A No Time to Die Wardrobe Review

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This is a spoiler-free review about Daniel Craig’s costumes in No Time to Die. I discuss the clothes, how they relate to locations within the film, and how they relate to the basic synopsis for the film that was already provided. Any moments from the film I discuss are in the trailer. I do not reveal any plot spoilers and twists beyond that.

Daniel Craig’s wardrobe in No Time To Die, designed by Suttirat Anne Larlarb, features a welcome mix of old Craig-era styles and new styles. We see the return of Tom Ford, Bond’s primary clothier since Quantum of Solace, but they have less representation in Craig’s wardrobe than before. Familiar clothing brands like Crockett & Jones, Orlebar Brown, N.Peal, Barbour, Brunello Cucinelli, Danner, Albert Thurston and Benson & Clegg return. New brands for Bond like Massimo Alba, Connolly, Rogue Territory, Tommy Bahama, Rag & Bone, Anderson & Sheppard, Sperry, Alexander Olch, Vuarnet and Barton Perreira fit in naturally with the rest of Bond’s clothes in the film.

Trailers, stills, paparazzi photos and a music video have already presented us with looks at all of the clothes that Daniel Craig wears in the film. We unfortunately do not see any new outfits in the film that we have not seen before. Some outfits get a tremendous amount of screen time, whilst others are only on screen very briefly. The costume changes are easy to follow in the film, and they all make sense within the context of the film. There are no costumes changes for the sake of variety.

Tom Ford’s clothes are featured less in No Time to Die than in any of Craig’s previous films. Apart from a pair of slim grey jeans, Tom Ford’s contributions to the film are limited to the suits and formal shirts. They provided a black shawl-collar dinner jacket and dress shirt, a grey Prince of Wales check suit with a white tab-collar shirt and navy ottoman tie, and a blue Prince of Wales check suit with a light blue point-collar shirt (the tie is not from Tom Ford). All three of the Tom Ford shirts have cocktail cuffs (returning from their revival in Spectre), which places No Time to Die alongside Thunderball, Diamonds Are Forever and The Man with the Golden Gun as the only films where Bond wears cocktail cuffs with both suits and evening wear.

Tom Ford have six ties as part of their unofficial No Time to Die collection, but only the navy ottoman tie shows up on Bond in the film. M (Ralph Fiennes) might wear one of the other ties from the collection. They also have a dark grey pinpoint melange suit in the collection that does not appear in the film.

I think the fabrics of both the grey and blue checked suits are beautiful, but I think that some variety in suiting patterns beyond different variations on the Prince of Wales/glen check would have been nice. Bond goes from the grey suit one day to the blue suit the next day. The grey pinpoint melange suit would have been a nice replacement for either suit. Craig previously wore both grey and blue checked suits as Bond, so while these patterns are not exactly the same as any that came before, the suits feel familiar and are perfectly in character for Craig’s Bond. It feels like they could be suits from his previous Bond films that returned.

The fit of the Tom Ford suits is slightly improved for No Time to Die compared to Skyfall and Spectre. They don’t look as strained. However, the collar of the blue suit does not sit against the neck in any scene, and I find it distracting. Every suit jacket has this problem, but it was with the blue suit that it is most noticeable. The suits, as beautiful as they are, do not have a bespoke look to them, despite being made in a bespoke manner to Daniel Craig’s individual pattern.

No Bond film would be complete without the dinner jacket sequence (though it doesn’t feel lacking from the two films that’s don’t include it). The black shawl-collar dinner suit in No Time to Die, like the two checked suits, is similar to a dinner suit from before. It’s almost identical to the Quantum of Solace dinner suit, with only minor tweaks. It has a single vent instead of double vents, and the fabric is a practical stretch wool instead of a luxurious mohair and cashmere blend. But it could easily pass for the Quantum of Solace dinner suit, particularly thanks to the medium-wide shawl collar and gauntlet cuffs. I don’t think it has the elegance of the former dinner suit, but it’s in character and a good send-off for Daniel Craig’s Bond. And like the Casino Royale dinner suit, it’s provided to him by another character with excellent taste.

