Princess Diana's Daring Black Dress Fetches Over $275,000 at London Auction

In this Friday, May 28, 2010 photo, the black taffeta evening gown worn by Princess Diana on her first official appearance after her engagement to Prince Charles, designed by Elizabeth Emanuel is displayed, at an auction house in London. It was black and strapless, with a sassy sequined flounce at the bodice and a gloriously full, swishy skirt. The dress was, Lady Diana Spencer thought, so grown-up, just right for her first official engagement after the announcement she was to marry Prince Charles. The black dress is expected to fetch between 30,000 and 50,000 pounds ($44,000 to $73,000) and the prototype of the wedding dress between 8,000 and 12,000 pounds ($12,000 to $17,000) but understand that Diana's legacy means there's a strong chance a private collector may snap up the garments. (AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth) Kirsty Wigglesworth

Lady Diana Spencer at a charity event at in London. (AP Photo/Peter Skingley)
NEW YORK (CBS) The daring black taffeta dress that transformed Princess Diana into a fashion icon has been sold at a London auction for more than $275,000.

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At the age of 19, the then Lady Diana Spencer wore the silk number to a London charity event - her first official engagement with fiance Prince Charles.

With its revealing neckline and dark hue, the dress was deemed by many as too daring for the bride-to-be.

The gown was designed by David and Elizabeth Emanuel.  The two would later design Princess Diana's wedding dress.

In her book, "A Dress for Diana," quoted in a BBC report, Elizabeth Emanuel wrote, "The transformation was incredible. She arrived looking like the nursery school teacher she was, but now she looked like a movie star." 

The dress, which was expected to fetch anywhere between $44,000 and $73,000, was sold to a Chilean fashion museum.

"It's the perfect ending to a perfect sale," said auctioneer Kerry Taylor.

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  • Joyce Lee

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