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In an extraordinary fusion of literature and luxury, a unique edition of Truman Capote’s iconic novel, Breakfast at Tiffany’s, has been transformed into a dazzling artifact valued at $1.5 million. This remarkable edition, covered with over a thousand diamonds, commemorates the centennial of the American writer’s birth and marks forty years since his passing. 

The Breakfast at Tiffany’s classic exemplar is not merely a book but a symbol of opulence, intertwining Capote’s narrative with the extravagance it vividly describes. Kate Holland, a master of British craftsmanship, was instrumental in this ambitious project, binding the novel in leather and adorning it with 1,035 diamonds and an emerald-cut sapphire. This endeavor was realized in collaboration with British jewelers Bentley & Skinner for the American luxury book dealer, Lux Mentis. The only signed copy by Capote of his 1958 novel is currently on display at the International Rare Book & Manuscript Fair in the heart of Manhattan, New York.

Encased and illuminated within an ebony birdcage, this edition of Breakfast at Tiffany’s is offered for sale at $1.5 million, with no room for auction or negotiation. The diamonds, totaling 30 carats, are strategically placed to depict a portion of Manhattan’s map, highlighting the essence of New York, the novel’s central locale. Furthermore, the sapphire marks the intersection of 5th Avenue and 57th Street, the location of the legendary Tiffany & Co. store, recently reopened under the auspices of the French luxury conglomerate LVMH in April 2023.

For Kate Holland, the novel represents a “love affair with New York,” a global hub for the arts, luxury and finance. While acknowledging discomfort with the $1.5 million asking price, Holland regards this book as an “art object,” suggesting it should be displayed rather than tucked away. Capote’s work and life, as much marked by scandal as by literary achievement, continue to inspire adaptations, the latest being Feud: The Capote Takedowns by Gus Van Sant, featuring Tom Hollander, Naomi Watts, Diane Lane and Demi Moore. This diamond-covered edition of Breakfast at Tiffany’s stands as a testament to Capote’s enduring legacy, marrying the literary with the luxurious in an unprecedented homage.

Tiffany & Co., a symbol of New York luxury since 1940 and newly renovated post-pandemic, was immortalized by the film adaptation of Capote’s novel, Breakfast at Tiffany’s (1961), directed by Blake Edwards and starring Audrey Hepburn and George Peppard. This romantic comedy, along with the somewhat darker novel, narrates the life of Holly Golightly, a whimsical socialite dreaming of marrying a billionaire to adorn her in jewels, against a backdrop of childhood trauma.

Audrey Hepburn’s portrayal of Holly Golightly in Breakfast at Tiffany’s film adaptation remains one of cinema’s most iconic roles. The actress, with her innate elegance and charm, brought Capote’s complex character to life, forever linking her image with the quintessential New York socialite. Her performance captured Holly’s whimsical and seemingly carefree spirit. Moreover, it subtly hinted at the deeper, more vulnerable layers of her persona. The film, through Audrey Hepburn’s portrayal, offers a more sanitized yet equally poignant version of the narrative, diverging in tone from Capote’s original work but maintaining its essence. The black dress and pearls ensemble Hepburn dons while gazing into Tiffany & Co.’s window has become an enduring symbol of elegance and sophistication, embodying the dreamy allure of New York City and its promise of a better life. Hepburn’s role in Breakfast at Tiffany’s cemented her status as a fashion icon and as a talented actress capable of conveying depth and vulnerability through her performance.