Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Queer Eye for the Soldier Guy?

I was doing some internet Christmas shopping, when I stumbled across these quilts and blankets.

And I said to myself, "What the hell?"

Really, now. Who has ever heard of "vintage camo?" Vintage camo? Vintage camo? Vintage camo? Not only does it make no sense on it's own terms, but try typing those to words together four times and they don't make any sense separately, either.

I'm trying to imagine what about this product makes it "vintage" camo. Are the colors the reason? I mean, pink and blue by themselves are not particularly vintage, unless they are made with plant materials using only technology that existed prior to 1820 or something. No aniline dyes for me! I'm sticking with the vegetable based pigments available before the Industrial Revolution!

I certainly don't think that these Pottery Barn Teen pillows and throws are actually made of actual camo fabric that is actually from the 1940s. I mean, seriously?

Or maybe there has been a meeting of the Joint Chiefs of Staff to select new! and modern! camouflage patterns, leaving these particular patterns behind, thus making them vintage?

Imagine Carson Kressley providing consulting advice. "I just don't know, General, these amorphous blobs just don't speak to me. They are so, well, early Manet. Let's bring these textiles into the 21st century, shall we? We need something more urban, more edgy. More Derelicte."

"Oh, hemmm hemmm harrumph. I don't know. Those camouflages were good enough for my grandfather and they are good enough for me."

"Come now, General. Embrace your fabulosity! There are more colors than just olive drab and desert tan, you know. Let's reach out across the color wheel, shall we? Just say no to those boring old colors and patterns!"

"Vintage" is less old than "antique" but slightly older than "retro," at least in my own personal lexicon, so maybe we're looking at camouflage that makes it hard to see you among other vintage textiles? Like from about 1940? "These fabrics will not protect you in military situations, but when you need to obscure your position in the midst of mid-century tea towel, this is the stuff!"

Is it old-fashioned to try to camouflage one's self in the jungle and desert, thus rendering these patterns "vintage" when modern soldiers have to be camouflaged in Fallujah or Kabul?

On Edit: I had the wrong link to Pottery Barn, which should now be fixed. Plus, Mr. Sweetie (who really does know everything that I don't) says that "vintage camo" really is the pattern--what I consider to be "classic" or "no adjective" camo. It is what camouflage is, isn't it? Apparently, it's the camouflage from WWII and maybe Vietnam, but now there really is a different kind of camo, and it is being used in the non-specific, unending, lack of any concrete goals or measure of success wars that we have been involved in under the current Administration.

Not that I have any opinions about that.

The questions! The lack of answers! How ever will I sleep tonight, knowing that there is the unanswerable questions--why are we here? what is the meaning of it all? why are pink and blue ersatz camouflage called "vintage?"


Anonymous said...

When I click on your link, I get Pottery Barn throws. Where is this camo stuff?

Cate Ross said...

My bad--it is a Pottery Barn item I found while searching "throws" but I had the wrong link.

It's fixed now.

Anonymous said...

Hi, can you please remove the hotlinked image from my website (the one of Carson). If you wish to use a photo of mine I do not mind (although it is polite to ask first, not just take!!) but please do not hotlink as this costs me money and I am a student and cannot afford it.

Cate Ross said...

Again, my bad. I apologize--didn't realize the link was hot and caused anyone any difficulty. I have removed the image and will remove or replace any other such images. My technical skills are only mediocre and I didn't realize there was any issue at all. Again, I apologize.