Mister Freedom® x Buzz Rickson’s original “BAILOUT” Flyer’s Jacket, 30th BR’s Anniversary Limited Edition, crafted in Japan, 2023

 

MF® MA-1 “BAILOUT” Flyer’s Jacket.
Mister Freedom® x Buzz Rickson’s 30th Anniversary Limited Edition.
mfsc FW2023 “Survival School” collection.
Made in Japan.

The MF® MA-1 “BAILOUT” Flyer’s Jacket drop officially launches our anticipated mfsc FW2023 “Survival School” capsule collection, an original line up freely-inspired by 40s~70s US military survival gear, vintage experimental MIL-SPECS garments, early NASA astronauts training program visuals etc.

Introduction to our FW2023 mfsc “Survival School” storyline:

In the early days of WW2, a downed pilot’s chances of being rescued and making it back to safety were very slim.
The USAAF  (United States Army Air Force) soon realized that training a serviceman in the art of flying was not enough. Arial combat training was lengthy, qualifying candidates few, so a skilled flyer needed to survive after a bail-out.
A downed aviator’s field experience was invaluable knowledge, and sharing that experience with new pilot recruits was crucial.

The odds of returning to base camp started changing with the establishment of “Survival Schools”, and the implementation by the DoD of proper “Survival – Evasion – Escape” training for all flying personnel. (timeline for USAAF here)

Newly-designed experimental gear was also being issued and tested in combat situations and survival circumstances.
Starting in the mid-1940s, official films recreating fictitious survival scenarios (jungle, desert, mountains, arctic) were produced, and became required viewing during training and on base.
Swimming skills became a requirement for all aircrews. Survival crash courses through tough physical training and studies of illustrated manuals became mandatory for Army Air Force and USN flyers.
Training in basic survival skills, acquiring jungle and mountain terrain knowledge, exotic fauna and flora expertise, learning about wilderness adaptability, food foraging, land navigation techniques, cold and hot weather survival, local language and customs essentials, expertise in blending with the elements to avoid capture, evasion tactics, …, all lead to greater chances to make it home for American flyboys.

Techniques, technology, and TO (Theater of Operations) have obviously evolved through the years for US Armed Forces, and so have instructions in survival manuals. If what applied to the Korean cold front in the 50s had to be adapted to Vietnam’s steamy jungles in the 60s, the basics and message remained the same after “Survival School”: “you now have the skills to live another day”, Sir.

For more background on our R&D inspiration and design process, check out:
* Vintage USAAF and USN pilot survival gear.
* Visuals from 1950s-1970s US military survival program, from “Arctic Indoctrination Survival School” (aka “Cool School”) to “Tropical Survival School” (aka “Green Hell”), to “Survival, Evasion, Resistance and Escape” (SERE) training.
* Visuals from NASA astronauts on desert/jungle survival training (+ here) or geological field trips ( photos 1965, 1965, 1965, 1967, 1969…)

On a side, personal note, if warfare survival skills are obviously irrelevant to a pampered civilian life, and the odds of one experiencing Louis Zamperini’s plight unlikely for most, basic knowledge of adaptability and improvisation, resourcefulness, awareness of one’s surroundings at all time, applying the right amount of common sense and civility in all situations, should be attitudes taught in schools, and at home.

Yes, learning how to fend off a wild cat attack while on a hike, or knowing which side of a tree is most likely to grow moss in the northern hemisphere may sound like useless knowledge for most city dwellers stuck in traffic.
But, without turning into a paranoid survivalist nut job, merely paying attention in daily life will never be a bad habit to have! “Improvise, adapt, overcome” is not a bad motto either.
Along those lines, knowing to keep one’s eyes on the road and not the Pokemon while driving or crossing the street may prevent many Darwin Awards from being distributed worldwide. Right now, in the US alone, 2 auto crashes occurred in the 10 seconds it took you to read this paragraph.
Oh, and don’t act like a prey if you cross path with a big cat, even “The Zamp” couldn’t outrun a mountain lion. Also, moss usually grows on trees on the side facing North, if you lost your way, forgot your compas, and just realized you killed your battery on TikTok…
Kids these days know more about sneaker brands than varieties of edible wild fruits. Not sure this is a good survival skill for our species.

