Vintage Swedish Air force Jacket "Pälsjacka M/1948"
Maker - Örebro sport och bilekipering
Era - 40/50s
Acquired - by Douglas Luhanko in 2013
It's Friday and we continue to show yet another vintage garment from our collection! This time we want to focus on a military garment. American Army garments are pretty well known and we have seen a lot of vintage US Army clothes reproduced by different brands, as an example we'd like to mention Buzz Rickson's, one of the well known Japanese makers that have done a terrific work when it comes to bringing old military style back to life!
As we however are not situated in America, but in Sweden we thought it would be fun to share a Swedish military jacket with you! We hope to give some inspiration of military garments from a culture that hasn't been represented a lot when it comes to reproduction of military styles.
This jacket is known as the M/1948 survival fur jacket and was issued as a pilot jacket by the Swedish airforce in 1948. It has a precursor called the M/1945 that looks almost identical, but was used as a Swedish tanker jacket. This jacket is made of a thick black cotton canvas fabric that is fully lined with sheepskin, white for the body and the arms and black on the collar.
When it comes to the design of the jacket it's rather wide and boxy, leaving room for the long fibered wool in the lining, and it features a wide collar that can be raised and buttoned to serve as a neck warmer. The back of the collar also has a zig zag reinforcement seam that adds extra rigidity, to keep standing when fastened in it's upright position. This is a detail that can bee seen on military, outdoor and biker jackets in different cultures.
On the front there is two large pockets and the jacket can be tightened using two leather straps that goes all around the waist. I suspect this could come handy to prevent cold air from getting in, since the jacket has a rather wide fit if not tightened and buckled. The front of the jacket is buttoned using four hidden buttons and the front also overlaps quite a bit, making sure that the chest is protected from the cold wind.
On the back you can see where the leather straps run all around the jacket.
Although Im Swedish with an interest in vintage garments, this jacket has proven to be quite rare and I have only seen it in real life four times. It's also hard to find good information about how long it stayed in service and why it was replaced.
On the inside on the front just beneath the top button hole we find the makers mark. In translation it says Ö.S.B Military Supplies, Örebro Sports and car-textiles. It tells us that the jacket was made in the Swedish city Örebro and this maker is pretty common when it comes to vintage Swedish army clothes from the middle of the last century.
Here you can also see that the top buttonhole is reinforced with black leather.
At the back of the neck there is a leather hanger that has been reinforced using rivets.
The pockets are large and go all the way down to the waistband.
The cuffs can also be tightened to prevent cold air from getting in.
The two black leather straps that are located in the waist and used to tighten the jacket when worn.
An interesting detail with vintage Swedish military gear is that it doesn't change too much from the late 19th century to the middle of the 19'th century and it is believed that the design and the materials remained the same due to the fact that Sweden wasn't participating in any wars during these years. So the design wasn't changed much, most likely because the garments newer saw any battle and avoid being tested and compared with other countries military garments. Things changed in the 1970's though, when the last era of the old style fur coats was retired in order to leave space for a new standard.
A friend of ours also have the matching pants that goes to this jacket. He found them in a thrift store one year ago and we were thrilled to see them because we didn't know of their existence until then! Maybe we can borrow them from him and have them posted on the blog later on to show the complete outfit.
If you know anything more about this jacket we would be happy to here your thoughts, so please give us a comment below!
And if you would like to see the jacket up close we keep it in the store for inspiration so stop by and we will be happy to show it to you over a cup of coffee. At the moment we actually have one for sale as well, and if you would be interested in it you will find it here!
Last week we talked about the meaning of real and fake in the form of a vintage bootleg Grateful Dead jersey, if you missed it you will find the article here