Thanks to H.N. White, I have a pair of the Albert Thurston dove grey braces as seen on Daniel Craig with his pinwale corduroy suit in No Time to Die. These braces are an unusual item for James Bond, who usually prefers to wear his braces with his dinner jacket rather than with his suits. So pairing braces with the most casual suit of the Bond series in No Time to Die is a surprising departure for the character, and there may be a reason for this choice in the story. Or it may just be for the look. Like the white braces that Daniel Craig notably wore as James Bond in previous films, these braces have equally made an impression. And this impression was made before No Time to Die‘s released.
The braces are in a ‘dove grey’ ribbon, which is a cool medium-light grey with a hint of blue. Bond wears the braces in a tone close to that of his blue shirt, for a subtle look. There are no rules as to what colour to wear and how to match your braces to the rest of your outfit, but they should compliment the outfit in one way or another. James Bond is not usually one to wear flashy clothes or bold colour combinations, so he matches his braces to his shirt as to not draw additional attention to the braces. Braces, when visible, draw enough attention without being in bright colours and flashy patterns.
The ribbon is 35 mm wide, which is narrower than Thurston’s standard 40-mm width. The narrower ribbon lends a more modern look. The ribbons have crosswise ribs and are made of a rigid material; they are not elastic. The only elastic is in the back.
The ends are dark brown leather, but they are pressed with a crocodile texture. The back elastic is brown to match the ends. The levers are brass.
There is a tag with a union flag hidden behind the back elastic, which is the only marking on the braces that denote these are from Albert Thurston. It’s a mark that all braces from Thurston carry, so it’s something to look for on any pair of braces you come across. The reverse of the tag states ‘Made in England’, and the levers say the same on back side.
Though Bond wears the braces with a rather casual suit in No Time to Die, these braces can be dressed up or down fairly easily. Because the ends are brown, the only requirement is that you wear brown shoes with them. These braces are perfect for Bond because they’re classic without looking old-fashioned. They’re not Wall Street, but they’re not too trendy either. They fit in with what Daniel Craig often wears as Bond, much of which comprises of new twists on classic garments.
I have been wearing Albert Thurston braces for about 15 years, starting roughly around the time that James Bond wore them in white moiré in Casino Royale. I didn’t yet have them in white moiré, and I don’t even recall being influenced by James Bond to wear Thurston braces. I got them because I was told by numerous more experienced dressers they were the best in braces. I have many pairs of Thurston braces, and I would have happily worn these dove grey braces without the James Bond connection.
These braces are made to Albert Thurston’s usual high standards, with clean finishing and quality materials. The materials are hardy, as they need to be for what is ultimately a utilitarian garment.
These braces are available from H.N. White with a 20% discount if you use code bondsuits. Though the braces were gifted to me, I receive no compensation from the sales of these braces, with or without the code, and I received nothing other than the braces in exchange for this post.
The trousers pictured here are light fawn cavalry twill from Mason & Sons. I was tempted to sew a set of buttons into a pair of tan corduroy trousers with belt loops I have to more closely replicate the look from No Time to Die, but my cavalry twill trousers are the correct colour and already had buttons for braces. The Thurston braces come with a set of buttons that can be sewn into trousers. While I don’t think it is a faux pas to wear braces on trousers that have belt loops, I prefer to wear my braces on trousers without belt loops for a cleaner look.
My shirt is from Kamakura, and it is my only shirt with a button-down collar. It is a light blue cotton knit with a diagonal rib that resembles twill, so it is a decent stand-in for Daniel Craig’s screen-worn shirt, albeit a shade or two lighter.
I would ordinarily wear a jacket over my braces, but for the purposes of this article I’m showing them off.
Photos by Janna Levin Spaiser