Nov. 29, 2000 -- A luminous green panther-style suit, leopard printjackets, pop star regalia in electric blue — Elton John is clearingout his closets to raise money to fight AIDS.
John, who rocks in a fashion class all his own, shared hisunique threads and style at an elaborate rummage sale today.
Fans lined up all day outside the central London shop where thestar was selling off 15,000 items of clothing and accessories.
Sir Elton snipped a pink ribbon to open the sale and the fanspoured in to prowl among racks packed with colorful designer wearand tables piled with sweaters, shirts and shoes.
Organizers said Elton John’s AIDS Foundation raised more than$140,000 in the first four hours. The sale is to continue forseveral days, until everything is sold.
The star’s last clothes sale, in 1997, raised $500,000 in fivedays.
Shoes, Hats and Panther SuitIn addition to high-priced designer wear, such as GianniVersace’s luminous panther suit — now $2,150-— and a $35,750 1986blue and purple stage costume, many more affordable items were onsale. Hundreds of pairs of shoes were priced about $45 each, shirtsstarted at $20 and baseball caps at $7.
The fans were thrilled to have such personal mementoes.
William Carbury, a 43-year-old college receptionist, said he had“gone a bit mad” at the sale. “I only had a budget of $215 but Iended up spending $500” on two pairs of shoes, some shirts and abelt.
“I can’t wait to try it all on,” he said.
Sharon Kalinoski, from Chicago, 36-year-old head of John’sAmerican fan club, said she’s spent more than $1,430 and that she’dbe back again Thursday for more.
“I bought over 60 items, some of which I will keep and some ofwhich I will give to fans back in the U.S.,” she said.
Then there were the folks who just admired Elton’s style.
“I’m not really a fan of Elton John but I do like hisclothes,” said London window cleaner Desmond Cooley, who spent$300 on sweaters and shoes.
“I’m going on holiday tomorrow to the Far East so I can pretendI am a millionaire with all my Versace gear.”