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Rock and pop costume

  • Place of origin:

    Great Britain (made)

  • Date:

    1981 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Ant, Adam, born 1954 (designer)
    Whiteing, Charles David (costumier)
    Swinden, Yvonne (designer)

  • Credit Line:

    Given by Stuart Leslie Goddard (Adam Ant)

  • Museum number:

    S.140&A to O-1983

  • Gallery location:

    Theatre & Performance, Room 106, case 6B, shelf CENTRE LEFT []

While attending Hornsey College of Art on a graphic design course Adam Ant (born Stuart Leslie Goddard) joined ‘50s influenced pub band Bazooka Joe as bass player. The band headlined the first concert played by the Sex Pistols and this new raw sound appealed to Adam Ant. He afterwards formed the band Adam and the Ants which failed to win favour with the British music press, despite that they toured the UK extensively. Around this time Adam appeared in Derek Jarman’s film Jubilee and caught the acting bug.

Adam and the band asked Malcolm McLaren to manage them, which soon led to the separation of Adam and the band. With a change of line up, the Ants returned with a new sound and look and became one of the most successful British acts of the early 1980s. After a string of hits, Adam dissolved the band and continued with a solo music career, interspersed with acting rolls on TV, film, and stage. Adam then started touring his new music, followed by a world tour showcasing his hit albums.

Place of Origin

Great Britain (made)


1981 (made)


Ant, Adam, born 1954 (designer)
Whiteing, Charles David (costumier)
Swinden, Yvonne (designer)


Height: 164 cm approx., Width: 59 cm approx., Depth: 25 cm approx., Length: 70 cm Shirt (B), collar to hem, Width: 48 cm Shirt (B), shoulder width, Length: 70 cm Breeches (D), waist to hem, Width: 60 cm Breeches (D), width, Weight: 1.1 kg Packed weight of parts B and D, Circumference: 56.0 cm Wig (L), circumference, Circumference: 56.0 cm Wig (M), circumference, Length: 65 cm Wig(L) - laid flat, Width: 19 cm Wig(L)-laid flat, Length: 63 cm Wig(M)-laid flat, Width: 26 cm Wig(M)-laid flat, Length: 645 mm Part L (laid flat), Width: 461 mm Part L (Laid flat), Length: 1322 mm Part M (laid flat), Width: 640 mm Part M (laid flat), Weight: 1.25 kg Parts L and M, measured in box

Object history note

This multi-part costume was worn in 1981 by Adam Ant for the publicity photographs and promotional video for the single, Prince Charming, and later on tour. There are two shirts, two pairs of breeches, two wigs and two scarfs, not identical but in similar styles, all worn in different combinations on tour. The gold and black striped shirt (S.140A-1983) and the dark silver leather breeches (S.140C-1983) were worn for the publicity photographs and in the video.

Descriptive line

'Prince Charming' costume worn by Adam Ant, 1981

Labels and date

'Prince Charming' outfit worn by Adam Ant

Adam Ant was the idiosyncratic front man of the British New Wave band Adam and the Ants. He spearheaded its artistic direction and designed all his own costumes. Now iconic, these costumes are indebted to historical, military and tribal dress. The one worn in the video for the 'Prince Charming' single is perhaps the most widely known of all. [60 words]

Wool, satin, furnishing fabric, Lurex, leather and plastic
Jacket made by Dave Whiting

Given by Stuart Leslie Goddard (known as Adam Ant)
Museum no. S.140&A, C, E to K, N, O-1983 []


Entertainment & Leisure; Stage costumes; Gender and Sexuality


Theatre and Performance Collection

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