The Camp Liner Jacket

The Camp Liner Jacket

Whether worn as a liner to our Winter Stable Jacket, or as a standalone piece, the Camp Liner Jacket evokes a sense of rugged utilitarianism and outdoor adventure.

One of the principal themes of modern menswear journalism is the dissecting and elevating of military classics. Battle uniform has existed, in some form or another, from the moment humans decided that a proper scrap was the best way to resolve a disagreement. The fact that military clothing focused so heavily on practicality while simultaneously looking smart has ensured that fashion writers have never stopped singing its praises. The latest wave of uniform chatter, that began about decade ago, may or may not have been sparked by our obsession – and when I say ‘our,’ I very much include myself ­– with the concept of ‘functionality.’ The idea that clothing should be useful, and we should understand how and why it works, now applies to both the hard-core mountaineer and the commuter whose most challenging expedition is the speed-walk between Bank and Monument stations.

But it makes sense, doesn’t it, that where possible, our clothing should work for us, that it should be useful. The obsession with all the ins and outs of military wear seems justified when you consider how hard that clothing had to work and how clever the best examples were. The perfectly placed pockets, the just-so hem lengths, the tough as nails fabrics. If we can incorporate even a touch of that smart thinking into the pieces that we wear most often ­– so a drawstring can provide a more comfortable fit, so a wallet is easy to access or a hood fastens fully to keep our necks warm – then, well, why not?

I have a long-length double-breasted wool coat so heavy that when on, it feels as if I’m giving a large adult a piggyback. The idea was that I’d only need this aggressively bulky coat and a decent jumper underneath to keep me going through the winter. With all the time I’d save avoiding the long-winded act of shedding layers every time I stepped indoors, I could finally tile that kitchen wall or learn Japanese. Getting lost on Hampstead Heath last winter, I realised that I was very much wrong. The sun had set, sat nav had given up and I was so cold that I could no longer remember the concept of toes. Then I panicked because I’d convinced myself that Heath foxes were definitely not as laidback as their street fox cousins, and somehow became more lost trying to steer clear.

Alongside the realisation that if slightly losing my way in a chilly, poorly lit city centre park incited panic, I should probably give that glacier hike a miss, I promised myself that I would always carry an extra layer. I never wanted to feel that cold ever again.

While I’m not suggesting that the Drake’s made in Italy Quilted Camp Liner could prevent a potential fox attack, it would almost certainly have calmed the shivers. Taking its cue from, you’ve guessed it, military outerwear, it features the wavy ‘onion’ style stitching you might recognise from the US Army M65 liner, (designed to be worn inside the iconic M65 field jacket). A piece that could easily be folded away in a bag, it cleverly buttons into the Winter Stable Jacket. Of course, it can be swapped out to provide an extra layer of warmth to any of your coats, sitting comfortably under your chosen outerwear thanks to its lightweight design. Like all good practical pieces, it’s packed with thoughtful touches including inner pockets, mountaineering style zip pulls, English cotton twill lining, a drawstring waist and a corduroy trimmed collar that zips all the way up. An all-seasons option, this jacket works perfectly worn alone, or beneath another layer. Useful indeed.

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