Category Archives: THE MOST UNUSUAL ELVIS ARTICLES ON THE WEB

’68 Comeback Special – A Wardrobe Review

Celebrating the 68 SPECIAL 50TH ANNIVERSARY

When I realized that December 3, 2018 would be the 50th anniversary of Elvis’ incredible TV special, I knew I had to post an article to commemorate the occasion.

I also knew every other Elvis website and blog would be doing the same thing. I wanted to come up with something different, and I have. We are going to learn what a leading British fashion design journalist has to say about what Elvis wore on the show.

Zoey Goto regularly writes about fashion in Elle, Numero, GQ, and GQ Style. She gets to report from the front row of London Fashion Week. And she has written the delightful book Elvis Style, where we get all of the text to follow.

 

Burgundy Suit from the Gospel Sequence:

 

Elvis - 68 Comeback Gospel suit

You might expect this photo-essay to start with the Black Leather Outfit, but be patient. It’s coming up.

Elvis sang a three-song Gospel medley wearing this burgundy suit:

“Where Could I Go but to the Lord”
“Up Above My Head”
“Saved”

lvis - 68 Comeback Gospel Suit

Here is what my friend, Zoey Goto had to say about the Gospel suit. (I asked her to write it on just six days’ notice, and she really came through).

The burgundy suit is so very of its time – the earthy colour, the sheen of the fabric, the slim cut of the suit, and the exaggerated double breasted lapels all scream late 60s/early 70s menswear! Perhaps this is why the outfit is often overlooked when we think about the legendary ’68 Comeback Special. Because this style was so fashionable at that time, it now looks more dated than for example the leather suit, which was not such a part of the zeitgeist.

The most effective part of this outfit was the styling of the white shirt, with its elongated collars worn over the top of the suit jacket, teamed with the apache tie scarf, which really framed Elvis’ face. From the chest upwards he looks fantastic! However, in comparison to the white suit – which is roomier and has a nipped in waist – the tight, straight up-and-down cut of the burgundy suit is unforgiving. Yet Elvis is in such good shape physically, that he still manages to pull this outfit off with panache!

Elvis 68 Comeback Dancing in Gospel Outfit

 

Well done, Zoey. That was great. And the passages from your book coming next are even better.

 

The white suit she mentioned is this one.

White Double-Breasted Suit from the “If I Can Dream” Finale.

 

Elvis 68 Comeback White Suit in front of Big Red Letters

Again, here is Zoey Goto’s review:

Out of the darkness, Elvis steps forward, his white suit instantly illuminated under the stage lights. He clutches the microphone between his hands almost as if praying, while behind him the word ELVIS is emblazoned in red lights.

It is the grand finale of his ’68 Comeback Special television program, and Elvis is giving an emotional rendition of the song “If I Can Dream” wearing a white double-breasted frock coat with a deep, single vent flap running down the back of his jacket – a signature of traditional American tailoring – which also allows Elvis to move with ease and to throw his arms wide at the end of the performance.

Six buttons run down the centre of the jacket, white slanted front pockets and a nipped-in waist emphasize his broad shoulders. Although the double-breasted jacket can add inches to the torso, the slim-line Elvis with his 32” waist, carries it off with grace.

Elvis - 68 Comeback White Suit

His coordinated front pleated pants graze his ankles without a break, creating a pleasing line from the hip to his white leather ankle boots. To complete the look, Elvis wears a deep red scarf in the style of an Apache tie – an accessory that had become synonymous with Country & Western fashion, where a colourful scarf or hanky is secured at the neck with a scarf ring.

Elvis - 68 Comeback White Suit Closeup-

As a fashion statement, Elvis’ white suit is all about the Deep South. Stepping on stage, Elvis looks every inch the Southern plantation owner, a choice that initially seems incongruous, given that Elvis has borrowed so heavily from black music and is currently on stage singing a song about brothers walking hand in hand.

However, look at his costume again and it becomes a sartorial symbol of his success – Elvis has been elevated from his humble sharecropper origins to finally becoming the Big Boss Man, as he had been previously singing that evening. In essence, his outfit can be seen as a take on upward social mobility – one of the key factors of the American Dream, which Elvis had long been associated with.

Elvis 68 Comeback White Suit Standing

 

And now, the one you’ve been waiting for.

Legendary Black Leather Outfit:

 

Elvis - 68 Comeback Black Leather - Back

Earlier in the ’68 Comeback Special performance, Elvis had performed a medley of his earlier hits while wearing fitted black leather trousers and jacket, with a black low neck t-shirt underneath. The outfit was a nod to Elvis’ rebellious 1950s image, but this time a more aggressive, sexual presence was evident. Black leather had long been strongly associated with motorcycle gangs, as illustrated by Marlon Brando in The Wild One (1953).

Marlon Brando - The Wild One

In his youth, Elvis had admired James Dean, but back in the 1950s, Elvis’ own rockabilly image and flashy Lansky Brothers clothing belonged to a very different tribe of rebellion.

Aside from owning a couple of leather jackets, Elvis had never been a devoted leather wearer, but given the luxury of revisiting his youthful image, Elvis embellished and reinterpreted history. Up on stage, as Elvis gyrates his way through a string of nostalgic hits, he instantly acquires the toughness and potency that his leather outfit lends.

Elvis - 68 Comeback Black Leather - Lip Curl

Look carefully at Elvis’ leather outfit, though, and it differs considerably from Brando’ Perfecto motorcycle jacket. Rather than the traditional studded biker jacket, with zippers running across the torso and a belted waist, Elvis’ version is essentially a denim jacket shape, but made in leather. This was not accidental – the designer Bill Belew was at the time finding inspiration in the blue jean outfits that the kids on the street were wearing.

Knowing that Elvis avoided denim as he associated it with the poverty of his childhood, Belew decided to have a denim jacket and trousers traced and remade in black leather, adding a few touches such as a front seam running down the trousers and hand stitching the yoke.

Elvis - 68 Comeback Black Leather Seated

Here are some other tidbits Zoey Goto shares with the readers:

This outfit marks the first time Elvis wore the high, Napoleon-inspired collar, which later became a signature of his jumpsuits and was employed to frame his face.

Close Up of Elvis' Black Leather Suit

On each wrist is a leather cuff. Although leather cuffs had been worn by cowboys to protect their wrists for over a century, Elvis’ buckled cuffs looked more like precursor to the leather wristbands worn by the punks in the mid-seventies.

Elvis - 68 Comeback Reproduction Elvis Black Leather Cuffs

Reproduction

Elvis’ ’68 comeback Special jacket and trousers were made from cordovan leather, the thick hide of the rump of the horse which is usually only used to make shoes. Elvis became so sweat-drenched in this rugged material that he had to literally be peeled out of the costume at the end of the performance.

 

Zoey meshed her thoughts with those of Japanese-born designer Atsuko Kudo to sum it all up nicely:

We all dress for sex appeal and attention, and this look does that in a very big way – he was like a peacock. This was Elvis’ comeback performance, the pressure was on to make a big statement and to dress in a way that empowered him. This outfit did that.

Elvis - 68 Comeback Black Leather - Arms Raised

 

I am so thankful Zoey Goto went along with me repeating part of her wonderful book Elvis Style. I’ve covered parts of it twice before in ElvisBlog:

A Look at Elvis’ Taste in Hats

Elvis’ Fashion Legacy

 

But Elvis Style covers so much more than just Elvis’ wardrobe. As the back cover says,

“Zoey Goto investigates why Elvis was, and continues to be, an icon of style, focusing on his wonderfully expressive hairstyles, clothes, cars, and interiors.”

This is such a uniquely different Elvis book. I highly recommend you get a copy.

Elvis Style - Cover

 

 

 

©  2018    Philip R Arnold, Original Elvis Blogmeister    All Rights Reserved    www.ElvisBlog.net

 

Elvis, Elvis Presley, and Graceland  are registered trademarks of  Elvis Presley Enterprises, Inc.

