James Bond’s Warm-Weather Black Tie Etiquette


Daniel Craig’s ivory dinner jacket in Spectre

After 30 years, James Bond will once again be wearing an ivory dinner jacket in Spectre. Bond started a tradition of often wearing an ivory dinner in warm climates 51 years ago in Goldfinger. In the six appearances of the ivory dinner jacket throughout the series, Bond has demonstrated how to properly wear warm weather black tie.

Bond’s warm-weather dinner jackets are ivory and not pure white because many natural fibres—particularly wool—have oils that prevent them from being bleached pure white. Calling it a “white” dinner jacket is not incorrect since white is the intended colour. Though Sean Connery’s ivory dinner jackets are made of wool, Roger Moore wears ivory dinner jackets in silk and linen. Daniel Craig’s ivory dinner jacket in Spectre is made of 56% silk and 44% viscose, a cool-wearing semi-synthetic fibre derived from cellulose.

Bond's first ivory dinner jacket in Goldfinger

Bond’s first ivory dinner jacket in Goldfinger

The ivory dinner jacket is part of the black tie dress code, which means it should only be worn after 6 pm. A light jacket does not mean it is for daytime. The jacket follows the conventions of its black and midnight blue counterparts, and the only exception is that the ivory dinner jacket traditionally does not have silk facings. Silk facings on an ivory dinner jacket are typically the mark of the cheap rental, though Daniel Craig’s considerably expensive ivory Tom Ford dinner jacket in Spectre has grosgrain silk facings. It lacks the refined taste of Bond’s previous ivory dinner jackets. Whilst black and midnight blue dinner jackets have silk facings to primarily differentiate them from ordinary lounge jackets, the ivory dinner jacket does not need such a distinctive mark. White dinner jackets are always worn with black or midnight blue trousers that match.

The ivory dinner jacket is strictly worn in warm weather. There’s no absolute consensus as to where the ivory dinner jacket should appropriately be worn, except it should never be worn in the British Isles and only in warm weather. Bernhard Roetzel states in his book Gentleman: A Timeless Guide to Fashion, “The white tuxedo is worn at open-air evening parties and on cruises.” Roetzel’s statement suggests that if the weather is warm enough to be comfortable outdoors, the ivory dinner jacket is appropriate.

Sean Connery's ivory dinner jacket in Diamonds Are Forever

Sean Connery’s ivory dinner jacket in Diamonds Are Forever

The tropics are the most appropriate place for an ivory dinner jacket. Sean Connery wears his ivory dinner jacket in the Goldfinger pre-title sequence in an unknown country in Latin American, a tropical region. Connery again wears the ivory dinner jacket in Diamonds Are Forever in Las Vegas. Las Vegas in not in the tropics, but the ivory dinner jacket is well-suited for its hot desert climate. The ivory dinner jacket is generally considered appropriate anywhere in the United States during the summer months, though some consider the northern states’ climate to not be right at any time of year for it.

In Thunderball, Bond visits the Bahamas, which is an appropriate location for an ivory dinner jacket. In the casino scene there, Adolfo Celi’s villain Largo is dressed in an elegant double-breasted ivory dinner jacket, whilst Bond contrasts him in an equally suitable midnight blue mohair dinner suit. However, Bond opts for the white dinner jacket in Ian Fleming’s novel Thunderball.


Roger Moore’s ivory dinner jacket in The Man with Golden Gun

Roger Moore first wears an ivory dinner jacket in The Man with the Golden Gun for a 9 pm dinner with Hai Fat in Thailand, which is within the tropics. Moore later wears an ivory dinner jacket in Octopussy in Udaipur, India, which lies one degree of latitude north of the Tropic of Cancer. Though technically not in the tropics, the weather is certainly hot enough to justify wearing an ivory dinner jacket. When Bond arrives at Kamal Khan’s club in his dinner jacket, the sky is still light. If it is June or July, it could be 6 pm. Only a few scenes later, Bond is having dinner in the same dinner jacket under a night sky.

Roger Moore’s last ivory dinner jacket is worn in daylight in A View to a Kill at Château de Chantilly in France, just north of Paris. Though it is daylight, the reception Bond attends starts at 6 pm, and because this scene takes place not long after the Royal Ascot at the beginning of summer, the sunset in the part of France would have been close to 10 pm. However, the location for wearing an ivory dinner jacket is questionable as it is very far north of the tropics and has the same climate as England. But since the weather is warm and the reception is outdoors, the ivory dinner jacket doesn’t look out of place. The ivory dinner jacket is more appropriate down south in the sub-tropical Mediterranean region, where Roger Moore occasionally wears a white silk dinner jacket in The Saint.

