Julien's Auctions Offers Property from the Estate of Oscar Winning Costume Designer Travilla Today
No one knew legendary screen goddess Marilyn Monroe like costume designer William Travilla. The famous 36-26-36 hourglass silhouette of the bombshell would help secure Travilla's place in Hollywood history as one of the most important fashion designers of its time. Although Marilyn Monroe was Travilla's most celebrated muse he designed for over 270 celebrities but none like Monroe who catapulted to super-stardom while donning Travilla's most important costumes.Julien's Auctions, the premier entertainment and celebrity memorabilia auction house proudly announces this rare opportunity to own one of Travilla's masterpieces of fashion in the upcoming "Property from the Estate of William Travilla" auction to take place today, October 11th, 2013 at the Julien's Auctions Beverly Hills gallery at 9665 Wilshire Blvd. The Hollywood icon was so enamored with Travilla that she once autographed one of her infamous calendars with the inscription "Oh Billy dear please dress me forever, Love Marilyn."
Born on Catalina Island, just off the California coast, Travilla had a Passion for art at a very early age. He attended the prestigious Chouinard School of Art in Los Angeles where he was advanced to adult classes at the age of 8! As a teenager the burlesque clubs he passed on the way to school began to pique his interest and he sketched costumes for the dancers and sold them.
He later went to Hollywood after avoiding the draft and started selling his sketches at Don the Beachcomber where a special young woman began collecting his work, actress Ann Sheridan. They developed a friendship and she eventually brought him to Warner Studios. Travilla went on to transition from Warner to Fox Studios where he met the young Monroe who would later do something for his gowns that no other woman could do. William Travilla was known professionally as simply Travilla.
Through his close friendship with Marilyn Monroe he created her costumes for Don't Bother to Knock and Gentlemen Prefer Blondes. He also created one of the most famous costumes in all of film - the pleated ivory cocktail dress Monroe wore in the 1955 film The Seven Year Itch. His costume became synonymous with Monroe as she wore it while standing on a New York subway ventilation grate and as the subway train passed the dress flew up in the air. Travilla was also nominated for an Academy Award for How to Marry a Millionaire in 1953, There's No Business Like Show Business in 1954 and The Stripper in 1963. Over the course of just a few years Travilla designed for eight of Monroe's films and many of these gowns have Gone down in history as his most important works.
This is The First Time his collection, which was bequeathed to his partner when he passed in 1990, will be available for auction. His original sketches which have been the focus of numerous press features as well as the gowns he made for Monroe early on and later would become the original ideas for her most famous scenes. Also included are his personal effects, sewing room artifacts, Oscar patterns and original watercolor renderings. Collectors wishing to expand their portfolio of true iconic Hollywood fashions will have this very rare opportunity to own a piece of Marilyn Monroe fashion history at this auction.
Some of the Marilyn Monroe highlights of the "Property from the Estate of William Travilla" auction include a Monroe/Andy Warhol Blue Tribute Dress which was created for an Andy Warhol memorial service at the Beverly Hilton and mimics the famous Seven Year Itch dress (Estimate: $4,000-$6,000), a Marilyn Monroe "Gentlemen Prefer Blondes" inspired gown by Travilla featuring the gold lame sunburst halter gown design (Estimate: $10,000 - $20,000), a "Gentlemen Prefer Brunettes" Travilla sketch (Estimate: $400-$600), Travilla's "There's No Business Like Show Business" Academy Award plaque ($3,000-$5,000), a 1953 Travilla "Gentlemen Prefer Blondes" costume sketch (Estimate: $6,000-$8,000), and a Marilyn Monroe "Seven Year Itch" inspired Travilla gown (Estimate: $20,000-$30,000) along with several other pieces.