 

Will the Official Graceland Store have Anything Left to Sell on Black Friday?

If you’ve ever bought something from the Official Graceland Store, you are now on their email list. I’m betting it’s a very long list, and the marketing folks at EPE are certainly putting it to good use. Here are the promotions they have emailed me in the past two weeks.

 

Nov. 5 – Shop Elvis Bling:

Shop Elvis Bling 11-5

 

Nov. 8 – Deck the Halls in Elvis Style:

Deck the Halls in Elvis Style 11-8

 

Nov. 9 – Pre-Order Elvis New Releases:

Pre-Order Elvis New releases 11-9

 

Nov. 11 – Veteran’s Day Sale:

Elvis Veteran's Day Sale 11-11

 

Nov. 13 – Elvis Gifts for Her:

Elvis Gifts for Her 11- 13

 

Nov 16 – Elvis Apparel:

Elvis Apparel 11-16

 

That’s a pretty impressive run of sales promotions – six of them in twelve calendar days:

Elvis Bling
Elvis Christmas
Elvis New Releases
Veteran’s Day
Elvis Gifts for Her
Elvis Apparel

 

I’d like to talk about one of these promotions: Elvis Gifts for Her. Any man on the Graceland Store mailing list might find some welcome Christmas ideas for his wife (if she’s an Elvis fan, too).

But what about a female fan scrolling through the offerings, especially if she is the only Elvis fan in the family. If she looks through the choices in the Elvis Gifts for Her and finds something she likes, very possibly she hints to the hubby to get it for her for Christmas. Maybe he never knows what to buy her, anyway, so he’s happy to get the clue.

Which is the same pitch I have used for three years for my book, BIG E and the SANTA MAN.

My Book -- BIG E and the SANTA MAN

I figured, okay, it’s about Elvis and it’s a Christmas story. It’s the perfect Christmas present for Elvis fans.

So ladies, tell your man to go to Amazon.com and type in the book’s name in the search box. The page pops up, and in a couple of clicks, he can take care of a present for his sweetie.

 

My book is inexpensive, but it will get him major points because it’s a great story and you will love it.

And the editors of Santa’s World magazine love it, too. So much, in fact, that they ran a cover story feature about Big E.

Santa's World

Only kidding. I used this picture in my second promotional post back in 2015. There’re a lot of new folks reading ElvisBlog now, so I thought I’d use it again.

But I’m not kidding about one other thing. You will like BIG E and the SANTA MAN if you get a copy. To get one for yourself, please click below.

Amazon page – BIG E and the SANTA MAN

Amazon page – BIG E and the SANTA MAN – Part 2

philarnold@charter.net –  email to get an autographed copy directly from me for $10 (U.S. destinations, others are more).

 

Thanks a lot,

Phil Arnold

Original ElvisBlogmeister (2005 – 2018)

 

Speculating on Elvis’ Rings Can Be Risky

 

Elvis Presley Unsold Blach Sapphire Ring at Julien's

The collector who purchased this ring for $7,500 in August 2017 thought he could sell it for a sizeable profit just eight months later in May 2018. He was wrong.

We’ll take a look at several Elvis rings in this post — ones that exemplify the risks of short-term speculating on them. First, here is the description of the above ring on the website for the August 12, 2017, Graceland Auction.

 

Diamond and Black Star Sapphire Ring:

The shimmering rays of the star effect in the star sapphire is called asterism, from the Latin word astrum, or “star.” Black star sapphires owe their stars to the included crystals of the shiny, dark mineral hematite. The unusual design of this 14-karat yellow gold, diamond and black star sapphire ring has a “Star Trek” flair.

Star sapphires were a favorite of Elvis’ and he was as known for wearing them as often as he gifted them to friends and family. This ring has an oval black star sapphire being held by two rays of diamonds atop a textured gold high-set band. The interior of the band is marked “14k”. The black sapphire measures 7.5 by 5.9 mm; the ring weighs 8 grams and contains 6 small diamonds.

This ring, size 6 1/4, emanates from Charlie Hodge and was purchased by the consignor in the early 1980s along with 11 additional rings. Elvis gave Charlie all 12 rings simultaneously in the same box in which Elvis had kept them. There are several photos of Elvis from the filming of Elvis: That’s The Way It Is that show him wearing a small ring on his pinky finger that strongly resembles the offered ring.

Elvis Presley - Close-up of Black Sapphire Ring

 

The ring had a minimum bid of $5,000, and the winning bid was $6,000. However, the winning bidder actually had to pay $7,500 because the standard 25% buyer’s premium was added.

Graceland Auction's Final Prices Include Buyers Premium

 

The last thing on the Graceland Auction website was this:

The ring, gifted by Elvis to Charlie Hodge, is accompanied by a letter of authenticity from Graceland Authenticated.

 

So, if I had owned this ring and needed to sell it, I too would have placed it on Graceland Auctions. They always do such a nice job with their detailed and interesting descriptions, plus a nice assortment of high-quality photos.

Elvis Presley's Black Sapphire Ring Pictures

 

And I would also have made the investment required to get the Letter of Authenticity (with pictures) from Graceland Authenticated. While that would have cost me 10% of the fair market value of the ring, I believe that will be more than covered by the increase in value it produces.

Graceland Authenticated Letter of Authenticity

 

To summarize, I’ve been following auctions of Elvis items for years, and I truly believe the Graceland Auctions gets the best results for people wanting to sell their Elvis memorabilia.

I also believe that folks who buy top-tier items through the Graceland Auctions have acquired something that will appreciate over the years. Here is a quote from Glenn Johnson who owns about 1,000 Elvis items at an estimated value of $4.5 million.

“A lot of people say the value of Elvis items will go down once his older fans are gone. I look at other historical figures and cultural icons from 100+ years ago. Their original fans are gone obviously, but yet their collectibles are fetching outrageous prices (ie Billy the Kid, Wyatt Earp, any early presidents). I say Elvis is here to stay.”

Glenn is certainly not the only Elvis collector who expects their collection to become more valuable as time goes by. However, would they think of trying to “flip” a new purchase in just eight months? I doubt it.

However, somebody did just that, as we saw above.

 

Julien's Auctions

Same ring. But, just the one photo that’s shown at the top of this post. Just a five-line item description.

That’s not going to juice up bidders much. And I’m not sure what kind of bidder base is attracted to an auction with more Britney Spears and Kiss stuff than Elvis.

But the best predictor of a bust when trying to flip an Elvis ring is simply the math of the whole thing. Bear with me please. Say the guy that bought the black star sapphire ring at Graceland for $7,500 wanted to make $1,000 profit. The hammer price (when the auctioneer slams the gavel down and says “Sold.”) would have to be $8,500 or more. Let’s go with that.

When that winning bidder pays up, he would have to cover that 25% buyer’s premium, bringing it up to $10, 625. But, wait, there’s more. Julien’s has another charge – 3% for on-line bids. That brings it up to $10,880. Nearly $11,000 for a ring that sold for $7,500 just eight months earlier. No, thanks.

 

Here are three more Elvis rings that sold on Graceland Auctions and did manage to sell on Julien’s – but at a loss.

 

Tiger’s Eye Ring:

Elvis Presley - Gold and Tiger’s Eye Ring

(From the Graceland Auction website):  Elvis loved jewelry and often his spirituality affected the gems he chose. Tiger’s eye was one stone that Elvis favored, perhaps because it is believed to bring harmony, balance and protection as well as enhance good luck. This simple and classic 10-karat yellow gold men’s ring, weighing 9 grams, has a single central oval-shaped tiger’s eye stone measuring 17 by 12 mm. The ring, size 10, was gifted by Elvis to Pat West, wife of Red and secretary to Elvis. The ring comes with a letter from Jimmy Velvet and Bobby (Red) West on Elvis Presley Museum certificate stock and states in part, “This large cat’s eye ring was worn by Elvis Presley. It was given to Pat West by Elvis while Pat was his secretary.” As further provenance, additional documents include a copy of a letter, dated December 15, 1983 on Elvis Presley Museum letterhead. This charming ring with impeccable provenance documentation is accompanied by a letter of authenticity from Graceland Authenticated.

