Matt Smith, the actor playing the latest incarnation of the Doctor in Doctor Who, has inadvertently revived the Harris Tweed industry in the Outer Hebrides. Mr. Smith, working with Dr Who’s costume designer Ray Holman, chose a vintage tweed jacket as part of his signature outfit, which also includes a bow tie, striped shirt and braces. The Chap has yet to establish whether the bow tie is real, though the braces are sadly of the clip-on variety.
Mr. Smith’s tweed jacket, however, is thankfully authentic, dating from the late 1960s and made from a Mackenzie two-by-two dogtooth Harris Tweed. Given the cult status of the Doctor, it comes as no surprise that fans of the series have been jamming the switchboard of the Harris Tweed Authority with requests for the provenance of the tweed. Though it is no longer manufactured, Lorna Macaulay of the Authority has promised to recreate a tweed as close as possible to the original.
The Doctor’s jacket’s provenance can be traced to the warehouse in Hendon of Angels Costumiers, and its label bears the familiar Dunn & Co name. Five reproduction jackets were immediately made on Savile Row for the Doctor to wear when performing stunts and generally running around on set in.
The Chap applauds Mr Smith for choosing to dress as a proper Chap, bucking the trend for the last two rather poorly dressed Doctors. We can only hope that, once he has tackled a phalanx of Daleks and a fleet of Cybermen, he sees the impracticality of wearing clip-on braces, and asks his costume designer to attach braces buttons to his trousers.