Navy Topcoat at the National Gallery

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Navy-Topcoat

Daniel Craig wears an elegant, though somewhat unremarkable, navy topcoat from Tom Ford in Skyfall over his glen check and navy herringbone suits. At a three-quarter length, it’s like a longer, heavier suit jacket that isn’t cut away in front. It has three buttons to show on front, but Daniel Craig fastens only the middle button like a suit jacket in the topcoat’s first appearance. He fastens the middle and bottom buttons in the topcoat’s second appearance. It’s difficult to tell if Daniel Craig is leaving buttons open as a fashion statement or because the coat is too tight to comfortably close the top button. It doesn’t look bad the way he wears it, but at the same time it looks affected. If he’s wearing a topcoat because it’s cold outside, why not make the most of the coat and fasten all of the buttons? Unlike on a button three lounge coat (a.k.a. suit jacket), the buttons on an overcoat fall in a straight line. Thus visually the straight line is preserved by either fastening all of the buttons, like how Connery wears his topcoat in Thunderball, or fastening none, like Pierce Brosnan does in GoldenEye.

Navy-Topcoat-3The coat is cut with straight and narrow shoulders, and the front is darted for a shaped silhouette. The cuffs button three, and like on his suit jacket, Daniel Craig leaves the last button open. The coat has straight, flapped pockets, a welted breast pocket and a deep single vent. Whilst it’s a very nice coat, a fly that hides the buttons could have made this a more elegant coat.

With the coat’s second appearance on a London rooftop, Craig wears black leather gloves and a medium grey cashmere scarf from Tom Ford in a parisian knot. The parisian knot is tied by folding the scarf in half, draping it over the neck and inserting the dangling ends of the scarf together through the loop created at the folded end. The parisian knot works best with longer, lighter scarves. Folding the scarf in half takes up a lot of length, and in a heavier scarf the knot can end up very bulky. Bulkiness, however, can be a benefit in very cold weather. The parisian knot is an easy and effective way to wear the scarf, and Craig tucks the ends into his coat. The scarf and gloves show that this is a colder scene than the earlier one, and Craig also flips up his collar for extra protection from the cold. But again, if it’s that cold outside why does he leave the top button open? The most logical reason would be that the topcoat is too small—like most of the tailored clothes in Skyfall—to properly close.

Navy-Topcoat-2

39 COMMENTS

  1. While I agree that Bond wears the coat too small and it is seemingly unremarkable, for some reason, I really like the look of it. If I had to put a finger on it, I guess the wider than currently fashionable lapels and shaped waist give it more shape and elegance than other basic topcoats at the moment.

  2. Hm… My single-breasted chesterfield coat has three buttons and I only fasten the middle button or none. I try to fasten all buttons, but it just doesn’t look right (similar too fasten all buttons in the suit jacket, sportcoat or blazer). My coat feets right (it could be a little wider in the armpits, but I used to workout and have bulky chest), it is not so tight like Skyfall clothes.

  3. RE: the unbuttoned top button, I always noticed this with Patrick McGoohan in Danger Man, although it was his raincoat (and he’d button *only* the bottom button), so issues of warmth didn’t necessarily apply.

    I came up with a theory that it was a practical thing for someone in Bond’s or Drake’s profession: it allowed faster access to a shoulder holster. While Bond might not be carrying while on the roof, it might be a dressing habit that carries over into the everyday (like a watch worn on the pulse-side of the wrist).

    Obviously, the theory breaks down a bit, because he’s buttoning the top button of his suit jacket a lot of the time, but that’s as far as I got…

    This also happens with Columbo, but let’s not use him as a sartorial guide… 🙂

  4. I also often leave the top button of my overcoat undone, and agree that something about all the buttons being done up just looks “wrong” to my eye. Too constricted? Too fussy? I’m not sure…but I feel the same way about it as if someone buttoned up all three buttons on his suit jacket.

    Good observation on M Ryan’s part about access to the shoulder holster!

    I find this a beautiful coat – I love the fabric and the shape to it and the exposed buttons don’t bother me at all. My personal preference for coats like this is to have them fall to the knee, though. Part of it is warmth, but part of it is visual. I find that the shorter coats can make someone look shorter, especially if there isn’t a lot of shape to it – they make a person look very block-y. However, I realize that the shorter coats are the style and this one certainly isn’t as short as some that I’ve seen otherwise well dressed men wearing in the last few years.

  5. He leaves the top button open so we could identify the colour of his shirt. 🙂

    It’s a nice coat, and I’m planning to get a similar one in black. I already have a charcoal overcoat with fly front.

  6. I really like this coat. Aside from the Barbour, it is my favorite piece of clothing in Skyfall. Very understated and elegant and a much better representation of Tom Ford’s style than the suits Bond wears in the film.

    As far as the buttoning, I don’t think the coat is too tight. Rather, I think he leaves the top button open for visual reasons. Specifically, they may have wanted to show more of the shirt and scarf because the colors play together nicely.

  7. I’ve found that leaving the top button of a coat open when wearing a parisian knot is a matter of comfort. The level of insulation is the same, without the restriction of a button that’s meant to lie flat against the body being pushed out by a mass of wool.

    Then again, my scarf is pretty chunky.

  8. I’ve taken to wearing a scarf in this fashion quite a bit over the last several years, and with the winter that we’re going through in New York this year I find myself doing so nearly every day!
    This is probably the first time that I can recall Bond adopting something from my style of dress as opposed to the other way around!