Elvis Presley's Tiger's Eye Ring - Upright

The ring sold at Graceland Auction for $10,000 including the 25% buyer’s fee. It sold at Julien’s for a hammer price of $8,000. This attempt to flip an Elvis ring resulted in a $2,000 loss.

 

Diamond and Garnet “Swami” Ring;

(From Graceland Auction website): This noble ring, in the form of a maharaja with diamond eyes and a large garnet centered on the front of his turban, is fit for a King—so what better person to own such a bauble than the King of Rock ‘n’ Roll himself, especially since the term “maharaja” means great ruler or king. The ring is marked 14k yellow gold and has stylized shoulders that accentuate the bearded and bejeweled turbaned head. The diamond eyes each weight 0.01 carat and measure 1.2 mm and the ring measures size 9 1/4. The ring, with a total weight of 27.3 grams, is offered with a detailed letter from the consignor that states in part:

“One of the items I picked up from Tom Hulett at this time was Elvis’ Turban Ring or Swami Ring. He told me at one point after wearing it amongst some other rings, Elvis took it off his hand and told Tom to try it on. Tom mentioned something about it being a kind of unusual ring while he put it on one of his fingers, and Elvis told him to just keep it. Much later on I found out that this might be one of the rings Elvis is wearing in the photos where he is wearing a turban, the long red coat with black accents, and the Ram Head necklace.”

The ring is also accompanied by a letter from Graceland Authenticated.

Elvis Presley's Swami Ring - Profile

The ring sold at Graceland Auction for $12,500 including the 25% buyer’s fee. It sold at Julien’s for a hammer price of $10,000. This attempt to flip an Elvis ring resulted in a $2,500 loss.

.

Gold and Gray Star Sapphire Ring:

Elvis Presley - Gold and Gray Star Sapphire Ring

(From Graceland Auction website):  Elvis was fond of jewelry featuring the star sapphire, which emanates rays from the center as light is shone on the stone. Elvis would often wear star sapphire rings and would as frequently gift them to family and friends. Perhaps his fascination stemmed from the special significance of sapphires in numerology, of which Elvis was an enthusiast. The offered gray star sapphire is set in a 14-karat gold “birds nest” setting, adding to its allure. The men’s ring, measuring size 10 1/2, is marked 14k and comes with a letter from Sam Thompson which states in part,

“During this time, in December of 1976, and while talking with Elvis upstairs at Graceland, Elvis called me into his dressing area of his bedroom and asked what size ring I wore. I told him I didn’t know and he told me to hold out my hand and he handed me a ring he removed from his own hand for me to try on. It fit on my pinky finger and he smiled and said it was his gift to me. The ring is nugget style, 14K yellow gold, with a gray star sapphire, and about a size 10 1/2. It has been in my possession since that day in 1976.”

This stunning gift from Elvis to Sam is accompanied by a letter of authenticity from Graceland Authenticated.

Elvis Presley's Gray Sapphire Ring Profile

The ring sold at Graceland Auction for $8,750 including the 25% buyer’s fee. It sold at Julien’s for a hammer price of $8,000. This attempt to flip an Elvis ring resulted in a $750 loss.

 

So, we have a total loss on the three Elvis rings of $5,250!!   Ouch.

 

Julien’s Auction in May 2018 did have a few spectacular results, including this ring.

Fifty-Diamond Star Ring:

Elvis' $100,000 Diamond Star Ring

A hundred grand for an Elvis ring!! In spite of the fact that the picture used obviously is not the best one to show off this stunning ring. The item detail does a better job.

“A diamond star-shaped ring given by Elvis Presley to a concert-goer Donna Lewis on July 24, 1975, during a performance at the Civic Center in Asheville, North Carolina.

“The ring is designed in 14K white gold, topped with 50 full-cut round diamonds totaling approximately 6.00 cts. and graded H-I color and VS-SI clarity, size 7 1/2. 25.4 grams.

“Accompanying the ring is a photograph of Lewis and Presley at the moment he gave her the ring; an image of Presley wearing the ring; an affidavit from Lewis; and two images of Presley with a thank-you card given to him at a concert on March 18, 1976, in Johnson City, Tennessee.”

 

I wonder what kind of price this fabulous ring would have brought at a Graceland Auctions with lots of great pictures, extensive description, and an all-Elvis bidder base.

 

Photos and text used by permission, copyright 2018 GracelandAuctions.com

 

 

 

© 2018 Philip R Arnold, Original Elvis Blogmeister All Rights Reserved www.ElvisBlog.net

 

 

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Elvis, Elvis Presley, and Graceland are registered trademarks of Elvis Presley Enterprises, Inc.

 

Getting Fooled by Photoshopped Elvis Photos

 

Elvis and Lisa

I showed this picture back in March and I was completely sure it was the real deal – not Photoshopped. Alert reader Diana from Long Island chimed in on Comments, “The fake ‘picture’ purporting to show Elvis and Lisa is awful–yuch.”

But I still wasn/t convinced and commented back, “A week before you, other reader claimed the Lisa and Elvis picture is Photoshopped. So, I asked him to help me out and send something that would prove this. It just seems unlikely that someone could find separate photos of both people in those unusual positions. But if you can find the originals, I would love to post them.”

Well, neither Diana nor Tony, the other detractor, sent in the proof — but I stumbled into it on Facebook.

 

Man and Child Before Elvis and Lisa Photoshopping

I think this was cropped from a larger photo, but there is still enough left to figure out what the Photoshop jockey did. He/she lifted the two bodies off this picture and found a nice shot of the Graceland living room to paste them on. The he found profile shots of Elvis and Lisa that were age appropriate and added them to the bodies. Diana, you and Tony were right. Sorry I doubted you.

 

Elvis on Guitar In The Sky

I’ve always liked Photoshopped Elvis photos like this. There’s no attempt to fool anyone to think it is real. Just a cool image.

 

Swirling Elvis

And I don’t know what kind of special effects would produce a picture like this, but I love it.

 

Elvis Meat Hammer

I get a kick out of the ones that are genuinely funny.

 

Elvis and Kiss

I have a file with 19 Photoshopped variations of Elvis in his Jailhouse Rock outfit. I recently found number 20. I like this one, too.

 

Twin Jailhouse Rock Elvises

Not bad, is it?

 

Elvis and Dog

But, the realization that a number of people are trying to fool us fans is starting to p— me off. We cherish Elvis so much that we’re inclined to want to like these warm and fuzzy pictures. We wish they were real.

Thanks to my friend Troy in Virginia for setting the record straight of the above photo of Elvis and a dog: “Unfortunately, as you suspected, the one with the dog has to be a fake because he is wearing a Jeff Gordon #24 NASCAR collar, and Gordon did not start racing until the early 1990s.” Good catch, Troy.

 

Photoshopped Elvis and Priscilla

What I really don’t get are these manufactured photos of Elvis and Priscilla. Why take a picture of Robert Wagner and Natalie Wood and put Elvis and Priscilla’s heads on them? Aren’t there hundreds of legitimate photos of Elvis and Priscilla already?

 

Fake Elvis and Gladys Presley

This is even worse. Why would anyone want to switch Elvis’ head for Vernon’s in a photo with Gladys? Maybe it was a Photoshop rookie getting some practice. It sure is a crummy job.

 

Elvis Fake or Photoshopped Photos

I mentioned finding the original picture used in the Elvis and Lisa fake on Facebook. You wouldn’t believe so many sites are devoted to this. The one above supposedly has 572 photos, but I gave up after scrolling through 10 % of them. Here are three other Facebook pages like this:

Elvis – Fake Photoshopped Pics Revealed
Fake Photoshopped Elvis Pics
Elvis Presley – Fake Photoshopped Photos

There is a good bit of duplication, but you might want to take a look at one or two of them if you are curious about the original photos used to make the fakes.

