Classic Camo

A Bellwether Insight

Photo: Adam Huang
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Camouflage is showing no sign of slowing down, as more and more brands adopt the motif on seasonless core product. Some are playing with playful colorations, but the overwhelming trend seems to point to more classic camo colors and shapes. Perhaps we are all looking for a way to just blend in?

Classic Army Motifs

The old-school military camo is most prevalent, with earth-hued ‘olive drab’ colors and traditional shapes. These are inspired by the woodland camouflage patterns used in military uniforms starting in the 1960’s, which were based on the Italian’s ‘telo mimetico’ patterns of the 1920’s. Look to 1960’s war protesters for streetwear styling tips and Andy Warhol’s camo Self-Portrait for mood board inspirations.

Olive Colors

Designers are playing with a range of camo motifs in olive drab colorways. The coloration ensures you are playing into the trend, while the pattern of camo can help you differentiate from your comps. Other brands, like Mulberry shown below, are showing geo-inspired camo patterns in classic greens (and we are loving their use of ECONYL, too!).

Desert Camouflage

This tan-colored camo was developed for desert uniforms; and, we first started seeing it in the 1980’s. Designers are using it as-is and interpreting the color scheme into more traditional shapes as well.

A look at the data

We see that the searches for ‘camo clothing’ have remained consistent over the last 12 months, with spikes in Q4 of 2019.

A look at our intuition

We put classic-looking camo on the fashion trend curve as ‘pre-peak.’ This means that many brands are keeping it as part of their core program, while most other brands use at least a piece or two of it in their collections at this point. We anticipate this trend continue to be reinvented over time.