Kamal Khan: Grey Jacket

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When Kamal Khan, played by Louis Jourdan, dresses in western clothing in Octopussy, the outfits are similar to outfits Bond wears. His dinner suit is just as classic and his navy suit is just as minimal. His jacket in a broken twill weave of dark and light grey wool is equally simplistic, but it’s also not boring. There’s a continuity error, however, since there were at least two of these jackets used in filming. One of the jackets buttons one and the other buttons two. Other than this discrepancy, the jackets are the same. They have straight shoulders with roped sleeveheads, and they are cut with a clean chest and are shaped through the waist. The jackets have 1-button cuffs, no vent and jetted pockets with a ticket pocket. The jacket’s vent-less skirt signifies that this jacket is not for sporting use, and the straight jetted pockets follow the vent-less rear’s clean look and non-sporting purpose. The buttons are all black leather, something that sets this jacket apart from all of Bond’s jackets. Bond instead prefers slightly less rustic horn buttons for his jackets.

This sports coat buttons one.

This jacket buttons one.

Khan’s jacket sleeves are flamboyantly a little short to show off more shirt cuff. It’s usually recommended to show between 1/4″ and 1/2″ of shirt cuff when the arms are at rest, though, like Roger Moore’s character Lord Brett Sinclair in The Persuaders, Kamal Khan also shows too much shirt cuff. Shorter jacket sleeves visually shortens the arm length, and it’s possible that Louis Jourdan thinks his arms are too long. But over an inch of shirt cuff simply looks disruptive and like a mistake.

This sports coat buttons two. Notice its short sleeves.

This jacket buttons two. Notice its short sleeves.

Charcoal trousers complement and provide the necessary contrast to the lighter grey jacket. We can’t see if they have pleats or not, but they have a sharp crease. Khan’s light blue shirt has a spread collar and 2-button cuffs. The tie is navy with raised rectangles, woven in a checker pattern. Khan ties it in what is probably a half windsor knot. Overall, the outfit is timeless in both the colour palate and its proportions. The only thing that doesn’t fit in well today is the jacket’s vent-less skirt, but like everything else it comes in and out of fashion.

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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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Woman of Straw: The Blue Suit from Goldfinger

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The cloth of Sean Connery’s blue suit in Q’s lab in Goldfinger is quite mysterious. It is a heavy weight, has a mottled colouring and has a woollen texture. That means it’s most likely tweed. We get another look at the same Anthony Sinclair suit in Woman of Straw, and in this film—the suit’s original appearance—the suit is a three-piece. There’s no question it’s the same suit. The cut is the same button two with natural shoulders and a draped chest. It has swelled edges, cloth-covered buttons and jetted pockets. The vents are still a mystery. The poor lighting in this film makes the vent style difficult to make out, but I believe I see double vents. See the enhanced screenshot below.

Click image to enlarge

The trousers have double forward pleats. The waistcoat is the same style as the waistcoats in Goldfinger: six buttons with five to button. Connery, however, fastens the bottom button, which is meant to be left open. This disrupts the otherwise clean lines of the waistcoat. The covered buttons down the waistcoat make a big impact, since without the waistcoat the covered buttons almost go unnoticed. Covered buttons aren’t ordinarily seen outside of formalwear, but they were popular in the 1960s on lounge suits as well. The Avengers’ John Steed also wore suits with covered buttons.

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This is a town and country suit, meaning it can effectively transition between relaxed country wear and business. The cloth has a country texture in a city colour, and the jetted pockets are a more formal city touch. Even though this suit is appropriate in both the city and country, it fits in better here than it does in Q’s lab. The houndstooth suit that Bond wears in M’s office also seems more appropriate in this film.

Connery wears this suit a few times throughout Women of Straw. Early in the film he wears a solid light blue tie, tied in a four-in-hand knot just like he does in Goldfinger. The white or off-white shirt has a moderate spread collar, a placket and double cuffs. Later in the film he wears a solid black tie, also tied in a four-in-hand knot, and the white or off-white shirt has a wider spread collar like in Goldfinger. He wears a white pocket handkerchief with both outfits.

