After Bond is taken in by Columbo’s men in For Your Eyes Only, they give him clothes to change into from his dinner suit. He wears three pieces in light navy: a blouson, a polo neck and trousers. The blouson is probably made of nylon or a cotton and nylon blend. It has a darker navy ribbed knit collar, cuffs and waistband with elastic. It has a yoke in the front and the back, and slanted, zippered pockets. The polo neck is made of fine knit cotton, worn tucked into the trousers. The long-rise, flat-front trousers are worn with black belt with a brass buckle, matching his black shoes.
“It was, exceptionally, a hot day in early June. James Bond put down the dark gray chalk pencil that was the marker for the dockets routed to the Double-O Section and took off his coat. He didn’t bother to hang it over the back of his chair, let alone take the trouble to get up and drape the coat over the hanger Mary Goodnight had suspended, at her own cost (damn women!), behind the Office of Works’ green door of his connecting office. He dropped the coat on the floor. There was no reason to keep the coat immaculate, the creases tidy.”
This passage comes from Fleming’s short story “The Property of a Lady,” which was added to the Octopussy and The Living Daylights short story collection in 1967. It’s interesting to see that Bond didn’t always care for his clothes the way a well-dressed man ordinarily would. But since the weather was hot and the suit was lightweight, it was probably too wrinkled to wear again without a pressing anyway. Hopefully the floor was clean!
Ernst Stavro Blofeld’s first full appearance came in You Only Live Twice with Donald Pleasence‘s cartoon-like portrayal. Besides the bald head, scarred face and white cat, Pleasence’s Blofeld is also known for his Mao suit. The Mao suit represents the West’s biggest enemy at the time, communism, and it labels Blofeld as the enemy even though SPECTRE is not a communist organization. Blofeld’s tan silk Mao suit is tailored much like a western suit with structured shoulders and a structured chest, and it’s closely fitted through the body. Unlike typical Mao suits, Blofeld’s jacket only has two pockets instead of four. The pockets are patch pockets with button-flaps, but the buttons are left undone. The jacket has a 5-button front, a turn-down collar and a single vent at the back. The trousers have a narrow leg and plain bottoms. Underneath the jacket, Blofeld wears a white-on-white stripe shirt with double cuffs. It’s probably a tunic shirt without a collar. His shoes are medium brown ankle boots with elastic under the instep.
One example of this suit’s jacket was sold at Bonhams in Knightsbridge on 17 November 2005 for £25,200. According to the listing, M. Berman Ltd. made the jacket for Donald Pleasence.
Bond chose an all grey outfit for blending into Blofeld’s volcano in You Only Live Twice. To hide himself, he keeps his entire body covered except for the face. The outfit consists of a knit shirt with a mock polo neck collar (which Bond folds down), trousers, soft climbing shoes, gloves and an open-face ninja mask, all in mid grey. Bond later removes the gloves and ninja mask.
Bond’s first suit in From Russia With Love reminds me of the conservative suits I see on many businessmen in America. It is probably the two-button front and single vent, which has long been the dominating style in America. Pleated trousers with turn-ups go along with that too as the most common style in America, though traditional forward pleats like Bond wears have been replaced by reverse pleats in almost all major American brands in the past 15 years, with the notable exception being Polo Ralph Lauren. The suit jacket is typical of Connery’s suits from Anthony Sinclair, with natural shoulders (that are big due to Connery’s build, a draped chest and a nipped waist. It’s made from a navy cloth in what’s probably worsted flannel.
The shirt is Connery’s usual pale blue poplin from Turnbull & Asser with a spread collar and 2-button turnback cuffs. The tie is a nay grenadine. Bond’s shoes are black lace-ups, though it is difficult to tell if they are oxford or derby-style. Bond wears his then usual white linen folded handkerchief in his breast pocket.
In Venice in Casino Royale, Bond wears a blue 2-button, interlock knit cotton polo shirt. What sets this shirt apart from most polos is a self-collar and a hidden-button fly placket. This shirt was not made by Sunspel like most of the other knit shirts in the film. However, the grey crew-neck undershirt visible underneath the polo is by Sunspel. The trousers are navy cotton twill chinos. Bond’s trainers are the Nike Air Articulate II model in (what appears to be) dark grey.
Today is Roger Moore’s 84th birthday and we will be looking at his classic riding ensemble from A View to a Kill. The outfit closely resembles Connery’s country outfit in Goldfinger. Moore wears a very similar 2-button brown barleycorn tweed sports coat, but this one does not have hacking pockets despite its intended equestrian use. But it does have a single vent, which is most practical on horseback.
If you look closely at the lapels you’ll see that they are not typical notch lapels. This type of angled notch lapel is known as cran Necker and often found in Parisian tailoring. Whilst this sports coat was still most likely made by Moore’s regular tailor, Douglas Hayward, he might have made it this way since Bond is wearing the coat in France.
|Notice the cran Necker notch lapels|
Bond goes for a beige shirt, with a spread collar, placket front and 1-button cuffs. His tie is a yellow wool knit, tied in a Prince Albert knot that gives it the long shape. His trousers are dark brown jodhpurs, which tuck inside his tall black riding boots.
Completing the ensemble are a brown velvet riding helmet and gloves in beige cord and brown leather. This outfit is the last Bond wears as his alias St. John Smythe.
Posing as horse stable heir James St. John Smythe, James Bond wears a blue blazer with a day cravat in A View To a Kill. The blue—slightly lighter than navy—blazer is tailored by Douglas Hayward is his usual low 2-button style with natural shoulders, roped sleeveheads and a clean chest. The blazer has brass buttons, with 4 on the cuffs, flapped pockets and double vents. Bond wears the blazer with stone-coloured trousers.
A white shirt and burgundy day cravat accompany the blazer. The shirt has a placket front, single-button cuffs and a spread collar, which is curved in inside the blazer. Bond only leaves the collar button unfastened. The day cravat is mostly burgundy, with a pattern including other colours. The cravat is more a part of St. John Smythe than it is a part of Bond.