The business suit is dead. Long live the suit!
Typically when James Bond is putting on a suit during the day, it’s for business. Bond is almost always conducting business throughout his life, but sometimes his business is to be social. A dark suit, and particularly a dark striped suit, during the day looks too serious for a social occasions.
While quite frequently Bond eschews suits for such daytime occasions in favour of blazers and other sports coats, the right suit can dress up a man for such occasions while not looking too serious. Sometimes Bond wants to dress down in a suit too.
The key is to not look like you’re dressing for the office, for a board meeting or for a funeral. Daytime social occasions are generally less formal than evening occasions, so the suits for daytime are more relaxed. Whether Bond is going out for a nice lunchtime drink or to an intimate afternoon concert, he need to look suitable for the occasion.
001. The Glen Check Suit
The glen check suit is Sean Connery’s Bond’s go-to suit for the daytime when he wants to get out of his business suit. He fits in perfectly at the Queen’s Club in Dr. No, and he couldn’t look cooler in his three-piece version on Goldfinger’s ranch in Goldfinger. With three-pieces this suit makes a particularly special daytime wedding suit.
002. The Linen Suit
Amongst the least formal of all suits is the linen suit. Bond wears linen suits in light colours such as tan, cream and light grey, and the occasional dark blue. He prefers to wear it without a tie, helping him to keep cool in the linen suit’s ideal setting. This is the kind of suit that fits in at a fancy tropical resort restaurant or bar.
003. The Corduroy Suit
Bond’s latest daytime social suit is the baby corduroy suit in No Time to Die. Like the linen suit, this is also a very informal suit. The relaxed construction of Bond’s suit from Massimo Alba makes it even more casual. It’s the type of suit a man can easily put on for occasions when he wouldn’t normally dress up. Bond’s lightweight example works particularly well in moderately warm weather, while a heavier version is best for cool autumns and spring.
004. The Dupioni Silk Suit
Roger Moore wears a number of silk suits in lighter colours throughout his Bond films in the 1970s. These suits are all very special suits, though he wears them during the day going about his business. They’re not something he would wear to the office, but they’re ideal for looking sophisticated throughout his travels in sunny locales. Such a suit may be best saved for a special luncheon or for a wedding, as it’s one of the dressier daytime suits.
005. The Gabardine Suit
The gabardine suit, in tan or fawn, was Roger Moore’s preferred daytime social suit in the 1980s. It replaced his silk suits of the previous decade as a slightly sporty but less ostentatious suit. Moore always looks relaxed in his gabardine suits, ready to sit down for afternoon tea rather than chase a villain.
006. The Grey Flannel Suit
The grey flannel suit is an all-purpose suit for cold weather. It’s appropriate for most formal office settings, but its soft look makes it suitable for social occasions too. Bond typically wears his grey flannel suits to the office, but in The Living Daylights he wears one to an intimate concert during the day.
007. The Damier Check Suit
The dark grey damier check suit in Spectre has a bold pattern that makes a dark suit more social than business. An off-duty Bond returns to Q-Branch to pick up his Aston Martin DB5 wearing this suit. It may be a three-piece suit, but Bond looks almost as cool and relaxed in it as he does in his checked suit in Goldfinger. Because this suit is also made of worsted wool, it’s a dressier social suit and is appropriate for weddings. Because this is a darker suit it can seamlessly make the transition from day to evening.
Honourable mentions go to the brown Donegal tweed suit in Moonraker, which is designed for more of a hunting purpose than a social purpose, and the brown mohair-blend suit in Quantum of Solace, which is somewhere between a business suit and a social suit. Brown suits can be excellent social suit, with their ideal purpose and setting depending on what they’re made of.