The jacket:

The Mister Freedom® BAILOUT Flyer’s Jacket is our spin on the classic MA-1 flight jacket – aka “bomber jacket” – the iconic piece of protective gear officially issued to USAF (United States Air Force) fighter jet pilots and flight crews throughout the 1950s~60s.

The design of the MA-1 flight jacket evolved through the years, with its inception around 1950 when the bulky mouton collar of its predecessor (the B-15 flight jacket, 1944~1954) was replaced by a soft wool knit ribbed band to better accommodate combat pilots modern flight helmets (out were the WW2 cloth skull caps, in were the hard shell “bone dome” types) and reconfigured jet aircrafts cockpits (the Jet Age mostly kicked propeller planes to oblivion for aerial warfare.)

Optimized for current technology, the MA-1 (MIL-J8279) was born, becoming official issue sometime in 1952. Followed many revisions, until the MA-1 was phased out by updated regulations and eventually retired in the late 1980s, outperformed by safer fire-resistant Nomex® MA-2 flight jackets. This wasn’t the MA-1’s last words however…

For our “Survival School” story, we decided to modify a vintage “JACKET, FLYING, MAN’S, INTERMEDIATE, MA-1, MIL-J-8279D” specimen from an Alpha Industries 1965 contract, and turn it into a “might have been” functional, wearable, “experimental” garment.

The major mod on the D-Type (fifth generation MA-1, circa 1960) had been its novelty reversible revamping, with a sage green (referred to as camo) nylon shell for classic military concealment on the ground, contrasting with an “Indian orange” high visibility lining. A downed pilot was instructed to wear the green side to evade enemy capture after a successful bailout, and wait for a rescue team flashing the orange side out.
Decades later, this major visual functional improvement probably helped to propel the MA-1 style to the unsustainable fashion sphere, from streetwear to catwalks, produced in all kinds of CoO (Country of Origin) for a wide range of international labels.

For our BAILOUT design mission, the main point of a plausible “revision” was to flip the blazing orange lining side as the main side, up the nylon twill ouncage, use the 2/2 nylon camo side as the lining, while keeping all period-correct Mil-Specs for fabrics and trims.

Collaborating with Buzz Rickson’s – celebrating at the same time their 30th Anniversary! – made this a breeze for us, thanks to the help, expertise and patience of Buzz’s creative director Kameya San and team. After providing detailed instructions/diagrams of our MA-1 BAILOUT concept, we gladly assumed the backseater role in the cockpit and let the world’s ichiban manufacturer of authentic military flight jacket replicas do all the heavy lifting.
Of course, Buzz delivered! No cut corners, outstanding craftsmanship and quality, living up to Toyo’s high manufacturing standards and BR’s impeccable reputation.

But, why not just wear a vintage D-Type with the orange side out?” one could legitimately wonder…
Well, because of the overall construction, quilted storm flap set-up, slash pockets configuration (“hand warmer” for the A-side and “map storage” for the B-side), utility (“cigarette/pen”) sleeve pocket on A-side, etc…, sporting a vintage MA-1 orange side out will always look like the garment is being worn inside out. Not a life-threatening issue of course, but, for those attached to details – and we are -, wearing out what is clearly a jacket’s lining in non-survival circumstances may look a bit awkward or contrived around town.
The BAILOUT fills that gap for one wanting to casually wear a bright orange military-style flight jacket, built like a legit 1960s MA-1.

Note that the MF® BAILOUT is still fully reversible, and can of course be worn B-side (green) out.

On original D-Types, the orange nylon twill lining is of a lighter/thinner grade than the Mil-Specs green 2/2 twill shell. The MF® BAILOUT jacket features vintage Mil-Specs heavy 2×2 grade nylon twill on both A (orange) and B (green) sides.
For the accuracy-obsessed, quote from Buzz Rickson’s MA-1 shell fabric specs:
36 filament yarns are twisted together to make a single thread that is then woven into the 2/2 twill fabric.
2/2 means two warp threads crossing every two weft threads, identified by diagonal lines.

