London tailors Mason & Sons have recreated the pale orange casual shirt worn by Steve McQueen in The Thomas Crown Affair (1968). Such is its brilliance, it almost steals the show during that iconic dune buggy scene with Faye Dunaway.
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The King of Cool and Faye Dunaway taking in the views in The Thomas Crown Affair (1968).
As motoring scenes go, it’s hard to top the dune buggy scene in The Thomas Crown Affair (1968). This is because of two reasons. Firstly, the ‘Meyers Manx’ buggy itself was a bespoke commission, designed by Steve McQueen and then brought to life by the Californian engineer, artist, boat builder and surfer Bruce Meyers. Then, there’s his co-pilot Faye Dunaway who ironically and rather hilariously doesn’t have a fraction of control. In fact, co-pilot is a bit of a stretch for this scene. Nevertheless, it’s an emphatically cool sequence that lives on as being one of the great motoring scenes in cinematic history which we’d all most likely trade an organ to experience for ourselves.
The dune buggy, which was otherwise known as the Meyers Manx, was a custom-built machine that designed by McQueen who was a well-known petrol head.
The second reason as to why it’s so memorable, however, is arguably a more important and specific one to London tailors Mason & Sons, who have recreated the eye-catching, peach-hued shirt worn by McQueen in one of his most off-duty looks in a film that's heralded for its sartorial prowess.
Faye Dunaway potentially upset with McQueen after he denied her permission to borrow his shirt.
While images of McQueen dressed in three-piece suits in The Thomas Crown Affair populate much of the Internet, his approach to casual dressing that resonates today in a much more relevant way.
This is the case in this scene, whereby he keeps it simple yet elegant, louche yet cool, with the shirt mostly unbuttoned. Beneath is his gold St. Christopher necklace, which provides a gilded touch, and a pair of navy swimming shorts). Overall, it’s a fail-safe combination that’s assuredly confident.
Please don’t worry about the brightness of the shirt in this photo, our recreation is faithful to the realness of the one worn by McQueen (pictured here with director Norman Jewison) and is much paler and lighter.
As per the muse in the film, the Mason & Sons iteration has a straight hem with a small vent and this encourages it to be worn outside a pair of trousers or shorts. There are two breast pockets with a flap, so to store away those essentials, like sunglasses, and contrasting white buttons. Rendered in soft cotton and linen mix, which with wear and washes will rumple and crumple beautifully, it has a soft and durable collar and cuffs, making it a perfect companion for those final doses of summer and early autumn sun.
This photograph is more accurate in terms of the shade of the shirt compared to the shot above. It also highlights the relaxed edge of it with a soft placket, cuffs and collar.
Now, orange isn’t a colour that’s particularly popular in menswear, despite its attractive and appealing qualities. It does require a certain level of confidence to sport it, and maybe a healthy and subtle tan, too. But it’s warm and playful and when worn as a casual shirt and paired with navy or neutral counterparts, it hits the right note every time.
The Peach Beach Shirt by Mason & Sons
Wherever you might currently be in the world, given the current climate we all probably need an escape – it’s been a challenging year, after all. So, whether it’s with your other half, or not, our recreation of this famous shirt will be a welcomed addition to your impending travel plans.