Roger Moore's ivory dinner jacket in A View to a Kill

Roger Moore’s ivory dinner jacket in A View to a Kill

Daniel Craig wears an ivory dinner jacket in Spectre in Morocco, a country with a largely Mediterranean climate. Humphrey Bogart established a precedent for wearing an ivory dinner jacket in Morocco in the 1942 film Casablanca. Based on the trailer, Bond appropriately wears his dinner jacket in the evening whilst having dinner on a train.

Despite the ivory dinner jacket being just as classic as black and midnight blue, they go in and out of fashion, and some people don’t care for them. Hardy Amies writes in his 1994 book The Englishman’s Suit:

One has to say firmly that a white dinner coat is effortlessly ‘naff’. It was derided by those who knew what was what in Venice ten years ago. I don’t suppose it matters what you wear in the Caribbean. But it looks seriously awful in Europe. It is also very impractical. A dinner suit should be made in a cloth of the lightest weight available, in midnight blue, of course. You can then wear it all the year round. The cloth used in white coats is not lighter and, if not wool, creases unattractively.

Also in the 1990s, Bond shared Amies’ opinion and did not wear any ivory dinner jackets. He could have in the Monte Carlo casino in GoldenEye, but every man in the casino is dressed in black. In The World is Not Enough, some men in the Azerbaijan casino are dressed in ivory dinner jackets, but Bond wears midnight blue. It’s a less appropriate location for an ivory dinner jacket, especially considering that it’s wintertime. Bond’s ally Valentin Zukovsky wears a flashy light taupe dinner jacket, which, like the ivory dinner jacket, is better suited for a warmer place.


Roger Moore’s ivory dinner jacket in Octopussy

The Final Spectre Trailer: Blue Sharkskin Suit and Light Brown Jacket


In the final Spectre trailer we get a look at two tailored outfits we haven’t seen much of before. The first is a blue sharkskin suit—woven in dark blue and light blue yarns—that we got a glimpse of in the full-length trailer. We also saw this outfit on a few of the final posters for Spectre. The final trailer features some great shots of this suit, and it’s the same as the other Tom Ford O’Connor suits in Spectre. The button three roll two suit jacket has straight shoulders with roped sleeveheads, a close fit and a short length. It is detailed with a single vent, slightly slanted flap pockets and four cuff buttons (with the last button worn open). The suit trousers have a flat front, narrow straight legs with turn-ups, and wide extended waistband with side adjusters,

With this suit, Bond wears a white shirt with a point collar and double cuffs. He matches the shirt with a folded white handkerchief in his breast pocket. The solid dark navy ottoman tie matches the darker yarns in the suit, and Bond ties it in a four-in-hand knot. Bond wears black, Dainite studded rubber-soled derby shoes with this suit with this suit, and they’re the Norwich model from Crockett & Jones.

Of all the looks that Daniel Craig wears in Spectre, this is the most classic Bond suit, and its elegant simplicity will prove to make this a memorable outfit. The navy two-piece suit with a navy tie recalls combinations that Sean Connery wears in From Russia with Love, Goldfinger and You Only Live Twice. The white shirt recalls the navy herringbone flannel suit that Connery wears in Goldfinger, as well as the literary Bond’s usual outfit.


The other outfit from Spectre that we get a new look at is light brown jacket with tan trousers that Daniel Craig wears in Morocco, which has been previously shown in a publicity still. The jacket and trousers are so close in colour that they look like a mismatched suit, but the jacket is darker and has more texture than the trousers have. Neither item is likely from Tom Ford. The light brown button three jacket is likely made of linen or a linen blend, and it is cut with soft shoulders and a close, short fit. Its fishmouth lapels have conspicuous pick stitching. The jacket also has slanted pockets and four cuff buttons with all fastened, if the jacket has working cuffs.

The flat front fawn-coloured trousers, which appear to be slightly lighter and smoother than the jacket, are likely a chino or drill cotton. What tells us that they are most likely not suit trousers is that they aren’t pressed with a crease and look much more casual. They have a low rise and narrow, straight legs. Craig wears them with what might be a brown braided leather belt with solid brown leather tab with holes on the end. The trousers may be the same trousers that Craig also wears with a navy Tom Ford polo and a tan suede jacket from Matchless.

My assessment that this is not a suit could be wrong, but if this is indeed a pairing of separate jacket and trousers, it would be James Bond’s first odd jacket since the navy double-breasted blazer in GoldenEye.

