Driving Coat, Hammond & Co. Ltd.

Driving Coat, Hammond & Co. Ltd.

Driving Coat
Hammond & Co. Ltd. (tailors)
1906-8
London
Woven houndstooth check tweed, lined with silk and woven wool
Museum no. T.96-1963
Given by Sir Phillip and Lady Joubert

This versatile double-breasted coat made of a heavy wool would have been ideal for outdoor wear. At the turn of the century a growing interest in sports and leisure pursuits led to more relaxed clothing for men. Comfortable clothes were needed to ride a bicycle, drive a motor car or play golf. This resulted in a range of informal styles that fed into mainstream fashion:

'A man's wardrobe is now almost as varied as a woman's. He has different costumes for walking, riding, driving, visiting, boating, hunting, shooting, golfing, bicycling, tennis, and cricket, dining, smoking, and lounging, football, racing, and yachting, to say nothing of uniform and the Court suit, besides the now developing motor-car costume'. (Mrs Humphry, 'Manners for Men', London 1897)

This suit has two slanting hip pockets with flaps and a small ticket pocket at the waist seam on the right-hand side. A tailor's label, stitched to the right inside breast pocket, is inscribed with the words, 'Hammond & Co., Ltd., 465 Oxford Street., London Fo 501 Mons. Paul Cocteau'. Paul Cocteau was the brother of the French writer and film maker Jean Cocteau. He preferred to purchase his sporting dress in England as he considered it to be the best quality.