The Navy Blue Sharkskin Suit in Spectre

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Spectre-Blue-Sharkskin-Suit

When James Bond enters his room at Franz Oberhauser’s desert crater lair in Spectre, he finds a blue sharkskin suit laid out on the bed for him. Bond is expected to wear this suit when joining Oberhauser for afternoon drinks. The suit from Tom Ford is in the same O’Connor model as most of the other suits in Spectre, even though this is technically not Bond’s own suit but rather one that was only provided for him. This could give an excuse for this suit’s fit problems, but that excuse doesn’t hold up considering all of the O’Connor suits in the film fit the same way.

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The suiting is a 100% wool super 110s sharkskin (also known as pick-and-pick) woven with dark and light blue yarns for an iridescent look. Though there’s no mohair content in the cloth, the different blues in it give it a shiny 1960s look. Depending on lighting, the suit can look anywhere from dark navy to medium blue. In person, the suiting is brighter and more vivid than it looks on screen. This suit is perfect for social occasions, both during the day under the sun and in the evening under artificial light. The cloth is too shiny for most business.

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Being the O’Connor model designed by Spectre‘s costumer designer Jany Temime and Tom Ford, the cut and details match many of the other suits in the film. The jacket has straight, padded shoulders with roped sleeve heads, a close-fitting chest, a too-tight waist and a fashionably short length. The front has three buttons with narrow lapels rolled to the middle button for a button two look. This is known as “button two, show one” or “three-roll-two”. The lower foreparts are cutaway for a dynamic “X” on the front of the jacket. The jacket is detailed with a single vent, slanted hip pockets, a curved “barchetta” breast pocket and four buttons on the cuffs. The last buttonhole on the cuffs is longer than the rest, and Bond wears the last button open.

The suit trousers have a wide extended waistband, slide-buckle side-adjusters, side seams curved forward at the top with on-seam pockets, narrow straight legs and turn-ups. They have a low rise, which reveals a triangle of shirt below the jacket’s fastened button. The trousers with this suit look even shorter than the trousers in the rest of the film and don’t even touch the shoes. High-water trousers don’t serve a purpose in the desert!

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With this suit Bond wears a white cotton poplin shirt with a point collar, double cuffs, a front placket and back darts, which give the shirt a close fit in the small of the back. The shirt has a close fit overall, but it’s not too tight like the suit jacket is. He matches the shirt with a folded white handkerchief in his suit jacket’s breast pocket. The tie is dark navy silk repp in a colour Tom Ford calls “ink”. It is darker than the suit, but the hue is the same as the suit’s so it matches well. The tie is 7.5 cm/3 inches wide, and it’s tied in a four-in-hand knot. Bond’s shoes are the Crockett & Jones Norwich model. They are black calf five-eyelet, cap-toe derby shoes with Dainite studded rubber soles.

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Crockett & Jones Norwich

This suit is likely the same suit that is in the gun barrel sequence at the start of the film.

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Some of the images here have been colour-corrected due to the filters on the film that make it look overly warm.

29 COMMENTS

  1. This suit made a particularly bad impression on me which is foremost due to the short trousers. Of course I like the classic (almost) monochromatic “Connery” look (all blue) and the material chosen but because of the cut it looks like a child’s suit worn by a grown-up. Ridiculous and not worth any further comment.

  2. Reading this made me realise the gunbarrel walk is yet another new one shot for SPECTRE. I thought they’d just reused the Skyfall one again. But no, it’s a better pose, better lighting, better gunbarrel graphics, better placement within the movie… I can forgive the suit in those circumstances.

    http://s15.postimg.org/mw3tf6yjf/image.jpg

    On a side note, every time I put brass collar stiffeners in to my Charles Tywhitt shirts, I think about how these tiny, concealed, pointed bits of metal hidden in every nice shirt Bond has worn could help him in the future. Not unlike 20’s gangsters with razor blades in their hatbands, they could be used to stab, throw, cut rope, short electrics and pick locks. No one ever pats down a secret agent’s neck.
    Come on Purves and Wade, I’m doing all your work for you!

    • We’ll see if they, or for that matter Daniel Craig, are returning for another film. The future looks dim with the lukewarm response this movie got from both fans and Craig himself!

