CLOTHING


Note: Janis is tiny; assume all clothing is sized small or xsmall (34-36 European, 5-6 US), all shoes are size 6 1/2 - 7 US, all pants are very short, everything in Excellent to Very Good shape unless otherwises noted. Photos/album covers/press photos of Janis in the clothing will be provided whenever possible.

042. STARS CAP: Cap worn on back cover of STARS album, pinkish suede, "JI" written inside. With vinyl copy of Stars album (no insert) or CD. Minimum bid $100.00. I lived in this cap from 1972-1974; wore it all over the world. It's in pretty good shape (yes it's been cleaned) and my good luck piece. VIEW THIS ITEM

002. MINK STOLE: High quality brown & black, with Pearl Fink embroidered inside. Minimum bid $100.00. My Dad had the great idea of buying Mom a mink stole, which she'd always wanted, sometime in the mid-'60's. My brother Eric and I contributed our allowances for what seemed like months, and Dad made up the slack.

003. MARCHING BAND JACKET: blue & red, worn through the late '60's/'70's. It was a great time to be alive, the 1960's. Every weekend throngs of people my age (15) would head down to Greenwich Village, stand around in front of the fountain at the bottom of Fifth Avenue, and sing, play chess, get to know one another. Everyone was trying to dress differently from the "normal" people who wore suits (yes, even on weekends) and dresses with stockings and heels. Marching band jackets were part of the look, slung over a pair of jeans or tights and a workshirt.

016. ANTIQUE "MR. BOJANGLES" THREE-PIECE TAILS/TUX OUTFIT: Stunning satin and stone tap/softshoe dancer's outfit - cream colored, fully lined, original buttons, by Eaves Brooks Costume Company. Pants have very heavy "real" rhinestones down sides, w/rhinestone lapels and collar, silk buttoniere (pink), attached suspenders, spat covers; 3 pieces. Minimum bid $250.00. I bought this on the street in The Village at some point because it seemed like a piece of history; always thought I'd wear it when my Fred Astaire fantasy came true. While I suppose you could wear it, it's the sort of outfit I expect to see hanging in a wardrobe museum, or used for film and onstage by a really great dancer. When you look at how this was made and how clothing now is made, you want to hang all the current manufacturers.

001. UNCLE WONDERFUL COAT: Long high-cotton stage coat, red w/black trim, used on cover of Uncle Wonderful & Tonight Show appearance; not worn since. With CD of Uncle Wonderful and photo. I bought this in Los Angeles just before the cover shoot, wore it twice, and put it away in the closet. It comes down to my knees (which means a "normal" person would probably have a mid-thigh jacket).
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015. SUEDE CUSTOM PANTS: brown, partially lined, very small, used onstage in the '60's & '70's. People are always asking me what it was like to "hang" with Joplin & Hendrix; the truth is that when we weren't making music, we were usually shopping. Janis & I ordered identical brown suede pants together from a woman named Olive Watson; these are mine.

043. JANIS' BABY SHOES: white, tiny tiny and very worn. Well... how do you set a minimum bid on something like this? When my Mom died she left a little treasure trove with my baby shoes, baby blanket, and her own long braids that she'd cut off during high school in the 1940's. A couple of friends are appalled that I'm selling these, but my reasoning is that my mother would rather they raised money for a good cause than sat around my house gathering dust. And as my soundman Philip Clark says "Why not? You're not pregnant; you don't need 'em!"

004. SEQUINED SUIT JACKET: black with small-barrel piping, worn once to Grammy Awards, closer to SM/MED than XS, original price $300. Minimum bid $100.00. It's always a problem knowing what to wear for awards shows; if you win, you've probably underdressed, and if you lose you look like a fool. This was a compromise because the sequins dressed up the plain tights and boots I wore.

005. TWO PIECE SILK SUIT: Royal blue raw silk suit, closer to a size 7-8, used on stage 1993-1994, with matching tie, size 38 European. I bought this after a course of Cortisone put 43 pounds on my small frame, so it's a lot bigger than most of my clothing. Originally a men's suit, cut down with lapels etc. made smaller to suit a female frame.

