22 October 2010
A new record for the highest price ever paid for a Barbie doll has been set at a charity auction in New York. The doll wore a pink diamond necklace and was sold for US$302,500.
Click to hear the report:
In the packed auction room the bidding was brisk for lot 358, a Barbie doll quite unlike any you have ever seen before. This version of the all-American blonde toy was dressed in a black strapless evening dress, with a pink diamond necklace matching her pink peep-toe stiletto heels.
It was the diamonds which drove Barbie's price up to US$302,500. Who bought her? An anonymous bidder. The price was at the lower end of the estimates that Christie's, the auction house, had put.
The jewellery designer Stefano Canturi, who created this Barbie and her necklace, says investors are taking refuge in rare gems right now because of uncertain economic times. The prices of diamonds and coloured jewels have gone up 20% over the past year, according to the auction house, Christie's.
The proceeds from the sale of the bejewelled Barbie will go to Breast Cancer Research.
Laura Trevelyan, BBC News, New York
Click to hear the vocabulary:
crowded or crammed with people
offering a particular price (at an auction)
quick or rapid
object being sold in auction
dress without fabric going over the shoulders
- stiletto heels
shoes with high, narrow and pointed heels
unidentified or secret
shelter from danger (or economic instability)