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Photograph of Princess Elizabeth wearing the c.1930 dress, estimate £2000-3000 at Kerry Taylor Auctions.

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At first glance, there’s nothing too interesting about a third-hand infant dress with scuff marks – marked lot 494 at Kerry Taylor Auctions.

But this c.1930 floral dress was worn by a young Princess Elizabeth and goes to auction on June 11 with an estimate of £2000-3000.

Elizabeth II dress

The green and pink print cotton dress with a ruffled collar, puff sleeves and two-tiered ruffle skirt was owned by nanny Clara Knight. It sold for £2800 at Kerry Taylor Auctions.

The green and pink print cotton dress with a ruffled collar, puff sleeves and two-tiered ruffle skirt is accompanied by a photograph of the late queen wearing the dress with a pony.

In her infant years, Princess Elizabeth would most often play with her sister, Princess Margaret. The siblings had a four-year age gap and would dress in identical frocks but with different colourways – usually Liberty-style dresses with floral designs.

At the time it was not expected Princess Elizabeth would one day become queen. She was third in line to the throne and it wasn’t until King Edward VIII abdication in 1936 that it became clear she would become the country’s future sovereign.

The dress was the possession of the late queen’s nanny, Clara Knight (1879-1946). Known to the children as ‘Allah’ because they couldn’t pronounce ‘Clara’ easily, Knight has been referred to as a ‘no-nonsense’ nanny who was strict with timetables and possessed a stickler for tidiness.

She was allowed to keep the clothes after the princesses had outgrown them and many were sent to her nieces in East Sussex at Christmas time. It was her family in Sussex that rediscovered the box of dresses under a bed before being loaned to a local museum and later sold at auction.

Other items formerly belonging to the nanny have gone to auction. A collection of the late Queen’s toys including a Minnie and Mickey Mouse dolls dating from the early were bought at auction for £1650 by art dealer Daniel Hadden in 2017.

Two matching c.1937 cotton dresses worn by Princess Elizabeth and Princess Margaret also sold for £9000 in December 2018.

This dress will be sold as part of the Kerry Taylor Auctions’ Passion for Fashion & The Mr Steven Philip Collection (Part 2) sale.