Lot 191: Beatles John Lennon's Collarless Mohair Beatle suit from 1963


October 31, 2015
Chelmsford, United Kingdom

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Description: There are a number of instant iconic visions that come to mind when the word Beatles is mentioned. Almost certainly, the Mop Tops hair is one of them, few bands ever created a haircut that some 50 years later commands instant acknowledgement as 'their' haircut the Beatles Haircut does.

The Beatles logo with its extended drop T on Ringo's bass drum pounding out the Beat is also another instant Iconic image associated with this band, indeed one of those very kits comes to sale in December this year, direct from Ringo himself, and the $500k estimate is widely murmured to be very conservative.

The other, and in my opinion, most iconic image of the Beatles at the very top of their tree has to be their stage wear. The collarless Mohair suits created by Dougie Millings, a London tailor inspired to reinvent their image by Pierre Cardin's 60's tube suits. The result of his work turned Brian Epstein's four prodigies into a clean cut media friendly powerhouse that, instead of following their greaser-style leather heroes such as Elvis & Gene Vincent, were prised out of their sweat-soaked Hamburg leather combos for which they were revered in Both Germany and the humid pit of the Cavern, to now lead the first Brit Pop Fashion revolution.

Almost instantly, their stablemates and peers changed, as did the world. Dougie Millings name is not one instantly known by music fans and/or historians but his designs and subsequent influence diverted the fashions of millions of young people on the turn of a hard earned coin. Indeed, by 1964 the suit has traversed the Atlantic, and the Millings Style with Beatles Boots and longer hair had arrived in the USA and was being imitated by many US musicians as the new cool. Ultimately the jacket itself reverted back to its original Nehru beginnings that went on to be a major part of the pyschedelic Hippie movement that again the Beatles were synonymous with. Outside of the Millings Mohair Beatle suits, the Sgt Pepper Outfits remain as the other Iconic Beatle image and yet their design owes much to the same Nehru beginnings as the Millings creation.

Captured on film countless times the photographs of the four Liverpudlian Lads in their mohair suits is for many the enduring image of the influence of the Beatles. Photographer Dezo Hoffman captured not only the Beatles but the Beatles with their Tailor.

This particular hand-made suit in beige from 1963 with black rope piping bears the label D. Millings of 41, Great Poultney Street London with 'John' handwritten on the label. It was discovered by Madame Tussauds in London in one of their warehouses in 2006. It was believed to have been destroyed or missing but bizarrely, was found in a plastic carrier bag. The suits were donated to Tussauds by Brian Epstein, the Beatles enigmatic manager to be worn by the first wax effigies of the Fab Four. Paul Ringo & George's suits had all previously been found and sold at auction but John's remained missing.

The suit has been exhibited in The Beatles Museum in Liverpool since 2008.

The suit comes with a letter from James Bradbury. General Manager of Madame Tussauds in London. There are a few moth holes in the suit as can be expected for a suit of this age and its journey. With a copy of Dezo Hoffmans With The Beatles Book showing John wearing the suit in many photos. James Wilkinson 2015

John talks about the suit!!!
Notes: Please note: this item is shipped from Chelmsford, Essex United Kingdom
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October 31, 2015, 4:00 PM GMT

Chelmsford, United Kingdom

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