The Non-Marilyn Monroe Exhibit

I’ve seen news links all over the Internet about a Marilyn Monroe dress and tiara on exhibit at the Reading Museum in Berkshire, UK.

A direct quote from the press release:

“A dress and tiara worn by Marilyn Monroe…are among a fascinating collection of showbiz memorabilia on display at Reading Museum later this week.

The Hollywood collection features alongside many other incredible exhibits from the world of entertainment at the Celebrity exhibition which opens on Saturday, October 9.

The glitzy showcase coincides with another exhibition called Dressed 2 Express, already running at the museum at Reading Town Hall, looking at how celebrity fashion reflects our personality.

(Above: Actual photo montage from press release.)

The black, strapless, silk dress was worn by Marilyn to the televised birthday of John F Kennedy at Madison Square Garden, New York, and sold at auction for $1.26 million.

It was later gifted to her step-sister Bebe Goddard before being acquired by Heaven and Earth, which purchase Marilyn items for museums and private buyers from all over the world.

The stunning rhinestone tiara was a present from an admiring fan after he saw her in her 1953 film How To Marry A Millionaire in which she starred with Betty Grable and Lauren Bacall.”

Funny, I always thought Marilyn Monroe wore THIS dress to the JFK gala, and THIS dress later sold for $1.26 million.

Also, I don’t remember a tiara in How To Marry A Millionaire. However, there was a tiara in Gentlemen Prefer Blondes. Is it being implied that this is the tiara Marilyn wore in GPB?

The tiara on exhibit:

Marilyn in GPB with the actual tiara used in the film:

Obviously not the same bling.

It’s a well known fact that Bebe Goddard “Marilyn Monroe owned” items are not authentic. However, even a casual Marilyn Monroe fan knows that she wore a nude colored gown embellished with rhinestones to the JFK birthday gala, not a black strapless evening dress.

I’ll give the museum a bit of slack because it is based in the UK, and not located in the US, but come on, do a little research!