The use of military camouflage dates back to World War I when the idea of visual deception became an essential military tactic. Today, clothing issued to soldiers is produced in a variety of camouflage patterns to allow them to go undetected during covert operations. The explicit military purpose of camouflage may be to blend in, but in the world of street fashion, these fractal greens, browns, and greys can be incorporated in classic or edgy styles to really stand out in the urban jungle. From Brushstroke to Multicam, here’s an inside look at Alpha’s camo collection:
Developed by British paratroopers in WWII, they used large brushes to paint different colors over their khakis before entering enemy territory. This design was popular through the 1960s since each soldier could customize his fatigues to his surroundings. The 7-pocket Tracker pant offers a great blend of form and function, all the while staying ‘stealth’ with various camouflage options.
This camo design was created by the US Army Engineer Research and Development Laboratory (ERDL) and mimics the browns of leaves, greens of grass, and blacks of twigs and branches. Shop the light-weight Muster pant with plenty of pockets for all your gadgets.
This design took ERDL and enlarged the pattern by 60% with a four-color pattern and was used for almost all American armed forces from 1981-2006. Alpha was one of the first to produce the M-65 in 1966 and we went on to produce them for the government through 1990. Today we still make the M-65 Field Coat as well as modern variations of the vintage field coat from the war days.
The first N-3B jackets were produced in the mid 1950s for USAF aircrews assigned to transport troops in extremely cold climates. The US Military used the two-color grid camo pattern of the Slim Fit N-3B parka during the Gulf War to aid soldiers in hiding from older generation enemy night vision devices.
Created as a Brushstroke variant by the Vietnamese in the 1960s, it was quickly adopted by majority of Vietnamese Marines. The black, brown, and green stripes made this design effective in the Southeast Asia rainforests – and because of this, American Special Forces began wearing the same patterns by the end of the Vietnam War. Alpha’s Air Force APECS parka is made in the USA and used by U.S. military field personnel for protection against the harshest weather conditions.
The Multicam pattern was developed for American troops in Afghanistan who regularly moved between alpine and desert – but needed one set of fatigues. Multicam is designed to blend into any type of terrain, weather, or lighting condition with an iguana-like pattern that has over a hundred separate image layers. The official Air Force APECS multicam parka features all-weather Gore-Tex® construction and is designed to resist water even after laundering or after being subjected to jet fuel, gasoline, hydraulic fluid, DEET or other harsh petroleum oils.