A gift from Sir Richard Branson, the Virgin Atlantic jumper was a favourite with Princess Diana.
Princess Diana’s go-to gym sweatshirt was a gift to her by Sir Richard Branson in the late 1990s. She wore the navy Virgin Atlantic jumper regularly to the gym, as a trick to make it useless for the paparazzi to follow her to the gym! It was recently auctioned and was sold for an incredible $53,500, i.e. Rs. 36,67,120!
In a recent blog Sir Branson shared that he also bid on the jumper but lost to someone else! He reflected on the time when he’d gifted HRH the jumper:
“My family and I grew close to Diana and her children when they were quite young, when the press followed their every move (and movement). We welcomed the family to Necker on several occasions to offer some much deserved privacy and relaxation.
Diana was always fond of Virgin Atlantic and I distinctly remember one flight when she entered the flight deck (back in the days when this was allowed) and announced over the loudspeaker that if the passengers looked to their right they could see Granny’s House (or rather, Windsor Castle).
Another time, when we won our court case against British Airways, I received a simple, one-lined letter from Diana, which simply said ‘hurrah.’
As such, it seemed only right to gift her the Virgin Atlantic sweatshirt as a token of our appreciation. I didn’t realise at the time that she would go on to wear the sweatshirt every time she went to the gym – making a point about how ridiculous it was to photograph her working out every day.”
The sweatshirt features the airline’s retro Flying Lady logo, which was inspired by Alberto Vargas’ sketches of pin-up girls in the 1930s. A few months before Princess Diana’s untimely demise, she gifted the oversized jumper to her friend and personal trainer Jenni Rivett.
Rivett said in a Facebook post that the sweatshirt was only gathering dust in her closet and she aims to help a family in Malawi with the proceeds of the auction.