In Partnership with the Southern Weekend

The World’s Most Expensive Dress

It was worn by Marilyn Monroe for JFK's 45th Birthday celebration and you won't believe how much Ripley's Believe it or Not! paid for it.

It’s the world’s most expensive dress.  Around 16,000 people attended John F. Kennedy’s 45th Birthday celebration which took place on May 19, 1962, 10 days before his actual birthday on May 29th.  Many celebrities attended the event at Madison Square Garden.  Ticket prices ranged from $10-$100 each.

Entertainment that evening included Marilyn Monroe’s iconic performance of “Happy Birthday, Mr. President.” Today, the custom dress she wore for the performance holds the Guinness Book World Record as the most expensive dress in the world.  The dress was designed especially for Marilyn Monroe by french designer Jean Louis and was actually sewn onto her moments before she took the stage.  She was even late to the stage because of it still being sewn on.  You can still see the stitches in the back.  The color of the dress was intended to mimic her skin tone and thousands of rhinestones were hand sewn on the dress and strategically placed as she didn’t wear any undergarments.  This was one of her last public appearances before her death.  The celebration took place on May 19, 1962 and Marilyn died less than three months later on August 5, 1962.  We learned all about the costly dress and got a first hand look during it’s stay at Ripley’s Believe it or Not! in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.  Ripley’s Believe it or Not! purchased the dress at auction and you won’t believe what it set them back.  It will be on display in Myrtle Beach until August 12, 2018 and will make a few appearances in other Ripley’s Believe it or Not! locations before being safely stored.