Sir Elton and Beckhams clear closets in the fight against Aids

David Lister Media
Thursday 05 December 2002 01:00
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With the cult of celebrity upon us, the celebrity jumble sale was just waiting to happen. So in the name of charity, Sir Elton John, David Furnish, Victoria Beckham and her husband, David, have cleared the detritus from their extensive wardrobes.

Some 20,000 items of clothing and merchandise went on sale in Regent Street, London, yesterday to be sold to raise money for the Elton John Aids Foundation.

Brave Sir Elton parted with a pair of pink brocade lederhosen with a padded pink heart on the front that he wore for his 1974 performance in Madison Square Garden with John Lennon, now available at a reserve price of £35,000. He also bid farewell to the multi-coloured plumed outfit made for his 1977 appearance on The Muppet Show.

Victoria Beckham cleared out her Maria Grachvogel creations, including a chocolate-coloured dress she wore for her Walkers crisps advert. Her footballer husband gave away a grey Gianni Versace suit.

The shop sells jackets, coats, suits, shirts, ties, belts and sunglasses, as well asmerchandise including scented candles and special print editions.

Sir Elton himself, wearing a black suit with diamante detail, made a brief visit to the Out The Closet IV shop in Regent Street to cut a ribbon. His partner, David Furnish, dressed in Christian Dior, said: "We do this to raise as much money as we can for HIV and Aids. Forty-two million people are infected with the disease and it's growing. It is a disease that knows no boundaries or prejudices."

Suzanne Ness travelled from Wisconsin in the United States after reading of the sale on Sir Elton's internet fan club. She said: "I'm buying anything that's neat. If they take charge cards there's no budget."

In the first two hours, the sale raised more than £50,000 and it will continue until the shop sells out. The money will help to fund projects in 55 countries dealing with Aids prevention initiatives and direct care for people affected by HIV.

And the haute couture shops of London can look forward to a prosperous Christmas. Elton and the Beckhams will have to replenish their wardrobes.

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