SaDCast Show Notes: On Milsurp & Military Clothing

Military surplus is a fun way to add some spice to your wardrobe, and Spencer and I have been doing it for a while now! We discuss the appeal of Milsurp, our favorite pieces, and where we suggest you get them, all in this much-anticipated episode.

You can also enjoy the plethora of inspiration images (which is probably the real reason you’re here…)

Episode Brought to You By:  Stryx

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Outline

  • 2:25 Movie Talk
  • 8:20 Military Surplus
  • 11:50 “There’s just something special about vintage military stuff. Like anything vintage, it’s about the details you can’t find today.” 
  • 12:15 “We watched a documentary yesterday about Liverano and he talks about how beautiful a piece of clothing gets as it ages. He was talking about tailoring – we’re talking about more casual garments here – but the same principle applies.”
  • 14:10 “What’s great about the stuff we tend to buy from WWII, Korea, Vietnam is it’s all cotton, all wool, organic fabrics.”
  • 14:40 “The stuff today doesn’t have that same utilitarian feel to it.”
  • 16:50 “Vintage milsurp looks and can fit in better with classic menswear than regular  stuff.”
  • 17:20 Our Favorite Pieces
  • 18:30 “One of the things that appeals to us about M-43’s or jungle jackets is they are still very wearable. Guy’s still wear olive military overshirts, they wear BDU’s casually, or they wear a mallbrand repro M-65. So the M-43 and jungle jackets are versions of those things that are a little bit cooler.”
  • 21:00 “It’s all about finding alternatives to things that are still cool. Instead of wearing a trenchcoat, wearing an M-43 field jacket. Pop the collar, little bit above the knee, it’s cooler, they have a rugged appeal to them.”
  • 27:40 “This episode is going to be completely incomprehensible if you don’t know much about military surplus.”
  • 30:25 “For me military surplus has this appeal that workwear always had: the beauty in these incredibly practical garments. We’re talking about them as fashion but they were not designed as fashion, they were designed to be worn on 10 hour marches and carry fucking ammo pouches – I don’t know what they carry I haven’t served.”
  • 31:10 “The appeal of it, especially when we spoke about the 70’s, is people started to wear these things out in public because that’s what they had.” 
  • 33:10 How We Pull it Off
  • 36:00 “Chinos are the easiest way to get into it. Khaki chinos if they’re WWII are cool because of their age and high waist, but it’s still different from wearing Banana Republic chinos, the wider leg brings a different silhouette and creates more interest.”
  • 43:35 “When you wear a lot of military surplus, there come connotations with it. It’s easier to avoid those connotations if you’re just wearing a field jacket, but if you’re wearing something that has a specific branch of the military on it or a lot of combined military, you look like a militia person.”
  • 44:10 “It’s really hard to wear a WWII greatcoat without looking like Dwight Schrute.”
  • 47:40 “You look at Inherent Vice: he’s wearing a military jacket the whole time, you see that in a lot of movies of the 60’s and 70’s, these counter-culture characters wearing military jackets. It’s the same thing that we’re doing, we’re wearing it in a different context to give it new meaning.”
  • 48:10 Where To Get It
  • 48:15 “Avoid milsurp stores because they typically do not carry this type of stuff. They’ll carry what is currently surplus. A lot of milsurp stores do have a stock of vintage items, some repro…if you can, always go for original.”
  • 50:00 “Check your local flea markets because I’m sure someone out there is selling it, I’m sure you’ll find something.”
  • 51:20 “If everyone is buying 90’s streetwear, casual wear is the hype – milsurp is the hype for classic menswear.”
  • 54:31 Skip the Nazi memorabilia
  • 54:31 “Some of the guys that run these WWII repro sites have maybe weird opinions about Nazi Germany.”
  • 55:30 “I know that black trench coats are cool but it’s not okay to wear Nazi gear out and about.”

Recommended Stores

Recommended Reading

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My faithful M-43 fieled jacket, one of my first pieces I ever got.

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WWI Olive HBT Army pants.

It’s funny that the guy in an M-43, cuffed jeans, and sneakers is the subject of ridicule, but that outfit is basically what a bunch of guys do today.

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Gurkhas. Not as straight forward as regular chinos, but contain plenty of character.

Fun pants.

A USN chore coat. Note the shawl collar, which makes it different than regular chore coats.

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Doug in an N-1 and WWII chinos.

Zach is a great person to follow for milsurp inspo mixed with rugged ivy.

Christopher in a great denim on denim combo utilizing the USN shawl collar chore coat.

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A 1950’s USN chambray and those Army pants!

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You can always dress up military pants.

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Cool pockets that you can’t find normally.

Schaffer wearing a tailored top on rugged milsurp olive chinos.

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A-2 and OG-107s

Jared in fatigue cutoffs.

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Tony Sylvester, one of the masters of combining vintage milsurp with contemporary tailoring.

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Jay in an overshirt.

Nothing wrong with all olive.

Kenji with the GOAT milsurp + tailoring fit.

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Like I said on the podcast, my jungle jacket was so useful during my Japan trip.

The jungle jacket works with everything!

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Again, great details here.

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Repro N-1 with tapered OG-107s.

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WWII coveralls.

The trousers are from Clutch Cafe, but still cool.

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The faded green and USMC stencil makes this chore coat cool

 

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Joshua in a Swedish military jacket. It doesn’t always have to be American!

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Gurkha shorts, a fun military piece that makes shorts much more palatable.

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USN chambray dressed up.

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WWII chinos are cool af.

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1950’s period repro of an Army shirt.

A Fine-Tooth Comb wearing an admittedly cool military smock from J. Crew of all places.

Bryceland’s has some good repro, especially since they’ve collected a lot of originals and worn them with tailoring.

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Just fine for tailoring, just with a slouchier, rugged character.

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Ethan - milsurp boys Spencer, Mj - beanie. Navy crew neck sweater, jungle jacket, white wide leg chinos, cream socks, penny loafers

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Submit Your Questions & Stories

Thanks for listening and reading along! Don’t forget to support us on Patreon to get some extra content and access to our exclusive Discord. And we stream on Twitch too.

Shout out to Stryx for being the sponsor of this episode. Use the code STYLEPOD25 for 25% off any one-time purchase!

Buh-bye!

StyleandDirection | EthanMWong | SpencerDSO

The Podcast is produced by MJ and Matthew.

7 comments

  1. Huntzer · June 28

    I’ll spare you the old-guy rant about trivializing men who risked everything so that you could doodle around in their old uniforms because surplus IS cool. But I can’t let you off the hook for the third or fourth pic caption. Those are probably bomber guys (heavy fleece coats), probably 8th Air Force, and died in the thousands. Your clueless cap? “Fun pants.””
    No one expects historical perfection but you can do better than that.

    Like

    • maziyao · July 28

      hmm I guess you won’t agree with “the largest imperialist army of all time” either

      Like

  2. Eugene · July 17

    Huntzer I think your taking it all a little to seriously, they always say their podcasts are “without the stuffiness”… Maybe he’s talking about having fun with clothes? or pants that are fun to wear?

    Liked by 1 person

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