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Jumpsuit Junkie
10-17-2008, 12:23 PM
I suppose the Jumpsuit is now indelibly linked to Elvis! Perhaps the’ Aloha’ and ‘Mexican Sundial’ Jumpsuits are the most recognised by the general public. There is estimated to be over 100 jumpsuits and two piece suits used as stage costumes.

1969 -1970. In the beginning the Jumpsuits/Costumes were simple in design and as the years passed by the simple became the spectacular. In the early days there would be duplicates of the simple in design Jumpsuits, for example there were multiple Cossack tops and Two Piece suits of different colours a similar case for the “Chain" Jumpsuits and two of the "Concha", of course this became untenable when the more elaborate costumes started in 1971 due to the cost factor, However there was an exception for the "Aloha" Jumpsuits, two were made for the telecast and one more made for the 1974 tours.

1971 saw simple nail designs of the ‘Cisco Kid’ Jumpsuits make way to what would become the established design mainly due to the talents of Gene Doucette, Gene had taken over from Bill Belew in the design stakes and it was his flair that saw the Jumpsuit morph from plain and simple Jumpsuit to the specticles they became from late 1971 onwards.

1972 sees the Jumpsuit finally reach its splendid peak, the design seems to have settled on a recognisable format that Elvis seemed happy with. The patterns and themes changed after 1972 but the suits basic style would stay the same until 1976. There were of course variations with the puff sleeves in the 'Chicken Rib', 'Eskimo Totem Pole' and 'Egyptian Bird' designs of 1975 but the Jumpsuit essentially remained the same as the 1976 'Colouful Flame' Jumpsuit demonstrates.

1973 probably saw the most elaborate Jumpsuits in the form of stones and nails e.g. the 'Arabian First Edition' aka the 'Memphis' Suit, 'Black Spanish Flowers' and of course the 'Aloha Eagle'. It could be argued that 1973 saw the jumpsuit become a work of art rather than a stage outfit. The designs had taken on beautiful detail and with many Jumpsuits taken on a theme.

1974 Gene Doucette had changed styles and moved to embroidery designs very probably at Elvis' request due to the weight of previous Jumpsuits. There were subtle changes to the designs of 1974 for example the sleeves were free from patterns or design, again probably at Elvis's request due to stones or nails scratching guitars etc. The designs of 1974 are of two extremes.. The 'Chinese Dragon' and the 'Mad Tiger' are quite flashy, where as the three 'Phoenix' designs seem to be simpler and understated in comparison.

1975 - There is debate as to whether Elvis should have switched over to two piece suits by 1975. Looking at the frequency of new suits by 1975 only 8 new Jumpsuits and 7 'Two Piece Suit' designs as opposed to 1973 with a peak of 17 new Jumpsuits (not including the aloha duplicates) it could be argued that Elvis tried the two piece and decided he didn't like them! 1975 followed the same design pattern of 1974 in that the designs were embroidery with fine detail, the ‘Chief’ aka the ‘Indian Feather being a fine example.

1976 – This was a particularly uninspired year, there was only one new Jumpsuit made in the form of the ‘Colourful Flame’ although the Jumpsuit was extremely flashy in design it was only worn twice which leaves you wondering why two of this design were made? Most of 1976 saw Elvis wear the ‘Egyptian Birds’ aka ‘Bicentennial Jumpsuits’

1977 made 1976 look inspired, there was a suit designed for Elvis, however it wasn’t completed in time for Elvis to have worn it on stage. Elvis only switched between three Jumpsuits in 1977 namely the ‘Chief’ aka ‘Indian Feather’ from 1975, ‘Arabian second Edition’ aka ‘King of Spades’ from 1974 and of course the ‘Mexican Sundial’ also from 1974.

http://img51.imageshack.us/img51/3917/1111qg.jpg

MojoElvis
10-18-2008, 06:14 PM
Eventhough the Indian Chief/Indian Feather jumpsuit is my all time favorite, I like most of what was designed in 1974. Making the Dragon Fire my second favorite.

Jumpsuit Junkie
10-18-2008, 07:15 PM
Agreed 1974, was on the whole a good design year!

