Bond Style – A Double-Breasted Blazer in GoldenEye

Pierce Brosnan as James Bond in GoldenEye (1995).

Pierce Brosnan as James Bond in GoldenEye (1995).

Vitals

Pierce Brosnan as James Bond, British government secret agent

Monte Carlo, April 1995

Film: GoldenEye
Release Date: November 13, 1995
Director: Martin Campbell
Costume Designer: Lindy Hemming

Background

In London, April’s a spring month. The same is true in Monte Carlo, the “international byword for the extravagant display and reckless dispersal of wealth” (according to The New Encyclopædia Britannica‘s 15th Edition), where April temperatures remain steady in the mid-50s°F range. Already sophisticated, Bond fits in nicely with this world of the elite as he tracks Xenia Onatopp, the Georgia-born (country, not state) femme fatale with connections to the Janus crime syndicate.

After Xenia’s night of passion gives new meaning to the term “thunder thighs”, Bond sneaks aboard the yacht where Xenia hosted her deadly tryst. Once he discovers the dead Royal Canadian Navy admiral (named “Chuck” rather than Charles?), Bond realizes Janus’s plan to steal the prototype Tiger helicopter. He takes off across the harbor, but it’s too late; Xenia has already escaped with the stolen helicopter. Foiled again!

What’d He Wear?

Much of the clothing in this scene was also worn the day previously when we first catch up with 007 racing his classic DB5 along the windy mountain roads of Monaco, nine years after the prologue. In that scene, he was dressed comfortably for “a pleasant drive in the country” with a day cravat and a navy jumper. The next morning, for his investigation aboard the yacht, he ditches the jumper and day cravat for an elegant dark navy double-breasted blazer. Matt Spaiser provides a nice breakdown of this outfit on The Suits of James Bond.

I typically disregard a navy blazer, blue shirt, and khakis as too much of a “white man” look, but James Bond’s deviation from the norm keeps him looking cooler than your average off-the-rack yuppie. (Readers of Nelson DeMille’s John Corey series are likely familiar with Corey’s preference for a navy blazer, blue “sport shirt”, and khakis. While John Corey is far from being a yuppie, his NYPD cop vibe is much different than that of a sophisticated British secret agent.)

The navy blue worsted serge Brioni “Plinio” blazer is double-breasted with six brass buttons on the front with two to button, both left unfastened. The wide peak lapels – each with a buttonhole – sweep down to just below his waist line; the jacket’s slightly longer fit, the long lapel roll, and the fact that Brosnan keeps the blazer unfastened can make it look very large.

Bond takes in his surroundings.

Bond takes in his surroundings.

Bond’s blazer has a welted breast pocket and flapped hip pockets, just above the lowest button axis. The rear has double vents, allowing our action hero an even greater range of movement as he hops off and on various boats throughout this sequence. The action required of Bond here is likely another reason why he keeps the jacket open; not only does it allow him better access to his holstered Walther PPK, but it would be cumbersome for him to unbutton his jacket for a stunt, re-button it to look “good” while entering a room, unbutton it for a fight, etc., etc.

The blazer also has four scaled-down brass buttons on each cuff that match the six on the front.

Shining brass buttons make piloting a speedboat even classier.

Shining brass buttons make piloting a speedboat even classier.

The double-breasted blazer pops in and out of fashion every twenty years or so. Both George Lazenby and Roger Moore had sported them in On Her Majesty’s Secret Service and The Man with the Golden Gun (respectively), and my most recent post from April 20th shows Roger Sterling wearing one as he joins Don Draper at a Hollywood party on Mad Men.

Bond wears a French blue semi-solid cotton shirt with white buttons down the front placket. His cuffs are rounded with a single button and edge stitching. The collar is left open with the top two buttons of the shirt undone. It’s almost definitely the same shirt from the DB5 sequence earlier.

GE4-CL-Shrt

The trousers are sand-colored Brioni Snello wool khakis. They are triple-reverse pleated (hello, ’90s!), which is an excessive amount of pleats (some may say one too many… as a flat front advocate I say three too many), but there’s no denying that it would make that initial leap over the side of the yacht much easier.

GE4-CL-Trousers

Seriously, how many times does Bond leap on and off of various boats in this scene? At least three, right?

