The controversy behind the Marilyn Monroe dress worn by Kim Kardashian

Historical garments must not be worn by anyoneneither by public nor private figures. So categorical is the conclusion that the International Council of Museums, ICOM, released in a statement.

A slam of the door for the controversy started by kim kardashianin another blow of impact of which she is a specialist, when she took to the Metropolitan gala the dress with which Marilyn Monroe sang “Happy Birthday Mr President” to John Fitzgerald Kennedywho was about to turn 45.

I also read: Marilyn Monroe’s dress designer is outraged at Kim Kardashian for wearing it

It was in Madison Square Garden in New York, before some fifteen thousand people and almost exactly sixty years ago: on May 19, 1962. A few weeks later, the police removed Monroe’s lifeless body from his home in Los Angeles.

Kim Kardashian had to lose almost 8 kilos to wear the dress (Photo: REUTERS / Brendan Mcdermid).
Kim Kardashian had to lose almost 8 kilos to wear the dress (Photo: REUTERS / Brendan Mcdermid).For: REUTERS

What Kardashian was looking for was to cause an impact and being the center of attention, regardless of whether you admire Marilyn or not”, comments Carla Rodríguez, fashion specialist. “They say that she came to the place to take the photo and then, throughout the ceremony, she wore a replica. Whatever, looked for impact and achieved it. They are marketing coups, fashion bets that these women make to attract attention. The truth is that he had already been doing strange things in the met gala. Last year she wore a black Balenciaga outfit that covered her up, like a catsuit that left almost nothing in sight. Now he has fulfilled his goal again. With a dress that she could have paid for if it were torn”, he adds.

The controversy was served. Not only because it is the most expensive dress in the world, with a value greater than five million dollarsbut because of the versions that Kardashian he had lost several kilos to enter it, quite a complicated message. But among the voices against, the one that was heard the most was that of the veteran Bob Mackienone other than the designer of the original dress.

Kim Kardashian was harshly criticized by the designer of Marilyn Monroe's dress: "it was a big mistake".  (Photo: REUTERS/Andrew Kelly).
Kim Kardashian was harshly criticized by the designer of Marilyn Monroe’s dress: “It was a big mistake.” (Photo: REUTERS/Andrew Kelly).

Legend has it that under the piece of gauze (silk soufflé) the color naked, with six thousand embroidered crystals, the actress did not wear underwear. It was the dress that Marilyn showed off, to a huge collective exclamation, as she took off her fur coat onstage at the stadium.

Kim Kardashian paid tribute to Marilyn Monroe wearing the dress she wore at the Golden Globes in 1962 (Photo: Instagram / kimkardashian).
Kim Kardashian paid tribute to Marilyn Monroe wearing the dress she wore at the Golden Globes in 1962 (Photo: Instagram / kimkardashian).

Marilyn Monroe’s dress that went down in history

The image of that birthday song, however, would go down in history as a stamp of the sad last days of the movie star. Alone, after three marriages that had gone wrong, addicted to drugs, in the midst of rumors that she was a lover of the Kennedys, obeying her role as her sexy blonde in which she would be his last public performance.

In this combination of photos, Kim Kardashian arrives at the Metropolitan Museum of Art's Institute of Dress benefit gala to celebrate the opening of the exhibition "In America: An Anthology of Fashion" on Monday, May 2, 2022 in New York.  (Photo Evan Agostini/Invision/AP)
In this combination of photos, Kim Kardashian arrives at the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Dress Institute benefit gala to celebrate the opening of the “In America: An Anthology of Fashion” exhibition on Monday, May 2, 2022, in New York. (Photo Evan Agostini/Invision/AP)

“Everyone does what they want, and I would never criticize what someone is wearing or how it looks. The problem is that we cannot be someone else, so these controversies arise. Marilyn in that dress is an icon, a single image, there are not two Marilyn Monroe. So, everyone will be different. Women are dressed for personality, not for body”, says haute couture designer Gabriel Lage.

I also read: Marilyn Monroe, the diva who could not escape her loneliness

She adds: “It is the personality, the happiness with which a dress is worn, that makes a design shine. Marilyn was pure personality, romantic, almost childlike. With that dress it will have been possible to make noise, but maybe it would have been better to take another. I do not belong to this culture that they talk about as it is, generating scandal: I prefer that they speak well”.

Letizia from Spain at the gala at the Royal Palace dressed by Lage (Photo: EFE).
Letizia from Spain at the gala at the Royal Palace dressed by Lage (Photo: EFE).

Precisely, the dress that Lage created for Queen Letizia is speaking well the world. The Spanish press is full of praise for this piece that he describes as a tulle base with a work of Bulgarian threads and appliqués of flat glassware, very soft, with an evasé line and slightly flared sleeves. A dream fulfilled. “I want to dress Letizia long before she was queen. I love his personality, he has a special halo, great style, he is absolutely elegant. Everything that happened was amazing, the crowning of my work,” she says, playing with the crowns.

Pampita and a tribute to Elsa Serrano at the Martín Fierro 2022

Many linked Kardashian’s “tribute” to Marilyn with the appearance of Pampita in the Martín Fierroclad in a fantastic suit by the late designer Elsa Serrano. Another dress that came out of a museum, in this particular case. On the vernacular red carpet, Pampita said that she wore the dress as a double tribute: to Serrano, and to the one who had worn it for the first time, actress Norma Aleandro, when she received the Oscar for The official storyin 1986.

“I am very happy because I’m wearing a very emotionally charged dress”, said the driver of The Hotel of the Famous (eltrece). “I had promised Elsa that she would be able to wear one of her dresses at some gala. It could not be given so, very kindly, Elsa’s daughters gave me this wonderful dress from her museum that he will be accompanying me as I had promised him, ”he added.

Pampita dressed in red with a design by Elsa Serrano.  (Photo: Movilpress).
Pampita dressed in red with a design by Elsa Serrano. (Photo: Movilpress).

Returning to the museum association, its statement underlines that the use of historical pieces not only undermines its good practices but it can cause irreparable damage to an object that belongs to the history of fashion. Marilyn Monroe’s dresswhose death will be sixty years on August 4, set a record when auctioned in 2016. Its price was five times what it had marked, ten years earlier, another iconic garment, the dress of Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast at Tiffany’swhich sold for $800,000.

Norma Aleandro at the 1986 Oscar Awards ceremony (video capture)
Norma Aleandro at the 1986 Oscar Awards ceremony (video capture)

Given the controversy, the owners of Marilyn’s dress, the company Ripley’s Believe it or notconfirmed that They gave the dress to Kardashian for the photos of the red carpet, to then show off a replica. They also assured that she did not make any changes to it and that Kardashian is, after Monroe, the only person in history who has dressed it. For a while.

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