Star Trek: The Motion Picture…..It’s a costume Jim but not as we know it!

This….is a quandary. I’m really hoping that perhaps a Knight in shining armor can help me out with this one because I’m dry….I just don’t know what it is? One thing that is amazing is that the code on the typed Western costume tag is within nine items away from the code that is on a Chekov Western costume tag that I own….so they were made within a short time of each other (although that is a guess….and a big coincidence since they are both typed.) Here is the tag for the Chekov with pants costume sold at Christies Trek auction in 2006

Chekov tag

Purchased as lot number 6870 in the “Its a Wrap” auctions this was listed as a Captain Kirk style away team costume. Here is the text from the auction:STAR TREK II: “ADMIRAL KIRK AWAY TEAM FIELD JACKET” – UNFINISHED An unfinished Starfleet away team field jacket like those featured in Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan for wear by William Shatner in his portrayal of “Admiral Kirk”. The item is made from off white colored un-dyed fabric with multiple sewn in raised accents for a busier appearance. The item features a high degree of deteriorated foam interior lining that has collected in the folded up hems that are not sewn shut. The pockets also have collected a degree of this same material, it has not detracted from the overall external appearance of the item. The asymmetrical front seals through the use of Velcro placements; the costume features two front and reverse flap pockets and a pair of hand pockets. A sewn in Western Costume Co. tag reads ‘William Shatner’.

Interior tag

The problem is the costume is finished. All the seams are sewn...but there are two weird things about this outfit. One is the pockets and the interior have a fine muddy red colored granules in the pockets…which look to be the foam that the costume was originally made from disintegrating. Most of that I literally poured out of the costume, but some still resides. There is  piece of red threading made into a square on the front. The other difference is the color and texture of the material. It just doesn’t seem to match the on screen version…so at that point doing all the usual things to authenticate the piece I can only deduce that its a test version.

I have read interviews with Robert Fletcher, the costume maker that outfits were recolored and this was proved accurate with several pieces in the IAW auctions. So after much research if anyone has read anything or has an idea I’d love to know. Here are the pictures in the meantime. If the costume was dyed this may have destroyed the foam over time….but that doesn’t explain the small dots in the fabric that give it an almost porous appearance.

Below is the costume as it appears in the production. As you can see a very different color, and non porous fabric. Let us know if you have any theories.


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2 thoughts on “Star Trek: The Motion Picture…..It’s a costume Jim but not as we know it!

  1. I feel this is a finished prototype, probably made to show the makers of the jackets how it all went together.I think they are sued ,so they might have been done by a specialist. Also,as it has a label ,it is definately a fitting toile for Shatner. The red dust is definately perished foam particles from quilted areas,i have seen this in other Trek costumes. The red tacking stitched area must have been a placement for some hardwear,maybe even a bio-buckle…

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