You can also go on Pinterest and search for Fake Elvis Photos. You can scroll for a long time looking at them, but there doesn’t seem to be many of the ‘before pictures’ used to make them.

 

Elvis and Molly. Better than a Hound Dog

Let’s end with a photo a graphic designer made for me as a favor. It looks sort-of like the famous picture of Elvis on the Steve Allen Show singing Hound Dog, except that is my dog Molly on the stand. This is the avatar I use on PHOENIX – The Elvis Forum.

 

This Photoshopping of Elvis pictures certainly seems to be a big growing phenomenon. It better not get too big, or Graceland will jump in and make it a part of Elvis Week, like they do now with the tribute artists and Elvis memorabilia auctions. Maybe there will be a big exhibit at the Guest House ballroom, or maybe a competition for the best Elvis Photoshop Artist.

Don’t dismiss this idea. They already have named Betty Harper, Joe Petruccio, and others as Official Artists for Elvis Presley Enterprises. Maybe someday there will be Official EPE Photoshop Artists as well.

 

 

© 2018 Philip R Arnold, Original Elvis Blogmeister All Rights Reserved www.ElvisBlog.net
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Elvis, Elvis Presley, and Graceland are registered trademarks of Elvis Presley Enterprises, Inc.

Elvis Goodies rom the Fuzzy Room – Part 4

You readers really came through the last time I did this. In two days, everything was sold. Thanks for helping me find new homes for the Elvis stuff I’ve collected for decades and displayed in my Fuzzy Room.

Jungle Tree Fuzzy Room

 

Please Note: The prices are for delivery to USA destinations only. Postal rates to other countries are just prohibitive and way too much hassle. Sorry.

 

Elvis Refrigerator Magnet Set:

 

Editor’s Note:  This item has been sold.

 

Elvis Magnet Set

 

Elvis treasures are nice to own, but they mostly just sit around and look pretty. This one has a bonus because you can play with it. I’ve had a lot of fun messing around this magnet set for a couple of decades.

 

Elvis in Blue Hawaii Swim Trunks

It starts with a 7 inch tall Elvis wearing the swim trunks from Blue Hawaii. Then, you get to be his wardrobe manager. And look at all the fine stuff you get to put on him.

 

Elvis in '68 Special Black Leather Suit

The “68 Special black leather is one of my favorites. The jacket is so baaad and the pants are the best ones in the set.

 

Elvis in Flame Jumpsuit

The Flame Jumpsuit from 1976 always looks good. I’m just glad to see something other than the Aloha American Eagle suit getting featured. It’s on so many different Elvis products.

 

Elvis in Hawaii Shirt and Lei

It’s hard to beat the Hawaiian shirt and lei. The sunglasses could go on any of the outfits, of course, but this is the only place I use them.

 

Elvis in Karate Gi Top

Here’s an Elvis image you’ve never seen before – wearing the Karate Gi without the pants. You lady readers are welcome to download a copy of this photo.

 

Elvis- Jailhouse Rock Jacket and Karate Gi Pants

I like to mix up the combinations of shirt and pants. Elvis looks just fine wearing the Karate Gi pants with the Jailhouse Rock jacket.

 

Elvis - Gold Coat and Bluejeans

I thought it would be interesting to pair up the gold coat with the Jailhouse Rock blue jeans. Elvis is such a fashion icon, he can successfully make elegant and simple work together

 

My least favorites are the Army Uniform. Elvis just looks too dull in them. I put them in a box that might as well be marked Rejects, because I don’t use them. Someone else may feel differently.

 

Discarded Elvis Army Uniform

 

They are joined in reject box by the pants of the Gold Lame Suit. I like the coat, but the pants are too baggy, so they too ended up in there, too. You know, it’s feels weird to use the word reject in connection with anything Elvis.

 

One time when my brother visited, we did a lot of drinking and were feeling no pain. I gave him the complete show of all the different Elvises I could create with my magnet set. I also told him about the Army uniform and the gold pants being in the reject box because I didn’t care about them.

That was all my brother needed to hear. Later, when I went to use the bathroom, he hurried back to the refrigerator. Using our kitchen scissors he cut off about a third of the gold pants, and then placed them on Elvis. Then he added the wide jumpsuit belt that comes in the set. He completed the ensemble with the tall Army boots.

 

Jethro Elvis

 

I came into the kitchen, and actually did one of those head fakes as I walked by the refrigerator. I cussed out my brother and then we broke into laughter. Good brother bonding time. Sorry, Elvis.

He came up with a name that’s bad, but I after all these years I still remember it – Jethro Elvis.

 

Elvis Magnet Shoes

I must admit I don’t use the shoes very often. Maybe the blue suede shoes with the blue jeans just for variety. They won’t work with anything else, except the black the black leather pants. One of the black leather shoes is missing, and the other is in the reject box.

 

Teddy Bear, Guitar, Hound Dog

The teddy bear, guitar, and hound dog just hang around near Elvis in his prized spot on the refrigerator.

 

Elvis Magnet Hair

What do you think this is? It’s supposed to be Elvis’ hair, jumpsuit era, I would guess. It is the stupidest thing you ever saw. The Elvis face is this set has great hair.

 

Head of Elvis Magnet

I can’t believe anyone would want to ruin it like this.

Elvis wearing Magnet Hair

Guess where I keep the ugly hair?

 

Elvis Magnet

I’ve had this Elvis name magnet positioned above him most of the time, but sometimes I like a new look and it goes underneath.

 

I apologize to anyone offended by the Jethro Elvis picture or the idea that anything Elvis could end up in a reject box.

 

So, would you like an Elvis goodie that you can interact with… as frequently as you please? This magnet set is it. Whoever buys it will be rewarded with a lot of fun. Is there room on your refrigerator for something really cool?

 

The price on this set is $20 delivered. If you want it, send me an email at philarnold@charter.net. (Do not notify me of your interest on Comments.) As usual, first come, first served. I would prefer payment by PayPal, but checks work, too

Pay Now with PayPal Button.

I will send a PayPal invoice to whoever responds first. You approve it, and I send the package. Shipment with check payment will take a little longer.

 

Thanks for your support.

Phil Arnold

 

 

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Elvis Goodies from the Fuzzy Room – Part 3

Fred Flintstone Elvis T-shirt - Back

You readers are the best. I’m so pleased by your support helping me find new homes for the Elvis stuff I’ve collected for decades and displayed in my Fuzzy Room.

Jungle Tree Fuzzy Room

You’ve snapped up every item I offered for sale. So, now it’s time to look at some new Elvis goodies.

Please Note: The prices quoted are for delivery to USA destinations only. Postal rates to other countries are just prohibitive. Sorry.

 

Fred Flintstone / Elvis T-shirt:

Editor’s note:  This item has been sold.

Fred Flintstone - Elvis T-shirt

I’ll bet you’ve never seen this outstanding two-sided T-shirt before. I did an extensive internet search and could find just one. It was for sale at $25 plus postage. Mine is gently worn, so I will cut that price in half and sell it for $15 delivered. Size XL. Wear this on your trip to Graceland and you’ll catch the attention of lots of other fans.

 

1,000 Piece Elvis Puzzle:

Editor’s Note:  This item has now been sold.

 

Elvis Puzzle

If you like puzzles as much as you like Elvis, this is for you. There are a lot of used versions of this available on line, but what I am offering is unopened. The picture above is the cover of the box. Here is a bigger picture of the puzzle, which measures 18 x 28 when completed.

Elvis Legends Puzzle

Prices for the unopened puzzles online range from $25 to $37 plus freight. Here’s a deal – $17 delivered.

 

Set of Five M&M Elvis Figurines:

Editor’s Note: This item has now been sold.

