Daniel Craig’s James Bond Movie Tuxedos
How to encapsulate class and charm in a tuxedo like James Bond
James Bond has been a legendary male style icon since the first movie: Dr. No was released in the 1960s. This fact didn’t falter when Daniel Craig burst onto the scene in Casino Royale in 2006. Bond always oozes charisma and demands respect - a look which, unsurprisingly, many want to emulate.
The recent release of No Time To Die has brought James Bond and his impeccable style to the forefront once again, and men across the globe want to encapsulate his style.
Let’s take a look at the tuxedos Daniel Craig has worn throughout the movie franchise & reminisce over some of the memorable scenes.
We will explain black tie sartorial codes and our view of what worked & some elements that were not quite to our taste.
The classic black tuxedo, Casino Royale (2006)
Peak lapel classic black tux
In the 2006 film Casino Royale, James Bond wears a classic black tux. It looks incredibly simple, with the fine details of traditional evening wear, such as the single button fastening, silk peak lapels, silk jetted pockets, and no vents.
Vents are slits in the bottom of the jacket, often used in sportswear to aid movement. In Europe you would normally see two side vents, and a single centre vent is a popular look in the US.
On very traditional tuxedos & dinner jackets, there are no vents in the jacket, as the seat must be covered for formality etiquette. However, this can be impractical for movement - if you want to put your hands in your pockets or sit down, the jacket can sit awkwardly without the vents.
For this reason more recently two vents became acceptable and also advisable. Go for two vents, rather than a centre vent, as it is too sporty and informal, and might reveal the seat of your trousers when you use the pockets.
Should you wear a cummerband or waistcoat with your tuxedo?
Traditionally, a cummerbund or a horseshoe waistcoat is worn to cover up the shirt where it shows between the trousers and the single button closing on the jacket. This creates an uninterrupted clean silhouette line for your torso.
In more recent years, it has become acceptable to not wear a cummerbund or waistcoat under a tuxedo. A tuxedo without a waistcoat or cummerband has a more relaxed, somewhat less formal flair about it. You can skip the cummerband or waistcoat when you are wearing a tuxedo at an event where the dress code says “black tie optional”.
The midnight blue tuxedo, Quantum Of Solace (2008)
Midnight blue shawl lapel tuxedo
Again, James Bond dons a classic tuxedo in Quantum Of Solace, this time with silk shawl lapels, made in midnight blue cloth and white pocket square detail. Bond blends in perfectly with the sea of tuxedo-wearing men in the audience at the opera - a traditionally formal, black tie occasion.
In the film, Bond happens to find this tux in a locker, and it somehow fits him impeccably. An improbable scenario in a tailor’s world!
Shawl or Peak Lapel on a Dinner Jacket?
A peak lapel extends sideways beyond the collar, forming a peak which points upwards towards the shoulders. The shawl lapel is a continuous, slightly rounded collar which tapers toward the button, which evolved from a Victorian smoking jacket.
Both peak and shawl lapels are a classic look for a tuxedo. A peak lapel is seen as the more formal of the two. A shawl gives a more relaxed flair.
On the Casino Royale tux, the choice was a peak lapel - with the points of the lapel pointing upwards to draw the eye and make the shoulders seem broad and strong. However, in Quantum of Solace, Daniel Craig’s dinner jacket has a shawl lapel. It gives a softer, slightly casual and modern aesthetic.
The contemporary midnight blue tuxedo, Skyfall (2012)
Midnight blue shawl lapel tuxedo
Bond sits in a room of wires and computers with Bond villain Silva. His hands are tied behind his back, exposing his shirt and cummerband.
In Skyfall, Bond wears trousers with silk stripes down the leg, that echo the black silk lapels, jetting and buttons on the jacket.
Unusually, the tux worn in Skyfall has a single, central vent at the back - a first for a Bond dinner jacket. An unconventional choice as it is considered too sporty for black tie. Single vents are popular for business & casual wear suits in the US, in Europe two side vents are more common.
Is midnight blue better than black for a tuxedo?
Midnight blue is a very deep, almost-black fabric, which is meant to appear “darker than black” in low light. Most of James Bond’s tuxes have in fact been midnight blue, not black.
Under artificial yellow light, midnight blue appears blacker than black. A black tuxedo under this light can appear to have a brown or slightly green tinge.
In daytime scenes of the Skyfall movie the tuxedo almost seems vivid blue. Daytime lighting is a rare occurrence for a black tie outfit that is only meant to be worn after dark.
