Recently, at the annual MET Gala which was themed 'Gilded Glamour' this year, Kim Kardashian was seen on the red carpet wearing a dress from 1962. The dress was drawn by Bob Mackie and later sewn by Jean Louis, and was seen on late icon Marilyn Monroe when she sang happy birthday to former President John F. Kennedy on his 45th birthday.
The late icon Marilyn Monroe, known to have lived a life filled with problems caused by fame, is still held by the same curse even decades after her death. Exploited for her captivating beauty, used and abused by men of the industry, it can be said that she was never allowed a breather during her 36-year short life.
The famous dress was sewn by the French designer Jean Louis for the icon and belonged to her personal collection. At an auction held in 2016, the dress was sold approximately for 4.8 million dollars, making it the most expensive dress sold at an auction. The dress was later acquired by Ripley's 'Believe It Or Not!' museum. Adorned with thousands of hand-sewn crystals 60 years ago, the dress is now said to be valued at around 10 million dollars.
A one-of-a-kind dress is sewn according to someone else's body measurements it is only expected from someone else to struggle to squeeze in it. Kim Kardashian is said to have lost pounds and pounds to be able to fit in the dress, still stretching the expensive garment and even ripping off the crystals that were sewn by hand. The owner of the original sketch of the dress, 82-year-old designer Bob Mackie also stated that he saw that as a 'huge mistake', and added "It was only designed for her. Nobody else should be seen in that dress." After getting her photos taken on the red carpet for a couple of minutes the magazine star is said to have changed into a replica of the dress for the rest of the night.
Being a sixty-year-old dress, it needs special care to be preserved and kept in shape for as long as possible. Is exposing it to heat, extreme flashlights, and sweat only for a couple of frames the right thing to do for a dress that has itself engraved in history? If there was a replica made to wear for the rest of the night, why did she choose to permanently damage the dress? Known to have her personal archive fashion collection as well; was this only a show of power, her money, and connections?
Not only the dress was damaged, but it was also damaged in vain. The theme of the year was 'Gilded Glamour' and the dress being dated and looking nowhere near the term Gilded fashion, did not make the noise the magazine star hoped it would. The theme being about the era's extravagant lifestyle reflected on fashion, one could understand at first glance that the star did not fit the big frame of that night.
Decades have passed after the icon Marilyn Monroe's tragic life and death. Now, years after her death, her name and belongings are still shown little to no respect, merely perceived as an object for collectors to take a part in no matter the situation. It might be only a dress that is worn but the issue here lies in the abuse of the name, the status, and power. At an age like this, is it really the right thing to keep abusing a woman's name who was taken advantage of all her life instead of letting her finally rest in peace?