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Equestrian Pursuits

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Bond’s second hacking jacket of the series is a bit more bold than the first one, but it’s just as traditional. Goldfinger features Bond’s first hacking jacket, a subtle barleycorn tweed. On Her Majesty’s Secret Service features Bond’s second hacking jacket, a bolder houndstooth tweed. But it’s a rather simple check, in black, brown and cream with a red overcheck. The jacket is made by Dimi Major, with lightly padded shoulders, a swelled chest, a nipped waist and a flared skirt. It’s a button three with one button on the cuffs and the hacking jacket features of slanted pockets and a deep single vent. Slanted pockets are easier to access on horseback whilst the deep vent helps the jacket to split in back over the horse.

Click the image for a close-up of the weave.

Click the image for a close-up of the weave.

Bond almost never fastens the top button on his button three jackets. On most of Bond’s button three jackets the lapels gently roll at the top button. Here, Lazenby interrupts the roll by fastening the top button. Dimi Major cuts his button three jackets to look great either with both to the top and middle buttons closed or just the middle button closed. Unlike ordinary sports coats, riding jackets are longer and have three buttons placed higher on the chest, with all three meant to fasten. Lazenby’s hacking jacket is cut like a typical sports coat, meaning the bottom button isn’t meant to fasten. Closing the top button puts this jacket more in the spirit of riding jackets. But fastening the top button is also necessary to hold in the day cravat.

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The beige shirt has a stock collar, which extends around to close at the left side of the neck instead of the front. It looks unbroken across the front and is meant to be worn with a stock tie or a day cravat, of which Bond wears the latter. Bond’s cravat is also beige and is worn with a pin. The beige jodhpurs—likely made of cavalry twill wool due to its elastic properties—are worn with a belt and fit into Bond’s tall, black riding boots. Since I’m not involved in the equestrian world, I cannot judge the appropriateness of the outfit. The only part of this outfit that may be worn outside of equestrian activity is the hacking jacket, and the rest of the outfit should be limited to equestrian pursuits.

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In A View to a Kill, Roger Moore wears another equestrian outfit, but with a conventional shirt and knitted tie.

The Saint: Dressing Down Tweed

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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.

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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 boots with elastic gussets on the sides. Though black boots go well with grey trousers, brown would be better suited for the country setting and casual nature of the outfit.

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Marnie: English-American Style

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In 1964′s Marnie, directed by Alfred Hitchcock, Sean Connery wears an elegant mix of American Ivy League—as worn by Felix Leiter in Goldfinger—and English Savile Row style. I’m not talking about the “Updated American” suit, which takes the American sack suit and adds darts to the jacket—and sometimes pleats to the trousers. I’m talking about the way one wears his clothes. Another Hitchcock leading man, Cary Grant famously dressed in an English-American manner, often combining English tailoring with American accessories. Polo Ralph Lauren is currently the most well-known purveyor of this style, whilst New York and Chicago’s Paul Stuart and Charleston’s Ben Silver also excel at selling this style of clothing, both in their tailoring and in their accessories.

Marnie-Herringbone-Jacket-2Though Connery’s sports coats and trousers in Marnie are likely English in origin, he wears them in a decidedly American manner. This jacket is a woolen herringbone tweed in black and grey. It buttons three, with the lapel rolling over the top button. That type of lapel roll is typically associated with American tailoring, though English tailors have been known to cut their suits this way as well. Though all of the suits in Marnie have a somewhat full cut, this jacket may be cut a bit fuller, since Americans often wear their sports coats larger to be able to accommodate a jumper underneath. The full cut works well on Connery, since a more athletic cut wouldn’t drape as well considering his large drop. Still, the jacket has plenty of shape. Like the suits in Marnie, this jacket has flap pockets, 3 buttons on the cuffs and no vent.

