Diana, Princess of Wales are to be auctioned by specialist Kerry Taylor. (Photo by Simon Burchell/Getty Images)
Princess Diana dances at the White house with movie star John Travolta. - Princess of Wales - Di. This icon image was taken in 1985.

A DRESS worn by Diana, Princess of Wales, when she danced with John Travolta at a White House State dinner, has been sold for £240,000 to an anonymous bidder – who said he wanted to surprise his wife.

The off-the-shoulder midnight blue velvet gown, designed by Victor Edelstein, captivated the public when Diana was pictured wearing it as she was twirled around the dancefloor by the film star during a visit to the US in 1985.

It was the star lot in a sale of 10 of Diana's dresses at vintage fashion auctioneers Kerry Taylor Auctions in London.

Auctioneer Kerry Taylor said: "It was bought by a British gentleman who said he wanted to buy it as a surprise to cheer up his wife. I hope that the sale has really made someone's day."

She said the new owner of the gown was a "lucky woman".

The garments were originally sold by Diana for charity at Prince William's suggestion.

American Maureen Rorech Dunkel initially bought the dresses as a long-term investment, but after Diana's death in 1997 she exhibited them to raise money for good causes.

The collection, dubbed Fit For A Princess, reached a total of £862,800 yesterday.

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