 

M&M Elvis

The M&M people did a good job with the iconic Elvis outfits on these 3” tall resin figurines. There are white and blue jumpsuits, gold lamé suit, ’68 Special black leather, and Aloha from Hawaii flowered shirt. All but the one in the blue jumpsuit were originally part of a set. I added one more because I liked these little guys so much. They do tip over fairly easily, so I added a spot of glue on their soles to keep them steady on the woodgrain panel you see. I have popped them off for shipping, but it’s so simple to put them back.

I looked all over the internet and found one, two, and three piece offerings, but not the original four-piece set I bought. Strange. The consensus price for one was $10 plus postage, so let’s see if a price of $20 for all five delivered works for somebody. I probably should go on line and see what the M&M collectors would bid, but these guys should go to an Elvis fan. They are so cool.

 

Elvis 29¢ Stamp Beach Towel:

Editor’s note:  This item has been sold.

Elvis Stamp Beach Towel

This big beauty measures 31” x 56”. It has had very little use and still looks great. I found another one online for $15 including postage, so I’ll offer this one at $12 delivered.

 

Elvis 30th Anniversary Collector’s Edition:

Editor’s Note:  Three copies of this have been sold, but I have two more.

30th Anniversary Issue

This 64 page high-quality publication was a big seller at Elvis Week 2007. I was at the tables for four days selling it and other items associated with Elvis The Magazine. I am also listed as a Contributing Editor in it, although it contains none of my work.

What it does contain is a treasure of information, recollections, and full-page photos.

Elvis…30 Year Timeline: This is a year-by-year account of everything concerning Elvis that occurred from 1978 to 2007. I’ve never seen this done before, and it is most interesting.

Conversations and Memories: I love this section, especially the folks whose comments about Elvis haven’t shown up a lot in other media. Here’s the list:

Bernard Lansky
DJ Fontana
Frank Paige (announcer at the Louisiana Hayride)
Janelle McComb
Joe Esposito
Sam Phillips
Johnny Black ( Bill Black’s brother)
Joe Moscheo (Imperials Quartet)
Millie Kirkham
Don Siegel (director, Flaming Star)
Marian Cocke
Don Robertson (songwriter)
Ben Weisman (songwriter)
Harold Lloyd (jeweler)
Anita Wood
Jimmy velvet
Scotty Moore
Johnny Cash
June Juanico
Eddie Fadal
Neal Mathews (Jordanaires)
Gordon Stoker (Jordanaires)
Ray Walker (Jordanaires)
Ira Jones (Elvis’ Army Sargent)
Red West
Charlie Hodge

Collecting the King – Thirty Decade of Elvis Conventions: This article by expert Robert Alaniz has a few surprises.

Elvis Presley Fan Clubs: A listing of 37 domestic and international.

Origins of Elvis Week: Good article, but I wish it was longer.

26 full-page photographs, some you haven’t seen elsewhere:

 

This collector’s item originally sold for $19.95. It can be yours for $10 delivered.

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Elvis Rubix Cube:

Editor’s Note: This item has now been sold.

 

Actually, this cube is considerably simpler than the original Rubix. You won’t have any trouble getting it opened and maneuvered into twelve Elvis photos:

Blue Suede Shoes
Teddy Bear
Jailhouse Rock
Hound Dog
Don’t be Cruel
Thank you, thank you very much
G.I. Blues (above)
Shake Rattle and Roll (above)
Burnin’ Love
Lonely Street
Blue Hawaii
Heartbreak Hotel.

Elvis Rubix Cube

It’s 3” in each direction, a fun little fidget. I found it online at $7.50 plus another $7.50 postage. I think somebody is padding the postage a bit here. How about $9 delivered?

Jailhouse Rock

Blue Hawaii

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Elvis Pins, Magnets, and Key Chain:

Editor’s note:  This item has been sold.

 

Elvis Pins, Magnets, and Key Chain

Here’s a nice set of little Elvis collectibles. There are three refrigerator magnets – Elvis with a guitar, Elvis and Nixon, and a really nifty mini-45 gold record that says Love Me Tender. The Elvis stamp makes its second appearance here on a keychain. And there are two pins, one with a photo and the other with a drawing. How about the whole package for $12 delivered?

 

Pay Now with PayPal Button.

If you want an item, send me an email at philarnold@charter.net. (Do not notify me of your interest on Comments.) As usual, first come, first served. I would prefer payment using PayPal, but checks will work, too. When I get your email, I will initiate billing on PayPal. You approve it, and I send the item right out to you. With a check, it’ll take a little longer.

Thanks for your support.

Phil Arnold

 

© 2018 Philip R Arnold, Original Elvis Blogmeister All Rights Reserved www.ElvisBlog.net

 

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Elvis’ Fabulous Wardrobe – Part 7

Elvis' Suzy Cream Cheese Two-Tone Brown Suede Fringed Jacket - Back

Sadly, only one of the last four Graceland Auctions offered more than a minimal selection of Elvis’ wardrobe. Here are the two items offered on Jan 6, 2018 during the Elvis Birthday Week celebration.

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1970s Leather Jacket:

Elvis' Leather Jacket He Gave to Bodyguard Dave Hebler

 

The auction website says, “Leather jackets have always been synonymous with the kind of cool of which Elvis Presley certainly had no shortage.”

This light brown leather coat with three-button front closure and two side pockets was one of several that Elvis owned in various colors. A manufacturer’s tag at the back collar states, “Genuine Leather / by Grais / Made in U.S.A.” Rubin Grais was an immigrant shoe maker from Russia who came to the U.S. and adapted his skills to create one of the iconic leather manufacturers of the ’40s and ’50s.

Grais Label

Elvis gave this coat to his bodyguard, Dave Hebler, who worked for him from 1972 to 1976. A Letter of Authenticity from Hebler states,

“One day Elvis invited me upstairs to his bedroom at Graceland and offered me all of his jumpsuits. He complained that they no longer fit him and that he wanted them out of his closet. I told him I had no use for his jumpsuits nor did I have the ability to store them at my apartment. I then moved a majority of the jumpsuits to the shed at the back of Graceland. I did receive several jackets including this brown leather jacket. Elvis had several of these.”

Perhaps because there was no accompanying photo of Elvis wearing the coat, the auction had an estimate of $3 – 4,000, which seemed pretty cheap to me. Somebody picked up a good deal at $2,875 including the auction surcharge.

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Signed Shirt from Elvis’ Personal Wardrobe:

Signed Shirt from Elvis' Personal Wardrobe Provided as the Grand Prize in a 1973 Boy Scout Raffle

 

Besides being a typically cool Elvis shirt, this one has an interesting history. The green shirt has gold buttons down the front and gold stars across the chest and on the collar and cuffs.

Elvis was well-known for his generosity and philanthropy, which became a long-standing tradition. A good example is Elvis donating this shirt to Memphis Boy Scout Troop #225 to raise money for their Jamboree Trip Fund. Tickets were printed for the raffle and each sold for a donation of 50 cents.

Announcement on Elvis' Donated Shirt

 

Harold A. Smith purchased this ticket in 1973 and was the lucky winner. Harold’s wife Shirley, who was a part-time nurse at Methodist Hospital in Memphis, took the shirt to work when Elvis was there as a patient and was able to get his autograph on the lower left front side.

Elvis' Signed Shirt

 

Smith had the shirt framed, and it hung in his KOA campground office as a big attraction until he sold the campground in 1984.

Although there is no picture of Elvis wearing the shirt, it is stamped “Elvis” in the collar, and the lot includes the winning ticket and a Memphis Press-Semiter newspaper article about Elvis’ donation to the Boy Scout troop. However, it is the autograph that made it a highly prized Elvis double collectible. The minimum starting price was $8,000, and the winning bid was $11,250.

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Now, I would like to take a look at Elvis’ clothing items from the Gotta Have Rock and Roll auction held earlier this month.

