Kim Kardashian Triumphed in a Fierce Bidding War to Buy Princess Diana’s Amethyst Cross Pendant at Auction
It’s thought that the Attallah Cross has only been worn by the princess.
Kim Kardashian is the new owner of a unique piece of jewelry that sparkles with history. The reality-show star has scooped up the Attallah Cross, a one-of-a-kind treasure closely associated with Princess Diana, its only known wearer.
Kardashian acquired the cross-shaped amethyst and diamond pendant in the final minutes of Sotheby’s “Royal & Noble” sale in London, following a flurry of bids between four bidders vying for the distinctive jewel. A representative for Kardashian ultimately prevailed with a purchase price of £163,800 ($197,453), far exceeding the pre-auction estimate of £80,000–£120,000.
“This is a bold piece of jewelry,” said Kristian Spofforth, Head of Jewellery at Sotheby’s London, “which cannot fail to make a vibrant statement, whether it be of faith or fashion—or indeed both.” He added, “We are delighted that this piece has found a new lease of life within the hands of another globally famous name.”
The Attallah Cross was the star attraction in Sotheby’s sale of outstanding objects and heirlooms bearing aristocratic provenance, which also included a carved giltwood ‘Medici’ frame, made in Florence ca. 1650, and a 16th-century Flemish millefleurs tapestry.
The striking pendant was crafted in the 1920s by court jeweler Garrard—where the Princess of Wales chose her engagement ring in 1981—as a private commission for an unnamed client. Diana most famously wore it in 1987 to a charity gala supporting Birthright, the women’s health organization she became patron of several years earlier.
Set with square-cut amethysts within a gold and silver frame, and accented by circular diamonds, the pendant measures approximately 136 x 95 millimeters (5.35 x 3.74 inches). The diamond weight alone approaches 5.25 carats.
The bejeweled crucifix was purchased by its namesake, Naim Attallah CBE, in the 1980s. Friendly with Princess Diana, the Palestinian-British publisher and former director of Asprey loaned the cross to her on a number of occasions. It’s thought that the Attallah Cross has been donned only by the princess; now it’s set to grace a new sort of royalty.
Follow Artnet News on Facebook:
Want to stay ahead of the art world? Subscribe to our newsletter to get the breaking news, eye-opening interviews, and incisive critical takes that drive the conversation forward.