Elizabeth Taylor's 1961 Oscars Dress Discovered in Suitcase Decades After Event

Elizabeth Taylor's Christian Dior couture Soirée à Rio 'Oscar' dress, Spring-Summer 1961, by Marc Bohan, 'Slim Line' collection; Elizabeth Taylor's Christian Dior couture Soirée à Rio 'Oscar' dress, Spring-Summer 1961, by Marc Bohan, 'Slim Line' collection Auction: Passion for Fashion & Ballet, 6th Dec, 2022 Courtesy Kerry Taylor Auctions; Elizabeth Taylor, holding the Oscar she won for best actress in director Daniel Mann's film, 'Butterfield 8,' with husband, American singer/actor Eddie Fisher, at the Academy Awards, Santa Monica, California. (Photo by Darlene Hammond/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)
Elizabeth Taylor's Christian Dior couture Soirée à Rio 'Oscar' dress, Spring-Summer 1961, by Marc Bohan, 'Slim Line' collection; Elizabeth Taylor's Christian Dior couture Soirée à Rio 'Oscar' dress, Spring-Summer 1961, by Marc Bohan, 'Slim Line' collection Auction: Passion for Fashion & Ballet, 6th Dec, 2022 Courtesy Kerry Taylor Auctions; Elizabeth Taylor, holding the Oscar she won for best actress in director Daniel Mann's film, 'Butterfield 8,' with husband, American singer/actor Eddie Fisher, at the Academy Awards, Santa Monica, California. (Photo by Darlene Hammond/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

Courtesy Kerry Taylor Auctions; Darlene Hammond/Hulton Archive/Getty Elizabeth Taylor's in Christian Dior

An Elizabeth Taylor fashion mystery has finally been solved.

The one-of-a-kind dress the actress wore when she won her first Oscar in 1961 hadn't been seen since that momentous evening. But more than 60 years after winning Best Actress for BUtterfield 8, the dress has been found.

The gown, designed by Marc Bohan for Christian Dior, was discovered carefully packed away in a large plastic suitcase — alongside 11 more of the star's garments — in central London, according to a statement from Kerry Taylor Auctions.

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The auction house is handling the auction of the Dior dress and other pieces from Taylor.

Tucked away in a suitcase owned by former employees and close family friends Gaston and Anne Sanz, the dress was in good condition.

Anne revealed to the auction house that Taylor considered the 1961 Oscars dress a "lucky charm," and although it was worn for just the Academy Awards ceremony, she would bring it with her on her travels.

Elizabeth Taylor's Christian Dior couture Soirée à Rio 'Oscar' dress, Spring-Summer 1961, by Marc Bohan, 'Slim Line' collection
Elizabeth Taylor's Christian Dior couture Soirée à Rio 'Oscar' dress, Spring-Summer 1961, by Marc Bohan, 'Slim Line' collection

Courtesy Kerry Taylor Auctions Elizabeth Taylor Oscar dress

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Ten years after her big win, in 1971, Taylor called Anne to her suite at the Dorchester Hotel, where the actress spent most of her time with then-husband, Richard Burton. According to the auction house, Taylor, tired of packing and repacking all of her clothes for their non-stop travel, told Anne to take her pick of her wardrobe.

Anne filled two large suitcases with Taylor's gowns and dresses, including the famous Dior gown.

The pale yellow chiffon bodice and ivory bubble skirt features a green taffeta belt that is embroidered with silk flowers and bees. It is expected to fetch between $48,000 and $73,000.

Other dresses included in the collection include a Dior couture blue silk crêpe dress and the black widow dress she wore in the film Boom, designed by Karl Lagerfeld.

Elizabeth Taylor's film-worn robe from 'Boom!' designed by Karl Lagerfeld
Elizabeth Taylor's film-worn robe from 'Boom!' designed by Karl Lagerfeld

Courtesy Kerry Taylor Auctions; Courtesy Everett Collection Elizabeth Taylor in Boom

On the evening of her notable win, Taylor accessorized the gorgeous Dior dress with long evening gloves and large diamond and pearl droplet earrings.

The acceptance speech she gave while donning the gown is remembered as one of the most memorable speeches in Academy Awards history, due to the breathy way she spoke and how she kept it short and sweet.

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"I don't really know how to express my gratitude for this and for everything," she said. "I guess all I can do is say thank you, thank you with all my heart."