Regarding warmth, “INTERMEDIATE” in the original MA-1 nomenclature refers to the “Intermediate Zone” climate for which the garment was initially optimized, a range of 14º F ~ 50º F in a military classification of 5 climate zones at the time.
The MA-1 was also considered as a versatile year-round piece of gear in temperate climates by flight crews, worn zipped-up in Winter and un-zipped in Spring.
We decided to keep the period-correct Wool/Cotton blend (60/40) fiber interlining of the 1960s originals, and not the cheaper and lighter polyester fiber modern days substitution. This makes the BAILOUT much heftier and bulkier than contemporary fashion MA-1 type jackets out there.

For the zipper, we went with a robust vintage-style aluminum model of Coats & Clark (CC) slide fastener, instead of the expected black oxidized brass CONMAR zipper of period D-Type MA-1 jackets. CROWN was a division of Coats & Clark. Production of most CROWN fasteners (like the aluminum spring automatic lock etc) was abandoned sometime in the 1960s, deemed too complicated and too costly.
Some 30 years ago, Toyo Enterprise went through great lengths (and, I was told, hundreds of thousands of dollars in R&D and retro engineering) to faithfully reproduce several CROWN fastener models, and now owns the Trademark. These cost today about $30~$40 to produce… Kameya San was kind enough to hook us up with a few CC models for this limited edition.

We also opted to stay true to the original MA-1 jackets fit and profile, with the old school full and boxy cut, setting them apart from modernized slimmed-down versions with trimmed sleeves flooding the fashion market since the 1980s.
The BAILOUT’s classic shorter length compliments one’s natural waist, and works best with mid to high rise trousers or jeans.

This season, the recurring mfsc cloth label for our “Survival School” collection is a respectful nod to the little-known Quartermaster Research Facility (aka Natick Army Labs), a US Department of Defense organization located in Natick, Massachusetts. The “CLOTHING & TEXTILE RESEARCH UNIT” has been tasked with designing and developing anything from new uniforms/gear/fabrics/camo patterns/etc for the US military since 1952. Those guys are the real OG designers of most streetwear today.
The Mister Freedom® BAILOUT “Clothing & Textile Research Unit” labeling is concealed in the left side slash pocket.

Of course, the Mister Freedom® BAILOUT comes “unissued”, i.e. free of unearned squadron/unit patches. Should you want to go full-on Top Gun, do your thing Mav’!

Speaking of Hollywood, our subtle nod to “The Hunter” (1980) – McQueen’s final movie – with his bounty-hunter “Papa Thorson” character (pops going full circle after Josh Randall, ain’t he?!) sporting an MA-1 iteration won’t be lost on the cinephile. Papa and stunt double/friend Loren Janes are wearing the flap pocket model MIL-J8279E (E-Type) in the movie, although they may be commercial versions?
Anecdotally, “Buzz Rickson” is the name of McQueen’s character name in “The War Lover” (1962.)

The MF® x Buzz Rickson’s “BAILOUT” Flyer’s Jacket is a classic reimagined in California, USA by Mister Freedom®, designed for the man-o-style uninterested in fleeing trends, and crafted in Japan by Toyo Enterprise.

SPECS:
PATTERN:
A classic 1960s US military flight jacket pattern (MA-1) revisited, and a visual nod to colorful Jet Age astronaut jackets.

FABRIC:
A-side: Rescue out, period Mil-Specs 2/2 heavy nylon twill, “Indian” orange.
B-side: Camo out, period Mil-Specs 2/2 heavy nylon twill, 1960s USAF sage green.

Interlining: thick insulating blend of undyed 60% Wool – 40% Cotton pile fibers.