Unchained Melody
10-18-2008, 08:02 PM
Would have to say 1974 for me aswell.

Although 72 very very close!

SatninLove
10-20-2008, 06:37 PM
69-70 for me..
-SatninLove

SatninLove
10-20-2008, 06:38 PM
although i'm fond of 71 and 77
-SatninLove

jeanelvisgirl
10-22-2008, 12:40 PM
I have to say I prefer the more simple designs......the 69 two piece ghis, the Concha, Chain and Fringe suits........the very elegant Now Suit ...... the Cisco kid suits... the ones I do NOT like include the Bicentennial suits and the crazy Gypsy suits...... I so wish he had continued to wear the two piece white suits.. I love the ones with the coloured pockets and capes, especially the black cape with the paisley lining......

medleyofcostumes
10-23-2008, 02:58 PM
IMO almost all the suits Elvis wore on stage had an interesting design, whether simple or flashy. Well done to all the designers. Actually, we need a book on jumpsuits which highlight the great stuff the desibners came up with - front and back design, cape, belt, bell bottom design etc. Maybe one day...

jeanelvisgirl
10-23-2008, 03:31 PM
I have heard that such a book may appear sooner rather than later

Polk-Salad-Annie
11-07-2008, 09:42 PM
I voted for: 1973 - Jumpsuited Peak - Nice and Spangerly, Aloha & Starburst

renapap05
11-09-2008, 11:50 AM
1969-1970 for me;) The best Jumpsuits ever!!!(y)(y)(y)

elvispresleytheking
11-27-2008, 07:47 PM
72 for me, I especially love the Blue Nail and Burning Love, but the Adonis and Blue Swirl are in there as well, along with the Owl. Though 74 is a really close 2nd, with the elaborate embroidered beauty of the peacock and dragon.

Jumpsuit Junkie
01-13-2009, 09:28 PM
Although there are some Jumpsuits that look rather over the top, when you see them up close, for instance the Mexican Sundial and the Arabian First Edition take on a completely different meaning when you see close up shots of the design. the detail is breath taking. I wonder if the fans could have appreciated the intricacies without them being on display and photo's taken of the up close :hmm:

jean francois
01-14-2009, 10:00 PM
sundial Suit For Me Thank You

Wendy56
01-17-2009, 02:43 AM
All suits have their own charm. Elvis was so handsome and he looked so great with anything on. :wub: I love Nails and the Sundial too. Elvis wanted to please his fans in every detail... :notworhy.
*Thanks a lot for that Sundial pic. :clap:

WHITETIGERMAN
01-17-2009, 04:01 PM
1969-1972 really is what I like........but as said before...he looked so good in anything.

ehollier
01-21-2009, 05:26 AM
1969-1972 really is what I like........but as said before...he looked so good in anything.



Definitely 1969-70 was his best year; however, I bet he would have looked good in nothing at all, also.........:blush:

WHITETIGERMAN
01-21-2009, 05:28 AM
Definitely 1969-70 was his best year; however, I bet he would have looked good in nothing at all, also.........:blush:

Agreed.....LOL....I bet all the women would agree to that comment.
Me being male.....he would look good in anything to me.But 69-70
you're right.(y)

Debra
01-21-2009, 08:34 AM
'69 and '70 to me too.He looked gorgeous in white(y)(y)

beckelvis
01-23-2009, 08:54 PM
for me 69´-70´,though also i like 73´-74´,very much.

molokai123
06-20-2009, 04:26 AM
for me 69´-70´,though also i like 73´-74´,very much.

