In the mid 1980's, B & K Enterprises Costume Co., Inc. was fortunate with the introduction to Gene Doucette. The following information contains some photographs, news articles, and Gene's résumé.
This extremely talented man has taught Kim & I many lessons about costuming; but the most important thing he has given us over the years is his friendship. Gene is like a brother to us. He now does our embroidery work.
Gene originally taught Kim how to do this. In 1999 Kim was diagnosed with breast cancer. Gene relieved us of the burden of worry concerning the embroidery work on the costumes. He took it over, as he did when he designed the garments for Elvis. While we still cut the garments here, and do the rhinestone and stud work at our shop, Gene has utilized his talents to provide the customers with the best-quality embroidered costumes on the market -- bar none.
Gene is still involved with the design & costuming industry in California. He is an independent designer for many studios, and many of today's most talented stars. Kim and I are always proud of the fact that he is our very special friend.
“Anything I’ve ever accomplished, or created artistically, I dedicate and owe to my Mom, June Marie Read Doucette. She once said that I could draw before I could talk. All of my gifts are from her.
My Mom was a hard working woman with a natural gift to create. She was a true natural artisan. She could take a few bucks and redecorate our entire apartment out of odds and ends. She could knit, hang wallpaper, refinish furniture, cook, and manage to hold down a full time job as a waitress while raising four unruly kids who never managed to get sick at the same time. I sometimes wonder how she managed to put up with us. She was always there and never let us down.
Any talent I may posses comes truly from her. I can only hope that I’ve made her proud of me.” -Gene Doucette
Gene Doucette was born February 8, 1948 in Brooklyn, NY. He is the second of four children (2 boys & girls). Gene is of French Canadian and Iroquois Indian descent. His father was a printer, his mother a waitress.
Gene is a self-taught artist and has been drawing since he could hold a pencil. He moved to Los Angeles in 1970 in response to a job offer. The job fell through and Gene was stranded in LA with two suitcases and $25. He then worked as a bus boy, waiter, supermarket checker, and clothes salesman.
Gene met Kent Warner (costumer) at an MGM auction and Kent helped him get a job at Berman’s Costumes. At about the same time, Gene accepted employment with Pzazz Designs, a Hollywood-based costuming company. He started working out of the owner-operator, Nick Sherlock’s garage. Gene was hired to work part-time at first and it then became a full time job. As Pzazz grew, so did Gene’s position.
In 1972, Gene started doing the designing on Elvis Presley’s costumes. Because Gene worked in the background, Bill Belew’s name became synonymous with Elvis Costumes. In the 1970’s, Bill Belew was in big demand. He was busy doing television shows and movies, so he would give Gene the blank suits and Gene would design them himself. Gene designed most of the suits from 1972 until Elvis’ death. He designed the more elaborate suits such as the Aloha, Peacock, Sundial, Tiger, and American Eagle. The list goes on and on. In the late 1970’s, Pzazz fell on hard times. Gene started his free-lance career working for many different entertainers, television shows, and movies.
In 1988, Gene was brought together with Butch and Kim Polston of B & K Enterprises Costume Co., Inc. through Ciro Romano, Elvis’ tailor since 1968. At that time, a business relationship and close friendship was formed. Gene works on Elvis Presley remakes exclusively through B & K Enterprises Costume Co., Inc. , and also does designing on country western wear and outer wear. Gene also continues to work in the entertainment field.
Gene currently lives in a plush area of California with his kitten, Phoebe. In his spare time, Gene enjoys musicals (Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers), sci-fi movies and Disney. His fondest memory of Elvis was seeing him on the “Ed Sullivan Show” singing “Hound Dog”.
PROFESSIONAL RÉSUMÉ EMBROIDERY DESIGN SPECIALIST Member: I.A.T.S.E.
B&K Enterprises Costumes - Butch & Kim Polston (Costume & Embroidery Design)
House of Embroidery – Gabriel Amaya (Embroidery Design)
Silvia's Costumes - Silvia Tchakmakjian (Embroidery Design)
Elvis Presley - Concert & Personal Wardrobe (All Major Image Design Costumes)
The Bob Hope Special - 80th Birthday Paris 1983 – NBC (Emmy Nomination)
The Bob Hope Show - 9 Primetime Specials – NBC (USO Persian Gulf 1987)
Punky Brewster - Children's Primetime Special – NBC (Emmy Nomination)
Punky Brewster - TV series, NBC
Going Bananas - TV series, NBC - Hanna Barbera
NBC TV Affiliates - Promotion TV Specials, Affiliate Presentations
Chicago - National & International Tour
Sigfried & Roy - Las Vegas Act, Cable TV Special, National Tour
Southern Comfort - Las Vegas, International Tour
The Alamo - Country Stage & Specialty – Nashville
Stroker Ace - ( Loni Anderson, Burt Reynolds )-Special Costumes
Stir Crazy - ( Gene Wilder, Richard Pryor )-Special Costumes
Ultra Quiz - ( Dan Rowen & Dick Martin )-NBC Primetime Special
Gene Doucette/Holly Harp Collections-Spring Line
Crocker Center-Bunker Hill - Staff Uniforms - Gilbert M. Jordan, Cushman / McGuire Associate
Tapatio Springs Country Club - Staff Uniforms - Gilbert M. Jordan, Cannell & Chafin
Mr. Doucette will:
- Do any and/or all radio, TV, news interviews, spots, etc.
- Set on Stage at opening of a limited amount of shows for a question and answer session.
- Will act as Art and Technical Director in assisting Butch
- Polston in setting up some of the shows and displays.
- Will oversee amount of wardrobe to be set up for display. And arrangement of Display Cases.
You will need to organize and supply the following:
- All round trip airfares for Mr. Doucette
- Stage Security
- All publicity and promotional cost
- All transportation personal
- All Accommodations
- Interpreter - non English-speaking countries only
Notes: Price for Mr. Doucette will vary from state to state and country to country. Please allow 24-48 hours for price quote. Mr. Doucette’s services may be arranged with or without costume display.
Call 812-256-2687 for Details