Pay Atten-Shun!

Step in line for the Autumn-Winter 2016 new military trend

Words: Gunner Barrack | Photography: Kristin-Lee Moolman

Conscription is no longer a thing and thank god for that; imagine following up high school with an intensive two years in basics instead of an intense two weeks at Matric Rage?

Despite not learning to march in step or how to make a bed with hospital corners, we still do borrow from the military. In particular we make use of its uniform, a unisex trend that never seemed to go away and from which the men's silhouette for Autumn Winter 2016 takes major inspiration.

If you’ve been paying attention, many of our hero pieces were first designed during the world wars. That’s the bomber jacket, the parka and the T-shirt to name just three. And it wasn’t only the returning GIs who helped bring this apparel to the fore. As a form of protest during the Vietnam era, young antiwar objectors began wearing camouflage, cargo pants and flak jackets on campus; early influencers who inspired the fashion world, which now returns to the trend year on year.

This season’s take on military style incorporates tight tailoring, cargo pants, camouflage, boots and embellishments. Just by adding an accessory or two you promote a casual outfit to a higher rank.

Just remember that it’s a take on military, and if you shop exclusively at an army supply store you run the risk of featuring on a Stolen Valor video (This is where actual soliders shame poseurs on camera for wearing their uniform, yelling “I did not watch my buddies die face-down in the muck so this ****…").

At ease, you can easily conscript military-inspired pieces into your look by focusing on wearable items like utility pants, a parka, rugged boots and camo, which when worn with some of the other big trends of the season – a cable knit pullover, denim shirt, logo-print sweater, check, quilting, faux fur and graphic jumper – hints towards a general militaristic attitude instead of making you look like a toy solider.

Other details such as cargo pockets, epaulettes, insignia and badges are great. Having people salute you in the streets not so much…