006. NARAS "GRAMMY" JACKET: medium-large, leather & wool with Grammy insignia embroidered on back, from awards dinner for Breaking Silence nomination. Size M-L. I've had nine Grammy nominations and two wins, but this was the first time anyone ever gave me something with the Grammy insignia on it. Very warm, pretty big for me!

007. LEATHER BOMBER JACKET: Fantastic European kid glove with zippered lining, used in tons of publicity photos and shoots, as well as European outdoor shows 1994-1997; with photo. Minimum bid $100.00. I love leather jackets; my dream as a kid was to own two of them (so one could go on the road and one could stay at home). This is so soft that I've used it as a pillow backstage, and so warm that I toured Europe with only this and a sweater to protect me. Looks great, hardly worn (that's what you get for good European leather!). My favorite jacket in the world.
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008. "JETSONS" JACKET: Black & white leather jacket from the early '70's, well-worn but with no tears or shreds. I call this the Jetsons jacket because the style looks like something out of a Jetsons cartoon - very sharp. My second favorite jacket; lining's pretty worn, it's seen a lot of the world.

009. ANTIQUE TUXEDO TAILS: Black and grey Rayon Blend (remember when it was a "new fabric"?), small-medium size, worn for shows 1993-1995. I went to the tux tops when I realized I'd be touring Europe and Japan a lot. In those countries people tend to get dressed up for shows, and I didn't want to be dismayingly casual in front of an audience! I bought this and had it modified to fit because it hung great, and was warm enough for outdoor shows in the fall.

010. TUXEDO TAILS: Handmade for stage, black shadow print with brilliant fuschia lining, silk & satin, worn for shows 1993-1995. I went to the tux tops when I realized I'd be touring Europe and Japan a lot. In those countries people tend to get dressed up for shows, and I didn't want to be dismayingly casual in front of an audience! I had five of the tops made specifically for stage, with brighter than bright linings that would show whenever I walked or turned.
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011. TUXEDO TAILS: Handmade for stage, fuschia shadow print w/black shadow print lining, silk/satin, worn for shows 1993-1995. I went to the tux tops when I realized I'd be touring Europe and Japan a lot. In those countries people tend to get dressed up for shows, and I didn't want to be dismayingly casual in front of an audience! I had five of the tops made specifically for stage, with brighter than bright linings that would show whenever I walked or turned.
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044. "TERMINATOR" LEATHER BOOTS: From the UK, completely awesome, round steel heels, side straps, laces, worn a lot. Ani Difranco wears them onstage, there's a pair in the Star Trek movie -- hard to be uncool in boots like these. Worn 1996-present; size 7. Ani & I had been corresponding for about a year, but we met for the first time backstage at the Dranouter Festival in Belgium. She was wearing a pair of ridiculously cool boots and I threatened to steal them when her back was turned. She laughed and said they were from the UK. Lo and behold, when I arrived home Pat had just bought me a gift - a pair of exactly the same boots! How she knew I do not know.... The next time I saw Ani we were working on "Searching for America" (a cut she produced for my Hunger album), and she had different boots. When I asked why, she laughed and said she hadn't dared wear the others around me.

045. COOL COWBOY BOOTS: Cowboy boots with a difference, color panorama of gunfight all around leg, pointy toes & low heel, very unusual; size 7. Just a bit worn but still fantastic looking; worn 1994-present. I have a thing about boots, probably because it's so hard to find clothes that fit me; boots and sneakers are some of the few things I can buy "off the rack". So whenever I see weird or interesting, I grab it. These boots get stares wherever I go; they're not especially loud (no day-glow or anything), but they're definitely unusual. Very comfortable, too.

046. HIGH-HEELED SNEAKERS: From Xenos, worn onstage only 1995-present; size 7. These are the same sneakers fans keep offering to buy for ridiculous amounts of money. Don't expect them to look worn; I was raised in the old school, where stage shoes are worn only on stage. They are, however, extremely cool, and quite comfortable.

047. HIGH-HEELED PLATFORM SNEAKERS: Converse, used onstage & off 1995-present; worn but still "different"; size 7. With photo. It's unfortunate that Converse has stopped making the interesting sneakers they were experimenting with for a while, because I've been offered a lot of money for these. Worn mostly at folk festivals and other areas where the terrain was rough getting to and from stage and the site.