DETAILS:
* Constructed and redesigned with all period Mil-Specs patterns/fabrics/trims/snaps/zippers.
* Vintage silhouette and proportions true to authentic vintage USAF MA-1 profiles: full cut, boxy fit.
* Fully reversible: main side (A-side) is rescue (Indian orange), lining (B-side) is camo (sage green.)
* Two slanted “hand warmer” slash pockets on shell, snap closure, 35/65 Wool/Rayon blend double face brushed pocket lining.
* Two interior “map” welt pockets, snap closure, white cotton twill pocket lining.
* Quilted storm flap.
* Soft 100% wool ribbed knit collar, waistband and sleeve cuffs.
* Utility pocket (“cigarette” pocket) on A-side sleeve, authentic pen caps slots.
* Aluminum “CC” (Coats & Clark) CROWN type double-sided slide fastener (zipper), all cotton tape, leather pull tab extension for easier gloved operation.
* Intricate garment construction, authentic puckering seams, cut and sewn by skilled and experienced artisans.
* Year-round jacket, optimized for 14º F ~ 50º F (minus 10º C ~ 10º C) range temps.
* Original Mister Freedom® x Buzz Rickson’s “Clothing & Textile Research Unit” labeling, concealed in the left side slash pocket.
* Crafted in Japan by specialized expert artisans, with a 30-year experience in authentically-reproducing vintage military gear.

SIZING/FIT:
The MF® x Buzz Rickson’s “BAILOUT” Flyer’s Jacket comes ready to wear out of the box. No initial process required.

MF® crew sizing recs:
CL (5’7 ~ 140 lbs): I opted for a SMALL, for a comfortable yet period fit.
John (6’ ~ 170 lbs): LARGE
Ivan (5’9 ~ 160 lbs): MEDIUM
Enoch (6’ ~ 153 lbs): SMALL

The MF® BAILOUT pretty much fits like authentic 1960s vintage MA-1 jackets, for those familiar with them.
Some people may consider sizing down, according to silhouette and subjective style preferences.
Please refer to size chart for approximate measurements, keeping in mind that due to the thickness of the shell + interlining + lining, properly measuring is somewhat subject to one’s interpretation.

CARE:
Professional DRY CLEAN only or spot clean when needed.
Do NOT machine wash/heat dry.
Because of the 100% wool knit trims and , please store garment with your choice of moth-repellent product.

Available from www.misterfreedom.com, our Los Angeles brick & mortar store, and fine retailers around the World.
Email sales@misterfreedom.com or call 323-653-2014 with any questions unanswered above.
Thank you for your support.

Christophe Loiron
Mister Freedom®
©2023

Mister Freedom® x Sugar Cane msfc FW2023 LookBook Preview, PART 1: “Survival School” & Cali-Jan

A) Mister Freedom® x Sugar Cane Co FW2023 “SURVIVAL SCHOOL”

Mister Freedom® x Sugar Cane Co FW2023 “SURVIVAL SCHOOL” ©2023

Mister Freedom® x Sugar Cane Co FW2023 “SURVIVAL SCHOOL” ©2023

Mister Freedom® x Sugar Cane Co FW2023 “SURVIVAL SCHOOL” ©2023

Mister Freedom® x Sugar Cane Co FW2023 “SURVIVAL SCHOOL” ©2023

Mister Freedom® x Sugar Cane Co FW2023 “SURVIVAL SCHOOL” ©2023

Mister Freedom® x Sugar Cane Co FW2023 “SURVIVAL SCHOOL” ©2023

Mister Freedom® x Sugar Cane Co FW2023 “SURVIVAL SCHOOL” ©2023

Mister Freedom® x Sugar Cane Co FW2023 “SURVIVAL SCHOOL” ©2023

 

 

* Mister Freedom® x Buzz Rickson’s MA-1 “BAILOUT” Flyer’s Jacket *

“Where is my kit?”, Joe Greene, castaway ©2023

“Down, but not out! I got this!”, Joe Greene ©2023

MF® MA-1 Bailout Flyer’s Jacket ©2023

MF® MA-1 Bailout Flyer’s Jacket ©2023

MF® MA-1 Bailout Flyer’s Jacket ©2023

MF® MA-1 Bailout Flyer’s Jacket ©2023

MF® MA-1 Bailout Flyer’s Jacket ©2023

MF® MA-1 Bailout Flyer’s Jacket ©2023

MF® MA-1 Bailout Flyer’s Jacket ©2023

MF® MA-1 Bailout Flyer’s Jacket ©2023

MF® MA-1 Bailout Flyer’s Jacket ©2023

MF® MA-1 Bailout Flyer’s Jacket ©2023

MF® MA-1 Bailout Flyer’s Jacket ©2023

MF® MA-1 Bailout Flyer’s Jacket ©2023

 

