By Marice Richter
DALLAS (Reuters) - A gold cape worn by Hollywood icon Elizabeth Taylor in the 1963 film "Cleopatra" sold at auction for $59,375 in Dallas on Friday.
The cape had been wrapped in tissue and stored in a cedar closet for years, the female owner of the garment told officials at Heritage Auctions.
The owner, who asked not to be identified, said her mother had acquired the cape from the now defunct Western Costume company sometime after the film's premiere.
The woman's mother had worked in the couture fashion industry, Heritage officials said. The woman told officials at the auction house that she had never mentioned or showed the cape to anyone.
But after the actress died on March 23, 2011, she decided to reintroduce it to the world.
The cape was designed to resemble the wings of a Phoenix. It is constructed of gold painted leather with hand-stitched gold beads and sequins. Taylor wore the cape in two scenes in the movie. The cape was expected to sell for $20,000 at auction.
"Taylor was featured in countless newspaper and magazine articles wearing this cape," Margaret Barrett, director of entertainment and music memorabilia for Heritage Auctions, said in a statement.
"This piece is the epitome of glamorous and it was worn by one of Hollywood's greatest leading ladies at the very peak of her fame, power and beauty," she said.
(Editing by Greg McCune)