men's : 1970s : k5438
product code : k5438 : £ 145

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  • It was Lamar Fike, Elvis Presley's long-term friend and

    employee who revealed how this French motor racing style

    of the late 60's became Elvis' famous sunglasses. In an

    interview Fike told how in 1970, quite fittingly, he picked up

    a pair in a gas station. When Elvis saw them on Fike, he

    asked him to go back in and buy more, so he could have his

    own. Elvis wore them just as they were and then had some

    souped-up with bespoke metal adornments with his EP initials,

    TCB logo and lightning flashes. The bridge had to be enlarged

    to fit these which was tricky, as the frame is actually a

    composite with a chrome-like coating and only the Grand

    Prix arms are metal. Over the next 7 years, as his jumpsuits

    became more outlandish with rhinestones and beading, he had

    sunglasses customised and copied in iterations using materials,

    colours and embellishments that co-ordinated more with the

    Las Vegas stage than the race track. But he always had some

    of the unadorned silver pairs for his day-time Elvis ensembles.

    Fike lived on until 2018 and had kept three of the original pairs

    that he had given to Elvis - one was sold at auction just a few

    weeks ago and looks very similar to these. The only fault with

    the frame and for which it has been marked down only as 'good',

    is that it has a small hairline crackin the coating at the left

    hinge. We had this pair fitted with new Polaroid lenses in the

    high neutral (62%ABS) lenses - which was the tint apparently

    preferred by Elvis as they could be worn at night, and while

    performing and also showed off his eyes.

    All we can say now is Long Live the King!

                                                           — klasik