 

 

 

* Mister Freedom® x Sugar Cane MF-41 UTILITY Jacket & MECHANIC Trousers, OG-107 Sateen *

MF® MF-41 UTILITY Jacket & MECHANIC Trousers, OG-107 Sateen ©2023

MF® MF-41 UTILITY Jacket & MECHANIC Trousers, OG-107 Sateen ©2023

MF® MF-41 UTILITY Jacket, OG-107 Sateen ©2023

MF® MF-41 UTILITY Jacket, OG-107 Sateen ©2023

MF® MECHANIC Trousers, OG-107 Sateen ©2023

MF® MECHANIC Trousers, OG-107 Sateen ©2023

MF® MECHANIC Trousers, OG-107 Sateen ©2023

MF® MECHANIC Trousers, OG-107 Sateen ©2023

 

 

* Mister Freedom® x Sugar Cane SNIPES Shirt, HBT, Army Green Shade 44 *

MF® MF-41 UTILITY Jacket, MECHANIC Trousers & SNIPES Shirt ©2023

MF® SNIPES Shirt, Army Green shade 44 HBT ©2023

MF® SNIPES Shirt, Army Green shade 44 HBT ©2023

MF® SNIPES Shirt, Army Green shade 44 HBT ©2023

MF® SNIPES Shirt, Army Green shade 44 HBT ©2023

Mister Freedom® x Sugar Cane Co FW2023 “SURVIVAL SCHOOL” ©2023

 

* Mister Freedom® x Sugar Cane BARNSTORMER Jacket, Khaki Jungle Cloth *

MF® BARNSTORMER Jacket, Khaki Jungle Cloth ©2023

MF® BARNSTORMER Jacket, Khaki Jungle Cloth ©2023

MF® BARNSTORMER Jacket, Khaki Jungle Cloth ©2023

MF® BARNSTORMER Jacket, Khaki Jungle Cloth ©2023

MF® BARNSTORMER Jacket, Khaki Jungle Cloth ©2023

MF® BARNSTORMER Jacket, Khaki Jungle Cloth ©2023

MF® BARNSTORMER Jacket, Khaki Jungle Cloth ©2023

MF® BARNSTORMER Jacket, Jungle Cloth & PEACOAT, SC301 “Okinawa” fiber denim ©2023

MF® BARNSTORMER Jacket, Khaki Jungle Cloth ©2023

MF® BARNSTORMER Jacket, Khaki Jungle Cloth ©2023

 

 

* Mister Freedom® x Sugar Cane PEACOAT, 14 Oz. SC301 “Okinawa” fiber denim *

MF® PEACOAT, SC301 “Okinawa” fiber denim ©2023

MF® BARNSTORMER Jacket, Jungle Cloth & PEACOAT, SC301 “Okinawa” fiber denim ©2023

MF® PEACOAT, SC301 “Okinawa” fiber denim ©2023

MF® PEACOAT, SC301 “Okinawa” fiber denim ©2023

MF® PEACOAT, SC301 “Okinawa” fiber denim ©2023

MF® PEACOAT, SC301 “Okinawa” fiber denim ©2023

MF® PEACOAT, SC301 “Okinawa” fiber denim ©2023

MF® BARNSTORMER Jacket, Jungle Cloth & PEACOAT, SC301 “Okinawa” fiber denim ©2023

 

MF® PEACOAT, SC301 “Okinawa” fiber denim ©2023

 

 

