Camouflage print has been a thing since what feels like the dawn of time. In the past several years, it’s managed to navigate off the hunt/aisles of Wal-Mart to enjoy a bit of love in proper menswear circles.
Each designer has their own spin on the stuff, but we’ve never seen such a unique take as from Gant Rugger with their Arctic Camo E-Z Original Button Down. It just hit their online shop yesterday—here’s what else you need to know.
The Story: The earliest iterations of camo can be seen as far back as the fourth century, when Julius Caesar used a Venetian blue to blend his ships in with the sea during wartime. Since then it’s evolved umpteen times at the hands of everyone from the US Army to Dries Van Noten. This pre-fall number from Gant Rugger takes it one step further, swapping penguins in place of nonsensical color swatches.
Who to Channel: Alan Alda, if the M*A*S*H hospital landed in March of the Penguins instead of the Korean War; the personification of Mr. Popper’s affinity for wildlife.
When to Wear It: It’s a lightweight selvage madras, so anytime between now and early autumn is fitting; occasions of arctic safaris are preferred.
Degree of Difficulty: Medium. It’s tough because, ya know, you’re wearing a penguin shirt. But made easier by the fact that you’ll blend into your surroundings.
It’s October (yes, already) and that means one thing: a new crop of magazines has hit the shelves. September was the big rallying point for the fall menswear transition, so now it’s less about how fall looks and more about how fall feels: there’s tweed, the upcoming elections and awards season jockeying (coincidentally, each cover featured an A-list actor). So, let’s get into it.
It seems we just can’t get enough of camouflage these days—whether it’s heritage labels digging up archival patterns or technocrats devising new algorithms to make soldiers even more invisible. But central to the idea of camo is blending into your natural surroundings (whether it be woodland, desert or SoHo) and effectively hiding from something or someone. So we’ve decided to take stock of the camo patterns that have arrived on the scene in the past year—from spiraling giraffes to Vietnam-era stripes—and give our best interpretation of the perceived disguising agent of each.
This latest installment comes from the collective minds of LA-based label U.S. Alteration (yes, that is Lupe Fiasco in their lookbook) and one of our favorite men’s shops, Union. They’ve taken military-issue fatigues and put them through an over-dye process, giving the camo a muted look—except for the few patches they’ve left exposed. It might be the most inventive repurpose of camo we’ve seen yet. They’re launching the gear this weekend in LA with a big to-do, so those of us not in town will have to wait till the stuff makes its way onto the Web.
Last week it was the venerable trad standby J. Press hopping on the trend, and this week it’s the makers of the indispensable boot of the desert, Clarks. That’s right, camo suede. You’ve probably already got a pair in a dusty suede or waxed leather, but it might be time for an update. And there’s no denying the comforting feeling of wrapping your feet in crepe sole and suede as the leaves begin to turn. And for those still not totally convinced by the camo look, consider this dipping your toe.
Ray Shines Bright: Sad news in the literary world today: sci-fi legend Ray Bradbury has passed. Suffice it to say, he lived a full life. Even pushing 90, he was sharp as a tack, reports the Times. [NYTimes]
Mr. Packet’s Wild Ride: This is how the awesomeness that is Kempt arrives to your computer (from the undisclosed bunker we write it in). [Gizmodo]
Future Is Now: We Are the Market has a sneak peek at Camo’s spring/summer line... for 2013. We want it now. [WATM]
Take the Oath: On the heels of our post on Kirk Miller’s ties for The Paris Review, let the fellows at Permanent Style give you a tour of the shop. [Permanent Style]
These pants come courtesy of Rogue Territory, who are turning raindrop camo into their signature pattern. (You may remember us gushing about the safari-shorts version a while back.) If you want your legs to effectively blend in during a brown-and-green thunderstorm, it’s really your only choice.
Military style gets name-checked a lot, but it’s rare that a designer gets specific enough to name their favorite division. So we were glad to see Nigel Cabourn dedicate his spring/summer line to the Desert Rats, an armored division that spent WWII going toe-to-toe with Rommel in North Africa. (That jerboa patch on their shoulder is the giveaway.) As for the actual clothes, that means oversized camo prints, army green and one of the more rugged aircraft jackets on the market. It’s History Channel menswear; in our book, that’s the best kind.
It’s been a strange month for magazines. We got to see more of Michelle Williams’ Marilyn impression, the wisdom of an ex-president and some quality drinking-and-shooting time with the bull-shaped creature known as Channing Tatum. But naturally, you’ll want more than that, so we’ve got an intricately detailed summary after the jump…
It’s hard to look good when it’s pouring, but the latest Market Week offered a fresh solution: the stylish poncho.
We’re thinking of Sifr in particular, who combined the classic functional item with the Rick-Owens-in-Tokyo look for a surprisingly sharp item. Gone are the drooping shoulders and the baggy silhouette, replaced by a more tailored shoulder. Think of it as Jedi rain gear.