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Where to buy a vintage canvas anorak for outdoor wear?

August 3, 2019

Knowing where to buy a vintage canvas anorak for your next skiing, mountain climbing, camping or hiking trip can save you a great deal of stress – and money too!


Anorak’s have been popular since the ancient Caribou Innuits fashioned them from bear and seal skin. These military style garments are tough, durable and, of late, crafted with style and technology. So, do you know where to buy a vintage canvas anorak for your next camping or hiking adventure? Read on and find out!

1960s Olive Green anorak

1960s Olive Green anorak

Anorak Basics

Before we explore where to buy a vintage canvas anorak, let’s talk briefly about what an anorak really is. The origins of the word “Anorak” are a bit murky. Some use it to define a hooded parka, usually made from canvas.  Others use the term Anorak to loosely describe military style jackets made from waterproof materials.


The question of where to buy a vintage canvas anorak is further complicated because of the definition of what an anorak looks like. Some sources define it as looking more akin to a parka jacket, and therefore sourced from outdoor gear shops. Others hold that the anorak smock looks more like military gear, and therefore is best bought from any place selling a vintage army jacket or other combat wear.


Regardless of which definition of the anorak smock we go with; there are some characteristics of this jacket coat that are irrefutable. For instance, most experts agree on the following about the anorak:


  • It is a rugged piece of outerwear
  • It is usually a hip-length garment
  • It usually features a hooded parka style zippered head covering


With so many variations of what a vintage anorak looks like, how would one go about determining where to buy one from? When looking for where to buy a vintage canvas anorak, therefore, you also need to understand how the anorak differs from other similar garments, so that you know exactly where to buy it from.


Typically speaking, an anorak smock is distinct from a hooded parka. While the latter is usually designed as a front-open, zippered jacket coat, the classic vintage anorak is worn more like a pullover. You slide it over your head in order to get it on.


Another significant feature of the anorak, or other similarly designed military jacket is the fact that, unlike any other hooded parka or outdoor coat, it (the anorak) is designed with chest pouch pockets. This is a marked deviation from the side pockets you will find in any parka jacket or hooded outerwear available today.


And the reason for this unique anorak feature is practicality. Once you strap on your backpack over a traditional military jacket, the side pockets are rendered useless because they are obstructed by the backpack belt. The chest pocket design of the anorak jacket coat, on the other hand, allows you ample room to access the front pockets, while still keeping the army jacket design convenient and functional.

60s black anorak

60s black anorak

What to look for?

Before letting you know where to buy a vintage canvas anorak, it’s probably prudent to understand what to look for when sourcing your military style vintage canvas anorak.


If you intend going on a skiing, camping or hiking trip in the wild outdoors, or wish to do a bit of mountain climbing on the side, then you want a parka jacket that’s made from fortified canvas. Built to withstand the harshest of outdoor conditions, a canvas army jacket will ensure that your outerwear doesn’t succumb to wear and tear of intense use.


Next, you need a hooded parka so that your head and ears are always protected in cold gusts and strong winds. The water resistant hood will also serve as a natural protector from rain and melting snow, while keeping you warm and dry.


A typical anorak smock shouldn’t be of a fitted-design. It needs to be sufficiently loose fit so that it doesn’t impede your movements. Additionally, the ideal vintage-style military jacket shouldn’t be too loose fitting so as to allow wind or water to penetrate into the garment.


Look for a vintage canvas anorak that isn’t too long for you. Ideally, in the outdoors, your field jacket should be hip length, or no longer than your knees. That design ideally ensures that you can keep the wind and cold at bay. The ideal anorak smock will have a drawcord at the hip to fasten the jacket around your body, preventing wind drafts from ricing into your body from beneath.


Infused with technology

Finally, when considering where to buy a vintage canvas anorak, look for a piece that’s infused with technology. Today’s jacket coat comes equipped with some cool advancements in fabric technologies and manufacturing techniques. So, check to see if your canvas parka jacket is treated with water resistant coatings.


And speaking of technologies, many suppliers manufacture their anorak smock with breathable fabric that helps keep the cold out, while ensuring proper ventilation from within their army jacket.


So, now that you know what to look for, it’s time to learn more about where to find that ideal vintage canvas anorak that you can use on your next camping or hiking trip.

Where to buy a vintage canvas anorak

Here are some suggestions on where to buy a vintage canvas anorak.


  • Alps & Meters

If you are looking for a vintage anorak that’s designed in military style, then the men’s Alps & Meters Alpine Anorak Pullover might be what you need. Modeled on the vintage army jacket used by the US 10th Mountain Division Alpinists, this particular piece has been upgraded and fortified by contemporary fiber and garment manufacturing technologies.

The hooded parka design of the Alpine Anorak Pullover ensures ample protection against harsh weather. It’s fortified and waxed British Millerain canvas exterior makes this military jacket anorak the ideal choice if you are looking to stay dry during heavy downpours or thick snow. Whether you are out camping or hiking, the drawcord waist will make sure that you keep warm and dry!

Designed like a field jacket, it is also infused by additional technology that makes it the ideal outdoor outerwear. The interior, like its canvas exterior, is also designed to be waterproof, with a breathable membrane that helps keep the inside temperature comfortable and dry. This parka jacket also features waxed and reinforced canvas shoulder panels that make this jacket coat even more durable.


  • Halo Men’s Canvas Anorak

It’s true that Alps & Meters have a higher-price-point for their vintage style army jacket. But if you are wondering where to buy a vintage canvas anorak that’s less pricey, yet at the same time vintage-looking, then the Halo Men’s Canvas Anorak might fit the bill.


Loosely inspired by the jacket coat and outerwear designed for the Danish Army Special Forces, this is an ideal piece of outdoor wear for climbing, skiing, camping or hiking.


Halo’s vintage canvas anorak smock is constructed from water resistant canvas material – which means its idea for situations where you’ll be outdoors in torrential weather, facing gusty winds or in wet snowy conditions.  The half zipper opening, both in front and the side, make this vintage-inspired military jacket easy to slip on and off in a hurry.


While the thick water resistant outer canvas shell makes the Halo Men’s Canvas Anorak strong and durable, it’s cotton collar and rib cuff adds comfort and cosiness to this military style jacket.


Disclosures and Cautions

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