Did Kim Kardashian Damage Marilyn Monroe's Dress?

by Christopher Ehlers

EDGE Media Network Contributor

Monday June 13, 2022

Did Kim Kardashian Damage Marilyn Monroe's Dress?
  (Source:Associated Press)

Just about everyone on the face of the planet seemed to have an opinion about Kim Kardashian wearing Marilyn Monroe's iconic "Happy Birthday, Mr. President" dress to this year's Met Gala. And given the troubling recent Instagram posts by The Marilyn Monroe Collection, those opinions are unlikely to let up any time soon.

Their initial Instagram post, which has been liked over 10,000 times, featured a close up of the back of the dress that was taken June 12 at the Hollywood location of Ripley's Believe It or Not. It appears to show missing beads and loose threads. "So much for keeping the integrity of the dress and the preservation," a caption read.

Even more damning was their next post, which featured a side-by-side comparison of the dress both pre and post Kardashian, and things aren't looking too good for her right now.

"Just in case you missed it...missing crystals, and some left hanging by a thread," said the caption. Kardashian isn't the only one who took heat for wearing the one-of-a-kind piece of Hollywood history to the Met Gala. Ripley's Believe It or Not, who owned the dress, also received a ton of flack for agreeing to let her borrow it, which is why they did some early damage control detailing their efforts to maintain its integrity. "Great care was taken to preserve this piece of pop culture history," said Ripley's via a May press release. "With input from garment conservationists, appraisers, and archivists, the garment's condition was top priority. Believe It or Not! no alterations were to be made to the dress and Kim even changed into a replica after the red carpet."

Despite the photos that seem to paint a very unfortunate picture, it appears as though great pains were taken to protect the dress. In a Slate article last month, Amanda Joiner, Vice President of Licensing and Publishing at Ripley's, said: "We basically had many conversations with Kim and her team and put a lot of requirements in place with security and with the handling of the dress. The dress was never with Kim alone. It was always with a Ripley's representative. We always ensured that at any time we felt that the dress was in danger of ripping, or we felt uncomfortable about anything, we always had the ability to be able to say we were not going to continue with this."

Regardless of Kardashian's reverence for the dress and of Ripley's alleged security precautions, the sad fact remains that the 60-year-old dress does not appear to be in the same flawless condition that it once was. It'll be interesting to see how this one shakes out.