Glass Onion: Benoit Blanc’s Striped Seersucker Swimwear
Daniel Craig as Benoit Blanc, famous Southern detective
Spetses, Greece, May 2020
Film: Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery
Release Date: November 23, 2022
Director: Rian Johnson
Costume Designer: Jenny Eagan
Three years ago this month, eccentric billionaire tech developer Miles Bron (Edward Norton) pulled together a half-dozen of his closest
friends frenemies for a weekend at his private Greek island. It’s May 2020, and—as in real life—the height of the COVID-19 lock-downs, though there appear to be no restrictions for Miles’ upper-class coterie.
While Miles welcomes some from outside his college clique, such as the laidback loafer Derol (Noah Segan), he’s unpleasantly surprised to greet the woman he had known as his former business partner Andi Brand (Janelle Monáe) and the famed detective Benoit Blanc (Daniel Craig).
Rian Johnson’s first Knives Out film, credited with reviving the classic murder mystery genre, was set in a grand, isolated mansion, evoking genre predecessors like Murder By Death, Clue, and Agatha Christie’s And Then There Were None, while Benoit Blanc’s sun-baked seaside reappearance in Glass Onion was said to be inspired by vacation-set whodunits like The Last of Sheila and Christie’s Death on the Nile and Evil Under the Sun.
What’d He Wear?
After spending the first Knives Out buttoned up in autumnal tweeds and wool, Benoit Blanc can let loose a bit for the warm Hellenic mystery, rotating through a collection of linen suits and shirts as well as a fittingly idiosyncratic seersucker swimsuit made by Anto Beverly Hills, worn while navigating the swimming pools and smokeless gardens of Miles Bron’s private island.
Perhaps to disguise the fact that the erstwhile James Bond would be in better shape than expected of a fussy detective, Craig was outfitted in an old-fashioned two-piece swimsuit consisting of a short-sleeved pullover short and thigh-length shorts, both made of a matching white-and-blue awning-striped seersucker cotton, presumably treated for some degree of water resistance.
Maureen Lee Lenker reported for Entertainment Weekly that costume designer Jenny Eagen was inspired by no less than Frank Sinatra for Benoit’s bathing costume. “Initially her idea was for something made of terry cloth, a very ’60s look, but when visiting her shirt-maker, she was struck with inspiration. ‘He was like, “Oh, my dad used to build Frank Sinatra something,”‘ she remembers. ‘His dad was also a shirt maker and he had the patterns. He brought out old pictures and I was like, “This could be amazing.”‘
Ol’ Blue Eyes wasn’t the only mid-century crooner who had a hand in Benoit Blanc’s sartorial development, as Eagen explained to the Costume Designers Guild that the shirt pattern had been originally created for Paul Anka in the ’70s.
The hip-length shirt has a flat collar and a V-shaped neckline that dips to mid-chest, where the left side elegantly overlaps. The shirt also has elbow-length sleeves, side pleats on the back, and welted hand pockets positioned just above the hem.
The matching flat-front shorts are banded in dark blue across the top with a matching dark blue drawstring. Blanc appears to wear them over white underwear, perhaps to protect his modesty when wading through the water in the light-weight cloth.
As with all of his Greek outfits in Glass Onion, Benoit Blanc wears a neckerchief that adds a dandyish dash à la Cary Grant in the early Riviera-set scenes of To Catch a Thief. He contrasts the white and blue of his outfit with a yellow bandana, specifically the Golden Yellow Floral Bandana made by Abracadana. The brand describes the kerchief as inspired by ancient Bohemian textiles, with the white floral design screen-printed on a tightly woven 100% cotton quilting fabric.
Blanc protects his stainless Omega Seamaster 1948 Co-Axial Master Chronometer by not wearing it into the pool, but he continues wearing his Cutler & Gross 1302 sunglasses with their retro-inspired round “Honey Turtle” acetate frames and titanium lugs and temples.
He completes the look with the “Settat” sandals from Manolo Blahnik, the high-end Spanish shoe designer famously celebrated on Sex and the City. Each upper consists of two pieces of woven cream-colored raffia palm crossing over the instep (leaving the toes exposed) and light-brown calf leather slingback straps with a brass-toned rectangular single-prong buckle along the outside to adjust the fit around the foot.
To my knowledge, all of the above brands worn on screen by Daniel Craig were first identified widely by the excellent Instagram account @whatsdanielwearing, a must-follow for fans of the actor and his on- and off-screen style.
What to Imbibe
“Have a hard kombucha, they’re actually pretty good… Jared Leto sent ’em over,” Miles attests as Blanc strides onto the deck of his pool. Branded “Red Plant”, Leto’s kombucha joins the incredible array of fictional celebrity-endorsed consumables in the Knives Out universe, including Jeremy Renner’s hot sauce that becomes a more significant plot point than you may expect.
I’ve only drank kombucha a handful of times and assumed that it had only originated a few years before I first heard of it around 2015, but “kombucha tea’s alleged healing properties have been touted since it originated in China more than 2,000 years ago,” according to UPMC HealthBeat in a post that helpfully explores the supposed health benefits and determines that—while many of its benefits are mostly unproven—the fermentation process that creates kombucha also yields a wealth of gut-friendly probiotics.
From my state of relative unfamiliarity, I was surprised to learn that hard kombucha actually exists… though Jared Leto has yet to toss his enterprising hat into this arena. Adding a degree of alcohol may somewhat nullify the positive impact of probiotic-rich kombucha, though Health.com concludes that “hard kombuchas are a comparable alternative to beer, wine, or mixed drinks.”
How to Get the Look
Benoit Blanc took his seaside styling cues from mid-century icons like Cary Grant and Frank Sinatra, dressing with memorable eccentricity for a sunny afternoon by the pool in a matching seersucker shirt and shorts, accessorized with one of his usual colorful neckerchiefs, luxury sandals, and natty sunglasses.
- White-and-blue awning-striped seersucker cotton short-sleeved pullover shirt with V-neck collar and hip pockets
- White-and-blue awning-striped seersucker cotton flat-front shorts with white-banded waist and side pockets
- Yellow and white floral-print cotton neckerchief
- Cream-colored raffia palm sandals with light brown calf leather slingback straps
- Cutler & Gross 1302 “Honey Turtle” tortoise round-framed sunglasses with titanium lugs and temples
Do Yourself a Favor and…
Check out the movie, now streaming on Netflix.
It is a dangerous thing to mistake speaking without thought with speaking the truth.