During the climax of The Living Daylights, James Bond dresses as one of the Mujahideen in Afghanistan whilst fighting as one of them and also to disguise himself. On top he wears a medium brown leather—probably sheepskin—waistcoat, and it has four buttons from the neck down to the waist, where it cuts away. He wears the waistcoat open. Underneath the waistcoat Bond wears a warm grey shirt that has a short point collar that is laid flat. The collar has a band but it doesn’t have a button. However, the top button on the shirt isn’t more than an inch below the collar. The shirt also has an open breast pocket on the left side, a narrow placket and square 1-button cuffs.
Bond’s harem-like trousers match the shirt’s warm grey. They aren’t harem trousers to the extreme that M.C. Hammer made popular at the time, but they are very baggy in the thigh, have a somewhat low crotch and are fitted at the ankle. The waistband gathers with a drawstring. Bond wears a black belt around his waist on top of the shirt but underneath the waistcoat to hold his combat gear. To complete the disguise Bond wears a black Afghan turban.
Bond’s black leather combat boots have rubber soles attached with a storm welt. The boots also have a whopping 14 eyelets, and by that I mean 14 on each side! They are all metal eyelets and there are no speed hooks. They are laced in a standard criss-cross method, but combat boots are often laced in other methods, like the “Army Lacing” method mentioned on Ian’s Shoelace Site. The criss-cross lacing that Bond’s boots are laced in isn’t the best choice for him in this situation because he needs to cut the laces open quickly. Straight lacing methods—there are a few different methods listed on Ian’s Shoelace Site—are best for cutting the laces open because the horizontal sections of the lacing can be cut very quickly with a knife. Different militaries may have different ways of lacing shoes, and Bond may be used to lacing his shoes a certain way. With straight lacing, Necros would have died even quicker, making for perhaps a less suspenseful scene. The boots are the only part of this outfit that isn’t costume. With the boots Bond wears tall black socks.
In From Russia with Love, Bond finds a navy wool car coat and peaked cap in a SPECTRE agent’s truck to wear on his maritime escape from Trieste to Venice. His lightweight grey suit isn’t enough to keep him warm during his trip across the water. The hip-length coat just barely covers the suit jacket, so it’s not the best for wearing over a suit. In a way, the coat is like a single-breasted version of a pea coat, if only it had slash pockets instead of patch pockets. It has four buttons, with the top button at the base of the neck and the bottom at the top of the hip pockets. The hip pockets are open patch pockets. The coat has a yoke across the upper back, a vent in back, swelled edges and lapped seams.
With the car coat Bond wears a black peaked cap with a gold anchor embroidered at the front. Is he wearing the cap to let people know he’s the captain of this boat, is he wearing it to keep his head warm, or is he wearing it just for fun?
Aris Kristatos, played by Julian Glover in For Your Eyes Only, keeps wearing a suede trench coat in warm grey. It’s a full-length coat that hits below the knee, but unlike most trench coats which have raglan sleeves, this has set-in sleeves. There are actually ten buttons like would be found on the standard trench coat, and the buttons are grey horn. The coat has the usual trench coat details like a self belt, shoulder straps and angled pockets with buttoned flaps. It has straps around the wrists that close with brass buckles instead of the typical leather. There are yokes across the upper back and upper chest for dryness during snowfall. Most trench coats instead have the yoke only in back and a storm flap in front. The most noticeable part of this coat is the black fur on the collar and the revers. And for warmth, the coat is lined in black fur.
Underneath the trench coat Kristatos wears an olive green double-breasted blazer. It has six white metal buttons with two to fasten. Under the blazer he wears a red cashmere polo neck jumper. The combination of the red jumper and the green blazer hints that Kirstatos is affiliated with the Soviets, something we don’t learn until later in the film. Green and red were often found together on Soviet military uniforms, just with the red limited to accents. We briefly see a little bit of his trousers, which appear to be light grey in a shade similar to the trench coat. Kristatos wears tan leather gloves, most likely lined with cashmere for warmth. Bond, Kristatos and Ferrara all politely remove their gloves to shake hands. Unless the weather is extremely frigid, gloves meant for warmth should be removed for a handshake.
