From the dark grey flannel suit Connery wore in Dr. No to Brosnan’s grey pick-and-pick in The World Is Not Enough, the grey suit has been a staple of Bond’s wardrobe throughout his film history. Recently, the light grey sharkskin suit Craig’s Bond wore in the pre-title sequence of Skyfall has become a fan favorite.
Features wanted for the Skyfall Grey Tom Ford Istanbul Suit
- Grey sharkskin or pick-and-pick fabric
- Slim-fit or more modern cut
- Two-button jacket with single vent and notch lapels
- Flat-front trousers
It’s the combination of white and black yarns, woven in a classic pick-and-pick, that give the fabric it’s semi-solid, lighter grey color. If you’d like to learn more about the complete outift Bond wears in Istanbul, check out this comprehensive article from BAMF Style and this post at The Suits of James Bond.
As for alternatives? Look, there are A LOT of 100% polyester, poorly-fused construction suits out there that will do the job on the cheap. But for the options here, I’m going to try and stay as close to 100% wool as possible. And keep the price under $500. The good news? There are more than a few suits that meet that criteria. What is difficult to find is the three button cuff and single vent of the original. When did the single vent jacket go out of style? If you need a primer on suit construction (fused vs. half-canvassed vs. canvassed), this article on The Art of Manliness gives a good overview.
Best Options for the Skyfall Grey Tom Ford Istanbul Suit
Neiman Marcus Modern-Fit Gray Shark Suit: on sale for $299.40
Normally priced at $799, it’s currently on sale at Last Call. The fabric is 100% super 120s wool in a true pick-and-pick. But no mention of the construction. So what are we sacrificing, style-wise? Well, it comes with double vents and four button cuffs. Sizes are little scattered. But most of the common ones are still in stock.
A great deal for those of you in the UK. How the price jumps to over $400 for U.S. customers is beyond me. Especially with the current exchange rate. Back to the suit details. The fabric is again super 120s wool woven in a twill that comes close to the look of sharkskin. The product page doesn’t share any details on whether the jacket is single or double vented. Or on the construction. But Hawes & Curtis regularly work with half-canvas for their custom suits. So fingers crossed?
The fabric is a 50% wool/50% polyester blend. But I’m making an exception to my “100% wool” rule because the fabric is very close to the Tom Ford in color and pattern. And because price. Unfortunately, we are once again getting a four button cuff and double vents. The size selection at Debenhams is still pretty good. Although they are indicating that the more popular sizes are getting low in stock.
Stafford Travel Grey Sharkskin Slim-Fit Suit Jacket and Suit Trousers: on sale for $139.99
The bargain for U.S. buyers. Typical JCPenney, they state the fabric is “wool/polyester”, but don’t give actual percentages. Still, it’s a good color and pattern match at a reasonable price. Just note a couple of things. It’s a Stafford “slim-fit”. So consider sizing down. And the jacket has double vents and four button cuffs. Almost all sizes are in stock.
ASOS Slim Suit in 100% Grey Wool: £150.00/$227.00
A slightly lighter-in-color, more modern alternative. It’s an ASOS suit. So the narrow lapels and cropped tail are to be expected. And for many of us, “slim-fit” is going to mean “skinny”. The jacket comes with four button cuffs and double vents. But those slanted hip pockets are a nice nod to the Tom Ford. ASOS has all sizes available on their site.
Calvin Klein Marby Extreme Slim Light Grey Suit: $178.08 to $395.13
It’s time to play the Amazon pricing game! You’re a size 40R? Good for you! The price as I’m writing this is $184.44. You’re a 42 long? Cue sad sound. The price jumps up to $384.15. I’m pretty sure I don’t want to guess how a “Calvin Klein Extreme Slim” actually fits in the real world. But the suit is 100% wool in a close color and fabric match. Again, the jacket has four button cuffs and double vents. Most sizes are in stock.
House of Fraser has this alternative. Fabric is 100% wool. But the product page declines to share the type of wool or construction used. The jacket has four button cuffs and double vents. And like the ASOS above, the hip pockets are slightly angled, giving it more of that Tom Ford look.
$300 and up
Saks Fifth Avenue BLACK Sharkskin Slim Fit Suit in Light Grey: on sale for $349.97
BIG drop in price for this one. Suggested retail is $1295.00. And Saks Off 5th still has a good selection of sizes left. The suit is 100% wool in a true sharkskin made in Italy. Another four button cuff, double vent jacket. They also have a similar suit in a classic fit for $299.97. But the sizes for that one are limited to 38 to 44.
Michael Kors Slim-Fit Gray Sharkskin Suit: on sale for $385.00
A made-in-Canada option on sale at Last Call. There is no mention of the fabric content on the product page. At this price, I’m assuming 100% wool. But I can’t be sure. If you’ve read this far, it should come as no surprise that the jacket has four button cuffs and double vents. Available sizing is a little scattered.
Reiss Harry B Slim Fit Grey Suit Blazer and Suit Trousers: £360.00
Hallelujah! A single vent jacket! The downside is it also has black buttons. But that’s an easy $20 fix. And it may well be worth it when the cut, fabric and pattern are such a close match for the Tom Ford. The 100% wool fabric looks to be more of twill or melange weave than a true sharkskin. But the effect is very similar. For the jacket, Reiss has sizes 36 to 44 in stock. In the pants, they have sizes 28 to 36.
Suit Supply Lazio in Plain Grey: $499.00
Netherlands-based Suit Supply is a popular company on the men’s style forums. From their current range of fits, the Lazio is slimmest and most modern. They’re calling the 100% super 110s wool fabric “Plain Grey”. But the close-up clearly shows a twill or melange style weave. The jacket is a half-canvassed construction and comes with four button cuffs (dark brown buttons!) and double vents. Unfortunately, I can only find this suit on their U.S. site.
Got a favorite alternative for the Skyfall grey Tom Ford Istanbul suit? Head to the comments below; that’s what they’re there for! As always, I’ll keep updating this post as new option appear.