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Auction Freddie Mercury Sotheby’s 

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Push the graffitied Garden Lodge door – the green original is for sale (above) – and you enter the world of Freddie Mercury. The lead singer of rock band Queen, his whole life, stopped in time since his death in the early 1991, is laid before you.

The Kensington mansion has been brought to Bond Street to showcase Sotheby’s forthcoming sale – Freddie Mercury: A World of His Own. You are invited to walk through every room of his house – dining room, lounge, party room, conservatory – and every trinket, artwork and piece of furniture is displayed life-like with the perfume of fresh lilies filling the air. This is Chez Freddie!

His extensive wardrobe is here. From stage costumes to the cat waistcoat he wore in his final appearance. Freddie wasn’t a slave to fashion. He wasn’t hung up on designers and keeping pace with trends. As long as the garments made him the focus of everybody’s attention he was happy. He was a showman, but his dress down, was that, dressed down. There are lots of T-shirts, sportswear, trainers and casual jackets.

The star menswear exhibit is his ‘Killer Queen’ fur jacket (below) which became a staple of his wardrobe from 1973 onwards. It made its first appearance on Top of the Pops in October 1974 for a performance of ‘Killer Queen’. The auction house says he probably spent the longest period of time wearing it than any other garment in this collection.

What is clear is that Freddie didn’t take clothes seriously looking at the many humorous slogans on the tops. There was his stage wardrobe and his comfort focussed off-duty clothes.

Sotheby’s has done a superb job and it feels like an event many years of negotiation in the making.

He holds a special place in people’s hearts and no doubt many of the estimates will be smashed as fans go gaga over this once-in-a-lifetime auction.

Until 5th September – FREE (Expect to queue)