Havana – Robert Redford’s Ivory Dinner Jacket

Robert Redford as Jack Weir in Havana (1990)

Robert Redford as Jack Weil in Havana (1990)

Vitals

Robert Redford as Jack Weil, smooth, cynical gambler and U.S. Navy veteran

Havana, December 1958

Film: Havana
Release Date: December 14, 1990
Director: Sydney Pollack
Costume Designer: Bernie Pollack

Background

The new year is a time of resolutions, but instead of dropping a few hundred quid on a gym membership that will be used three times until it’s finally dropped in March, invest those dollars in a perfectly tailored dinner jacket… then resolve to find the occasion in 2017 to wear it. Whether it’s to class up a night out or just to feel confident at the grocery store, you’ll be glad you made the investment!

To illustrate the impression a great dinner jacket can make, BAMF Style is delivering a double dose of Robert Redford’s formalwear leading up to the new year. (Thursday’s post analyzed his black tie ensemble in Spy Game.) In this sequence from Havana, Jack Weil (Redford) dresses to the nines for an evening meeting with Meyer Lansky (Mark Rydell) and Joe Volpi (Alan Arkin) at one of Lansky’s casinos.

It isn’t New Year’s Eve yet, but it’s getting close…

What’d He Wear?

Jack sports a ivory wool shawl-collared dinner jacket, perfect for a warm evening soiree in Havana and evocative of Humphrey Bogart‘s classic double-breasted jacket in Casablanca.

A Christmas tree in the background isn't going to make meeting with Meyer Lansky any less tense.

A Christmas tree in the background isn’t going to make meeting with Meyer Lansky any less tense.

The shawl lapels are self-faced save for the strip of white satin piping along the edge. The top and sides of the welted breast pocket are also piped in white satin, further embellished by an ivory silk display kerchief poking out of the pocket. The jetted pockets are straight, and there appear to be two buttons on each cuff that match the single ivory plastic button on the front.

The details of Weir's dinner jacket set him apart as more of an individualist than Joe Volpi.

The details of Weil’s dinner jacket set him apart as more of an individualist than Joe Volpi.

He wears a black or midnight blue pleated silk cummerbund that remains visible above the low button stance of his jacket. Cummerbunds are the most popular waist covering for warm-weather formalwear as it keeps its wearer cooler than a waistcoat would.

The ventless dinner jacket is fully cut as was fashionable in the late 1950s with wide padded shoulders and roped sleeveheads.

Weir and Volpi hit the streets.

Weil and Volpi hit the streets.

Redford once again wears an Anto Beverly Hills shirt, and Anto confirmed that this white formal shirt has five 3/4″ pleats on each side of the placket, just like his Swiss cotton tuxedo shirt in Spy Game. Also similar to his Spy Game shirt is the long point collar, the three gold-trimmed round black studs visible above the waist, and the double (French) cuffs for his gold cuff links.

Weir's buddy takes on a much more tragic black tie ensemble.

Weil’s buddy takes on a much more tragic black tie ensemble.

The slim butterfly-shaped bow tie is either black or midnight blue silk.

havanawhite-cl2-tie

Jack wears a pair of reverse-pleated dark wool formal trousers, either in black or midnight blue with a black satin stripe down the side of each leg. His high-rise trousers also have plain-hemmed bottoms and side pockets where he often places his hands.

Weil wears a pair of black patent leather oxfords with black dress socks.

havanawhite-cl3-full

Weil’s accessories remain the same throughout Havana with an ornate gold signet ring on his right pinky and a gold wristwatch on his right wrist. The watch has a round yellow gold case with a gold dial and a flat gold bracelet.

Weir ends his night looking cooler than ever.

Weil ends his night looking cooler than ever.

Interestingly, this is one of the few times that Redford does not wear his usual silver Hopi-gifted ring.

Go Big or Go Home

This scene features Bobby Darin’s 1959 classic “Beyond the Sea”, but for your festive New Year’s Eve celebration, you’ll definitely want Darin’s bittersweet “Christmas Auld Lang Syne” from his 1960 album The 25th Day of December, available on Amazon.

havanawhite-cropHow to Get the Look

As always, Robert Redford makes dressing well look effortless.

  • Ivory wool single-breasted 1-button dinner jacket with satin-piped shawl collar, satin-piped breast pocket, straight jetted hip pockets, 2-button cuffs, and ventless back
  • White Swiss cotton formal shirt with long point collar, 3/4″-pleated front, gold-trimmed black studs down front placket, and double/French cuffs
  • Black slim silk bow tie
  • Gold cuff links
  • Black silk cummerbund
  • Black reverse-pleated formal trousers with black satin side stripes, side pockets, and plain-hemmed bottoms
  • Black patent leather oxfords/balmorals
  • Black dress socks
  • Gold wristwatch with round gold dial on flat bracelet
  • Gold signet pinky ring

For an extra subtle touch, Weil wears a white silk display kerchief in his jacket breast pocket.

Do Yourself a Favor and…

Buy the movie

…and have a happy, healthy, and safe new year!

(Yes, I know this gif is from Sneakers. That post will be coming someday, too.)

(Yes, I know this gif is from Sneakers. That post will be coming someday.)

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s