Saturday 7 January 2012

Driving Miss Lemon (away with Captain Hastings)

I was just thinking the other day that it was about time I did another Captain Hastings post and what should happen but Paperdoll, of The paper doll says "let's have tea!", features that notorious jumper, thereby giving me the perfect excuse to respond with some solid Arthur Hastings.

We've now reached The Adventure of Johnnie Waverly, which sees our heroes decamping to the countryside estate of Mr Waverly to investigate the threatened kidnap of his son.  As it only takes a couple of days for Poirot to solve the case Hastings' attire hardly changes, in fact he wears the same 3-piece suit the whole time, but that's not to say that there isn't any sartorial splendour to be had from the good Captain.

A little bit of Miss Lemon so people can't say I'm biased(!)
Captain Hastings has entered the Lagonda in the Le Mans 24 Hour race.  I think it's a shame we never get to find out if he made it to La Sarthe and, if so, how he did.  Miss Lemon remains largely unimpressed.

A sneak preview of Hastings' best outfit of the episode - the driving ensemble

The somewhat limited wardrobe of Captain Hastings at least means that we can focus a little more on the man himself:

A smile and a patterned (green) tie

A relaxed walk in the grounds
Hastings spends a fair amount of time wandering around with his hands in his pockets, giving a wonderful air of easiness mixed with thoughtfulness.

Even at the dinner table Hastings can't leave the cars alone(!)
Dressing for dinner (naturally) helps break up the clothing a bit.  The traditional 1930s peak lapel dinner jacket, waistcoat and dress shirt have never looked so good(!).

Back into the good old Prince of Wales check for breakfast
After a meagre breakfast ("I wonder if they're not a bit short of money, you know") it's off into the village to ask  a few questions and get a more substantial meal:

The brown trilby sets off against the grey 3-piece perfectly

If there's one thing Captain Hastings does know about, it's a full English breakfast with a glass of ale.  It's always a delight to see him educating Poirot once in a while.

"Two pints, please!"

Better light reveals the gorgeous pattern on the tie
In high spirits(!), it's back to the house in the Lagonda... which breaks down en route:

Off comes the jacket

Up go the shirtsleeves

On goes the oil(!)

Note the arm bands (not sure about the jug-in-the-ear look!)
Useful devices for keeping ones shirtsleeves out of the oil sump (and for avoiding the dreaded "monkey cuff" that can sometimes occur when sleeves are a bit too long - the edge of the cuff should rest nicely on the wrist) arm bands can still be had today.  Mine are a pair of Lloyd, Attree & Smith silvers, by way of Amazon.  It pays to get good quality bands, as some of the lesser ones tend not to have much give in them and so limit the blood flow a bit!

Rhodium-plated chrome colour arm bands by Lloyd, Attree & Smith (also available in gold) - £6.30 from Amazon

Finally we come to the pièce de résistance - the driving outfit.  Where do I begin?!  The cap, the gauntlets, the coat, the scarf - if I had a car this is how I'd want to be dressed when piloting it!  The whole thing just gels perfectly.
Gauntlets and myriad other gloves can be found for not unreasonable prices at Chester Jefferies glovemakers.  Two styles of gauntlet are available:

The Superior, from £65 @ Chester Jefferies

The Gauntlet, from £61 @ Chester Jefferies

The scarf, well I'm not sure but no doubt something similar could be found to suit in a charity shop or even a high street store.  There is always eBay and etsy too, of course.  Likewise the hat could easily be obtained from the likes of Village Hats for minimal outlay.

Check out that collar!
But that leather coat - oh my!  You'd have a job finding anything of the sort - particularly with that collar shape - anywhere these days.  We'll just have to admire Captain Hastings' example with envious eyes.

Beautiful scarf and cap

And so we reach the end of another Captain Hastings fashion post.  The man is obviously popular as he frequently appears as a search subject in my Blogger Stats.  The wonder coat-scarf-hat-gloves combo makes at least one more appearance in the series as well, so fear not - Arthur Hastings will return!


  1. Hahaha, my evil plan worked then!! I "heart" the Dashing Captain Hastings!! X

  2. Very smart man, that Hastings. Thanks for the glove links, I reckon those would make a good birthday gift for my husband. I keep telling him he needs to read your blog.

  3. What a great chap he is! Well dressed, yet relaxed. The definition of an sportsman from the old school.

  4. Wow, that IS the most dashing driving ensemble I've seen! The man wears spear point collars well, too. I have to sigh over Miss Lemon's frock, though, or I wouldn't be ME LOL

  5. Jolly good show. Fine thing to see a man who not only likes fine automobiles but knows how to dress in them as well, gloves, cap, scarf, all Jolly Good! Carry on, Capt. Hastings!

  6. good lord, I say this post is amazing


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