The tan Massimo Alba baby corduroy suit from the Italy scenes sees more action than any of the Tom Ford suits. Bond is off-duty in this suit and wearing it because he wants to wear a suit. He mainly puts it on to visit a cemetery. Despite what the unnamed bald man with the cat in For You Eyes Only tells him, Bond certainly has respect for the dead. Bond could have worn something more casual and not looked out of place, but he wears a suit to show respect. It’s a fantastic excuse for putting Bond in a suit for a stunt-heavy action sequence that follows.

The Italian suit is perfect for the setting of an old Italian city. It has a very different look for Bond, being corduroy and having a very soft Italian cut, but it looks fantastic in the film. It looks casual compared to a structured Tom Ford suit, so it helps Bond look natural in the context of the location. The colour of the suit also perfectly matches the location, which is a recurring theme in the film’s wardrobe. The colours Bond wears throughout the film always ensure he looks like he belongs wherever he is.

With this suit he wears a shirt from Brunello Cucinelli (one of Daniel Craig’s favourite brands, returning from Spectre), a unique burgundy tie from Alexander Olch, braces from Albert Thurston, suede chukka boots from Drakes. The braces, an unusual choice for Bond outside of black tie, are not given context within the film. They are only a stylistic choice.

Some of Craig’s casual clothes in No Time to Die have drawn criticism, either for being unusual styles for Bond or being brands one would not associate with Bond. The first is a loosely fitted blue linen jacket from Connolly that he wears in Italy with a short-sleeve Henley from Anderson & Sheppard and needlecord trousers from Massimo Alba. The loose fit is unusual for Daniel Craig, who usually likes to wear his clothes very tight. It does not have much screen time, but it introduces a more relaxed Bond for No Time to Die and helps Daniel Craig look more comfortable than ever in the role.

A black silk shirt from Tommy Bahama drew a lot of criticism for being a pedestrian brand (for Bond) that is usually associated with older people. However, Bond is retired when wearing the shirt and it’s a popular brand amongst retirees. On screen, the shirt looks tasteful and in-character for Bond. Most of the scenes he wears it in are dark, so it masks any shortcoming the shirt might have. It does not look cheap, nor does it make Bond look old. Again, he looks confident, comfortable and relaxed. The shirt also recalls a dark navy silk shirt that Daniel Craig wears in Casino Royale. Over the outfit he adds a navy Barbour jacket, which is a welcome return.

A worn grey t-shirt from Orlebar Brown with blue swim trunks also drew some criticism for how tattered it is, but we all have occasions that call for wearing old clothes. Perhaps it’s meant to stand in for one of the Sunspel t-shirts he wore in Casino Royale. It looks like something he’s had since 2006 and worn to death.

The long green corduroy ‘duster’ needlecord coat from Massimo Alba is another one of the most controversial items in No Time to Die. It’s a very unusual coat, and it’s not just unusual for Bond. However, at no moment does the long coat look awkward, unwieldy or out of place during the numerous scenes when Craig wears it. A waist-length jacket might have looked more modern and more fashionable, but the long length adds a sense of drama. Bond wears it in the forest, where the length gives him protection in the brush and the green colour provides camouflage. Upon seeing the coat in the film, it reminds me of Han Solo’s camouflage trench coat in Return of the Jedi. It’s one of my favourite looks in the film, though I think I would have a difficult time finding the right context to wear it in my personal life.

I think that something like the green Barbour jacket from Skyfall would have made a good alternative to this jacket. If the same jacket returned, it would have gone along with the theme of familiar wardrobe items from the Craig era.

Massimo Alba did not provide as many costume pieces for the film as Tom Ford did, but they play just as significant a role, if not more, in Bond’s look for No Time to Die.