      Your idea is a novel one. Perhaps used as a lockpick for handcuffs? Though it’s worth noting just because a shirt is luxury-quality doesn’t mean it will come with metal or even bone stays. My T&A shirt just came with plastic which I’m perfectly fine with. I own some brass stays, but they’re rather cheap and have jagged edges, hence my never using them past a few times. Tyrwhitt’s look nicer with their rounded edges.

    • That’s interesting I hadn’t read the reception as lukewarm at all. I read it as smashed out of the park. Certainly in the UK.
      Also, Craig has been very positive about the film from what I’ve heard. The wrist slitting quote was what you’d expect after 11 months of filming, or asking a 6 course dinner guest what they wanted for breakfast. Ha!

      I can’t deny any problems I have with the last few films have been down to scripts and plot holes but I can’t be sure P & W are responsible for these as the producers, director and editor all have a say in it, too and yet the problems remain.
      It’s hard to pinpoint the problem course as they have both Die Another Day and Casino Royale on their writing CV. If they’re that good, wouldn’t they have seen the giant plot holes in Skyfall? And yet, Casino is a masterpiece. And yet…I’m undecided.
      But they can have the collar stays idea for nothing.

  3. I thought the suit might have been taken from Bond’s bag that we saw him carrying earlier. Could it be that they just had it pressed and delivered to him after his arrival?

    • There’s not enough time for one of Bond’s suit to have been pressed. The way Madeleine looks at her dress, it would seem that it was provided for her, and I would assume the same for Bond. I think they were copying Dr. No, with clothes provided for them in their sizes.

  4. “a close-fitting chest, a too-tight waist and a fashionably short length.”

    Through no fault of the blog’s author, I am getting tired of seeing this description.

    • Ryan, with respect, what else do you expect him to say? Actually, fit aside, I wouldn’t be at all as negative as some others are about this suit. The colour is attractive and suits Craig and the tie is fine (if a little monochrome) but, as with the Mexico City suit, the shirt brings it all down. A sky blue or cream would have been far better here also, a) because both better suit Craig’s complexion and b) because if the template really is a version of the pared back Connery look, then it’s sloppy research. Connery wore precious few white shirts in his Bond movies. Most were cream/ecru or sky blue.

      Finally, slightly off topic. These scenes in the movie are, for me, where the movie would’ve better concluded, in keeping with the classic Bonds they apparently sought to return, at least in part, to in Spectre. The London section after this didn’t work for me. They seem perpetually hung up with throwing London at us in these last movies and hitherto it appeared briefly and earlier in the movies because as Cubby always maintained the goal was to bring the audiences to ever more exotic and spectacular locations away from their every day lives. Ah, those were the days…..

    • David! Egads! I haven’t been clear.

      My (I thought clever, but I guess muddied) point was that it’s getting tiresome to encounter the same problem with the clothes in outing after outing, thus requiring Matt to have to point it out again — not that I was criticizing Matt’s writing.

      All that said, I also agree with you on 2 other points — I do love the color of the suit, and thank you for pointing out aside from the fit, the shirt is what skews the look; and yes, the movie should have ended in the desert, instead of sort of trickling to a stop, again, in London, again.

  5. I agree with a lot of David’s comments, the Bond producers probably should have researched Bond’s clothing history a bit more. Turtlenecks weren’t in fashion till Craig wore them in Spectre, maybe we could be saying the same for cream dress shirts. His Morroccan brown sports jacket outfit would have benefited from a cream shirt instead of plain white and we could say that about a lot of his other outfits. As for Bond at Oberhauers lair, that was a missed opportunity for an erotic finale for sure. And could have been a more interesting firefight with his henchmen then Craig shooting them with such ease.

  6. Though David makes good points as always, this is probably the suit I care for the least in SPECTRE. Not sure, but something about it – maybe the slight sheen – doesn’t work for me. But the suggestion of a blue shirt is a good one and would help.

    As for the complaints about the “fit”, once again, this is the way suits are (ridiculously and unflatteringly) supposed to fit these days. Bond would look very out-dated if he dressed like Mallory (and yes, I agree Mallory’s suits fit better, but that is beside the need to make Bond, already potentially anachronistic, keep up with the times – once upon a time, Connery’s suits looked outdated (from 1967-2002) and now they are revered). Anyway, Craig suits fit better with this horrible currently-fashionable cut than the suits I see others wear around Los Angeles and which share the same fashionable cut (to me the biggest offender is the ultra-short jacket – it looks ridiculous).