69-70 for me also, oh yea 72 the 2 piece suits(y)

hughhughp
08-14-2009, 04:50 PM
Eventhough the Indian Chief/Indian Feather jumpsuit is my all time favorite, I like most of what was designed in 1974. Making the Dragon Fire my second favorite.
I think the indian feather is Elvis's most beautiful jumpsuit,i'M TRYING TO LOCATE THE WHEREABOUTS OF 1972 FIREWORKS JUMPSUIT ANY HELP?
HUGHHUGHP

hughhughp
08-16-2009, 01:28 PM
IMO almost all the suits Elvis wore on stage had an interesting design, whether simple or flashy. Well done to all the designers. Actually, we need a book on jumpsuits which highlight the great stuff the desibners came up with - front and back design, cape, belt, bell bottom design etc. Maybe one day...
Hi,
I have a very serious interest in the jumpsuits,and I agree with you,I thought the same thing years ago, Sean Shaver would have been the best to photo Elvis's suits and to produce such a book.There are many great Elvis books, however none compare to the work of Sean Shaver,he passed away some years ago.Graceland should commision such a book, with every suit,tracking down suits in private collections is easy for them to do.As the number of suits is small,all the best hughhughp

medleyofcostumes
08-28-2009, 08:57 PM
Hi,
I have a very serious interest in the jumpsuits,and I agree with you,I thought the same thing years ago, Sean Shaver would have been the best to photo Elvis's suits and to produce such a book.There are many great Elvis books, however none compare to the work of Sean Shaver,he passed away some years ago.Graceland should commision such a book, with every suit,tracking down suits in private collections is easy for them to do.As the number of suits is small,all the best hughhughp

When I was about 12 (late 80's) I started interesting myself with jumpsuits. The experience of seeing a picture of a suit for the first time is undescribable. From the now defunct "Elvis Monthly", I gathered lots of info, thanks to a guy named Scott Jenkins. His three articles in the early 1990's were memorable. One should remember that at the time there was no internet, fora to share info, so it waslimited compared to today.

Nowadays, thanks to fans and researchers like Leroy, I think we have about 95% (or more) of EP's wardrobe info. The only oddities (IMO) may include a one off or rarely photographed suits in Las Vegas or Tahoe (like the cobweb or knot) which to my knowledge were only discovered recently.

For me, the quest is still for the rare suit (or suits?) with black fringes worn during the opening show March 1975 in Las Vegas, where only one photo exists and it isn't too clear either. Other suits may pop up someday.

Regarding the book, I wish there is one someday. If I'm not mistaken some Norwegian guys from the fan club have been preparing one. Let's hope it is accurate and informative.

Regarding Shaver, I had a great opinion of him - I even corresponded with the guy for a year in the early 1990's and bought some books as well. I was actually led to believe, that there were unpublished photos of previously unknown suits - like the 'short fringe' or a red nail suit, stating he was lucky to get these shots. Eventually, years later, it was discovered that these were fake photos edited and made up from other known photos - just cut & paste to 'create' a new suit. Since then, though thanking Shaver for his photographic contribution in the 70's, my opinion of him has decreased.

For me, a book by Leroy will be a dream come true - like a free cold drink vending machine in the desert, and would be the mecca of all jumpsuit lovers.


PS
By the way, does anyone know what happened to Scott Jenkins?

Elisabeth
09-15-2009, 04:34 PM
1969 - 1970 for me. (y)(y)

jackie
09-17-2009, 04:11 PM
it didnt matter what jumpsuit he wore he looked good in it!!!jackie myers...

Neverending
10-23-2009, 08:41 AM
Nowadays, thanks to fans and researchers like Leroy, I think we have about 95% (or more) of EP's wardrobe info.

For me, a book by Leroy will be a dream come true - like a free cold drink vending machine in the desert, and would be the mecca of all jumpsuit lovers.




(y)(y)(y)

Yeah, that's true. I don't know nobody who has such a knowledge of Elvis jumpsuits like Leroy.
I learned a lot of his comments and corrections and I'm really grateful for this. Maybe one day he will do a book and I'm sure it will be an amazing work.
Thanks Leroy.

Lisarose
11-02-2009, 04:09 AM
I voted for the Peacock, Dragons, Eagle - I just love the embroidery and symbols. The costumes stood alone, I love his first jumpsuits, the Red Ladder, Eylets, those just emphasized Elvis!
Chicken Rib? I gotta go look that one up, cause it just don't sound attractive :lol:

Dany
11-02-2009, 09:03 PM
I vote in 1969 - Plain and Simple, Cossack & Two Piece. Absolutely beautiful. Elvis had a beutiful and sensual body in that time.

easyrider
11-04-2009, 01:34 PM
I voted for 1970

Dany
11-06-2009, 10:23 PM
for me 69' - 70'

Leroy
07-12-2010, 12:15 PM
I would love to do a book about his wardrobe. There is only one problem: Graceland. Do I need to say more ?

