“…At last, after shaving and putting on a dark blue Sea Island cotton shirt and navy blue tropical worsted trousers, Bond slipped his bare feet into black leather sandals and went through the bedroom…”, Live and Let Die, 1954.
If there’s one word on everyone’s lips at the moment, it’s ‘Bond’. If there were two words doing the social rounds, they would be ‘James Bond’. The hype surrounding No Time To Die has exceeded fever pitch. In fact, ‘hype’ doesn’t even do justice to the superlative levels of fervour and excitement ebbing and flowing through Bond enthusiasts everywhere — and not just enthusiasts, but sceptics, too. No one is immune to the Bond avidity spreading throughout London and beyond; and if you need a vehicle in which to channel that avidity, we’d advise looking to Sunspel; and, in particular, the brand’s Navy Riviera Polo Shirt.
The timeless British brand has long had an affinity with the country’s most famous superspy. Take Sea Island cotton, for example, as described in the above famous quote from the 1954 novel. Fleming had a strong affinity for the rare, luxurious cotton, with its unusually long staple length and meticulously fine texture; Sunspel, too, has a marked affinity for Sea Island cotton, having worked with the material since the 19th century. Indeed, the brand’s latest collection of Sea Island menswear styles is a direct celebration of its longstanding affiliation with the Bond creator: an affiliation marked by refinement, luxury and timeless elegance.
But we digress. Because the truly ineffable pull — when it comes to channeling that No Time To Die fervour — lies in the aforementioned Navy Riviera Polo Shirt. You’ll be familiar with the shirt’s impeccable credentials as a summer style staple, of course. But even though the rains may have descended and the leaves may be falling, it’s more of a vital purchase than ever this autumn — because it’s one of the shirts worn by Bond himself.
That’s right: the shirt formed an integral part of the wardrobe for Daniel Craig’s Bond debut in Casino Royale. As Craig put in the performance that would cement him as one of the most charismatic Bond iterations ever to grace our screens, he sported both a face covered in cuts and bruises (part of the territory of serving queen and country, naturally) and a Navy Riviera Polo Shirt.
The shirt was actually tailored specifically for Craig: Costume Designer Lindy Hemming worked with Sunspel to shorten its arms, and to make other subtle (yet vital) tweaks to both complement Craig’s physique, and to allow for broader range of movement during those pivotal action scenes. (Hemming has since commented that Craig looks “very sexy and happy in [Sunspel’s] clothing” — a statement with which we wholeheartedly agree).
The Navy Riviera Polo Shirt was, famously, sported by Craig’s Bond in the Casino Royale Bahamas’ scenes; the V Neck, meanwhile, made an appearance in those picturesque Venice shots, and the Riviera T-shirt came into its own in both Miami and Madagascar. There you go: myriad options to emulate Daniel Craig’s Bond various aesthetics throughout this iconic film.
Craig started his Bond journey in Sunspel clothing — and so in an almost tear-jerking move to bookend Craig’s stint as the nation’s hero, Sunspel has released three exclusive versions of the iconic Riviera Polo Shirt: just the thing to celebrate the arrival of a film that’s seen the nation wait with baited, anticipatory breath for far too long. Not to mention the fact that the brand is offering 20% off each Riviera Polo Shirt until 5th October…need we say more?
In addition to the Navy option — the Riviera Polo Shirt that could be accurately nicknamed ‘the main event’ — the brand is proffering the same shirt in three further colours, all inspired by Bond. Firstly, the brand has introduced a Riviera Polo Shirt in Grey Melange: made famous by the Riviera T-shirt worn by Craig in Casino Royale. The Skydiver Blue, meanwhile, was first released in 2012, to celebrate the launch of Skyfall (though this popular colour is on a fast-track route to selling out, so we’d advise snapping this one up while you can); and the Spectral Grey was — you’ve guessed it — first released in 2015, to mark the launch of Spectre.
Riviera Polo Shirt — Grey Melange (20% off)
Riviera Polo Shirt — Skydiver Blue (20% off)
Riviera Polo Shirt — Spectral Grey (20% off)
As attractive as these iterations of the Riviera Polo Shirt undeniably are, we wouldn’t want you to think we’d thrown caution to the (autumnal) wind entirely, when it comes to seasonal style. The days are getting shorter, darker and colder: and so with that in mind, we wouldn’t be doing right by you if we didn’t offer some seasonal iterations of this resplendent, iconic Polo Shirt to see you through the next few months (and out the other side, into next spring: at which point, you can dig out your Grey Melange or Skydiver Blue variation. We’re nothing if not efficient). Sunspel has an abundance of seasonal colours to offer, where the Riviera Polo Shirt is concerned: but we’re particularly partial to the Forest, Espresso and Mushroom options. With these autumnal colours, your wardrobe will be doing autumn better than your local park — and to top it all off, you’ll be emulating Daniel Craig’s Bond throughout.
Riviera Polo Shirt — Forest (20% off)
Riviera Polo Shirt — Espresso (20% off)
Riviera Polo Shirt — Mushroom (20% off)
So this autumn, celebrate No Time To Die with the considerable pomp and ceremony it deserves. Go and see the film, by all means (see it twice, or even three times — goodness knows, you’ve earned it); but if you want to celebrate the film properly, we’d highly recommend opting to purchase a Sunspel Riviera Polo Shirt. Or two. Or five.
Because the best part of all? Sunspel are generously offering 20% off the Riviera Polo Shirt until 5th October 2021. With its stellar Bond associations and considerable style credentials — and with the indelible links between Sunspel and Fleming himself — we have a feeling that’s a discount you’ll want to get on board with.