The ivory / white dinner jacket, Spectre (2015)
Exaggerated Peak Lapels
If your black tie jacket is tailored from different colour cloth to the trousers, it is no longer called a tuxedo - it is referred to as a dinner jacket.
In the 2015 film Spectre, there was a nod back to the white dinner jacket worn by Sean Connery as Bond in Goldfinger in 1964. The look is incredibly similar, even down to the red carnation worn in the buttonhole.
The look is inspired by 1940s suits, however unlike any dinner jacket worn by Bond in the past, it has two buttons, and a single centre vent at the back of the jacket. Once again, an unusual choice of details as dinner jackets much like tuxedos require a single button closing, unless they are double-breasted.
Bond wears a shirt with a bib front, interestingly in place of studs the choice was made in favour of buttons. Bib front shirts are considered the epitome of black tie tradition; tradition commands they are complemented with studs. Buttons & bibs are a rather unusual mix.
How / When to Wear an Ivory / White Dinner Jacket?
If you are attending a wedding as a guest, avoid wearing a white dinner jacket, as it is normally reserved for the groom. However, if it’s your wedding day, an ivory/white dinner jacket is perfect for the occasion!
An ivory dinner jacket is not a look that you can pull off at every event. At very formal events, such as a charity dinner, stick to a classic tuxedo.
White/ivory dinner jackets is a look more commonly found during the summer months (think a yacht, golf club party). It is a very popular style in the US.
You can have your dinner jacket tailor made in any colour - an ivory jacket like James Bond in Spectre is more understated and minimal, or go for something more vibrant if that suits your personality and the event you’re attending.
At parties or slightly more informal black tie events, you could wear a colourful dinner jacket - think deep purple, black velvet, royal blue with paisley, burgundy.
Ensure the trousers are always black or midnight blue - keeping the rest of the outfit simple is key to pulling off a contrasting dinner jacket.
The Black Tuxedo Shawl Lapel, No Time To Die (2021)
Shawl Lapel with Buttonhole
In No Time To Die, Daniel Craig wears...drumroll...surprise surprise... a black tuxedo! Nooooo, did he really? How unexpected!
In No Time to Die his tux is black and features a silk shawl collar, with a buttonhole angled up toward the shoulder. A buttonhole on a shawl lapel is considered a gross mistake in bespoke tailoring as the shawl lapels are meant to be sleek and uninterrupted.
The strong brand of James Bond movie franchise has the capacity to set trends. At Artefact London we have not seen a centre vent for black tie garments becoming popular despite it being a constant feature in the movie franchise. Time will show if the punctured shawl collar in the latest Bond movie will have any influence on what is considered 'classic black tie' or what is more acceptable as a look.
As in Spectre and Skyfall, the tuxedo features a single central vent at the back of a jacket. Again, unusual for a black tie garment, but is a regular occurrence for James Bond tuxes.
Bond wears a shirt with buttons on the front. James, wear those studs, man! Don't downgrade your black tie outfit with buttoned shirt. If studs really aren't your thing, James, wear a shirt with hidden buttons. Don't make tailors at Artefact London cry...
Can I Break Black Tie Traditions?
It depends entirely on the event (how strict is the dress code? How formal?) and your own propensity to stand out. Your black tie look should be a balance between the event dress code requirements & your personal preferences.
Once you master the rules of black tie you will have an understanding of which ones are ok to break depending on the event you are about to attend.
At Artefact London we can guide you through the rules and show you how to break them in style. We can create a bespoke tuxedo that rivals James Bond any day.
When we say it - we mean it.
Where to Get a James Bond Tuxedo?
A simple search in Google will give you hundreds of choices for off-the peg tuxedos to buy in every price range.
The suits in James Bond films are often supplied by designers like Tom Ford. As an example buying a Tom Ford tuxedo off the peg would set you back over £4000.
Why does Daniel Craig look so suave in his tuxes? They are well made and fit him impeccably. You might be lucky enough to fit into a ready to wear tuxedo with minimum alterations. However, if you want to invest in that one tuxedo that will rival James Bond, get in touch with Artefact London. We create effortless bespoke garments to impress.
Working with a tailor to create your made to measure Bond-inspired tuxedo or a suit means you will have an outfit that is meticulously constructed to your exact requirements, right for the occasion you’re attending.
And while Daniel Craig needs 20-40 copies of the same suit made to get through filming a Bond action scene, one bespoke, impeccably tailored tuxedo will see you through many black tie events and weddings.
How can you get James Bond’s distinct style? Do it like James Bond - ask your tailor.