MEN'S AND WOMEN'S RETRO & MOD CLOTHING - PRETTY GREEN, ELLESSE, LYLE & SCOTT

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Mens Parkas

Mens Mod ParkasMEN'S PARKAS

A mod essential, the Parka. Whether it's a fishtail parka, an N-3B Snorkel parka or a cagoule, the parka has a place in all men's wardrobes. The two staple styles in the parka range is the snorkel parka (the N-3B) and the Fishtail Parka, both of which have their fashion heritage roots in the US military. Alpha Industries was one of a few companies to first manufacture men's parkas, originally exclusively for the military, and then later for mass production. Alpha Industries still make a wide range of men's parkas today, with styles faithful to thier original N-3B snorkel parkas and fishtail parkas as well as modern, contemporary and fashion styles every season. We stock a large range of Alpha Industries Parkas, and more parkas and coats from other famous parka coat brands including Pretty Green, Ben Sherman, Merc, Baracuta and more. 

The Fishtail Parka, now inextricably linked to all facets of mod culture, was first used by the US miliatry in 1950 for soldiers to wear during the Korean war. After the end of the second world war, it was apparent that there was a need for a new, cold weather coat for military use and development of the fishtail parka began. There were four designs, named EX-48, M-48, M-51 and M-65, where the M stands for military and the number the year the design was standardised. The EX-48 was the prototype design, or the 'experimental' design. 'Fishtail' refers to the shape of the extended fishtail reverse, which was added for extra protection and warmth. It could be folded up and fixed inside by snaps in order to aid movement. 

The M-48 parka is distinguishable by having a sleeve pocket, which was dropped for the M-51 parka onwards. The original M-48 jacket was designed for warmth and was very high quality. The pockets were wool lined, both inside and out, the sleeve cuffs had a double button feature and the liner had a inner chest pocket, unique to the M-48. However, these features made the parka very expensive to produce and it was only in production for around a year. 

The M-51 fishtail parka was the design move on from the M-48. The outer hood of the M-51 is integral to the parka shell, a hood liner was added, the fur was made detachable and a button-in body liner, making the parka a three piece style. The idea behind this was that it would be easy to clean and for the wearer to choose whether to wear the lining or not as the weather dictated. The parka was more cost effective to produce then the M-48 and quickly became the military staple. 

The M-65 was the last revision to the fishtail parka. It features a removable quilted liner, made from modern, synthetic materials and a synthetic faux fur hood after objections to the use of real fur. In the sixties, the fishtail parka became a favourite and a symbol of mod culture. The parka was a practical, well made design, relatively cheap and available from army surplus shops. The oversized parkas were ideal for wearing while riding scooters and protected the mod's smarter clothing from grease and dirt from the scooter. 

The snorkel parka, a 3/4 length jacket with a full, attached hood, was designed in the early 1950s for military flight crews working in colder areas. Originally available in just sage green, the N-3B Parka got its 'snorkel' nickname from the effect produced by zipping the front and hood fully up, leaving only a small tunnel - or snorkel - for the wearer to see through. 

We stock a large range of men's parkas with styles suitable for every need, from Fishtail parkas and N-3B snorkel parkas through to summer weight parkas, anoraks and cagoules. 

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