Only a week has gone by since her death, but Whitney Houston’s belongings have already been scheduled for auction in California.
The singer’s black velvet gown as well as her famed vest and earrings from the 1992 film The Bodyguard will go home with the highest bidders at Julien’s Auctions in Beverly Hills, Calif. on March 31 through April 1, according to the Associated Press.
Houston’s possessions became available after she died on Feb. 11 at age 48. The singer was found submerged in her bathtub prior to Clive Davis’ annual pre-Grammys party, but the official cause of death is still unknown.
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The starting price for the gem-studded black dress, left, is $1,000. The earrings cost $600 and the vest costs $400, the AP notes. “It proves a point that these items, they’re an investment,” Darren Julien, the founder of Julien’s Auctions, told the AP. “You buy items just like a stock. Buy at the right time and sell at the right time, and they just increase in value.”
But it’s not all about making a profit. The items also have real historic and cultural value.
“It’s a celebration of her life,” Julien told the AP. “If you hide these things in fear that you’re going to offend someone – her life is to be celebrated. These items are historic now that she passed. They become a part of history. They should be in museums. She’s lived a life and had a career that nobody else has ever had.”
The singer’s memorabilia will join the ranks of other famed collectibles, including Charlie Chaplin’s cane and Clark Gable’s jacket from Gone With the Wind as part of the “Hollywood Legends” auction on March 19, an exhibition that’s free to the public and takes place just blocks away from the Beverly Hilton Hotel where Houston died. According to the AP, fans and collectors alike can bid by phone, online or in person.
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“For people who are fans of Whitney Houston and never would have had a chance to meet her and never got to talk to her, these are items that literally touched a part of her life,” Julien told the AP. “They are a way to relate to her or be a part of her life without having known her.”
The singer rests next to her father, who died in 2003, in the Fairview Cemetery in Westfield, N.J., the AP reports. She was buried Sunday after an invitation-only funeral service Saturday at New Hope Baptist Church, her childhood place of worship.