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Monroe famously wore the sparkling, sleeveless form-fitted gown embellished with thousands of crystals when she sang “Happy Birthday” to former President John F. Kennedy in 1962. Ripley’s Believe It or Not! loaned the dress to Kardashian to wear to the event earlier this year.
During the 41-year-old reality star’s appearance Tuesday on the “Today” show, host Hoda Kotb asked Kardashian if the “dress is ruined.”
“No, and Ripley’s, we worked together so well,” “The Kardashians” star replied. “There were handlers in gloves that put it on me.”
“It was such a process,” she added. “I showed up to the red carpet in a robe and slippers, and I put the dress on on the bottom of the carpet, went up the stairs. I probably had it on for three minutes, four minutes, and then I changed right at the top of the stairs.”
“I respect [Monroe], I understand how much this dress means to American history,” Kardashian continued. “And with the theme [of the Met Gala] being American, I thought, ‘What is more American than Marilyn Monroe singing Happy Birthday to the President of the United States?'”
Collector Scott Fortner, the curator of the world’s largest private collection of Monroe’s personal property and archives, previously shared several before and after photos of the gown on his Instagram. He noted how after the reality star wore the dress it was “missing crystals” with some “left hanging by a thread.”
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Fortner called the decision by Ripley’s to allow the reality star to wear it “irresponsible.” He said the photos prove that the dress was “significantly damaged” and is “irreparable.”
The collector made it clear that he wasn’t upset with Kardashian for wearing it, but with Ripley’s for loaning out a piece of Hollywood history. Ripley’s Believe It or Not! later responded to the criticism and said that the reality star “did not, in any way, damage the garment,” as The Daily Wire previously reported.