The white shirt may be from Tom Ford. The collar looks like it might be wider than the others in the film, which are point collars, but it is also a bit askew so it’s difficult accurately to assess the shape. The collar could be the same point collar that Daniel Craig wears on his shirts with all the other O’Connor suits in Spectre. This shirt may have cocktail cuffs. The tie is rust brown knitted silk with a pointed wide end and a straight narrow end, which suggests it is from Tom Ford. Though most knitted ties have straight ends, Tom Ford and a some others sell similar ties. In the fashion of the infamous pink tie in Diamonds Are Forever, this tie is too short and ends a few inches above the trousers. This outfit unusually lacks a pocket square. The sunglasses are the Tom Ford Henry model.

Seeing Bond in light brown again makes us recall Roger Moore, and this outfit is similar to but more casual and relaxed than any of the brown suits or tan sports coats that Moore wears in his Bond films. Let us not forget the tan suit that Timothy Dalton wears in The Living Daylights, also worn in Morocco like this brown outfit in Spectre. Dalton dresses his suit down by forgoing the tie, but even though Craig wears a tie with this outfit it still has the same casual demeanour. Like on Moore, the light brown jacket is flattering to Daniel Craig’s complexion.

Due to only having a brief shot of this brown outfit in the trailer and only one still, the observations on this outfit may not be entirely accurate and are highly subject to change.

James Bond’s Dinner Jackets by Colour: Black, Midnight Blue and Ivory

Do you prefer James Bond in a black, midnight blue or ivory dinner jacket? The following infographic shows each colour of Bond’s dinner jackets (also known as Tuxedos) by film. Black and midnight blue dinner jackets make up part of a dinner suit with matching trousers, whereas ivory dinner jackets are worn with black trousers.


Bullseye!: A Double-Breasted Grey Chalk Stripe Suit


Roger Moore as Gerald Bradley-Smith, with Michael Caine

The 1990 Michael Winner film Bullseye! stars Roger Moore and Michael Caine as both a pair a nuclear physicists and a pair of con men who impersonate the physicists. It also features Roger Moore’s daughter Deborah Moore (credited as Deborah Barrymore) and Derren Nesbitt, whom shirtmaker Frank Foster said I resemble a younger version of. John Bloomfield is the costume designer. Though Moore and Caine shared the same tailor, Douglas Hayward, there isn’t a whole lot of Hayward’s tailoring in the film. Aquascutum is thanked in the credits for contributing suits, coats and raincoats for both Moore and Caine. Dormeuil, a French textile company, is also thanked in the credits, but their cloths may have been used for women’s clothing.


Roger Moore as Sir John Bavistock

Roger Moore plays two characters in this film, Sir John Bavistock, a nuclear physicist, and Gerald Bradley-Smith, a conman who resembles Bavistock. In trying to impersonate Bavistock, Bradley-Smith purchases a suit identical to the double-breasted, dark grey chalk stripe suit Bavistock wears. The suit resembles the navy double-breasted suit made by Douglas Hayward that Roger Moore wears as James Bond in Octopussy, and this suit in Bullseye! was most likely made by Hayward.

Bradley-Smith picking out Bavistock's suit

Bradley-Smith picking out Bavistock’s suit

The double-breasted suit jacket has four buttons with one to button, which was a popular style in the 1980s and early 1990s. Though more fashionable brands usually paired this low keystone buttoning style with a low gorge (the seam where the collar meets the lapels), Hayward kept the gorge at a classic height. The jacket has soft shoulders with roped sleeveheads, a moderately full chest and a suppressed waist (as suppressed as Moore’s girthier figure can handle). The jacket has a very flattering cut and style for Moore’s body.

Roger Moore with Sally Kirkland, Deborah Moore and Derren Nesbitt

Roger Moore with Sally Kirkland, Deborah Moore and Derren Nesbitt

Moore’s suit jacket is detailed with flapped pockets, double vents and four buttons on each cuff. The suit trousers have medium-width straight legs with plain hems, side pockets and likely a flat or darted front.

There are two small details that make the Bullseye! suit’s jacket different from the Octopussy navy suit’s jacket. The jacket in Octopussy has three cuff buttons whilst the Bullseye! jacket has four cuff buttons. Also, the jacket in Octopussy has a buttonhole in each lapel, but the Bullseye! jacket only has a buttonhole in the left lapel. I’ve seen suit jackets from Hayward made in this era that match the details on this suit jacket, so it’s still most likely that Hayward made this suit.