B) Mister Freedom® x Tailor Toyo FW2023 “CALI-JAN” Souvenir Jacket

Mister Freedom® x Tailor Toyo FW2023 “CALI-JAN” Souvenir Jacket ©2023

Mister Freedom® x Tailor Toyo FW2023 “CALI-JAN” Souvenir Jacket ©2023

Mister Freedom® x Tailor Toyo FW2023 “CALI-JAN” Souvenir Jacket ©2023

Mister Freedom® x Tailor Toyo FW2023 “CALI-JAN” Souvenir Jacket ©2023

Mister Freedom® x Tailor Toyo FW2023 “CALI-JAN” Souvenir Jacket ©2023

Mister Freedom® x Tailor Toyo FW2023 “CALI-JAN” Souvenir Jacket ©2023

Mister Freedom® x Tailor Toyo FW2023 “CALI-JAN” Souvenir Jacket ©2023

Mister Freedom® x Tailor Toyo FW2023 “CALI-JAN” Souvenir Jacket ©2023

Mister Freedom® x Tailor Toyo FW2023 “CALI-JAN” Souvenir Jacket ©2023

Mister Freedom® x Tailor Toyo FW2023 “CALI-JAN” Souvenir Jacket ©2023

Mister Freedom® x Tailor Toyo FW2023 “CALI-JAN” Souvenir Jacket ©2023

Mister Freedom® x Tailor Toyo FW2023 “CALI-JAN” Souvenir Jacket ©2023

Mister Freedom® x Tailor Toyo FW2023 “CALI-JAN” Souvenir Jacket, A-SIDE ©2023

Mister Freedom® x Tailor Toyo FW2023 “CALI-JAN” Souvenir Jacket, B-SIDE ©2023

Mister Freedom® x Tailor Toyo FW2023 “CALI-JAN” Souvenir Jacket ©2023

Mister Freedom® x Tailor Toyo FW2023 “CALI-JAN” Souvenir Jacket ©2023

Mister Freedom® x Tailor Toyo FW2023 “CALI-JAN” Souvenir Jacket ©2023

Mister Freedom® x Tailor Toyo FW2023 “CALI-JAN” Souvenir Jacket ©2023

 

Mister Freedom® x Sugar Cane Co mfsc FW2023 Preview, PART 1:

FW2023 blog preview has been split in two parts for clarity, and is broken down in three A) B) C) groupings.

Dear Friends,

Hope this finds you well, healthy, and in good spirits.
Here is a preview of our Mister Freedom® x Sugar Cane (mfsc) SS2023 collaboration, for your consideration.

Unlike what this avalanche of visuals suggests, we’ve kept things streamlined and concise this season. First grouping is a new capsule concept we’re calling “SURVIVAL SCHOOL”, small but packing a lotta punch, and featuring a collaboration piece with Buzz Rickson’s, to celebrate their 30th Anniversary.

A) FW2023 mfsc “SURVIVAL SCHOOL”:

This mfsc FW2023 “Survival School” capsule collection is an original line up freely-inspired by 40s~70s US military survival gear, vintage experimental MIL-SPECS garments, early NASA astronauts training program visuals etc.

Brief historical background of our storyline:

In the early days of WW2, a downed pilot’s chances of being rescued and making it back to safety were very slim.
The USAAF  (United States Army Air Force) soon realized that training a serviceman in the art of flying was not enough. Arial combat training was lengthy, qualifying candidates few, so a skilled flyer needed to survive after a bail-out.
A downed aviator’s field experience was invaluable knowledge, and sharing that experience with new pilot recruits was crucial.

The odds of returning to base camp started changing with the establishment of “Survival Schools”, and the implementation by the DoD of proper “Survival – Evasion – Escape” training for all flying personnel. (timeline for USAAF here)

Newly-designed experimental gear was also being issued and tested in combat situations and survival circumstances.
Starting in the mid-1940s, official films recreating fictitious survival scenarios (jungle, desert, mountains, arctic) were produced, and became required viewing during training and on base. (Castaway, 1944)
Swimming skills became a requirement for all aircrews. Survival crash courses through tough physical training and studies of illustrated manuals became mandatory for Army Air Force and USN flyers.
Training in basic survival skills, acquiring jungle and mountain terrain knowledge, exotic fauna and flora expertise, learning about wilderness adaptability, food foraging, land navigation techniques, cold and hot weather survival, local language and customs essentials, expertise in blending with the elements to avoid capture, evasion tactics, …, all lead to greater chances to make it home for American flyboys.