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Paisley Shirt:

Elvis Presley's Paisley Shirt 1

 

Elvis purchased a lot of clothing from IC Costume Co. including this orange and blue paisley long sleeved, button down shirt. Elvis gave the shirt to his Aunt Delta in the 1970’s. There is no accompanying photo of Elvis wearing the shirt, but it does come with a letter of provenance from Aunt Delta. The estimate was $4 – 6,000, and it went for $3,993.

 

Green Suede Pullover Top:

Elvis' Pullover Top

 

Elvis’ personally owned and worn custom green suede pullover top with the Anton, Beverly Hills label and his initials “EP” sewn on as labels. Elvis gifted this shirt and many other articles of clothing to his close friend Charlie Hodge. Like the preceding shirt, the estimate was $4 – 6,000, and it went for $3,993.

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Black Faux Fur Pants:

Elvis' Black Faux Fur Pants

 

These unusual pants also came from the IC Costume Company. Elvis seemingly gave away his clothing to everybody, this time to his uncle Vester Presley (Vernon’s brother) one day when he was cleaning out his closets. For some reason, the minimum bid was only $2,000, but six bids pushed the winning number up to $4,290. Too bad they didn’t come up with a photo of Elvis wearing faux fur pants.

 

Paisley Shirt:

 

The facts are the same on this red and blue paisley long sleeved shirt as the previous one – made by IC Costume Co, given to his Aunt Delta, and an estimate of $4 – 6,000. However, it sold for $3,300, which is $693 less. I can’t figure out why they weren’t valued the same.

 

 

From this point on, we will look at something I’ve never seen before at auctions of Elvis’ wardrobe – six NO BIDS.

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Pale Blue Balloon-Sleeved Shirt:

Elvis' Pale Blue Balloon-Sleeved Shirt

 

First we have another Elvis owned and worn IC Costume Co. shirt with pale blue balloon-sleeves and large pointed collar. Elvis gave the shirt to his close friend and valet Richard Davis. It seems like stuff Elvis gave to Davis has been showing up at auctions for a decade. I wonder when the supply will run out. The minimum bid was only $2,000, but nobody cared to pony up that much. Maybe the shirt was too plain.

 

Stay Away Joe Red Wine Denim Jacket:

Elvis' Red Wine Denim Jacket from Stay Away Joe

 

Elvis wore this red wine colored denim jacket in his film “Stay Away Joe.” It is one of several denim jackets made for Elvis to wear in the film. Elvis gave the jacket to Charlie Hodge who was an extra on the movie. Hodge apparently accumulated a ton of Elvis’ clothing over the years. Also offered were three photographs of Elvis wearing the jacket during filming, such as in the shotgun wedding scene.

Elvis in Stay Away Joe Shotgun Wedding Scene

 

I have always maintained that photos of Elvis wearing an article of clothing enhanced its value to collectors. That must have been the thinking when the minimum bid was set at $8,000 and the estimate at $9 – 12,000. Pretty strong, and it must have scared off potential bidders. Also, this is movie wardrobe, not clothing that Elvis purchased and wore in his personal life.

 

Suzy Cream Cheese Two-Tone Brown Suede Fringed Jacket:

Elvis' Suzy Cream Cheese Two-Tone Brown Suede Fringed Jacket

 

The back of this stunning two-toned brown suede fringed jacket is shown in the first photo of this post. Elvis gave it to his friend Shaun Nielsen, who first met Elvis when he was a back-up singer on his gospel album “How Great Thou Art.” Shaun sang with Elvis until his final show, and one day when they were recording in the Jungle Room at Graceland, Elvis took the members of his band and vocalists upstairs and told them each to pick out something that they liked. This jacket was just one of many items he gave to Nielson. The minimum bid of $7,000 seemed reasonable to me, but not to the bidders.

 

Suede Shearling Coat:

 

Elvis’ personally owned and worn tan suede coat that he purchased from one of his favorite stores, Goldsmith’s in Memphis. Goldsmiths would often open late at night for Elvis so that he could shop privately.

 

Suede Shearling Coat- Elvis Wearing 2

These are two of the three supplied photos of Elvis wearing the coat.

Suede Shearling Coat - Elvis Wearing

Elvis gave this coat to Richard Davis who took care of his wardrobe and eventually became Elvis’ wardrobe manager. With three supporting photos, I thought the minimum bid of $6,000 was reasonable. Shows how much I know. Nobody bid.

 

Blue Track Suit with Red and White Stripes:

Elvis' Blue Track Suit with Red and White Stripes - Both Views

 

Elvis owned and wore this blue track suit with red and white stripes. He wore it at Graceland and when traveling on his plane. Elvis gave the track suit to Aunt Delta.

It does come with a photo, but the auction website says “Comes with a photo of the same track suit, or one virtually the same (I added the italics).” That might have tampered the enthusiasm of the bidders, and surely the minimum bid of $5,000 did.

 

Burgundy Patent Leather Boots:

Elvis' Burgundy Patent Leather Boots

Burgundy patent leather boots that Elvis wore off-stage for his casual every day wear. They ended up with Charlie Hodge who make a surprising statement in his letter of provenance: “Elvis’ shoe size varied from size 10 to 12.5 depending on the make of the shoes or boots.”

Here’s an included photo which the website says shows Elvis wearing the same, or very similar boots. There’s not even much of the boots showing. The estimate was $5 – 7,000, but again no bids.

 

 

Gotta Have Rock and Roll

So, a total of six items of Elvis’ wardrobe drew no bids. I’ve mentioned several possible reasons for this unheard of occurrence. But I think the big problem was that this Gotta Have Rock & Roll auction featured memorabilia from dozens of singers and bands. It probably attracted many bidders with no interest in Elvis.

On the other hand, the Graceland Auctions are 100% Elvis items, and they are scheduled to be part of big events like Elvis Week. My suggestion to the owners of the no-bid items here is to try again at the Graceland Auction in January 2019. With slightly lower minimum bids on the Stay Away Joe jacket and the track suit, I think every one of six items will draw multiple bidders and sell.

 

 

© 2018 Philip R Arnold, Original Elvis Blogmeister All Rights Reserved www.ElvisBlog.net

 

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How To Be a VIP at Elvis Week 2018

Elvis Week 2018 Logo

I’ve been to Elvis Week four times, but the last was in 2007. I would like to get back one more time because there have been so many changes and additions to the Graceland complex. But I’m retired and on a fixed income, so some of the Elvis Week options now offered by EPE are beyond my reach. Here is an extreme example.

“Elvis Week Elite” Ticket Package:

This one costs $1500 per person and allows you to feel like a VIP for the whole week. Information on the Elite Package is not found on Graceland.com. There are references to it, but when you click on them, it just takes you to the lesser packages.

Hollywood News Daily

I found out about Elite Ticket Package on hollywoodnewsdaily.com, and the article says these tickets can only be ordered over the phone. Maybe Graceland has a special contact list of deep-pocketed fans and sends them email invitations urging them to snap up some of these exclusive tickets.

Elvis Presley's Memphis SoundStage

If you buy the Elvis Week Elite Package you will get to see eleven concerts and events over eight days at the Graceland Soundstage at Elvis Presley’s Memphis.

Special Event with Lisa Marie Presley (8/11)
Elvis Presley Fan Club Presidents’ Event (8/12)
Darlene Love in Concert (8/13)
Conversations on Elvis: Co-stars (8/14)
The Gospel Music of Elvis Presley Concert (8/14)
Conversations on Elvis: Gospel (8/15)
A Musical Salute to Elvis (8/15)
Conversations on Elvis: ’68 Special (8/16)
’68 Special 50th Anniversary Celebration (8/16)
Conversations on Elvis: Elvis Connections (8/17)
Elvis Live in Concert (8/18)

As a bonus you get reserved, assigned front-of-the house seating to all these events, and you get early access to the Soundstage ten minutes before the general public.

