A workout sweatshirt of Diana, Princess of Wales, has sold at the Fine Autographs and Artifacts auction for $53,532 at the RR Auction ending on 10 July based out of Boston, Massachusetts.
The navy sweatshirt is by Virgin Atlantic and was her go-to workout gear. It was given to her by Virgin owner, Richard Branson and was later presented to her personal trainer, Jenni Rivett.
The buyer is out of California, and the collector has asked to remain anonymous. Not only did the purchaser get the sweatshirt, but they also got the gift tag Diana signed when she gave it to Rivett saying, “Dearest Jenni, Lots of love from, Diana, x.”
The never-washed sweatshirt comes with two letters of provenance from Rivett. In part, one says, “This sweatshirt was given to HRH by Sir Richard Branson. It became her most worn top on her regular visits to the gym. She felt there were far more important issues to focus on in the world than her gym attire and therefore decided that wearing the famous Virgin sweatshirt to every session, would be a good way to stop the media frenzy!
“A few months before her untimely death, she called me to say she had left a few sweatshirts for me. Amongst them, this one—which I have now decided to part with.”
The $53,532 will be donated to a Malawian family based in South Africa – Rivett’s home country.
Bobby Livingston, Executive VP at RR Auction said about the sell, “We are thrilled at the price achieved and considering that the proceeds will be donated to help a family in need — we could not be happier for everyone involved.”
Other items sold at this auction included an Alexander Graham Bell typed letter, Benjamin Franklin handwritten letter pre-war letter from England to his wife, and George Washington handwritten letter referencing a physicist-turned-British spy.
The auction began on 21 June and concluded on 10 July.