Techniques, technology, and TO (Theater of Operations) have obviously evolved through the years for US Armed Forces, and so have instructions in survival manuals. If what applied to the Korean cold front in the 50s had to be adapted to Vietnam’s steamy jungles in the 60s, the basics and message remained the same after “Survival School”: “you now have the skills to live another day”, Sir.

For more background on our R&D inspiration and design process, check out:
* Vintage USAAF and USN pilot survival gear.
* Visuals from 1950s-1970s US military survival program, from “Arctic Indoctrination Survival School” (aka “Cool School”) to “Tropical Survival School” (aka “Green Hell”), to “Survival, Evasion, Resistance and Escape” (SERE) training.
* Visuals from NASA astronauts on desert/jungle survival training (+ here) or geological field trips ( photos 19651965196519671969…)

One may notice the double labelling, branding this small collection.
The bottom woven label is our familiar “MFSC Naval Clothing Tailor”, partly covered by a printed cloth label stitched on top, a nod to the little-known Quartermaster Research Facility (aka Natick Army Labs), a US Department of Defense organization located in Natick, Massachusetts. The “CLOTHING & TEXTILE RESEARCH UNIT” has been tasked with designing and developing anything from new uniforms/gear/fabrics/camo/etc for the US military since 1952. The double labelling conveys the “test gear” approach of our designs.

Again, no replicas this season, just imagined (or re-imagined) garments that “might have been”, with the usual grain of salt and design liberties we like to take with History, and the reassurance that we do not take ourselves too seriously, resulting in garments easily workable into a classic wardrobe.

FW2023 mfsc “SURVIVAL SCHOOL” line-up:

1) MA-1 “BAILOUT” Flyer’s Jacket, Mister Freedom® x Buzz Rickson’s 30th Anniversary:
Inspiration: Vintage early to mid-60s USAF MA-1 (MIL-J8279 Type D) flight jackets.
Fabric: heavy 2×2 nylon twill shell (rescue orange) and lining (1960s sage green).

* All period-correct Mil-Specs fabric & trims + construction/manufacturing/expertise courtesy of Buzz Rickson’s (Toyo Enterprise)
* Fully reversible, Indian orange side out as the main side.
* Wool knit collar/cuffs and zipper tape: contrast sage green.
* Vintage Mil-Specs zippers and wool/cotton pile interlining.
* Sleeve utility pocket on rescue orange side.
* Made in Japan as a collaboration with Buzz Rickson’s.
Note: CL production size = SMALL

2) MF-41 UTILITY Jacket:
Inspiration: US Army M1941 HBT utility jacket + mfsc 2015 Utility Jacket
Fabric: OG-107 cotton sateen, vintage Mil-Specs, 9 Oz.

* Black painted starburst tack buttons.
* Unlined, all clean seams.
* Made in Japan
Note: CL production size = SMALL

3) MECHANIC Trousers:
Inspiration: 1950s USAF mechanic Utility Trousers (MIL-T-4335A) + mfsc 2014 Mechanic Trousers
Fabric: OG-107 cotton sateen, vintage Mil-Specs, 9 Oz.

* Orange cotton rip-stop inside reinforcement accents.
* Orange snap accent on side cinch tabs.
* Button fly, corozo buttons.
* Map pocket on left lower leg.
* Made in Japan
Note: CL production size = W30 or W32

4) SNIPES Shirt:
Inspiration: a revisited vintage 1930’s US Army wool uniform pattern + our classic mfsc 2020 Snipes Shirt.
Fabric: Cotton HBT cloth, ~6 Oz., Army Green shade 44 (AG-44), white selvedge ID.
Note: CL production size = SMALL or MEDIUM

4) BARNSTORMER Jacket:
Inspiration: 10-button Peacoat + 2010 mfsc P-Jacket + vintage civilian 1940s USN “Barnstormer” deck jackets.
Fabric: Heavy 100% cotton jungle cloth, 14 Oz., 1940s USN khaki.