In On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, Bond finds a plaid wool ski jacket—or maybe it’s a ski lodge jacket—to wear over his blue ski suit. He wears it both for warmth and to hide from Irma Bunt and Blofeld’s henchmen. A bold plaid isn’t the ideal find for someone who is trying to keep unnoticed. Unlike the clothes Bond finds in Quantum of Solace, this jacket is not a perfect fit. It’s a size too large. The plaid wool is in black, white purple and orange. The jacket appears to have three grey leather-covered buttons on the front, from the top down to the waist. I would have guessed a coat like this would have a fourth button below the waist, but another button could limit movement when skiing since there isn’t a vent. There are also buttoned straps on the sleeves, slash pockets that are good for hand-warming, and a belt in the back. For additional warmth the jacket has a beige quilted lining.
Roger Moore wears a smart casual outfit of a tweed jacket with a polo neck jumper in a fifth series episode of The Saint titled “The Death Game”. The jacket is made in a grey tweed with a small check and is in a button-three cut with a little drape and natural shoulders. It has the trendy 1960s details of narrow lapels, short double vents and single-button cuffs. The open patch pockets allow this jacket to be worn more casually.
The polo neck jumper is made in beige cashmere. The trousers are light grey wool, most likely in a cavalry twill weave. They have a narrow, tapered leg with plain bottoms. The hem is short with no break because of the narrow leg, and to compensate for the short length Moore wears black, short elastic-sided boots. Though black boots go well with grey trousers, brown would be better suited for the country setting and casual nature of the outfit.
Roger Moore wears a warm outfit for climbing up to St. Cyril’s Monastery in For Your Eyes Only. He wear a brown hooded monk’s robe but removes it to reveal a dark blue quilted gilet. The gilet has a zip front and is between waist and hip length. There are navy suede patches on the front of each shoulder. The gilet has two rounded pockets in the middle of the chest that are accessed from either side of the zip, two lower patch pockets and game pouch at the bottom of the back. Barbour makes similar gilets, but this one could have come from any number of retailers.
Under the gilet, Moore wears a chunky wool jumper in a two-tone effect light and dark grey. It has a mock polo neck collar with a rather large opening, since it can be folded down far enough that a shirt collar can stick up over it. The jumper appears to be very warm, though chunky knits aren’t so popular today. The dark blue shirt underneath is looks like one of Frank Foster’s shirts. It has the same large spread collar that all of Roger Moore’s shirts in the 1980s have. The shirt’s colour is close to the gilet’s slightly darker blue.
The shirt and gilet aren’t so dark that they clash with the black corduroy trousers. The trousers have a straight leg and plain hems. The lace-up climbing shoes are medium blue with black soles.
Corduroys and climbing shoes
The Foreman of Signals in Dr. No, played by John Hatton, has proven to be a more memorable dresser for other people than he has been for me. After I posted about the new Q’s cardigan, comparisons started to be drawn to this uncredited character who also wears a cardigan and tie. He wears a very basic charcoal cardigan with five buttons and ribbed cuffs, turned back. Under the cardigan he wears a white shirt with brown pencil stripes. The shirt’s wide spread collar provides enough room for the windsor-knotted, solid red-brown tie. He wears charcoal trousers with a light brown belt.
In comparison to the new Q, the Foreman of Signals is dressed much less colourfully. His outfit’s only colour is the dull red-brown tie, whilst Q’s outfit has brown, red and blue. Q’s cardigan follows the current trend for a closer fit, but that also makes him look younger. The Foreman and Q both wear the same half-frame style glasses, though Q’s are black and the Foreman’s are brown.
Skyfall‘s costume designer Jany Temime wanted Q (Ben Whishaw) to look like a young computer nerd, in the style of an “expensive student.” Q dresses in a young, casual and hip fashion, and it reflects the character’s immaturity and cockiness. Nevertheless, he is still fashionable in the “geek chic” style. Whishaw’s most memorable outfit features a light brown wool Dries Van Noten V-neck cardigan. It has the zip front, slash side pockets and ribbed bands across the shoulders and down the upper arm, and down the forearm. The continuous collar and fly has a dark blue and red stripe.
Q’s shirt is white with light grey pencil stripes and has a spread collar and double cuffs. His dark blue knitted tie from Zara is tied in a four-in-hand knot. Q’s trousers are a gingham check with dark blue and maroon, picking up the colours of the cardigan’s color. The dark blue suede chukka boots further reflect the blue found in every piece of this outfit except the shirt. The boots’ tan rubber soles roughly match the cardigan.