John Wayne Costumes

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  • Arthur,
    When costumes go back Western Costume Co. they strip the insignias off because when they rent it to another film they can make it any rank they want.


  • If, the flame war is over, the only way to authenticate these pieces are to see images of the Western Costume labels. Although Wayne repeated wearing earlier costumes from the 1960s after the lung operation, we know the batches that were later acquired and their specific numbers. He was scheduling three movies ahead and often wore pieces in subsequent films. His RIO LOBO blue shirt is one of the military ones from THE UNDEFEATED with the epaulets and pockets removed. At the Estate sale, we sold a complete uniform he wore and the number is the same as the later use. Most of the khaki pants go back to EL DORADO.

    Other than the classic stockade coat, all new pieces were made for TRUE GRIT. The material and colors of the shirts and pants were unlike the earlier pieces.

    As an aside, John Wayne's wardrobe is among the most faked in the world. Most can be traced to a single source who also flourished replicating Elvis garb. Another party was busted by WFAA TV in Dallas that was dumping pieces at Heritage up to 2007. It made news coast to coast and was the subject of two extended TV exposes. Refunds were offered and made, but the pieces keep showing up on eBay and at smaller auctions. The giveaway is the crooks did not know the proper numbers for the WCC labels that they were harvesting from cheap WCC pieces sold on eBay and bleaching to remove the original numbers and names. This process made the cloth labels yellow and get stiff. The numbers often repeated or were lazy efforts like 2 4 6 8 or 1 2 3 4.