    Also, I think that the London finale is for the British box office given Skyfall’s unprecedented success at said box office and also to give the now-prominent MI6 cast members something to do. The Craig Bond has become firmly grounded and iconic in London and “Britain” (as mocked by Silva in Skyfall) more so than even 1981-1985 Roger Moore. But I agree that the movie should have naturally ended in the Morrocan desert with a better finale. SPECTRE managed the remarkable feat of being both too long and rushed in the last two acts.

    Finally, Ryan – “erotic”? I presume you meant “exotic.” Although I am open to ideas as to how that would have ended!

    • Yes, ‘exotic’, gotta love spell check, but I’m sure some people hoped for an ‘erotic’ ending of some kind. My wife complained that Daniel Craig didn’t remove his shirt in Spectre. I’m sure Craig was getting tried of being labelled as a sex symbol and just wanted to concentrate on character.

    • Craig’s suits in Quantum of Solace fit well without looking “outdated”. If there’s an overarching theme in this blog, it’s that a well-fitting suit is a well-fitting suit no matter the current fashions. (And by extension, a poor-fitting suit is a poor-fitting suit no matter whether it’s the current trend.)

      It’s in the other details that a suit can be unfashionable, while still being well cut and flattering.

  7. What’s with this new trend of calling dark navy blue ‘Ink’, I have a very dark navy suit, when I purchased it the label said “Ink”, I thought it maybe was black but when I held it up against a black suit it was unmistakably navy. When I think of ‘ink’ I think of a purplish black color.

  8. Jovan,

    I understand your statement that SPECTRE’s reception was lukewarm (while I liked the character development, thought some of it was fun, and the opening tracking shot was one for the ages, I thought it overall uneven, overlong, underdeveloped, and strained with the “everything is connected” concept – the film was, for me, the worst of the Craig era, but mid-range Bond), the fact is it made a ton of money. Nearly $900m in the bank (even off a huge budget – you gotta pay for all that gorgeous location shooting!) – if only other movies could be received so “lukewarm”. Scott Mendelson at The Ticket Booth at forbes.com had a good write up of it a few days ago (pointing out that the USD’s strength also cut down the international gross compared to 2012).

    Grosses were off a lot (I think the biggest fall since OHMSS from YOLT) in the US market – to the same range Bond generally has been in since 1995, Skyfall excepted. But they obviously need to put together a better-received (in my view sharper) and less-expensive movie next time as perhaps a lot of the monetary success was goodwill left over from the much-better-received Skyfall. But for a movie with a troubled production, it made a lot of money for all involved on a scale nearly unprecedented for a non-fantasy film.

  9. Interesting points, Christian, Jovan etc. I watched Skyfall for the first time just prior to watching Spectre in the cinema in November and I genuinely cannot understand the reverence reserved for this movie. Lousy suits aside, the constant and spurious obsession with what appears to be “depth of character” in a Bond movie has become as tiresome and yawn inducing as the related and equally spurious “Bond in development since CR” theme. WE JUST WANT TO BE ENTERTAINED. Skyfall I found claustrophobic and the complete lack of foreign locales aside from the excellent pre – credit sequence in Istanbul, Macao at night (again claustrophobic) and a shot on a boat in the China Sea was terrible/pathetic. At least Spectre redressed this, despite its uneven nature. But this London, London and more bloody London. Perhaps it’s best if M, Moneypenny et al are left as more secondary players, the way they were up to 1995, for future movies. It’s not really necessary. Nothing wrong with an erotic finish any day though!

    • Skyfall was what a Bond movie should be though. It was fun, intense, but not overly dark. (Something Quantum of Solace suffered from — it was far too serious.) I didn’t think Bond’s backstory interfered with the movie much.

  10. 🙂 I didn’t like SF exactly for what you like it. And I like QoS because it is quite the contrary of a “Tongue-in-cheek-Bond”. There’s no accounting for taste. Each to his own.

  11. On another note, for the next Bond actor, non considering the financial problems involved with the fact of being willing to produce a huge amount of suits for free, I think Dunhill or Kingsman could be a good choice. They have a rather classic British style and are less flashy and obviously pricey than the current Tom Ford suits.

    • Kingsman doesn’t exactly exist in real life. Are you perhaps talking about Huntsman, its inspiration, or Martin Nicholls who actually tailored the clothing?

    • Yes, of course, I am talking of Martin Nicholls. The clothes are still available on Mr Porter website under the brand name of Kingsman -the suits and jackets-, while some items are made by other brands, like the T&A shirts.

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