The trousers’ side pockets are slanted with edge stitching, and there is a jetted right rear pocket that closes with a button. The bottoms are cuffed with standard size turn-ups, and they break high over his shoes. His belt is brown leather with a gold or brass clasp.

More points are awarded to this outfit for matching the belt to the shoes. Through a special product placement deal, GoldenEye landed several pairs of Church’s shoes for Bond. The pair featured in this and the earlier DB5 sequence are Church’s Chetwynd shoes, a pair of full brogue oxfords in “walnut brown” Nevada leather. More information about these shoes can be found on James Bond Lifestyle.

I'm not sure how much Church's paid to get their shoes in GoldenEye, but if this is the best look we get of them... it may not have been the best investment.

I’m not sure how much Church’s paid to get their shoes in GoldenEye, but if this is the best look we get of them… it may not have been the best investment.

The exact shoes worn by Brosnan were auctioned by Christie’s in their “Film and Entertainment Memorabilia” auction on December 19, 2007 in London. The final sale price was £1,080 ($2,174 in real money), and simply described as “A pair of Church’s brown leather brogues, both inscribed inside in an unknown hand in blue ballpoint pen with wardrobe details (illegible) – worn by Pierce Brosnan as James Bond in the 1995 United Artists/Eon film GoldenEye” and accompanied by a letter of provenance.

Bond wears light brown socks that are a shade too dark to perfectly carry the leg line from the trousers into his shoes.

GoldenEye was the first Bond flick to place an Omega watch on its hero, first in the form of a stainless Omega Seamaster Professional 2541.80.00 with a blue bezel, blue dial, date window, and stainless steel bracelet. It’s water resistant up to 300 meters, which is wise when spending so much time seaside. The precision movement is Omega’s 1538 quartz movement; Bond switches from quartz to the automatic movement 2531.00 Seamaster Professional in the next film, Tomorrow Never Dies.

When I know I'm going to be getting into a fight, I tend to take off my watch. I'm not fighting on millionaires' yachts docked in Monaco, though.

When I know I’m going to be getting into a fight, I tend to take off my watch. I’m not fighting on millionaires’ yachts docked in Monaco, though.

It’s difficult to ascertain whether or not Bond is wearing his black leather Galco Executive holster for the PPK. While he probably is, the double-breasted blazer manages to conceal most of his torso even while blowing around in all of the action sequences.

How to Get the Look

007 offers an elegant variation of the standard blue blazer and khakis for his seaside adventures in Monte Carlo.

  • Dark navy blue worsted serge double-breasted 6×2 brass button Brioni Plinio blazer with wide peak lapels, welted breast pocket, flapped hip pocket, 4-button cuffs, and double rear vents
  • French blue cotton semi-solid dress shirt with spread collar, front placket, and rounded 1-button cuffs
  • Sand-colored wool Brioni Snello triple reverse-pleated khaki trousers with belt loops, slanted side pockets, jetted button-through right rear pocket, and cuffed bottoms/turn-ups
  • Brown leather belt with gold clasp
  • Walnut brown Nevada leather Church’s Chetwynd full brogue oxford shoes
  • Light brown dress socks
  • Black leather Galco Executive RHD shoulder holster, for Walther PPK
  • Omega Seamaster Professional 2541.80.00 with stainless steel case, blue bezel, blue dial, and stainless steel bracelet

Iconic Alternatives has a great rundown of affordable options to channel elements of this, such as the oxford brogues, and many other 007 outfits.

The Gun

No surprises here, just Bond’s trusty Walther PPK. GoldenEye marked the last film where Bond’s standard PPK was his only issued sidearm until Quantum of Solace brought it back thirteen years later.

Gun drawn, dark jacket, and sun creeping in through the blinds... this is as film noir as Bond gets.

Gun drawn, dark jacket, and sun creeping in through the blinds… this is as film noir as Bond gets.

Do Yourself a Favor and…

Buy the movie.

Footnotes

To read Matt Spaiser’s expert analysis on The Suits of James Bond, check out his post here.

2 comments

  1. Pingback: GoldenEye – Bond’s Tan Suit & BMW Z3 in Cuba | BAMF Style
  2. Pingback: Bond Style – Day Cravat and Navy Sweater in GoldenEye | BAMF Style

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