With the suit Moore wears a pale blue shirt that has a spread collar and double cuffs. The shirt is not made by Moore’s longtime shirtmaker Frank Foster due to its much shorter collar and link holes centred on the double cuffs instead of off-centred towards the fold. The regimental tie has stripes alternating red-navy-brown-navy, with the navy stripes slightly narrower than the others. This is the Winchester College tie, also known as the Old Wykehamist tie after the name for Winchester alumni. BIll Tanner wears the same tie with a similar suit in For Your Eyes Only. Moore knots the tie in a four-in-hand knot. He wears black shoes with the suit.


Basted for Bond: Examining Daniel Craig’s Tom Ford Clothes, Part 1

This week’s “Basted for Bond” infographic looks at the Tom Ford suits and coats that Daniel Craig wears in Quantum of Solace and Skyfall. This infographic details the differences between the “Regency” suit jacket from Quantum of Solace and the “O’Connor” suit jacket. Breakdowns of the navy overcoat and black greatcoat from Quantum of Solace and the navy topcoat from Skyfall are also included. A graphic for the Spectre clothes will come separately after the film is released.


The Quiller Memorandum: A Dependable Grey Suit


The popularity of the spy genre in the 1960s brought us the 1966 film The Quiller Memorandum. The character Qullier was originally written by novelist Elleston Trevor—under the pseudonym Adam Hall—as a British agent in the 1965 novel The Berlin Memorandum. In The Quiller Memorandum he is an American played by American actor George Segal, but he is still working for the British.


The Quiller Memorandum has a few things in common with the James Bond series, including a John Barry score (which is very different from his Bond scores), a song sung by “From Russia With Love” singer Matt Monro, and a villain played by Max von Sydow (who played Blofed in the unofficial Bond film Never Say Never Again). Though the film is not especially unique or interesting, the main character is well-dressed in a Bond-like manner. Like Cary Grant does in North By Northwest, George Segal wears a single suit throughout almost the entire film. Only in the final scene of the film does Segal change his clothes. But unlike in Northwest By Northwest, the suit in The Quiller Memorandum never has a chance to get cleaned.


Though Quiller is an American in this film, the film was made in England and Germany, and George Segal is almost certainly wearing an English suit. Like Sean Connery’s Anthony Sinclair suits, Segal’s suit has an unassuming look that is perfect for a spy. The suit is tailored in a Bond-like lightweight medium grey pick-and-pick wool and has a similar cut to Sean Connery’s Anthony Sinclair suits, but with a few notable differences. The suits are similar in that jackets both button two and are cut with soft shoulders, roped sleeveheads, a full chest, a gently nipped waist and narrow lapels. Instead of the low button stance on Connery’s suit jackets, Segal’s suit jacket has a medium button stance.


Segal’s suit jacket is cut with a slightly short length to reflect the contemporary trends, but the jacket is just long enough to cover his buttocks. It is detailed with jetted pockets, three cuff buttons and double vents. Black buttons contrast with the jacket. The suit trousers have an extended waistband with a hidden hook-and-eye closure, “Daks top” side adjusters with two buttons, slanted side pockets, front darts (positioned in front of the pockets) and straight legs with turn-ups.

Under the suit, Segal wears an ecru shirt with a point collar that has a lot of tie space, a front placket and rounded single-button cuffs. The cuff button is placed near the base of the cuff. The textured burgundy tie is very flattering to Segal’s warm spring complexion and blonde hair, and he ties it in a four-in-hand knot. Segal wears black lace-up shoes with his suit.


George Segal wears clothes by On Her Majesty’s Secret Service tailor Dimi Major in the 1973 film A Touch of Class. The suit in The Quiller Memorandum shares a slight resemblance with Dimi Major’s cut, and the shoulders on Segal’s suits in A Touch of Class look identical to this suit’s shoulders. The Quiller suit lacks the fashionable flair that could be found on George Lazenby’s suits three years later, and though the shape of the jacket’s lapels is different, the trouser style is the same. There is a possibility that Dimi Major could have made this suit.


Rittenhouse Costume Cards


As many of you may know, Rittenhouse has sold “costume cards” of actual wardrobe clippings from the James Bond series. These include not only cards of James Bond’s clothes but of other characters as well, such as M, Mathis, Solange, Patrice, Silva and others. Most of these have been from clothes featured in Daniel Craig’s Bond films, but there have been cards from clothes throughout the series, including a piece of Sean Connery’s dinner suit in Dr. No. Many costume cards can be found on eBay, though the cards of Bond’s tie swatches are some of the most in-demand.

