One of the most unique pieces of clothing that Roger Moore wears in The Persuaders is a cardigan that’s styled like a blazer. There are a number of different blazers in The Persuaders, and I’ve already written about the striped blazer. Though this piece is worn in seven episodes of the series, the example here is from the episode “Element of Risk”. Sometimes he wears it with a white polo neck, and other times he wears it with an open-neck shirt and day cravat. But here he dresses it up with a tie. Though it has elements of a blazer, it’s no more formal than the typical cardigan. The navy cardigan is a button two, show three double-breasted model. It has a collar and notch lapels, short side vents, open patch pockets and three buttons on the cuffs. The buttons are brass, which is what gives this cardigan the blazer look. The length of the cardigan is longer than most cardigans, but it’s shorter than the length of a blazer, though similar to what’s popular today for a jacket.
The mid-grey trousers are made at Cyril Castle by his trouser-maker at the time, Richard Paine. The trousers have a straight leg, plain bottoms, front darts and jetted pockets angled across the front. The lilac shirt is the usual style in the series, with a large, moderate spread collar, one-button, button-down cocktail cuffs and a plain front. The purple tie has a double-rib weave. He also wears tall brown zip boots.
Also with this outfit, Moore wears a cream-coloured cotton trench coat. Although it is a lighter colour than the traditional tan, it still is longer than knee-length with five rows of buttons to the collar. However, it is missing many of the traditional details, like the shoulder straps, the storm flap and the belt. Instead of a belt, the coat is fitted through the body.
It will hardly surprise anyone to hear that I have been very fond of this jacket/ensemble ever since I first watched The Persuaders. Can’t say that the lilac shirt and matching tie would be Moore’s finest hour although I suppose it suits the character here.
Actually, the cardigan blazer first appeared in an episode of the final Saint series “The Ex-King of Diamonds” which had a storyline that was almost a pilot for The Persuaders. I assume it’s the same one, as The Persuaders did boast that Moore’s character’s wardrobe was designed by him and therefore he just chose to include this garment.
I recall seeing a similar garment in the 1990’s in the window of a shop attached to the Ritz Hotel in London and the elderly owner of a menswear shop here in Dublin which specializes in knitwear told me some years ago that he stocked jacket/cardigans like this in the late 60’s/early 1970’s timeframe.
I like this trench coat too. From memory I think this appeared in this episode alone although he had a few trench coats in the series
Thanks for your contribution, David. I actually like the lilac shirt and purple tie. It’s a more flamboyant twist on Bond’s classic sky blue shirt and navy tie. I also chose to show the occurrence of the cardigan with a tie to relate to the current trend of dressing up a cardigan with a tie.
You’re right that this trench coat only appeared in this episode. More often he wore the brown leather one.
David… the shop in The Ritz was… wait for it… Angelo of Rome. I know this, because I bought one there (regrettably I no longer have it – we are going back a good 15 years)
Angelo of Rome ? Is it the same Angelo who made Moore’s suits in Moonraker ?
Yes, that’s it.
Yes the very same. I have no idea if they did bespoke but lots of RTW suits etc, all I would guess of Brioni quality and similar style. It was like one of the San Carlo/St Charles stores that are to be found around the Park Lane end of Mayfair
Blazer-cardigan were very popular in Italy in 70s and 80s,especially for kids and boys.
Were absolutly identical at this.
Thanks for the information. I didn’t know they were so popular.
I wore one for my First Communion when I was ten (we were living in Italy at the time).
I agree that this look is very Italian and a look that modern designers are definitely trying to bring back. Roger obviously liked it and I sense may well have been influenced by his Italian wife at the time. In my opinion, he never looked better than his period in The Persuaders where he became an icon for British elegance, good taste, exceptional good looks and roguish charm, all things sadly missing today from the standard British male.
I just think shades of purple are not always the most flattering for many men’s complexions and flatter a dark skinned person best. Moore looks, frankly, a little pasty here. I do remember the leather trench coat well although I have also somewhat mixed feelings about it. Moore wore it in quite a number of episodes so he obviously liked it and as it would have been a bit warmer for the British winter than a regular trench coat that makes sense. Worth a post in the future?
That is indeed interesting. I wonder when Angelo of Rome went completely out of business? I can’t remember if the blazer I saw in the shop at that time was identical to Moore’s but, from memory, it certainly looked very similar. If your blazer was identical then it would indicate that Angelo Roma actually supplied some pieces to Moore while he still had Castle as his main tailor. I know Hayward made outfits for him prior to their Bond period so this would also make sense. Sadly, at that time, I didn’t have the money to buy the blazer!
Steve, couldn’t agree more with your sentiments!
David, I agree with you about the purple. That said, I still think Moore looks great here. Very rakish, but yet still elegant as always.
I’ve seen numerous versions of this in the last two years, but only in stores (and only at very fashion forward ones like Zara and H&M). I’ve not noticed anyone wearing them, however that may be due to where I work (the financial district) more than anything else. I could see this becoming a very popular piece in the near future as traditional cardigans have been “in” for so many years now…people are always looking for ways to make their wardrobes look fresh. Which, ironically, means that we just keep cycling in versions of things that were popular in the past…
A very sharp cardigan. It would work, IMHO, as off-duty wear for Bond. As Bond in the Moore era was partial to actual blazers, it seems odd to also pack a cardigan trying to be a blazer. Perhaps swapping out the brass buttons for something more subdued would make a difference. ’nuff said about the shirt/tie. it was the early ’70’s, after all.
Matt do you plan on doing a post on the blazer-cardigan from The Saint ?, can’t wait for another Saint post in general really.
I think that Saint one you’re referring to (only featured in one episode of the final series which was, coincidentally a Persuaders forerunner) is the same garment seen here in The Persuaders or knowing Roger, he had a few in his wardrobe!