Style Manual

The modern man’s guide to dressing well every day

The History of the Parka

Winter is soon approaching and that can only mean one thing – it’s time to layer up and stay warm. For the last few years, the Parka has made a steady comeback since its glory days in the 90s. Not only is this classic considered to be a statement coat and perfect for looking stylish, it’s also really good for keeping you warm. This practical element comes through because fundamentally the parka was designed not as a fashion piece but for military use in the USA army.

Rewind back to the 1950s and you’ll find that the Parka was a fundamental piece of kit in the military. Available in an army green colour, the combination of a warm fabric and furry hood made it ideal for flight crews that were stationed in very cold areas.


The “Fishtail” Parka was also very popular in the 1950s. Used to protect soldiers from the cold weather during the Korean War,  it adopted the name “Fishtail” Parka because it was shaped like a fishtail at the back so it could be tied around the upper leg making it more resistant to wind.

It was in the next decade of the swinging sixties that the fishtail parka became a more mainstream fashion item. Popular among the Mods, the “fishtail” Parka symbolised rebellion and was cheap to buy, warm, easy to wear while riding a scooter and not to mention unique to the Mod culture.


As time has passed, the Parka hasn’t lost any significance. In the 90s, the military green version became associated with Indie bands such as Oasis. Moving on to now, and the Parka is available in a variety of colours, styles and fabrics and one of the most popular worn jackets today.


This comes as no surprice. After all, the Parka is extremely versatile. You can easily dress is casually with a t-shirt and trainers or smarten up with a stylish shirt, jumper, chinos and formal shoes.

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