Well, Graceland has come up with one more thing for us to spend our money on when we get to Memphis – and I will be glad to do it. I can’t wait to see the new exhibit of 58 jumpsuits. Wonder why it took them so long to think of this great idea? It’s a natural.
Of course, they also have an exhibit catalog we can purchase, and I’m up for that, too. The elvis.com website shows what a couple of pages look like, and they are first class. Very nice photos, including close-ups showing the intricate design on the flared pants leg and the back. The exhibit book will be a great keepsake.
They have created an official logo for the exhibit, and I would post it here on Elvisblog if I weren’t afraid of getting in trouble. There is a color scheme on it, as well as on the exhibit backdrops and the surround design. Remember the red, gold, and orange circles in the Aloha From Hawaii backdrop? They’re back at Elvis Jumpsuits: All Access.
Here are some quotes from Graceland staff about the exhibit:
Amy – Graphic Design: “To be so close to the costumes and see the detail and workmanship that went into these suits [is] just amazing.”
Kevin – Media: “Our new exhibit is one that REALLY has the WOW factor… These stage costumes are truly works of art and an important piece of pop culture.”
Angie – Archives: “I found the perfect Elvis quote to open the exhibit. It’s from [1970 movie] That’s The Way It Is.
Elvis – Special Contributor: “If the songs don’t go over, then we can always do a medley of costumes.”
Kevin in media also mentions the stories behind the names of the jumpsuits, including his favorites, the King of Spades and the Dragon. Many of the jumpsuits have been named by the fans, causing a few to be multi-named, like the Burning Love/Matador/Red Pinwheel suit.
Graceland owns a total of 88 Elvis jumpsuits out of the approximately 120 he wore from 1969 to 1977. Fans can also see eight more in the Graceland racquetball court, four more in the trophy building, and two in the Elvis After Dark Museum. There are at least twenty jumpsuits we will never see because they are in the hands of private collectors.
As we all know, Elvis was a lot thinner in 1969 than he was in July 1977 (in that famous Aztec suit). It is not surprising to learn that Elvis’ belt size grew from 32 inches to 38 inches during that period.
There is one thing about Elvis Jumpsuits: All Access that disappoints me. It is housed where the Elvis ‘56 exhibit used to be. This was one thing I looked forward to seeing during Elvis Week 2007, but it won’t happen. The Elvis ‘56 exhibit opened on March 20, 2006, so we fans had just one year to catch it. Elvis Jumpsuits is scheduled to stay open for only two years. It appears that EPE now has enough memorabilia in their growing collection to do rotating exhibits. That will certainly reward those loyal folks who visit Graceland every year, and it may induce the rest of us to go more frequently. Good marketing, but I’m still bummed about missing Elvis ’56.
Oh well, seeing Elvis Jumpsuits: All Access will help ease the pain.
© 2007 Philip R Arnold All Rights Reserved www.elvisblog.net