Diana’s engagement blouse for sale

Princess Diana’s wedding dress designer is to sell the late royal’s engagement blouse.

Elizabeth Emmanuel has decided to part with the pink chiffon garment – which was lent to Diana for a Vogue magazine photo shoot by Lord Snowdon shortly before her engagement to Prince Charles was announced in 1980 – after running into financial difficulties.

The designer insists she is saddened at the prospect of selling the blouse, along with a 16ins miniature version of Diana’s wedding dress, in an internet auction.

She said: “We got a phone call from Vogue magazine asking us if we had anything that we could lend, a blouse with a high neck that could be worn by a very famous personality. They didn’t say who it was, we didn’t know at the time it was for Diana, when we did find out we were very excited.

“It is really the garment that started it all off, the relationship between Diana and ourselves. It is sad, especially for me, but I don’t know what to do with them. There comes a point where it is so expensive to store.”

Diana fell in love with the blouse and later chose a black dress designed by Elizabeth Emmanuel for her first official public engagement. She then commissioned the dressmaker to design her wedding gown.

More than 200 items, including outfits worn by British actresses Helena Bonham Carter and Elizabeth Hurley, will also be auctioned on the website www.auctionatrium.com between 3 and 13 November.