  9. Unremarkable is probably about right, part of me thinks it’s a bit of a wasted opportunity not to have something a little more notable (maybe a velvet collar, or peaked lapels, or as you mentioned a covered fly front, some kind of detail to make it somewhat more special) though I can’t help thinking its minimal, unfussy, nondescript appearance is a true to the character in a sense.

    I don’t care for how short it is though. It doesn’t have to be knee length but looking at the second picture with him standing on the roof, it doesn’t look like it’s substantially longer than a suit jacket, though I guess with the very short jackets in the film the length of the coat does harmonize with them.

  10. This really can’t beat Connery’s Chesterfield in Dr No or Moore’s one in LALD…
    If it’s cold, you wear a classic length coat, not something as short… it’s really useless. And the narrow shoulders make him looks like he’s going to burst out of his clothes. We will have to wait for another couple of years without being able to find overcoats of decent length in RTW now…

    Matt, in your article about Mallory’s double breasted suit, there is a screenshot (the first one I guess) showing a grey glen plaid overcoat on a hanger. Could it be Mallory’s own coat ? Or Moneypenny’s perhaps ?

    • The grey glen plaid coat is Monneypenny’s coat. There is a light brown coat that also looks like a women’s coat (much smaller sleeves), and there’s a navy coat that would have to be Mallory’s.

  11. I think this coat needs a fly front. Without it it looks a cheaper product than it actually is. I also think that without a fly it looks more like a work coat similar to what my father wore when working at the coal mine. Obviously the lapels give it some redemption. I think the coat contradicts its self in its length too.
    I have a full length Chesterfield with a fly front and three buttons of which I close all of them.
    Great post Matt
    cheers
    Ryan

  12. This coat is another example of Temime’s pretentiously retro takes on Bond’s clothing. Quite irritating in my opinion
    cheers
    Ryan

    • I am not sure what you mean by “pretentiously retro,” but I can’t find anything substantially wrong with this coat. There is plenty to criticize about Skyfall from a sartorial point of view; I just don’t think this coat should be included.

      • The point I’m trying to make here is that Temime has made (tried to make) Bond look “cool” and “hip”. This coat is so consistent with the other tight fitting clothing. On paper it all looks correct; Glen check suits and overcoats and so on. But Tamime has just sabotaged what we know as stylish garments and turned them into some pretentious “retro-mod-suits areback fasfashion” nonsense. Pretty much what goes on in the UK. Sports jackets are all tbe rage now but when they weren’t people would ask me why I’m dressed like an old man…. ut now its cool so no one bats an eyelid. .This isn’t really about the Temime is it? 🙂

      • I agree that Temime is trying to make Bond look cool and hip, but it’s a very modern and current look, as Temime intended it to be, and not a retro look. The current trends started a few years ago as being 1960s inspired, but the tailoring in Skyfall has very little resemblance to what people wore in the 1960s.

  13. The correct way to fasten an overcoat is to button all buttons. Full stop. It’s not treated the same as a suit jacket and is a different beast entirely. This is established sartorial protocol from time immemorial and all Bonds, without exception from Connery, Lazeny and Moore buttoned their overcoats. I cannot recall what Dalton did with his in “The Living Daylights” but I suspect it wasn’t anything too inspiring, the normally impeccable Brosnan committed a faux pas with leaving his beautiful coat in “Tomorrow Never Dies” flapping in the Hamburg breeze and Craig, well, I better not go there or risk upsetting the 2014 fashion police!

    I will say that the scarf, tied with the Parisian knot, looks nice. In fact, I often tie my own scarves with a Parisian knot so I suppose he must have a bit of flair after all!

  14. It’s only really applicable to cold weather scenarios, but typically if I wear any cold weather coat with a scarf, I leave the top button unbuttoned in spite of combating the cold. Tucking in, and then untucking the scarf and having to button over it as well seems like one too many steps and detrimental to the speedy catharsis of finding a warm indoor location and having a reason to take the damn thing off. For that matter, stepping outside in winter for a smoke proves to be a dilemma, attempting manual dexterity in extracting a cigarette from a breast pocket while wearing thick gloves, a scarf, and buttoning up – a problem that would certainly arise for Fleming’s Bond.

  15. Matt, the single breasted overcoat in Quantum of Solace, worn in London scenes, is it black or dark navy? It looks black to me, but I’m not certain.

    Also, are Quantum of Solace and The World Is Not Enough the only two films in which Bond wears black overcoats?

  16. i am 13 years old and play the 007 games and in bloodstone bond wears really some nice clothes that would be cool for this site

  17. Are/were tight-fitting jackets and suits trendy as Skyfall was released? I thought Craig’s clothes looked terrible in that film… Unless that look was by design, hoping to convey a man out of sorts with his life and career.

    • The look was intended to be trendy, but also to show off Daniel Craig’s toned physique. The problem is that tight suits don’t look much different on a muscular person than they do on a fat person. A suit should be tailored to the body and drape smoothly over it. The costume designer didn’t seem to understand that a tight suit isn’t the same as a tight t-shirt. The tight suits don’t really work with the story either. It doesn’t make sense that Bond is so muscular after letting himself go for a while. A tight suit in the context of the story would more likely mean that he got a little fat.

      • If the boots were dress boots I wouldn’t have a problem with them, but they aren’t dress boots. The width of the tie isn’t noticeable when the jacket is buttoned, so I don’t think it’s really an issue. Do you think it still looks too wide with the jacket buttoned?

        Moore smoked cigars in real life, and quite a lot of them, after he gave up cigarettes.

  18. I absolutely love this the navy topcoat – and as always thanks for a great site.

    Would be nice with some notes on the army (?) jacket Bond wears at the end of Skyfall, at the Skyfall range.

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