Sean Connery’s white dinner jacket in Goldfinger is just as iconic as the black dinner suit that introduced Bond in Dr. No, and there’s no better choice of clothing for an evening in the tropics. Just like the dinner suit in Dr. No is actually midnight blue and not black, this dinner jacket isn’t exactly white but rather an off white or ivory. Wool can never be a perfect white and tends to yellow over time. This dinner jacket is most likely made in a tropical wool; it doesn’t make sense to make an ivory dinner jacket in anything heavier.
The quintessential ivory dinner jacket has a shawl collar but in Goldfinger Bond’s dinner jacket has the equally acceptable peaked lapels. The lapels are self-faced; an ivory dinner jacket should not have silk facings like on a black dinner jacket. The jacket closes at the front with a single button and has four buttons on each cuff, all in shiny white mother of pearl. The lower pockets are jetted without flaps and the back is without vents.
The trousers are black tropical wool with double forward pleats, slanted side pockets, tapered legs and an extended waistband with a hidden clasp closure. Unlike proper trousers to wear with an ivory dinner jacket, these do not have a silk stripe down each outseam. The trousers are held up with “Daks tops” style side-adjusters with three smoke mother-of-pearl buttons on each side that attach to tabs with elastic tunnelled through the back. Like in Dr. No, Bond foregoes the cummerbund.
A really unique part of this outfit is the shirt fabric, a fancy white with a white satin stripe (close-up below). The shirt has a pleated front with mother-of-pearl buttons down the placket, a spread collar and mitred double cuffs. The large mitre cut in the corner of the cuff is about halfway to the fold. Bond wears the same shirt with his black dinner suit later in the film. Frank Foster made the shirt. The batwing-shaped bow tie is black satin silk.
And making this one of Bond’s most memorable black tie outfits is the red carnation in the lapel, which stands out against the ivory jacket. The stem sits in the buttonhole in the lapel and is held in place by a loop sewn behind the lapel.