 

Lisa Marie Presley at table

After the Lisa Marie special event, package ticket holders have admission to an “Exclusive Photo and Autograph Opportunity” with her.

On Monday August 13 you get to attend two events at the Grand Ballroom at the Graceland Guesthouse.

Guesthouse at Graceland Grand Ballroom

Elvis Fan Reunion – 1pm
Elvis Week Dance Party – 9pm

These are general admission events. The Elite Package ticket holders can really have a big day on the 13th, because they also have the Darlene Love concert that night at 7pm. However, they might be a little late getting to the dance party if they stay after the concert to get a selfie with Darlene or to buy an autographed photo of her.

 

Elvis Presley's Memphis

On Friday, August 17, the package includes admission to the Party at Elvis Presley’s Memphis. There’s going to be live music, complimentary hors d’oeuvres, and cash bars. The Graceland calendar of events does not state the party is in any building, so I guess it’s outside.

There is one additional event for the Elite ticket holders at Grand Ballroom at the Guesthouse. At 5pm on August 16, they get to attend a “Private VIP Reception.” Although no details are given on the website, it sounds like it is tied in with the ’68 Special event at 7pm across the street. But they will not have to walk there. They can take the dedicated shuttle service.

Guesthouse Shuttle Bus

Actually, the Elite Package includes unlimited use of this shuttle service between Guesthouse and Graceland from 8am to 11pm all week. It says nothing about Elvis’ Presley’s Memphis being on the route, but you have to think that it is.

 

Elvis Presley's Graceland

Of course, the Elvis Week Elite Ticket Package includes a tour of the Graceland mansion, and, as you would expect, it is the top-of-the-line Ultimate VIP Tour. Regular prices on these tickets are $169 per person.

Ultimate VIP Tour of Graceland

 

Are you starting to get tired just thinking about doing all this stuff?

 

Here are a few extra perks the Elite Ticket Package offers.

$150 in food vouchers for Elvis Presley’s Memphis Entertainment Complex
Elvis Week Parking Pass good for Graceland parking on August 10-18
Elvis Week Collectibles Pack (with exclusive merchandise valued at $50)
Commemorative Elvis Week Elite laminate (your badge to show you’re a VIP)
Reserved line placement for Candlelight Vigil
Elvis Week Property Pass

 

I must admit, if I had $3,000, I might consider buying two Elite Package tickets for one final Elvis Week blast. However, there would be lots of other expenses to cover. Air fare to Memphis, food costs above the $150 voucher, and six nights at the Graceland Guesthouse (I would skip the Lisa Marie event on the 11th and the fan club presidents’ event on the 12th and pick-up the schedule on the 13th).

Guesthouse at Graceland

Of course, lodging for six nights at the Guesthouse is much higher during Elvis Week than at other times. Let’s see what the cheapest room for two people with a king bed would be for six nights from August 13 through August 19:

 

Guesthouse Room Rate

 

Wow! Let’s see, there’s $3,000 for the Elite Package Tickets, about $600 for air fare, $2,540 for lodging, about $500 for meals, and probably another $250 for incidentals. That totals $6,900.

 

If I ever win the lottery, I’ll definitely go for it. Otherwise, I’m gonna stay home.

 

 

©  2018    Philip R Arnold, Original Elvis Blogmeister    All Rights Reserved    www.ElvisBlog.net

 

 

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Elvis T-Shirt Review — Summer 2018

Tailor-made Elvis T-Shirts

It’s the weekend before the 4th of July, time to do my ninth annual review of Elvis T-shirts. Before we get into the latest designs from ShopGraceland.com, I just want to point out the above photo and say that someone has come up with a great idea for a custom-made Elvis T-shirt. These women are wearing shirts that show themselves hugging Elvis and about to be kissed. How cool is that! Does anybody know if this is something done at Elvis Presley’s Memphis at Graceland or maybe at an Elvis convention? Please let me know on Comments and I’ll share with everybody. Now for the review.

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68 Comeback Joe Petruccio:

JOE PETRUCCIO 68 STANDUP Elvis T-shirt

Hopefully you all are familiar with Joe Pertruccio’s fabulous Elvis artwork. I have featured T-shirts with his Elvis drawings on them before, and praised them highly. I also like black T-shirts. From a distance, it’s probably hard for someone to get what’s going on with this shirt. You have to move up closer and focus on the image to see it’s Elvis in his famous black leather outfit playing guitar. It doesn’t even need to have his name on it. Very subtle, and yet, probably the edgiest Elvis T-shirt ever made. $30

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Guitarman Joe Petruccio:

JOE PETRUCCIO GUITARMAN ELVIS T-SHIRT

Now that I have praised Joe Petruccio, let’s talk about one of his miss-fires. Even close-up you might need a while to figure what this design is all about. Let’s blow it up and look for anything Elvis in it.

JOE PETRUCCIO GUITARMAN T-SHIRT Blow-up

Did you find the name Elvis Presley spelled out vertically in the guitar’s neck? I wish it had been left off this one, too. As subtle as the first one was, this one is over-kill — just too much stuff. It’s almost psychedelic, not the type of thing most Elvis fans are looking for. $30

 

Just Pretend Joe Petruccio Raglan:

JOE PETRUCCIO JUST PRETEND RAGLAN Elvis T-shirt

I feel kind of guilty for knocking any Joe Petruccio design, so I’ll try to make up for that by praising this one. I love the simplicity, and it’s so effective it also doesn’t need Elvis’ name on it. The raglan cut is a nice variation, too. It costs $30, but I’d pay more to have the image on the back of the shirt and something like this on the front.

Elvis Presley in Sundial Jumpsuit.

 

Elvis Presley Made America Great:

ELVIS PRESLEY MADE AMERICA GREAT 24.99

Okay, that’s enough on the shirts with Joe Petruccio designs. Here’s a good one for the 4th of July. I like Elvis Presley done in red, white and blue, but I can’t keep from picking at it a bit. They should have made the capital P for Presley all blue with white stars. It looks more like a D the way it is.

ELVIS PRESLEY MADE AMERICA GREAT Silhouette Blow-up

And the little Elvis silhouette distracts from the clarity of both words.

I do like the theme Elvis Made America Great, but I hope no wingnut finds it offensive because it’s derived from another phrase that disturbs them. I sure wouldn’t want an Elvis fan hassled at a restaurant because they were wearing this shirt. $25

 

Elvis Shades TCB Collage:

ELVIS SHADES COLLAGE TCB T-shirt

There have been lots of TCB T-shirts and lot of shirts with Elvis wearing his signature sunglasses. Now we have one with both. I especially like the bright sunburst radiating out from behind the TCB. It enhances both photos. The website says.” Take Care of Business in this hip 70’s collage Elvis T-shirt.” $25

 

68 Special Rhinestone Woman’s:

ELVIS PRESLEY 68 SPECIAL RHINESTONE WOMEN'S T-SHIRT

This woman’s T-shirt appeals to me for its simplicity. The image looks a little different because it is done by a process the website calls, “a tonal dark rhinestone graphic of Elvis.” I don’t know what that means, but it’s not real rhinestones as have been featured on other shirts over the years. They cost big bucks, but this one can be yours for $60.

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Ambition is a Dream with a V8 Engine:

ELVIS PRESLEY AMBITION IS A DREAM WITH A V8 ENGINE RAGLAN

This is a good concept that started well but finished poorly. The overlapping V and red-colored 8 draw the eye to the wrong thing. Elvis’ picture is the only thing that should be prominent in the center. Then the bottom text could read, “with a V8 Engine.” Much more balanced and easier to read. Raglan style shirts seem to be very popular these days, and the black sleeves on a white shirt is a nice touch. $30

 

Graceland Microphone Raglan:

GRACELAND MICROPHONE RAGLAN T-shirt

This is my least favorite. I have fussed before about T-shirts that say Graceland with no mention of Elvis. I am an Elvis fan, not a Graceland fan. But somebody must like Graceland shirts, because they keep coming up with new designs. This shirt really bugs me because it says Graceland: Home to Rock ‘n’ Roll. Why not “Home of Elvis Presley”? $30

 

I feel like this review has not presented enough designs I like, so here are a few from a source you might not think of: AllPosters.com.