048. SEQUINED SNEAKERS: Converse-type sneakers from Europe, black sequins with white trim white, worn onstage & off 1995-present; size 7. I saw these sneakers in a shop in Amsterdam and grabbed two pairs, thinking "I'm just never going to see sequined sneakers again". And although I'm sure more exist somewhere, I haven't found them!

025-030. 6 GODLIKE T-SHIRTS: Each with the word "GODLIKE" embroidered in white on front of Watson's XL heavyweight black English T-shirt; one each to the six highest bidders. Worn on stage from 1995-present; each with a photo. I was shooting a video in England when someone walked in wearing a T-shirt similar to these. I offered him fifty bucks on the spot for it and began wearing it on stage. I ended up ordering XL heavyweight black shirts from Watson's UK and having the embroidery done here; the cotton quality's terrific (witness how long I've been wearing them on stage) adn they hang beautifully. These have the nicks and dents you'd expect in old stage clothing - collars have been cut out, some slight shredding on the bottoms and necks of some of them.
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023. RUDE GIRL T-SHIRT: With RUDE GIRL embroidered in aqua thread on the front of a Watson's XL heavyweight navy English T-shirt with collar cut out; worn onstage 1995-present. I was recently offered $150 if I'd sell this shirt after a show, unwashed... gross! The RUDE GIRL logo is my (yep it's trademarked) logo, and goes with the little picture you see all over this site. It's also the name of my publishing company.

031. ACOUSTIC T-SHIRT: With "Acoustic" embroidered in white on front of Watson's XL heavyweight black English T-shirt; worn onstage from 1995-present. I had this made when I was playing a lot of folk festivals; people sometimes give me a hard time because although I play an acoustic guitar, I use a lot of outboard effects. The shirt fooled everyone for the first ten minutes of my show. Again, nicks and dents, collar cut out, but still in great shape.

024. FRUITBAT T-SHIRT with "FRUITBAT":"Fruitbat" embroidered in white on front of Watson's XL heavyweight black English T-shirt, collar cut out; worn at Seattle Zoo, Portland Zoo, and other "zoo" gigs from 1995-present. I think my two favorite types of outdoor gig are folk festivals and "zoo" gigs. The Portland and Seattle Zoos put on a series of outdoor concerts every year, with low or no ticket pricing. The big benefit for me is that zoos usually give performers a guided "backstage tour". We've gotten to "meet" everything from penguins to fruitbats at these shows. After I'd done a couple of them I decided to have this shirt made for every zoo gig I did.

033. NICOLE MILLER "FRUIT & PALM" SILK TIE: Worn with Joan Baez at a San Francisco benefit concert (photo). I've known Joan since I was 16 years old, and she's always been splendid to me. Nevertheless, it worries me to take the stage when she's on it, because she always looks so great. I thought the tie would at least distract....
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034. NICOLE MILLER "MONEY" SILK TIE: Worn through Japan & European tours 1994-1995 (photo). I burst out laughing when I saw this tie in an airport shop somewhere; dollar signs, currency, everything the world thinks we Americans are obsessed with!

035. LOT OF ONE EACH KENZO & TABASCO SILK TIES: The Kenzo is gold and green flowers, the Tabasco is maroon with their "sunnyside up" eggs design, worn through tours 1995-1996. Pat and I took off for a long weekend just before she started law school, intending to wander through the South. We wound up in Louisiana during a huge rainstorm and took refuge in the Tabasco factory, where we learned more than I ever though possible about that wonderful pepper. I bought the tie in honor of that day. The Kenzo just made me think of Van Gogh and feel good.
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036. LOT OF 4 HANDMADE HEADBANDS: 1 silk black & white shiny, one silk blue & black shiny, one flowered silk, plus 1 velvet with colored sequins attached, worn onstage 1995-1998. With photo. I started wearing headbands again because outdoor shows in the summer heat meant sweat would drip down my face, onto my hands, and interfere with my playing. After a while it also became a good way to have longer hair & still keep it off my neck.
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037. LOT OF 4 HANDMADE HEADBANDS: 2 silk black & white flowered, 1 velvet with sequins and 1 plain red velour-type cotton, worn onstage 1995-1998. I don't know why it took me so long to go back to headbands; Jimi and everyone else I knew wore brightly-colored ones through the sixties, wrapped around their heads, their biceps, their thighs. Pretty cool stuff.

