Live and Let Die has always been my favorite Roger Moore Bond movie and, aside from the denim-on-denim island look, it’s full of great sartorial moments. One of my favorite casual looks from the film is the black short-sleeve shirt with tan trousers. Admittedly, wearing black is a bit unconventional in warm weather but both Roger Moore and Daniel Craig have shown how great it can look.
The black short-sleeve shirt Moore wears in Live and Let Die is made from silk, which is lightweight and breathable enough to handle the heat. According to Matt Spaiser over on Bond Suits, the shirt features a point collar, a breast pocket, white mother of pearl buttons, and turned-up cuffs on its short sleeves. Moore wears the shirt tucked in, so we don’t know what kind of hem it has.
Even though Moore wears his shirt tucked in, I looked for alternatives that can be worn untucked. I don’t have anything against tucking in shirts but it’s also not very hard to find an alternative you can wear tucked in to get Moore’s look—just get a black short-sleeve dress shirt with a point collar and voila! Instead, I looked for shirts that you can wear untucked for a more contemporary take on Moore’s Live and Let Die look.
What to look for?
Moore’s black silk shirt has four key features that I looked for in a good alternative:
1) A lightweight fabric (cotton, linen, etc.)
2) A point collar (no camp or button-down collars here)
3) A breast pocket
4) Turned-up sleeves
Here are four options that will get the job done for under $100!
This option from Kohl’s hits 2.5/4 of the features I’m looking for. It’s made with Pima cotton blended with polyester—unfortunately, the product page doesn’t say what the percentages of each fabric are. It also has a point collar and short sleeves that look like turned-up sleeves, but I’m pretty sure it’s an exaggerated seam along the shirt cuffs (that’s why it gets a half point for turned-up sleeves).
This Express Shirt hits a solid 2/4 of the key features. It’s made from cotton for breathability, although there is a bit of spandex in the fabric as well. Like Kohl’s, they don’t tell us how much. This shirt also features a point collar. It’s missing the breast pocket and turned-up sleeves, but you can always get the turned-up look by folding the sleeves yourself. (I do that all the time.)
This shirt gets closer to Moore’s original with 3/4 of the features. Probably the most special thing about this shirt is that it’s made from a silk/rayon blend (rayon is often used as an artificial silk), so it will have the same lightweight feel as Moore’s. Instead of the smooth sheen of Moore’s shirt, however, this option from Macy’s has a textured weave that gives it a matte look. This shirt also has a point collar and a breast pocket—the only thing missing is the turned-up sleeves.
This shirt from Michael Kors has 3/4 of the characteristics I’m looking for and based on looks alone I consider it the closest to Moore’s shirt. Like the shirt from Express, it’s made from a cotton/spandex blend, although this shirt looks like it has a little more sheen to it. It also has a point collar and it’s the only shirt on the list with genuine turned-up sleeves. The only missing detail is the breast pocket.
The Luxury Option
Admittedly, there isn’t anything “budget” about this shirt from Sunspel—it’s just a great alternative made from luxury materials. It’s made from Sea Island cotton (one of Fleming’s favorites) so it will be lightweight and comfortable in the hottest weather. It also has a point collar and breast pocket. The sleeves aren’t turned up but there’s a seam that gives them a kind of cuffed look. Again, it’s not quite a budget option but it’s a great option if you can afford it.
What do you think of the options on this list? As always, let me know in the comments below or come find me over on Instagram (@bondonabudget).
(Both images of Roger Moore were sourced from Thunderballs.org.)