I own nine costume cards, including:

  1. The navy linen suit and blue end-on-end shirt from the black-and-white bathroom fight in Casino Royale.
  2. The grey linen Brioni suit and white self-stripe shirt from the Bahamas arrival in Casino Royale.
  3. The black Alfani shirt and mink Ted Baker trousers from the Bahamas poker scene in Casino Royale.
  4. The light blue poplin Brioni shirt worn with the navy track stripe suit from the final scene in Casino Royale.
  5. The pale blue Tom Ford shirt and navy pinstripe Tom Ford suit (with dirty trousers) from the opening scene of Quantum of Solace.
  6. The brown mohair tonic Tom Ford suit from the Bolivia arrival in Quantum of Solace.
  7. The black Tom Ford polo shirt and off-white Levi’s jeans from Quantum of Solace.
  8. The white Tom Ford shirt and midnight blue Tom Ford suit worn in Bolivia in Quantum of Solace.
  9. The light blue and charcoal grenadine-like tie worn with the charcoal rope stripe suit in Skyfall.

Which do you own?

Woven Tie Patterns


Sean Connery, George Lazenby and Timothy Dalton wear mostly solid ties in their James Bond films, and Roger Moore wears solid, striped and printed ties in his James Bond films. Pierce Brosnan and Daniel Craig (until Spectre) have mostly eschewed the ties that their predecessors wore for ties with woven patterns. These often intricate patterns are woven on a Jacquard loom. When the pattern is woven, the colours will be more vivid and more defined than on printed ties. Though most striped ties are also woven with different coloured yarns rather than printed, this article will be focusing on other types of patterns than stripes.


The first tie Bond wears that has a non-striped woven pattern is a navy tie with small white polka dots, He wears this tie with his navy double-breasted suit in Octopussy. Dots, from polka dots to pin dots, can be found both printed on and woven in ties, but woven dots are more vivid and defined.


The plaid tie Roger Moore wears with his grey tweed jacket in A View to a Kill also has a woven pattern, but it’s woven just as any ordinary plaid for a jacket or shirt would be woven in an ordinary even twill weave. Though stripes and checks on ties appear diagonally, they are not woven into the cloth diagonally. Ties are cut on the bias (diagonally) so they hang straight and don’t curl in either direction, hence why patterns on ties are usually diagonal. If the ribs on a tie are horizontal or vertical, it usually means the tie is woven in a twill weave.


Starting with GoldenEye, Bond has almost exclusively worn ties with woven patterns. In Pierce Brosnan’s Bond films the woven patterns vary from small to large. They range from small neat patterns and dots, to large chevrons and geometric patterns. The small neat patterns include the blue and bronze Turnbull & Asser tie that Bond wears with his vicuna-coloured overcoat and navy birdseye three-piece suit in Tomorrow Never Dies, the Herbie Frogg tie that Bond wears in the pipeline in The World Is Not Enough and the blue and yellow squares Turnbull & Asser tie that Bond wears on the plane with his navy birdseye suit in Die Another Day.

Some of Pierce Brosnan’s geometric ties include the black and gold tie in GoldenEye, the black tie with red, silver and gold lines and squares in The World Is Not Enough and the grey tie with blue circles in Die Another Day. The last two ties are from Turnbull & Asser. Though the weaving of these large patterns is very impressive, these are the furthest ties Bond has worn from the solid black knitted ties of his literary origins or the solid grenadine ties of his cinematic origins.


Daniel Craig’s James Bond continues on from Brosnan’s by wearing mostly ties with woven patterns. Craig’s Bond, however, has preferred more discrete neat patterns, usually woven in two or three colours. His ties often have a basket weave appearance, but the patterns are created on a Jacquard loom with floated yarns that only mimic a basket weave. We see this basket weave look on the navy and white tie with the charcoal blue checked suit in Casino Royale, on the navy and white tie with the midnight blue suit in Quantum of Solace and on the navy and grey tie with the navy herringbone suit at the end of Skyfall.


Many of the other ties that Daniel Craig’s Bond wears have other square patterns that look more complex than a basket weave. Craig’s other ties in his first three Bond films that don’t have a pattern of squares are the blue and white honeycomb tie with the three-piece navy pinstripe suit at the end of Casino Royale, the aubergine and black tie with white pin dots with the charcoal suit in Quantum of Solace, the oval-patterned tie at the end of Quantum of Solace and the two grenadine-esque ties in Skyfall. The ties in Quantum of Solace and Skyfall are made by Tom Ford.

Daniel Craig grey suit with grey rope stripes in Skyfall