The sketchbooks of Star Wars costume designer John Mallo will be auctioned off next week

John Mollo Star Wars sketchbooks

Whether you are a Star Wars fan or not, you would have a hard time denying that the costumes worn in the iconic films are anything, if not mesmerizing. The attention to detail and unique approach to apparel were far beyond most outfits worn in the sci-fi films of that era.

Like many costume and fashion designers, John Mollo kept his drawings in sketchbooks and hung onto them over the years. By doing this, Mollo has left collector’s with an exhilarating compilation of artwork spread across several sketchbooks that are estimated to sell for over $100,000 each.


Since the age of 6, John Mollo knew he wanted to be a costume designer, a desire that was was sparked by a trip to the movies. Mollo spent many years living out his dream and was quite successful at it.

His success got enough attention that George Lucas selected him to create iconic uniforms that were truly innovative when compared to the outfits typically seen in the sci-fi genre. This was partially due to the fact that Mollo was unfamiliar with outfits typically worn, allowing him to enter into the work without being influenced much by others.

Katherine Schofield, Head of Entertainment Memorabilia, says, “John Mollo created costumes that elevated characters to cult cinematic status and this highly important archive of his notes and sketches demonstrates how brilliantly the designer merged fantasy and practicality. These sketchbooks are a unique part of cinema history – in my experience nothing like this has been seen before at auction – and will have immense appeal to collectors.”

Auction highlights

A highlight of the auction certainly worth calling attention to is a sketchbook dated from April 1975 to July 1976. It includes some of the first sketches of prominent figures like Chewbacca, stormtroopers, and even the legendary Darth Vader. Not only does it contain artwork, it also has budget notes and things he wanted to remember from meetings with George Lucas.

Another standout sketchbook worth mentioning dates back to 1978-1970 and contains designs from The Empire Strikes Back. If you’re a fan of Ridley Scott’s Alien, this might be a favorite of yours since it contains artwork from that classic sci-fi film as well.

Estimates and auction date

The auction begins on December 11, 2018 at 4PM GMT and sketchbooks are anticipated to fetch $100,000+ a piece. If that is in your price range, head over to the listing and register to bid.

If not, you may be content to hang a hilarious portrait of Darth Vader on the toilet, patent artwork for the Millennium Falcon, or a few word art prints.

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