The CAMOUFLAGE PARKA / MITCHELL PATTERN is a reversible parka inspired by the the Vietnam War era, when various types of civilian wet weather gear such as ponchos and parkas were prevalent.
The Parka, which can be worn on the ‘Wine Leaf’ side for going incognito in the Spring & Summer months or the ‘Mitchell’ side in Fall & Winter is constructed from a printed cotton sateen fabric and sewn with cotton thread.
The jacket is fully workable on both sides thanks to the McCOY’S brand Conmar Zipper in Aluminium Alloy which is helped by an over-sized deerskin pull tab.
On both sides are angled flat pockets to the body and drawstring adjusters can be found at the collar and waist.
Reversible Mitchell Camo
During WWII, the Marine Corps had experimented with battledress camouflage using the M-42 Frog Skin design in an official capacity, while other U.S. troops — especially airborne pathfinder units landing in Normandy, camouflaged their uniforms with hand-painted splotches, stripes and foliage. But it was only after the end of the War, having seen its potential, that the US Military set out to develop a camouflage pattern for broader uniform use.
Between ‘48 and ‘53 field tests were conducted using a number of different patterns, culminating in a trial in Panama of 8 different designs. Two complimentary patterns were found particularly effective, the green hued Wine Leaf, a bright foliage pattern ideal for Spring and Summer months and The Mitchell, a brown cloudy pattern ideal for Fall and Winter that was named for its designer, an artist and former marine Meldon Mitchell. It was determined that this combination could be implemented in an interchangeable two-sided design that was designated as Pattern-53. Ultimately, the Mitchell name became synonymous with both sides and the Leaf design is recognized by that moniker today.
Initially only used by the Marine Corp, U.S involvement in Vietnam meant that by the mid 60s both the Army and Navy were using Mitchell helmet covers too. Throughout the war a number of trial garments were made and tested in Mitchell camouflage, including the M-65 though none of those garments widely issued and shelter halves and helmet covers remained the only official designation. The pattern was popular though and local tailors, particularly those in Okinawa would make custom pieces including boonie hats, shirts, pants and jackets, as reimagined here.
- Camouflage Printed Cotton Sateen
- Conmar Double-Sided Zipper, Aluminum Alloy
- Deerskin Pull Tab
- Cotton Sewing Thread Construction
- Made in Japan