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Elvis – Peacock:

allposters.com Peacock Jumpsuit Design Elvis T-shirt

I like it when they come up with Elvis designs that are new and different. Using elements from Elvis’ fabulous Peacock jumpsuit is a great idea. And Elvis’ blue face is kind of interesting, too. Only $20. AllPosters.com has lots of Elvis T-shirts priced at $18 and $20.

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Circle G Ranch:

allposters.com Circle G Ranch Elvis T-shirt

They don’t get much more original than this. I wonder if the folks who are campaigning for Elvis’ Circle G Ranch to be preserved and open to the public are aware that this shirt exists. $24

 

Elvis Presley – Long Live the King:

Allposters.com Long Live the King Elvis T-shirt

This is a wonderful woman’s T-shirt. I wish they had it in men’s. A great profile picture of Elvis with strong gold text saying. “Long Live the King.” What more do you need? And just $20.

 

I hope you enjoyed ElvisBlog’s 2018 Elvis T-shirt review.  You can read the previous eight reviews by typing T-Shirt Review in the search box.

 

As I did my research for this post, I noticed there are a great many products celebrating the 50th anniversary of Elvis’ ’68 Comeback Special. Some are great, some not so much. I’ll probably do a review of them sometime soon.

 

Have a cool 4th of July

 

© 2018 Philip R Arnold, Original Elvis Blogmeister All Rights Reserved www.ElvisBlog.net

 

 

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Elvis, Elvis Presley, and Graceland are registered trademarks of Elvis Presley Enterprises, Inc.

 

ElvisBlog Mini-Nuggets # 22

Do you remember the above photo from an ElvisBlog pictorial post three weeks ago? No information was given about the crown on Elvis’ head by the site where I found it, so I asked if any reader knew something about the reason he was being crowned. Well, reader Jo remembered seeing it in a book she owned, and she sent in an answer.

Genuine Elvis by Ronnie McDowell

The book is The Genuine Elvis by Ronnie McDowell, Edie Hand and Joe Meador, published in 2009. It contained the following information from Louise Smith, widow of Elvis’ cousin Gene Smith:

“One day, Elvis came to our house and the press followed him inside. A man and woman accompanied the man from the newspaper. They presented Elvis with a trophy. Written on it was the fact that during Elvis’ movies in the theater, they had sold more popcorn than during any other movies. They took a picture of me and Elvis and the woman who presented the trophy and it was in the newspaper in Memphis. When (Elvis) left, I told him that he had forgotten his trophy, and he told me that he would get it later. He came over many times to our house, and I always tried to give him the trophy and he always said he would get it later. Guess what? I still have the trophy that was shown in the newspaper article.”

Elvis Receiving Crown in 1960

Jo even attached this photo and caption which accompanied the article in the book. However she said she was a bit puzzled. “The date is given as 1956, but Elvis actually looks older – his sideburns are missing and his jacket is the same as that worn in the Welcome Home Elvis rehearsals in 1960. Has Louise got her dates muddled????”

So, I did a Google search for Elvis Popcorn Award, and an article came up with this picture.

Louise Smith, Elvis and Popcorn Award

The woman on the left is identified as Louise Smith and the one on the right as the presenter of the trophy. Five decades after the event, it would appear Louise Smith’s memory was indeed a little muddled, because the crown was not what accompanied the award. A trophy did

Popcorn Trophy Plaque

I blew up the award to see what it said. You can see the word Kernel, then Popcorn, (something), U.S.A.

So, the reason for the crown still remains a mystery, but the trophy picture confirms one thing:

Elvis was the King of Movie Popcorn Sales

 

 

More Elvis Armpit Sweat Revealed:

Elvis and Horses

This photo also appeared in that pictorial three weeks ago. I said I thought it had been taken on the set of Love Me Tender. However, I was corrected by reader Delores, who is quite a font of Elvis knowledge. She said the picture came from Loving You when young Susan Jessup (Delores Hart) took Elvis out to the family farm.

Elvis and delores Hart in Loving You

In the article I suggested that there couldn’t be many other pictures out there showing Elvis armpit sweat. Wrong!! Reader David did considerable detective work and found it in photos from three other movies.

Elvis Arm Sweat in 1960 GI Blues

G.I. Blues

 

Elvis Arm Sweat in 1962 follow that dream

Follow That Dream

 

Elvis, armpit sweat in1960 Flamig Star

Flaming Star

 

Of course, what I didn’t think we would ever see were any photos in real life of Elvis armpit sweat. David had that covered, too.

1970 Photo of Elvis Arm Sweat

Elvis in 1970

 

The Anniversary of the Opening of Graceland to the Public:

I get emails all the time from Graceland.com/news, Graceland Insiders, Shop Graceland, and probably some others. When I see the word Graceland, I click on them pretty much automatically to see what’s new. Yesterday, this came up.

Graceland Opened on June 6, 1982

 

I thought I would get to read about the history of this event. Then I scrolled down and saw this:

15% Off Graceland Gear

In the span of one month, we will see four reasons for a sale: Aloha from Hawaii anniversary, Memorial Day, Graceland’s opening anniversary, and Father’s Day. And I’ll bet there is some other reason for a sale prior to the 4th of July.  I hope they are selling ELVIS Gear at the next one.

So, Thursday was the 36th anniversary of the opening of Graceland. In four years, I expect a big event will be held with special guests, concerts at the Soundstage, special packages at the Guesthouse, etc. Here are a couple of pictures that will probably show up then on Graceland.com/news.

Aunt Delta and Jack Soden at opening of Graceland, June 7, 1982

This is EPE president Jack Soden and Elvis’ Aunt Delta (who continued to live in Graceland after the tours began) cutting the ceremonial ribbon.

 

Graceland Opening Flyer

Here is an advertisement for the opening of Graceland to the public. I wish it was a clearer image so we could read the ticket prices. The fine print down at the bottom says “Tours may be closed on Monday after September 1.” Of course, that never happened. The public response was too great.

 

Editor’s Note: Reader responses came in quickly confirming that the follow two photographs were definitely not taken the first day Graceland opened to the public.  As I had speculated, they were taken the day after Elvis died as fans poured into Memphis.  Sorry for the confusion.

You might want to scroll past them and look at two new photos giving a much clearer accounting of the opening of Graceland to the public.

 

These next two pictures, supposedly taken at that opening show amazing response on the first day.

Fans at Opening of Graceland

That looks like Elvis Week, doesn’t it? Or possibly the day after Elvis’ death was announced.  The internet source I used says it was taken on June 7, 1982, but the amount of mis-labeled Elvis photos on the internet is cause for a little skepticism. .

Fans at opening of Graceland

And this is supposed to be an aerial view of the event. You can barely see the mansion in the top right corner surrounded by trees. I never knew the opening of Graceland was such a highly attended event.

 

3,024 Tickets sold on the first Day Graceland opened to the public

This is a cropped photo that contains a significant fact in the text at the bottom. 3,024 tickets were sold the first day Graceland was opened to the public.

 

Fans Line Up outside Graceland on Day it Opened to the public

These are fans lining up to enter Graceland on the first day it was open to the public.

 

Jungle Tree Fuzzy Room

I would like to thank everyone who purchased one of the Elvis treasures I brought out from the Fuzzy Room and offered for sale. The three T-shirts were the last to go earlier this week. Next week I will show more items from the Fuzzy Room. Here’s a little tease – a set of Elvis Presley Salt and Pepper Shakers with a 50s look. Bet you haven’t seen these before.

Elvis Salt and Pepper Shakers

 

 

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