Evelyn Tremble: Too Many Patch Pockets

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Evelyn Tremble, played by Peter Sellers, is one of the many characters who become James Bond in the 1967 spoof of Casino Royale. He wears a very interesting tweed jacket on his visit to MI6. The button three jacket is made in a check with wide stripes of brown and a mix of brown and blue, separated with a grid of dark brown and a red overcheck. The jacket has softly-padded shoulders, a clean chest, narrow lapels, double vents and three-button cuffs. Though it must have been on purpose, the jacket’s collar noticeably stands away from the neck. This could be due to a poor fit, or the jacket could just deliberately be placed hanging off one side to make the character look sloppy. Tremble’s character is nothing like the James Bond he is recruited to be, and one of the things that sets him apart from Bond is his occasionally careless manner of dress.

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The pockets are a very unique part of this jacket. In addition to the usual breast pocket and two hip pockets there is also a ticket pocket. All of the pockets are patch pockets with slanted flaps. Patch pockets with flaps creates a very casual—but also bulky—look. Ordinary welt breast pockets are typical on jackets with flapped patch pockets to avoid having an awkward flapped patch breast pocket, but this jacket has the flapped patch breast pocket. When a jacket has a patch breast pocket, most often all the pockets are all open pockets. Most unusual is the inclusion of a patch ticket pocket. Because it’s a patch pocket, the pockets cannot overlap and the flap ends up above the waist because of the extra height needed for the patch. An ordinary welt and flap ticket pocket would have been best so the flap wouldn’t be so high up. Such a high ticket pocket visually shortens the torso considerably, and Peter Sellers was a slightly shorter-than-average man at 5’8″. Thus the extra patch pocket makes the jacket look very crowded. Ticket pockets in general can look crowded on a shorter man, but in any case there’s far too much going on with the pockets on this jacket.

Evelyn-Tremble-Tweed-Jacket-3Tremble’s cream shirt fits much better than the suit does and may have been made by Frank Foster, who often made shirts for Peter Sellers. The shirt has a spread collar and double cuffs. Tremble wears a red knitted tie. The taupe trousers have a flat front and, most likely, cross pockets like his other trousers in the film have.

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Evelyn Tremble: Dinner Suits

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In 1967’s Casino Royale spoof, Peter Sellers plays a baccarat expert named Evelyn Tremble, who isn’t the nattiest of dressers. But he’s turned into one of the film’s many James Bonds and is put into a midnight blue dinner suit worthy of the character. The dinner jacket has straight shoulders, buttons one, and has cran Necker notched lapels faced in midnight blue satin silk. The only time we see Bond wearing the cran Necker lapel style in the series is in A View to a Kill. It still isn’t the ideal lapel style for a dinner jacket, but everything else is right. The jacket also has jetted pockets and double vents. The flat front trousers have frogmouth pockets.

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Tremble’s white dress shirt has a pleated front, covered-button placket and curved double cuffs. Frank Foster was Sellers’ personal shirtmaker, though I see no evidence that this is a Foster shirt. Tremble wears a black satin, batwing bow tie and a matching narrow cummerbund. His shoes are short, black ankle boots.

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A shawl collar dinner suit on Tremble earlier in the film.

Before Tremble becomes James Bond, he wears a black shawl collar dinner suit. Whilst many would consider the shawl collar to be more refined than the notched lapels on Tremble’s later dinner jacket, the later outfit improves much over the earlier one. Besides this dinner jacket not being as well fitted, Tremble is wearing a regular white shirt, and his trousers have a belt.

Sir James Bond: Edwardian Tweed

The 1967 Casino Royale spoof features many James Bonds, though the original Bond (know knighted) is played by David Niven. Niven wears a sports suit tailored by Benson, Perry & Whitley, of 9 Cork Street, London, who was also Ian Fleming’s tailor. The overall style has an Edwardian button four front, which came back into high fashion for a time during the 1960s. Some people in the fashion industry, such as Hardy Amies, thought the old style came back to stay, and in turn would inspire a button five suit to become popular. But suits ultimately went in the opposite direction, with the button two model prevailing. For a time in the 1960s button one suits were also popular, as evidenced by other spies such as John Steed and Maxwell Smart (who also wore button four suits).

David Niven’s suit is made from an olive and brown Glen Urquhart check tweed with a red overcheck and trimmed with light brown leather elbow patches and shoulder patches for shooting. Apart from the button four front (of which Niven buttons the top 3), this suit also has the Edwardian touch of gauntlet (turnback) cuffs, which fasten with 2 buttons. Other details include beige horn buttons and hacking pockets with a ticket pocket. What brings the suit coat out of the Edwardian era into the 1960s is the fashionably shorter length.

Under the suit Niven wears a cream shirt with double cuffs and a colourful silk neckerchief. Niven’s braces are white with a bird print and have white braided ends. Removing his braces causes his trousers to drop, revealing his white boxer shorts. Outside the suit he wears a navy cape with a green collar and a forest green alpine hat with a rope band and feather.

The coat from this suit, though without the shoulder patches, was sold at Bonhams on 6 March 2007 for £240.