038-040. 3 LOTS OF 3 COTTON JAPANESE HEADBANDS: All pretty worn, white with black and red designs, worn onstage & in tons of publicity shots 1994-1998. One lot of three to each of the three highest bidders; each lot comes with a photo. I really wasn't too sure about putting headbands into the auction until I polled some fans and discovered that people really liked them. At any rate, they kept trying to buy them off me after shows... These are all pretty worn, probably have some makeup stains that won't wash out at the edges, and I don't know what you could do with them - I guess wear them, or hang them from guitar necks, or play with your cat.
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017. COOGI SWEATER: Blue & white crew, worn only once in Holland to receive gold record; men's size small. With photo. I was given a couple of Coogi sweaters before they became so darned fashionable, and really enjoyed their weight and colors. This is a nice, well-maintained sharp-looking top.
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022. ANOTHER COOGI SWEATER: Multi-colored, worn through European tours 1993-1995; men's size small. Again, given to me before they became fashionable and very well-maintained; this is my favorite of the two, with a deep V-neck and loads of colors. Ain't no thing like the real thing!

049-050. 2 PAIRS CLOTH BOOTS: Red cloth pointy-toed boots with black heels, handmade in Portugal then modified and strengthened for stage (steel brace between heel and sole, toe taps); size 6, worn onstage through the '70's & early '80's. Two pairs, one each to the two highest bidders; high bid also gets photo. I saw these boots at a store in Lisbon and grabbed a pair; they were so comfortable onstage that I contacted the manufacturer to ask about getting another set. They weren't being made anymore! but the owner of the shop agreed to make a special run of 6 black and 6 red for me. I wore them from around the time I made Night Rains through when I stopped performing live in 1982.
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012. PURPLE VEST & SEQUINED PANTS: Handmade silk for stage, used 1993-1995. This is probably not something you should wear around the neighborhood...very very loud.

013. BLACK SUEDE PANTS FROM FRANCE: Fully lined, extremely small (European 34-36 36), used onstage through the '70's, still in great shape. Well, there reaches a point where you go through your closet and think "Gee. No matter how skinny I get, I will never be able to wear those again." These were part of my horrible Moment Of Truth when I hit my '40's.

018. SILK TANKTOP AND SHIRT: Pink & purple reversible silk tanktop and yellow silk shirt, modified for stage (sleeve cuffs tightened, collars semi-braced etc) and worn 1993-1995; by Liz Claiborne (size 6). I was completely out of "stage clothes" and had a two month tour to do when Breaking Silence came out. I tore through the local department store and grabbed these bright, cheerful colors, figuring it would contrast with the darkness of the album cover and its somber mood.

019. SILK TANKTOP AND SHIRT: Green & gold reversible silk tanktop & pink silk shirt, modified for stage; worn 1993-1995. Liz Claiborne (size 6). Worn 1993-1995. It's hard to find clothing that works on stage - big enough to allow guitar playing, tight enough to not end up caught in the strings. I've always had long-sleeved shirts modified so those problems wouldn't arise; still, I've done entire songs with no low strings because a button got caught!

020. "LEATHER LOOK" TOP: Stretch sleeveless black boatneck top, with hand-painted fireworks and rhinestones, worn onstage 1985-1989; with photo in one of the "fireworks" tops. I was searching for a fabric that could go into the washing machine, crumble into nothing in a duffel without wrinkling, and be comfortable on stage. I have no idea what this material is but people always thought it was leather, even though it's comfortable in the heat.

021. SILK SHIRT: Purple Liz Claiborne silk shirt, modified for stage (size 6). Worn 1993-1995. People always think of Claiborne's clothing as a kind of upscale day-jobber look, but I found these shirts remarkably sturdy and well made. After all, they've seen laundromats in Japan, Australia, Holland, UK, Africa....


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