He initially wears the coat with a beige cotton/linen shirt by Connolly x Finamore. The shirt has an Italian style, with an extreme cutaway collar and rounded button cuffs with the button at the base of the cuff. It loosely recalls some of the sport shirts that Roger Moore wore as Bond, but the style of Craig’s shirt is more modern and Italian. He later switches into a long-sleeve henley from Rag & Bone.

Italian style plays a tremendous role in No Time to Die, compared to the emphasis on British style in the previous two Bond films. Considering how Brioni tailored Bond for five films, Bond is no stranger to Italian style, but the style in No Time to Die is different. Bond has now become acquainted with today’s more relaxed Italian style, yet he still wears it in a British and Bondian way. It’s never flashy and it draws little attention to itself. It’s not uncommon for well-dressed men in London today to dress Italian, so Bond is just keeping up with trends, as he typically does.

It has been suggested that Daniel Craig himself brought this Italian style to Bond. From the Italian brands to the Henleys to the sunglasses, Daniel Craig has brought clothes that he originally favoured in his personal life to James Bond.

The Rogue Territory (RGT) Tan Ridgeline Supply Jacket in waxed canvas, paired with a white t-shirt and blue jeans, is the most casual look of the film. It’s also one of the most popular looks in the film because of how accessible it is. The jacket is reasonably priced (by Bond’s standards) at $295, but it’s made to high standards in the USA. Despite how popular this look is, thanks to the trailer, Bond does not wear this jacket in the film for more than a few seconds. It has less screen time than any other outfit in the film, but it deserves no less attention than any other outfit. A Bond outfit is a Bond outfit.

What is likely to be the most iconic outfit from No Time to Die, and not just thanks to the poster, is the N.Peal military sweater. It deserves to be on the poster as it is what Bond wears for most of an act of the film. This is from a British brand and is an original take on a classic British military sweater, the Woolly Pully, so it’s perfect for Bond in every way. Bond wears the commando gear necessary for his mission while still dressing in a traditional manner befitting a traditional character.

N.Peal and Massimo Alba take the lead as the wardrobe stars of the film. Tom Ford has an important supporting role.

I will be covering all of the outfits in nauseating detail once the Blu-ray is released. That will give me a chance to get the closest possible look at the clothes, and I can include spoilers by that time.

9 COMMENTS

  1. The moive is very excited, and without spoilers,it is full of action and twists.
    Here in italy it was released yesterday.

  2. I think the film did a great job in bridging the gap between the traditional clothes we associate with Bond to today’s aesthetic. Craig wore a lot of styles I wouldn’t have previously have considered Bondian, but they made it work pretty seamlessly. EON has really been trying to work on this for the past few films and I think they’ve nailed it. Perhaps NTTD will be the “Dr. No” for the future style of the character.

  3. “Upon seeing the [needlecord duster] coat in the film, it reminds me of Han Solo’s camouflage trench coat in Return of the Jedi.” Hmmm… I don’t think I made that connection until you mentioned it. Very astute Matt. :) I look forward to seeing your analysis on it and all the other items mentioned.

    (P.S. Out of curiosity, how much of a Star Wars fan are you?)

  4. I wonder what you thought of Rami Malek’s parka/snowsuit in the ice shot – and the Safin’s style more generally! It was a pleasure to see the aesthetics of the masked man play out, but less so in other parts of the film when I think more could have been made of Safin’s stark, unique style.

    The idea of Malek as the masked man is in all the publicity for the film, so I hope that’s not a spoiler!

  5. I’m curious what your favorite and least favorite outfits are from No Time to Die? Or perhaps most characteristic of Bond and least characteristic of Bond?

    • My favourite is the grey glen check suit. My least favourite is the tattered grey t-shirt. Bond has an excuse for wearing the grey t-shirt, but I’d say the Connolly jacket and the henley he wears with it are the least characteristic compared to what the character has worn before.

  6. The final outfit with the navy military sweater was just incredibly cool. Looked fantastic and very appropriate for something as retro as infiltrating the villain’s private island lair.

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