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Princess Diana's iconic red sweater is up for auction, and it could sell for P4.3 million

By Camille Santiago Published Jul 18, 2023 4:37 pm

The late Princess Diana’s iconic sheep jumper was rediscovered four decades later, and it will soon be up for auction.

The bright red knit sweater that Princess Diana wore to a summer polo match in 1981 is estimated to cost between $50,000 (P2.7 million) to $80,000 (P4.3 million). It will be part of Sotheby's inaugural Fashion Icons sale in New York.

The sweater, which features white sheep and a lone black sheep print, was made by designers Sally Muir and Joanna Osborne of the knitwear brand, Warm & Wonderful.

However, her "much-loved" sweater got damaged and so she asked the designers to have it fixed or replaced.

Princess Diana's original sweater

After replacing it with a new one, the designers received a thank-you note from the monarch's private secretary, Oliver Everett CVO.

"I know that the Royal Highness will be very glad to have this sweater back and be most grateful to you for having re-done it," said the letter.

In February 2023, Sally and Joana discovered the old sweater along with the letters in the attic.

“I was in the attic in February searching for a pattern, and I just happen to notice this old wine box in a corner—and there was a red sheep jumper wrapped in a cotton bedspread,” Joanna told PEOPLE.

“It was well preserved, and I had a kind of Groundhog Day moment and thought, ‘Could this be the one?’ I looked at the cuff which had obviously been sewn back on, and I called Sal and said, ‘I think I’ve found the actual real Diana jumper!’” she exclaimed, before adding that they reached out to Sotheby's.

The letters from the Buckingham Palace 

Talking about the fashion piece, Sotheby’s global head of fashion and accessories Cynthia Houlton said that they believe this item holds much importance to the late princess.

“Being at a polo match for Prince Charles in 1981, and then again in 1983, of course, she was going to be photographed, of course, that was going to be captured. I think that also really speaks to how much she really liked this specific pattern and this sweater,” she told PEOPLE.

She added that Diana "looked much more in control" when she wore it the second time, pairing it with white jeans and a white collar top with a black tie.

The online bidding for the sweater starts on August 31 and until September 14.

It will be displayed in New York starting on September 7.