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Lady Gaga pays record sum for Alexander McQueen dress

US singer Lady Gaga Photo: REUTERS/Yves Herman

American pop star Lady Gaga is believed to have paid a world record price for a gown by her late friend Alexander McQueen at a London auction.

She was among bidders who paid almost half a million pounds for items from the personal collection of Daphne Guinness which was sold at Christie's. The lots went for four times the original estimate.

McQueen's close friend and supporter Isabella Blow Credit: Andy Butterton/PA Archive/Press Association Images

Miss Gaga paid £85,250 for an ivory silk tulle empire line gown, entitled The Girl Who Lived In The Tree. During bidding she fought off rival bids from institutions and couture collectors around the world to pay the record sum.

Another McQueen - a metallic silver mini-dress dating from 2008, the year before he committed suicide - also beat the previous record, fetching £79,250.

Alexander McQueen appears at the end of his 2006-2007 fashion collection in Paris Credit: REUTERS/Charles Platiau

Guinness was auctioning items from her personal collection to raise funds for the Isabella Blow Foundation, set up in memory of her friend to support emerging fashion talent.

Fashionista Blow killed herself in 2007, and her own extensive wardrobe - sold to settle debts on her estate - was bought in its entirety by Guinness to keep it intact.

Lady Gaga has said that she admires both Daphne and Isabella, described them as "a huge source of inspiration for me".

Daphne Guinness at the 2010 British Fashion Awards Credit: Ian West/PA Archive/Press Association Images

Guinness said after the auction, which raised £467,800:

This cause is close to my heart. I am genuinely touched by the response it has generated, and truly excited for the future of the Isabella Blow Foundation. I'm overwhelmed by how many bidders took part this evening and I'm particularly moved by Lady Gaga's support for the foundation. I like her very much, and it's lovely to see the nascent beginnings of something that may help other people.

– daphne guinness

McQueen was found dead in his Mayfair apartment in February 2010, days before London Fashion Week. His death shocked the fashion industry.