Return of the Mac: How the anorak had its image resuscitated

/ Mar 2017
With record rainfall saturating the country last week, it’s high time to consider anorak options. Besides the obvious rainproofing benefits, a stylish parka has become can be a highly useful weapon in your wardrobe. 

Once associated with dodgy types loitering in Times Square, nerds who’d want to drone on about trains they’d spotted, or Scandinavians (before that was cool), the humble anorak has taken all that bad press in its stride and run with it. 

Originally developed for military uses, but co-opted by mods in the 60s, parkas were so de rigueur by the nineties, especially amongst Britpop icons like Blur and Oasis, that they’d apparently become the kind of thing you could wear to a formal awards ceremony or magazine cover shoot.
Today, the influence of sportswear, streetwear and music festivals on designer fashion over the past decade has meant that anoraks, like hoodies, have been elevated to become a new kind of wardrobe staple. Luxury brands like Valentino, Balencianga and Givenchy, as well as more avantgarde labels like Vetements are producing premium, oversized parkas that are ideal for layering. 

Still imbued with a slightly louche, not-bothered vibe, the anorak is a good option for high-low dressing. Worn over suiting, a good quality, well-structured anorak can relax an otherwise overly formal look. Worn over a tee, collared shirt or rollneck jumper, an anorak’s crispness can make an outfit feel sharper. (But to maintain that pulled-together composure, it’s important to find an anorak, like the Meridian, that’s actually showerproof, with a breathable lining and a hood.)