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Etsy has just re-released Grateful Dead’s ultra-popular Dancing Bears bobbleheads, which sold out almost immediately during its initial run. But you’ll have to get your hands on the collectible item fast; the online retailer has only released 400 more of the hand-painted bears and they’re sure to go fast.
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The officially-licensed merch is part of a long-running collaboration between Kollectico and Warner Music Group, who say they worked directly with the iconic rock band for approval on the designs. The 24-inch bobbleheads are hand painted in four different primary colors (red, orange, yellow, green and blue), with each one individually numbered and packaged in a collectible box. The colorful dancing bears have become a signature logo for the band after appearing on the back cover of their 1973 release “The History of the Grateful Dead, Volume 1 (Bear’s Choice).” The design is said to have been inspired by their beloved sound engineer Owsley “Bear” Stanley.
But if you don’t get your hands on the fast-selling bears in time, worry not. We’ve rounded up the best Grateful Dead merch to gift to your favorite Deadheads, and you’re sure to find something you love.
Limited-Edition Grateful Dead Dancing Bear Bobbleheads
You’ll have to act fast if you want to get your hands on these psychedelic collectible items. Only 400 of the ultra-popular 24-inch hand painted bobbleheads were re-released today on Etsy. They come in four bright primary colors reminiscent of the band’s favorite tie-dye combos: red, orange, yellow, green and blue. But if you prefer Jerry over the bears, we don’t blame you: snag a Funk Pop! of the iconic guitarist instead.
44% Off Furreal Classic Grateful Dead Flip-Flops
A footwear wardrobe exclusively made up of flip-flops and sandals is already a sign of a Grateful Dead fan, but design them with psychedelic Dancing Bears and you have yourself a true Deadhead. For something more subtle, you can go for these navy green flip-flops part of the same collection.
Grateful Dead Changing Poncho
If Grateful Dead and the surf are two defining aspects of your identity, then you’ll appreciate this ultra-soft changing poncho designed with the band’s signature skull design on the top right corner. It’s built with kangaroo pockets, winter-weight cotton terry and a double-layer woven hood so you can stay cozy on the beach before and after going into the water.
Grateful Dead Tie-Dye Playing Cards
These make the best addition to any camping trip or long car ride. The full pack comes with different funky images, all featuring the band’s classic skull imagery and tie-dye patterns.
Beary Good & Sunshine Daydream Mineral Soak
<img class="wp-image-1234953338" src="https://variety.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/04/Grateful-Dead-Mineral-Soak.jpg?w=1024" alt=". - Credit: Courtesy Of Urban Outfitters" width="600" height="349" srcset="https://variety.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/04/Grateful-Dead-Mineral-Soak.jpg 1748w, https://variety.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/04/Grateful-Dead-Mineral-Soak.jpg?resize=150,87 150w, https://variety.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/04/Grateful-Dead-Mineral-Soak.jpg?resize=300,175 300w" sizes="(min-width: 87.5rem) 1000px, (min-width: 78.75rem) 681px, (min-width: 48rem) 450px, (max-width: 48rem) 250px" />Courtesy Of Urban Outfitters
From Wild Yonder Botanicals, these all natural, hand-blended, honey-infused mineral soaks can also be used as a body scrub (depending on how you prefer to spend your bath time). The collaboration began in 2018 and has since expanded to a whole Grateful Dead collection with air fresheners and roll-on oils.
Good Ol Grateful Dead Stance Socks
You cannot go wrong with Stance socks. These reliable wonders have been growing with wild popularity online for a few years now. The Dead line has a few fun looks that could easily elevate your foot game including these “Steal Your Boyd” red, white and blue babies and the tamer grey numbers complete with skeleton print. The mainly cotton socks are extremely breathable with medium cushioning.
Started by three friends, Slowtide creates comfort for outdoor hangouts. The brands whole vibe is basically creating various blankets and towels to keep your beach hangs both comfortable and stylish. You’ll spot their towels at trendy places including the Los Angeles, Portland and Palm Springs Ace Hotels. However, it’s their recent Grateful Dead collaboration that keeps selling out. This line includes over 12 different Grateful Dead-inspired blankets, towels and robes. There’s also a little California quick-dry towel and this white “Truckin” towel.
