Orlebar Brown is now of the third phase of their 007 collection. They were kind enough to gift me their On Her Majesty’s Secret Service Bond Linen Suit Jacket and Bond Linen Trouser from their latest 007 collection.
They chose Bond’s first cream suit of the series, as worn by George Lazenby in On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, as the inspiration for a suit in this collection. Lazenby’s suit was made by Dimi Major of Fulham, London in a dramatic English cut with hacking pockets. The original was a relaxed suit, but still had a structured English cut. Orlebar Brown updated this suit to have an even more relaxed look.
The jacket and trousers are sold separately to give the customer the opportunity to choose the best size in each piece or to purchase only one of the items.
The suit’s cloth is a blend of 57% linen and 43% cotton in a twill gabardine weave with cream in the warp and beige in the weft to give it more visual depth than a piece-dyed solid colour would have. Orlebar Brown call this colour ‘Matchstick’, and the jacket and trousers are both made in the same cloth.
For linen it does not wrinkle excessively because it is blended with cotton and is woven in a twill weave. Though linen in a twill weave does not wear as cool as a plain weave does, the twill weave minimizes the wrinkling that linen is known for.
Bond Linen Jacket
Orlebar Brown have a few other tailored jackets in their line, but they are not a suit brand. Thus, I would not expect them to make an exact copy of this suit in the same way that a brand that specialises in tailoring might. They have interpreted this jacket in a more modern, less structured and more casual manner that’s better aligned with the Orlebar Brown brand, and I think their update allows this jacket to be worn in ways that more men are wearing tailored clothes today.
Like Lazenby’s suit jacket, this jacket has two buttons on the front and three buttons on each cuff. The buttons on this jacket are branded nylon, which feel and look very nice despite not being a natural material. The cuffs have working buttonholes, which limit the amount the sleeves can easily be shortened.
There is a welt chest pocket and slanted hip pockets, though the slant is not as raked as on Lazenby’s jacket. There is a single vent in the rear, which goes well with the jacket’s casual look, but I miss the long double vents on Lazenby’s jacket.
There is edge stitching around the lapels and pockets to give it a sporty look.
The jacket has a buggy lining with a butterfly yoke lining over the shoulders and lining in the sleeves with the rest of the back unlined and the front self-faced. The minimal lining allows it to breathe with still helping the drape of the jacket.
I am wearing a size small, and for reference I am 5’9″ tall and my chest measures 37 inches. The jacket is fashionably short on me, though the sleeves are slightly long. I need to have the sleeves shortened and the jacket pressed.
Because these jackets have letter sizing rather than chest and length sizing, they won’t work for everyone. The body of this jacket fits like a 38S while the sleeves have a regular length. I wish the jacket were an inch or two longer and the button stance lowered the same amount. For me, the shorter length relegates the jacket to wearing it in a more casual manner.
David Zaritsky of The Bond Experience is around my height and wears a size medium, and the length of the medium is more traditional on someone who wears a regular-length jacket. Watch his video review on this suit to see how it looks on a different body shape.
How to Wear It
While the jacket goes perfectly with the matching trousers, and I will enjoy wearing them together as a suit, it can also be worn separately. It pairs nicely with chinos or linen trousers in a darker colour than the jacket like a khaki, tan, olive, brown or navy. Jeans could work too, if you’re so inclined.
Of the Orlebar Brown 007 shirts, only the pink You Only Live Twice shirt works well with it, but there’s no end to the cotton or linen shirts that can work well with it as long as they have a two-piece collar that can stand up under the jacket’s collar. I don’t think the Capri collar works well under a jacket.
Because this is an unstructured jacket, it’s easy to throw this jacket on over a polo to dress up a more casual look. And for those who would pair it with jeans, you could wear it over a t-shirt. If this jacket had the Savile Row cut and structure of Lazenby’s suit jacket, dressing it down like this would not work. The lack of structure and shorter length makes the jacket easier to dress down but more difficult to dress up.
Despite the fact that I am wearing a tie in these photos in an attempt to capture Lazenby’s look, I don’t think I will often wear this jacket with a tie. The casual look of this jacket makes it work better without a tie. I’ll be approaching this suit more like the way Roger Moore wore his cream suit in Moonraker in Rio on the dressier end, and I have already found myself wearing this jacket in a more casual manner than Bond has ever worn a tailored jacket.
But it’s not the kind of suit or jacket I would put on for a formal occasion. Even for a summer wedding I find the unstructured look too casual. I would wear it for a nice lunch or brunch, a museum or a summer concert. This suit is in the same vein as Daniel Craig’s corduroy suit in No Time to Die in that it’s the kind of suit you can wear when you don’t have to wear a suit.
Bond Linen Trouser
The trousers are my favourite item in the collection. In a linen and cotton blend they are not the omnipresent chinos that everyone wears. While chinos are a great wardrobe staple, these trousers provide something more special and stylish. We often put more focus on the top halves of our outfits, neglecting our bottom halves. But the right trousers can do a lot to enhance an outfit.
Orlebar Brown’s signature side adjusters are yet another thing that make these trousers special. Side-adjusters are not just for suit trousers and are great for casual trousers too. I especially like wearing these trousers with the Orlebar Brown capri-collar shirts because there’s no belt to leave a bulge under the untucked shirt.
The extended waistband with a hook and bar closure is also a nice attention to detail, which is something that traditional English trousers like Lazenby’s have. It gives a nice finish to the front of the trousers. The trousers also have on-seam side pockets and two welt back pockets.
The main reason why I really like the trousers is that they’re comfortable and they fit me well. On me, the rise is slightly higher than a mid rise, which is something I really appreciate during the era of low-rise trousers. The leg is slim but does not feel too tight.
I have a 31-inch waist and am wearing a size 32. The side-adjusters perfectly cinch the waist in to fit me. The length is too long, and I will have my tailor shorten them with an angled hem. Shortening trousers is to be expected on most men.
How to Wear It
The trousers’ versatility is one of the biggest reasons I love these trousers, and this creamy ecru colour is an especially easy trouser colour to wear. Though they pair well with the matching suit jacket, the trousers can be worn with almost any other shirt or jacket from Orlebar Brown’s 007 collections, past and present. They are the perfect Bondian pairing with the Thunderball striped shirt, the ivory Golden Gun shirt and the For Your Eyes Only t-shirt from the new collection and the Diamonds Are Forever towelling shirt and Golden Gun safari jacket from the past collection.
I will definitely be wearing these trousers a lot this summer with all sorts of outfits, dressing them up with blazers and down with polos.
I’m wearing the suit with a pink pinpoint shirt from Frank Foster, a navy knitted tie from Salvatore Ferragamo and loafers from Ralph Lauren.
Photos by Janna Levin Spaiser