James Bond’s clothes have pockets, and he uses them. Bond has the luxury of being a film character who doesn’t have to carry anything in his pockets unless the shot requires him to put something in his pocket or remove something from his pocket, so he never has to worry about stored items ruining the lines of his clothes.
Here are some of the items that Bond keeps in his pockets and where he keeps them.
A tailored jacket has more pockets than any other garment, and Bond takes advantage of almost all of them to store his personal effects. Read more about suit pockets.
Outer Breast Pocket
The outer breast pocket on a suit jacket, dinner jacket or sports coat is most commonly used to display a pocket square. Sean Connery, Pierce Brosnan and Daniel Craig all wear pocket squares as Bond.
Bond uses his blazer’s breast pocket in Moonraker to keep a vial of nerve gas safe before delivering it to M, allowing him to keep Drax’s secret weapon ‘close to his chest’ in a literal sense.
The breast pocket is one of the most convenient pockets to access, yet we tend to use it for display. Bond uses this pocket in two of his ivory dinner jackets for more useful items. In Octopussy Q places a poison pen here. In A View to a Kill, Bond keeps his sunglasses here. The breast pocket is one of the safer places to store sunglasses, though Cary Grant’s were crushed here in North by Northwest.
Outer Hip Pockets
People do not commonly use outer hip pockets because placing items in them can cause a pocket opening to sag and is more apt to ruin the line of a jacket more than using the inner breast pockets. But using these pockets is not against any rules; pockets are there to be used.
On Bond’s iconic glen check three-piece suit in Goldfinger, he uses his outer right hip pocket to store both a homing device and a gun he took from his prison guard. A jacket’s hip pocket is not the natural place to keep a gun, but he didn’t have a holster on him at the time.
In Octopussy, Bond stores cash from his backgammon winnings in the outer hip pockets of his ivory dinner jacket.
Inner Breast Pockets
The go-to pocket for most items when wearing a suit is the inner breast pocket. The left pocket gets the most use since it’s easily accessed from the right hand. On a modern slim-fit suit, placing items in these pockets can cause printing, but a jacket should ideally be tailored with enough fullness to be able to keep a slim wallet-sized item in each pocket. Daniel Craig’s Bond does not often use his suit pockets because his suits are too slim.
In From Russia with Love, Bond uses this pocket to store his cigarette case along with his pager that M can contact him with in the days before mobile phones.
In Diamonds Are Forever, Bond places Peter Franks’ passport in his blue blazer’s inner breast pockets, using pockets on both sides for this at different times. He keeps Franks’ death certificate in the right breast pocket of his black suit and the money he’s given for smuggling the diamonds in his left breast pocket.
In Octopussy, Bond stores cash from his backgammon winnings in both inner breast pockets of ivory dinner jacket in addition to the cash in the outer hip pockets. The cash in his breast pocket protects him during a street fight when ‘someone stuck a knife in [his] wallet’. He later places his papers for travelling to East Germany in the inner breast pocket of his navy double-breasted suit.
In both A View to a Kill and in The Living Daylights, Bond places his wallet in the left inner breast pockets of his tan suits.
Bond also uses this pocket in his charcoal suit to store his first mobile phone in Tomorrow Never Dies, which also acts as the keys to his BMW 750iL. In Spectre, he takes an earpiece out of this pocket that works with his laser microphone.
Inner Hip Pockets
Bond does not use the inner hip pockets of his jackets as much as the others. It is the most difficult pocket to access when wearing the jacket, being the only one that necessitates unbuttoning the jacket to access. He uses this pocket in Octopussy to store the Fabergé egg. Bond never uses as many pockets in one garment as he does in this ivory dinner jacket.
Right Side Pocket
Bond uses his trousers’ right side pocket the most for simple reason that it is easiest to reach for a right-handed person. In a very closely fitted suit, using trouser pockets instead of jacket pockets can help preserve the lines of the jacket. It also allows one to remove his jacket while still keeping important items on the body.
A View to a Kill and Quantum of Solace Bond keeps his wallet in this pocket of his suit trousers. In The Living Daylights he keeps his wallet in this pocket of his chinos.
In Casino Royale Bond keeps his mobile phone in his right trouser pocket. In most cases it would be too uncomfortable to store a wallet and a mobile in the same pocket, so one would likely have to be kept in the left side trouser pocket if jacket pockets are not being used.
Left Side Pocket
In Dr. No, Sean Connery walks around with his left hand comfortably in the left side pocket of his grey suit trousers. The double vents of his suit jacket allow easy access to this pocket and drape elegantly around his arm. People are discouraged from keeping their hands in their pockets because it signifies nervousness, but Connery looks cool and relaxed while doing so.
Frogmouth pockets are the most secure trouser pockets. Items will not fall out of these pockets in a low car seat or comfortable sofa like they can with side pockets, and pickpockets cannot easily reach inside them like they can with rear pockets.
Despite this security, Bond prefers to use these pockets only to rest his hands. Bond sticks his hands in his pockets in Goldfinger on numerous occasions, such as while standing in front of his Aston Martin DB5 on the precipice, and while standing around in Q’s lab in Octopussy.
Right Rear Hip Pocket
The right rear hip pocket is a common place for men to keep their wallet, which is known to cause back problems. Bond uses this pocket on rare occasion.
In Moonraker when Bond’s only trouser pockets are in the rear, he keeps his safe cracker here.
In Octopussy he supposedly keeps the Fabergé egg here. On two occasions he reaches in the area of his rear trouser pockets to retrieve the egg. The first is when he presents it to Kamal Khan at the backgammon table, and the second is when he gives it to Q at Q’s lab. There’s no way Bond could realistically keep the egg in his close-fitting evening trousers from Douglas Hayward, and the egg cannot be hidden in any pocket of the clothes he wears. When at the backgammon table there was likely a crew member hidden on the floor handing the egg to Bond. In Q’s lab the shot starts with Bond’s hand holding the egg behind his back.
Trousers may have small pockets for coins at the base of the waistband. Bond digs a coin out of this pocket of his suit trousers in The Man with the Golden Gun to pay a taxi driver.
Coats and Jackets
Slash pockets are some of the most convenient pockets on any garment, placed at a near vertical angle to allow the hand to reach inside comfortably. These pockets are found on casual jackets and outer coats, and they are especially good for hand-warming on outer coats.
In For Your Eyes Only, Bond uses the slash pockets in his green suede blouson to both store the keys to his Lotus Esprit and to rest his hands while held at gunpoint.
In Skyfall, Bond uses the right slash pocket on his pea coat to store his Walther PPK/S for quick access. Ray Kromphold of The Bond Armory is not a fan of placing guns in pockets but said, ‘the only upside is that you can have your hand in your pocket, directly on the firearm ready to draw, and nobody would know it was there. While if you had to go for your holster, it would be a little more obvious what you were doing.’
Shirt Breast Pocket
Bond’s shirts rarely have pockets, with them mostly on his sports shirts and safari shirts. Shirt breast pockets are convenient, but using them can look sloppy because they have no structure to support their shape.
Bond uses the breast pocket on his black half-zip sports shirt in Moonraker to store a vial of nerve gas when he retrieves it from Drax’s laboratory.
Later in Moonraker Bond takes a poison pen out of the flapped left breast pocket of his safari shirt-jacket. The pen sits inside the pocket while the clip hangs over the outside, all hidden by the flap.