Grateful Dead Warner Bros. Studio Albums Vinyl Box Set
In the period of four years (1967 to 1970), Grateful Dead put out five studio albums (and one live album) that would establish their jam band ethos. That collection has been bundled together in a vinyl box set and includes the albums: “The Grateful Dead,” “Anthem Of The Sun,” “Aoxomoxoa,” “Workingman’s Dead” and “American Beauty.” If you’re just looking for one, simple Dead album to add to your collection, we recommend “Aoxomoxoa.” “American Beauty” is by far and away their most popular studio album, but the “St. Stephen” track on Aoxomoxoa will literally change your life. If you’re looking for a live vinyl, we normally don’t plug “best” albums but this live compilation from ’69 to ’77 is pretty great.
‘Dig We Must’ T-Shirt
Tie-dye and the Grateful Dead, it’s like peanut butter and jelly, two great tastes that taste great together. To love the Dead is to love the whirly designs of tie-dye, and what better way to do it than with this adorable purple cotton tee?
‘Ripple Junction’ T-Shirt
If you’re looking for something with a vintage feel, the cotton t-shits of Ripple Junction have a faded vibe and a “been there” look, despite probably not being old enough to have lived through this show at all.
If you’re a true deadhead, it’s time to represent on your guitar while you slowly pick through the opening of “Uncle John’s Band.” If you’re looking for something a little less dancing bear, we love this steal your face strap with the bands name printed across. And while you’re at it, pick up a few guitar picks as well.
Keep your whole 2021 hippie vibe flowing all the way to the beach or the park with this cute Igloo collab. The vintage-styled coolers have returned with a tie-dye motif that says, “there’s probably something good in here.” If you’re on the hunt for the more elusive blue cooler, head to Target.
Let’s not even pretend for a second that you’re not into stickers. If you’ve made it this far in the “Best Grateful Dead Merchandise” list, you definitely have a steal your face sticker on something or another in your life. What’s a few more?
Smathers & Branson Dancing Bears Belt
For the yippie at heart. Just because you have to dress business casual at work or at your friend’s wedding, doesn’t mean you can’t add a little festive dancing bear flair. Normally known for their needlepoint belts of fish and boats, Smathers & Branson is the king of colorful accessories. It’s available in sizes 28 to 50 (depending on availability). When trying to size a S&B belt, the brand encourages purchasers to size up and add 2 inches to a men’s pant waist size.
Jerry Garcia Ties
Based on the artwork of late guitarist Jerry Garcia, who may not have worn ties that often, but he also didn’t work at a bank like your Dad.
Vintage 1992 Lithuania Tie Dye T-Shirt
The pièce de résistance of Grateful Dead merch. At the 1992 Summer Olympics in Barcelona, most eyes were on the remarkable and gold-winning dream team made up of NBA giants Michael Jordan, Scottie Pippen, Larry Bird, Patrick Ewing, David Robinson and Charles Barkley (to name a few). It was the stuff of legends. Meanwhile, the lesser-known Team Lithuania entered the Olympics as an independent country. With little to no funds, their story was penned in a local paper and read by the Grateful Dead. Inspired by their journey, the Dead decided to fund their trip to the Olympics. To commemorate their sponsors, designer Greg Speirs created a shirt from the colors of the Lithuanian flag with a skeleton dunking.
The team lost to the Americans 127-76, but when the Lithuanians beat the Unified Team for the bronze (made up of twelve out of the fifteen former Soviet republics) they wore these shirts to accept their trophies.
Tubbs Frontier Snowshoe
If you’re not going to go the traditional snowshoe route, then best to lean all the way in and go full deadhead snow bunny. This collaboration between the Dead and Tubbs is using the best-selling model from their whole snowshoe line. The limited edition shoes has EZ binding with a single buckle it makes getting in and out of the shoe simple.
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