Marilyn Monroe’s “Happy Birthday” dress sells for $5M at auction

We guess being an icon really does pay off. The iconic skintight dress that Marilyn Monroe wore when she crooned “Happy Birthday” to John F. Kennedy just sold for $4.8 million at auction to the Ripley’s Believe It or Not museum chain.

The dress is just one item in a three-day sale of Monroe’s personal belongings at Julien’s Auctions in Los Angeles. It was made with over 2,500 hand-stitched crystals, and was reportedly so tight that Monroe had to be sewn into it.

Monroe wore the dress at a Democratic fundraiser at Madison Square Garden in 1962, when she performed the song in front of 15,000 people. Monroe died only a few months later in August, and President Kennedy was assassinated a year later, making this moment in time especially poignant.

The dress
The dress

“That rendition has lived on for decades as one of the most remarkable events in her career and certainly one of the most storied tales in popular culture history — a moment in time squarely at the center of the 1960s, Hollywood and Camelot,” Darren Julien, President & CEO of Julien’s Auctions, said in a statement.

Maybe one day, if Kanye ever decides to sing “Happy Birthday” to Donald Trump, the Yeezy sneakers he wears will take on similar meaning. Though that scenario is likely very possible, somehow it seems substantially less romantic.