23 March 2024

The Pattie Boyd Collection far surpasses auction estimate at almost £3 million

23 March 2024

A trove of treasures from former fashion model Pattie Boyd, including photographs and love letters, have sold for almost £3 million at auction – far exceeding its original estimate.

The Pattie Boyd Collection included letters from the time she was involved in a love triangle with former husbands Eric Clapton and George Harrison.

The sale was led by original artwork chosen by Clapton for the cover of Derek And The Dominos’ 1970 album Layla And Other Assorted Love Songs.

It was estimated to fetch between £40,000 and £60,000, but sold for 33 times the pre-sale estimate at £1,976,000 – after a prolonged bidding battle.

Clapton famously wrote the 1970 track Layla about Boyd, as well as his 1977 hit Wonderful Tonight.

“I am completely blown away by the enthusiasm of international bidders for these special treasures that I have always loved,” Boyd said.

“I am so happy that new hearts will now enjoy them, as they enter into their next ‘chapters’.

“I am lucky that my life today continues to bring me joy and different adventures – I would encourage people to follow their passions and live their lives with gusto.”

The collection sold for a total of £2,818,184.

It included a handwritten love letter from Clapton in January 1971 on the title page torn from a copy of John Steinbeck’s Of Mice And Men, which had a £10,000 to £15,000 original estimate but sold for £119,700.

Meanwhile, the original handwritten lyrics for Harrison’s Mystical One sold for £47,800 and a photograph of The Beatles in India in 1968 sold for £52,920.

Boyd met Harrison on the set of the 1964 film A Hard Day’s Night and was married to him for more than a decade before she wed Clapton in 1979.

The 79-year-old, who was a renowned photographer and model in the 1960s, said she realised during her marriage to Beatles star Harrison that she had “to share everything, including George, with the public”.

The collection, which went on public display at Christie’s London headquarters on Friday March 15, provided a glimpse into the heart of the 1960s and 70s counterculture.

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