Jumpsuit Junkie
07-17-2010, 11:52 PM
I would love to do a book about his wardrobe. There is only one problem: Graceland. Do I need to say more ?

The problem with Graceland is they don't like people to get in the way by telling the truth. We are always happy to hear your knowledge.

medleyofcostumes
07-21-2010, 10:45 AM
I would love to do a book about his wardrobe. There is only one problem: Graceland. Do I need to say more ?

INCREDIBLE! So Graceland have the power to veto everything about Elvis? Or does not want to give access to Leroy. So it's ok for Graceland to have books by individuals claiming to be Elvis' love child, or lover, books on what Elvis loved to eat, but not a book about stagewear? To veto 'Elvis in concert' dvd, I can understand that, but what harm can be done with a stagewear book? It can do plenty to the aura of Elvis both to the 70's Elvis fan (like myself) but also to those who, wrongly, disregard the 70's altogether.

IMO, Graceland should thank it's lucky starts and endorse a jumpsuit book by Leroy - the guy's got the knowledge, enthusiasm and love for the subject. Leroy would do THE jumpsuit book, not a jumpsuit book.

Or maybe Graceland are happy with the hodgepodge petty book they released some time ago full with inaccuracies and wrong info? It is books like those, that throw people off - if Graceland, does not use the best people for Elvis' cause, how on earth would they pretend to keep Elvis' name alive? Eh?

Come on Graceland it's time to wake up!

hughhughp
10-04-2010, 08:30 PM
I would love to do a book about his wardrobe. There is only one problem: Graceland. Do I need to say more ?

you still may get a crack at doing a jumpsuit book,you have,it seems good contacts with Gene,that might help.We do need such a book,that's important,and I know of no one better to do it,but you.
yours hughhughp

Leroy
10-17-2010, 01:28 PM
you still may get a crack at doing a jumpsuit book,you have,it seems good contacts with Gene,that might help.We do need such a book,that's important,and I know of no one better to do it,but you.
yours hughhughp

Gene and Butch signed a contract with Graceland Enterprises a while ago. That kinda makes it hard to get their cooperation because they are obligated.

Jumpsuit Junkie
04-26-2011, 06:46 PM
In My opinion Graceland/EPE don't want anyone to publish a book because the want to be seen as the people who have all the knowledge, even though we know that they are far from accurate. Unfortunately Leroy, if you wanted to make a book you would have to sell your soul to the devil! Even then they would absolutely want to be able to edit your information (n)

1100ccRider
10-01-2011, 09:34 AM
I've ben wondering more and more, lately, about the question of whether Elvis' jumpsuits were made of pure white or some degree of off-white material, or both. I've long thought that many of the suits must have been rendered in pure white gabardine because white scarves (likely to be pure white with no discernible yellow in the mix) and belts didn't contrast, but when you're talking about stage lighting -- and even photography of the suits on display, sometimes -- it's hard to say how much is the object's inherent ground color and how much is the effect of lighting. There's also possibly, layered on this, the effects of age on the suit itself.

Anyway, it's for quite some time seemed to me that at least some of the suits were made off of-white material. One good example is the 1970 long fringe suit, that in live photos clearly contrasts with the white scarf that Elvis wore. Recently I noticed that a whole BUNCH of suits seem to contrast with the white of belts and so on, or with white-enameled studs. Most of, if not all, the suits from 1973 on, too, that I thought were maybe more likely to be pure white (including Aloha). On the other hand, there's a picture of Elvis wearing the 1971 'Now' suit backstage that shows a belt that's really dark in comparison to the white suit; I haven't looked to see if it was an alternate belt, but it's a sharp contrast. Of course, it'd seem that if the basic white gabardine was off-white, even slightly, the suit makers would have to go out of their way to bleach it to make it pure white, that seems unlikely.

Any ideas?