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The trousers are English in cut. They have double forward pleats, a tapered leg with turn-ups, side tabs and an extended waistband closure. The choice of charcoal for the trousers isn’t the best since there is little contrast with the jacket. However, there is contrast in texture, and that counts for something. In comparison to the trousers, the shirt is an American classic that Connery never wore as Bond: a button-down. The key to a successful button down collar is in the roll. The buttons are placed a bit higher up than where the collar points fall to assist the roll. The button-down is a rather casual collar, and thus Connery only wears it with sports coats in Marnie. Most people in England would never wear a tie with a button-down collar, since the buttons are there to help the collar stand up when it is unbuttoned more than they are there frame the tie. Connery also wears his ties in Marnie much different from how he wears them as Bond. The ties are narrower in Marnie, and narrower than his already somewhat narrow lapels. The tie is plain black, and he clips it to his shirt with a tie bar. He wears the bar with a slight downward angle. And in some shots the tie tucked into his trousers, meaning his ties are an extra-long length considering Connery’s height. Because the tie is so narrow, it’s difficult to tell if he is using a Windsor or Half Windsor knot. The lace-up shoes are black, keeping all the colours of the outfit in black, white and grey.

A Casual Topcoat

Casino Royale Topcoat

At M’s flat in Casino Royale, Bond wears a topcoat in a light blue barleycorn pattern on a black ground. The coat has straight shoulders which may signify that it is Brioni-made like the suits in the film. The coat has notch lapels and a collar like a typical lounge coat. The coat buttons three down the front and has 3 buttons on the cuffs, straight flapped pockets and a single vent. The coat is approximately knee length, though we don’t see Bond wearing the coat whilst standing.

Casino Royale Topcoat Detail

Blue and Black Barleycorn Detail

Underneath the coat Bond wears a black polo with three buttons. Though a long-sleeve polo would be most appropriate since Bond is wearing a topcoat, we don’t see black sleeves under the coat’s sleeves. It’s likely the sleeves are pushed up because it would be odd and impractical to wear a short-sleeve shirt under a topcoat. It’s difficult to tell the material of the polo, but its likely to be cashmere. The trousers are in a black and white Glen Urquhart check with an overlaid light blue plaid, which picks up the blue in the topcoat. The trousers have turn-ups. Bond also wears black socks and black calf chukka boots.

Casino Royale Topcoat

Tweed in Vegas

Diamonds Are Forever Plaid Jacket

Though suitable for winter nights in Las Vegas, for the most part a tweed jacket is out of place there. Bond wears a plaid tweed in tan, black and red during his stay in Las Vegas in Diamonds Are Forever. The jacket is in the same half-norfolk style as the herringbone jacket he wears earlier in the film. The jacket buttons three down the front and has a half belt and deep double vents at the back. It’s styled with two buttons on the sleeves, bellows patch pockets with flaps on the hips and no breast pocket. The buttons are dark brown leather. And the jacket has the same extended collar as the herringbone jacket. Though Anthony Sinclair made the suits for the film, we don’t know if he made the two tweed sports coats.

Diamonds Are Forever Ankle Boots

A tan knit polo neck shirt—tucked in—adds to the outfit’s warmth. The trousers are brown with a darted front, plain bottoms and frogmouth pockets. His shoes are medium brown ankle boots that close with a strap, as we have seen elsewhere in the film.

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Bond is still the best-dressed in the room. Notice Felix’s yellow shirt.

This outfit is a bit too warm-toned for Sean Connery’s complexion, but the herringbone jacket from the beginning of the film is a much better brown for Connery. The rich tans in the polo neck and within the jacket’s check don’t work so well for Connery, and in the context of a bold plaid makes Connery as much a victim of 1970′s fashions as much as Roger Moore ever was. However, Willard White’s (Jimmy Dean) western jacket and Felix Leiters’s (Norman Burton) yellow shirt make Connery’s clothes look tame.