Updated February 1st, 2021 – Way back in November of 2008, GQ UK published an interview with Daniel Craig to promote Quantum of Solace (you can read a reprint of that interview here). And as part of the photoshoot for that article, Mr. Craig wore a Tom Ford ivory shawl collar cardigan. That same cardigan in black would be worn during the Mathis Villa scenes in Quantum of Solace. And the rest is knitwear history.
While finding affordable alternatives for the black shawl collar cardigan has been an obsession around these parts for a while (okay, my obsession!), that cream/ivory colored version also deserves a serious look.
And why is it deserving of attention you may ask? Because it looks really cool! The cream/ivory color evokes the classic and manly Aran knit fisherman’s sweater. But the simpler rib knit gives the sweater a more streamlined, less busy attitude. It’s like a perfect mix of rustic traditional and urbane. Both Daniel Craig and David Beckham wear it well.
And I even tried my own take on the look using a now sold out cotton alternative from Celio:
This has quickly become one of my favorite looks to just throw on for a casual night out. I just need to be careful not to spill anything on myself!
Features Wanted for the Tom Ford Ivory Shawl Collar Cardigan
- Rib knit texture
- Five button closure with black leather buttons
- Patch hip pockets
So basically everything we want from the Quantum of Solace cardigan. But in cream/ivory.
Best Option for the Tom Ford Ivory Shawl Collar Cardigan
Grana Mongolian Cashmere Shawl Collar Cardigan in Natural White: on sale for $189.00
Not the cheapest alternative on this list. But when it comes to value for money, the Grana cardigan certainly makes a strong argument for being the “Best Option”. They’ve used an undyed 100% Mongolian cashmere yarn. Which means the sweater is going to be warm and light while still having some heft to it. Design-wise, it’s missing the patch front pockets (they’re on the side) and the black leather buttons of the original. However, we are getting that wide shawl collar and a great knit pattern and color match. It ain’t easy to find a good quality cashmere sweater at this price. So I’d definitely recommend giving it a look! Grana has sizes XS to XL in stock on their website.
Mango Recycled Cotton Cardigan in Off White: on sale for $25.99
If you want affordable, Mango delivers. Made from a 70% recycled cotton, 30% polyester blend yarn, the ribbing is a little lower profile than on the Tom Ford. There’s also the buttons and jetted pockets to consider when it comes to accuracy. But at the sale price (it was originally $69.99), it’s a hell of a deal. You’ll find sizes small to XXL on the Mango OUTLET website (not the main Mango site!).
The black version of this one already got a shout out in our post on alternatives for the Quantum of Solace cardigan. But the Ivory one is also worth a looksie. From a style perspective, it probably comes closer to the original Tom Ford cardigan than any of the others on this list. We get a great color match, the patch pockets, the thicker ribbing with some contrasting pattern at the collar. The fact that they’ve used a 100% organic cotton yarn is also a nice touch. So lots to like for the price! Simons has sizes small to XXL on their website.
Another one that showed up in our Quantum of Solace cardigan post. And, frankly, it’s even better in that Rope color. The heavy ribbed knit and wide, thick collar are points in it’s favorite. As are the dark buttons, which you can still change out for leather ones if you really feel the need. Points against? The lack of pockets and the 60% cotton, 40% acrylic yarn. UpWest has sizes small to XL in stock. Just note that the reviews say the sizing runs big (and that the 6’1″ tall model in the product pics is wearing an extra small!). So remember to check the size chart!
Coming to us from Nordstrom, this 62% Pima cotton/20% viscose/18% nylon Treasure & Bond option is a good color match. But that super-wide horizontal herringbone knit pattern is definitely more than a little different. Still could be worth a look if getting an exact match isn’t your top priority. Plus Nordstrom makes returns pretty painless if you get it and don’t like it. Sizes small to XXL are available at Nordstrom.
Edmund Hillary Lukla Shawl Cardigan in Snow: on sale for $142.84/£104.10
This one requires a little back story. Some of you may be unaware that New Zealander Sir Edmund Hillary and his partner Tenzing Norgay were the first people to summit Mount Everest (Chomolungma in Tibetan and Sagarmatha in Nepalese) on May 29th, 1953. After this historic achievement, both men continued to build on their legacies by devoting their energies to improving the lives of the people of Nepal. This led to the creation of the Sir Edmund Hillary Foundation, which is still working with local organizations to help build hospitals, schools and develop infrastructure in the region.
The Edmund Hillary brand was co-founded with the direct involvement of the Hillary family and donates a percentage of each sale to one of the causes close to Sir Edmund’s heart. It’s clothing designs are inspired by the heritage mountaineering and sportswear of the 1950s, with most of the manufacturing done in Great Britain and New Zealand. For example, the cardigan above is made from 100% British Lambswool in Yorkshire. I’ve linked to the Edmund Hillary brand website above for the sweater and to see more from their collection. They definitely have some cool pieces!
Do you have any alternatives for the Tom Ford Ivory Shawl Collar Cardigan you’d like to share? That’s what we use the comments for! And please check out our Facebook page, Instagram account, Twitter account and Pinterest Boards for more Bond and McQueen style advice and inspiration!