Comparing the Barbour Beacon Heritage X To Ki To Sports Jacket and the Barbour Dept. B Commander
Of all the products and clothes in SkyFall (2012), the most popular and sought after might be the olive green Barbour Beacon Heritage X To Ki To Sports Jacket worn by James Bond in the Scotland scenes. My favorite Bond jacket of all time was sold out quickly when the movie came out and fetched high prices on eBay.
Since it was a Limited Edition series, Barbour wasn't able to produce more of the jackets. To be able to supply the jacket to the Bond fans, Barbour decided to remake the jacket but release it under a different name, the Barbour Dept. (B) Commander, which seems to be a clear reference to 'Commander' Bond. In this article, I will compare the original Barbour X To Ki To Sports Jacket with the Barbour Dept. (B) Commander.
Update December 2013: Barbour now sells the Commander jacket under the name "Barbour Heritage Beacon Sports Jacket" from the Dept. B collection, but it is the exact same jacket as the Commander. The word Commander never appeared on the jacket iteself, and the modelnumbers are the same.
About the Barbour Beacon Heritage X To Ki To Sports Jacket
The jacket worn by James Bond (Daniel Craig) in the movie SkyFall is a Barbour Beacon Heritage X To Ki To Sports Jacket, a Limited Edition series.
The X To Ki To jacket was part of the Beacon Heritage collection, a collaboration between Barbour and Japanese designer Tokihito Yoshida. The collection is inspired by Barbour’s sporting, motorcycling and military past and offers a range of jackets, knitwear and shirts.
Currently sold out everywhere, this jacket can only sometimes to be found on eBay.
About the Barbour Dept. (B) Commander
The Barbour Commander was launched mid 2013 as part of Barbour's new Dept. B menswear collection. Just like the Barbour X To Ki To Sports Jacket it is a Limited Edition series. The Commander jacket has been very popular, especially among Bond fans who weren't able to pick up the original Bond jacket. Priced at £385 or $535 at End Clothing the same price as the original To Ki To jacket. To limit speculation with the jacket, Barbour (and some other stores) limit each purchase to 1 jacket per person.
Taking a closer look
The Barbour X To Ki To Sports Jacket and the Barbour Dept. B Commander are exactly the same for the most part. Both have the same tailored (fitted) sports jacket shape, and are made from 6oz Sylkoil waxed cotton with the classic Barbour tarten lining in the inside. When you feel the fabric of these jackets, you can feel the oil. Be careful when you want to hang this jacket in your closet next to your other clothes, because it might stain other garments with a little bit of greasy oil.
Both jackets are the same color oliver green. The color is hard to photograph: sometimes it looks darker or lighter than it is. Dark Olive Green is how I would describe it.
The jackets have a single welted chest pocket and two lower bellowed pockets at the front. At the back the jackets have two zipped lower back poacher pockets. These large pockets were originally designed to carry game, but you can fit virtually anything in there.
More beautiful details include the soft leather-bound cuff edges, shoulder and elbow patches. Both jackets have a triangle shaped button-up throat flap (see photo below), also leather-bound, which protects the throat from wind. Be careful not to lose this little triangle flap, since when you don't use it you probably put it in a pocket.
Both jackets are surprisingly versatile, and look great worn as a blazer with the collar folded down and lapels open, or with the collar turned up worn over a fine-knit jumper (from N. Peal if you want to stay close to the SkyFall look) and scarf for the authentic Bond look.
Differences between Barbour X To Ki To Sports Jacket and Barbour Dept B Commander
One of the main differences between the Barbour X To Ki To and the Commander is that the To Ki To includes a removable hood. The hood is beautifully crafted, with the classic Barbour tarten lining. It's quite practical in rainy situations, as it is adjustable and covers up the head very well.
This hood can be attached and removed with a zipper and buttons, so the To Ki To has a zipper just below the collar. Also, there are two extra buttons on the front below the collar to fasten the hood. Those buttons and zipper are obviously not present on the Commander.
The hood is actually not used in the movie and the costume designer even removed the zipper that attaches the hood to the jacket. So the lack of the hood of the Barbour Dept B Commander makes it a bit more similar to the film version.
Another big difference is the protective flap inside the front of the jacket on the Barbour X To Ki To (see photo above and below).
On the Commander, this flap is completely missing, which is a shame since it is very useful to keep out the wind, especially since the jackets only has buttons at the front and no zipper, so wind can get through.
The only other differences are the labels and logos of each jacket. Compare the large labels inside the jacket on the photo below.
On the outside left pocket, each jacket has a different embroidery: we can see the embroidered "Barbour" logo of the To Ki To Sports Jacket and "Barbour Dept (B)" on the left front pocket of the Commander.
Both jackets come with 3 spare buttons, a gold/green Barbour pin, warranty and service cards. The Commander that I bought had a card which was labeled "Barbour Department B 'SkyFall' Commander Jacket - Medium" which might have been an addition from End Clothing (where I got the jacket) because underneath, the original sticker reads 'Commander Jacket'.
The Barbour X To Ki To jacket has modelnumber MWX0364OL71 and the Commander jacket has modelnumber MWX0007OL71.
The other details of the jackets seem to be exactly the same, from the shape, pockets, design, fabrics and color. I have a Medium version of each jacket and both fit exactly the same.
The jackets are both tight fitting, but Barbour recommends to order your normal size for a good fit. The jackets are especially tight around the shoulders and chest, so if you have wide shoulders/chest, you might want to consider sizing up. Big bellys might also not quite fit if you want to close the buttons. Think of it as a tight fitting sports jacket and not as a winter coat where you can fit many layers underneath. Wearing it with a shirt, nice thin (N. Peal) sweater and thin scarf is perfect.
Where to buy
Note that the Commander jacket is also a Limited Edition so might sell out soon again. Some stores already sold out of certain sizes. If you have an official Barbour store nearby, I would recommend paying it a visit and fit the jacket. I bought my Barbour Dept B Commander jacket at End Clothing, which has a UK and USA website. Great service and fast delivery. I have heard positive feedback from fans in the USA, Canada, Denmark, Belgium and the UK.
For USA fans, End Clothing and Aphrodite Clothing offer the best price. If you're ordering from the USA website you get the jacket for only $535, basically the normal price minus the VAT. Please note that you might have to pay about $100 custom taxes when the jacket arrives, but many people have received the jacket without having to pay anything extra, making this a very good deal. Canadian fans beware, I heard from a fan in Canada that he had to pay close to 190CAD import taxes, so make sure you calculate that as a possible extra cost in your final price.
The Barbour Beacon Sports (Commander) jacket was since December 2013 also available in Navy Blue (update 2016: sold out).
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