Skyfall and Tab Collars
Generally speaking, I’m not a huge James Bond fan but SKYFALL is worth mentioning: Not only is it the biggest British film of all time, it’s actually rather good. Around the time of it’s theatrical release the media was awash with excessive Bond praise, so I decided not to cover it. However, Skyfall has played quite a significant role in my life in recent weeks because of what I do for a living. The movie is available on Blu-ray and DVD from today (here in the UK).
When I started writing this article, I was going to focus on the Tom Ford suits in general but in researching around the costumes I found out something much more interesting…
There was something I found intriguing about Bond’s shirt collars in the movie: When you come to watch it, notice how perfectly shaped his collars always are. The tips of the collar are always in exactly the right place, regardless of the action
On close inspection of the video you can see that there’s a small diamond shape in the point of the collar. At first I thought this could have been created by collar bones - but these are too long and straight to make this shape. Then I thought the collar points are either weighted or pinned down.
However, according to the best online resource for information on this subject, TheSuitsOfJamesBond.com, which is an excellent site, Bond wears a ’tab collar’ in Skyfall.
GQ corroborates this fact as well: A shirt with a tab collar is something I’d never heard of before, but stick ‘tab collar’ into Google and you get an image of Daniel Craig in Skyfall.
The tab collar is an ingenious but very simple idea, illustrated well by the image below from The Cufflinks Shop. The points of the collar are drawn close together a piece of fabric, a 'tab’ that is fastened with a button that I think might be attached to the top of the placket. This is what creates a nice neat finish to the collar that’s hidden by and elevates the tie knot.
I’ve never actually seen a tab collar up close so I can't confirm that the small diamond shapes that are present in the magnified image above are caused by the tab, but I think it’s very likely. The diamond shape could be the stitching between the tab fabric and the underside of the collar.
In fact, you can actually by the white Tom Ford shirts that Bond wears in the movie. They’re available from Selfridges for the pricely sum of £310 each!
This little detail might seem insignificant, but to me, it’s exciting. A lot has been written about Jame Bond’s attire and there’s not too much new to say about it… This is new. Skyfall is the first Bond movie in which the British spy wears shirts with tabbed collars.
I’m also quite pleased that the niggling feel ing about those collars paid off: Almost by accident, I found out that there was a clever little secret hidden away that helps make James Bond look impeccable. Here’s a nice pic of Bond in the National Gallery to finish.
Skyfall is available on Blu-ray and DVD now.
Thanks to MGM, Columbia Pictures, Sony Pictures and Fox Home Entertainment for the images.