Hipster retail chain Urban Outfitters simply cannot resist its perpetual urge to procure fashion items from the discarded piles of gear stowed in the military’s musty issuing facilities.
The company that once dared to capitalize on the sensational stylings of the military’s PT glow belt — coined the “Rothco Reflective Physical Training Belt” and sold for $30 — now has turned its sights to the Navy’s coveralls.
Yet these are not coveralls that simply resemble those worn by generations of sailors. These are actual Navy variants, replete with both personal identification and “U.S. Navy” name tapes sewn above the outfit’s breast pockets.
The Navy’s current guidance on wear of coveralls states that “commanding officers can authorize the wear of Navy blue coveralls ashore in environments that place an excessive amount of wear on working uniforms.”
But with the Urban Outfitters set, “ashore environments” can apply to any locale a hipster is likely to frequent — slam poetry contests, second-hand bookshops, and organic farmer’s markets.
For a laughable $120, Urban Outfitters consumers can be forged by a sea of terrible fashion decisions while wearing what the store has labeled the “Vintage US Navy Coverall.” Match it with a beanie designed to dangle 85 percent off of the back of one’s head despite being at the gym — or even the glow belt — to effectively transform into Boatswain’s Mate First Class Cretin.
Even better, with the purchase of the advertised set, the wearer can evidently assume the identity of a sailor named King. But make no mistake, a vicarious life of seamanship duties like swabbing decks, painting, and complaining about a lack of eggs prior to a long-awaited underway replenishment is anything but an existence fit for royalty.
Commenters on the Urban Outfitters website were sure to note the absurdity of the outfit.
“You can buy these exact same ones brand new at the military exchange stores for 40 dollars,” one user wrote.
“You can get these at boot camp for free,” another commented.
Even coveralls produced by respectable brands cost less than the exorbitant sum demanded by the Philadelphia-based chain. Carhartt’s Navy-colored “Flame-Resistant Traditional Twill Coverall,” for example, can be purchased for under $100.
Add the Urban Outfitters coveralls to the fashion industry’s already long list of militarized clothing. If insistent on buying a set, be sure to pair them with the Wool-Cashmere Peacoat by Ralph Lauren, a $3,495 peacocking piece of Navy-esque outerwear that is sure to keep you warm — and ostentatiously fashionable — as you brave the high seas alongside Captain Ahab in search of the white whale.
“Call me Ishmael?" More like call me fabulous!