* Classic 1910s~1920s USN wool peacoat pattern/construction.
* Fully lined (beige corduroy for body & OG-107 sateen for arms)
* 1920s style 13-Star buttons.
* Black leather contrast pocket welt/pocket stops.
* Detachable chin strap.
* Tonal stitching.
* Made in Japan.
Note: CL production size = 38

5) Denim PEACOAT:
Inspiration: revisited original mfsc 2008 denim P-Jacket (Peacoat), our take on vintage 10-button USN/USCG Peacoats.
Fabric: Sugar Cane Co original SC301 “Okinawa” fiber denim, 14 Oz., 80% cotton x 20% Okinawan recycled sugarcane fibers, white selvedge ID.

* Classic 1910s~1920s USN wool peacoat pattern/construction.
* Fully lined (beige corduroy for body & OG-107 sateen for arms)
* 1920s style 13-Star buttons.
* Black leather contrast pocket welt/pocket stops.
* Detachable chin strap.
* Ivory contrast stitching.
* Made in Japan
Note: CL production size = 38

 

 

B) Mister Freedom® x Tailor Toyo FW2023 “CALI-JAN” Souvenir Jacket:

Next up is our 4th collaboration to date with Tailor Toyo (renown branch of Toyo Enterprises), the Master of “Sukajan”, and this number stands on its own.

Inspiration: This style of jackets has its origin in the naval base of Yokosuka, Japan, where skilled tailor shops have provided souvenir apparel to military personnel stationed there since the mid-1940s.
Sukajan is a composite word morphing (Yoko)Suka and the term Jaanpa borrowed from the english word jumper (ie. baseball/bomber style jacket.)

Following our debut 2015 Saigon Cowboy Party Jacket, explosive 2016 Mururoa Jacket, stellar 2017 Apollo Jacket, here comes the CALI-JAN, blending California vibes, 1960’s Vietnam-made souvenir jacket graphics (Viet-Jan) and 1950’s Japan-made jacket styles and visuals.

We were in uncharted waters during R&D, with many choices to make regarding style/color combo/stitching/etc, and I was very attached to not end-up with an original garment that would look too contemporary or fashiony. And, as the CALI-JAN would be fully reversible, there were two sides to consider!

At the end of a long process – and thanks to the team of experts at Tailor Toyo, the company’s long history with producing authentic sukajan, extensive communication with our dear friend Tanaka San (aka Tom) to coordinate it all, and, to the credit of Toyo’s network of skilled and experienced artisans who hand-operate the vintage embroidery machines –  this modern rendition (from a poorly-executed doodle to the finished garment) turned out pretty cool!
Our 2023 CALIJAN looks legit, straight out of Dobuita Dōri circa 1955!

The original graphic pays respect to our beloved State of California, USA, and references a mixed bag of random iconic slices of Americana, from Frank Bullit’s 1968 green Mustang in the streets of San Francisco, to Buck Owen’s cheap patriotic acoustic guitar and the Bakersfield Sound, to Marilyn Monroe’s time on Catalina Island, to 1960’s surfer culture (CA State official sport), to California poppies (CA State official flower), to Blue & Gold (CA State official colors), to the endangered Joshua Trees etc…
And of course, the ubiquitous Joe Greene, aka Couscous, Sleepy Joe, the Dude, …, and actually the only native Californian involved in this whole project!
Cowabunga, says the Dude.

Fabric: 100% rayon fine twill.

* Fully reversible.
* Traditional ‘loose’ two-tone wool knit.
* Vintage style 50s zipper.
* Quilted pattern shell.
* Crafted (this word is abused in but does apply here) in Japan in very limited quantities.
Note: CL production size = MEDIUM

Next blog post will focus on FW2023 additions to the Mister Freedom® x Sugar Cane SPORSTMAN catalog, and more…

Hang in there, and thanks for taking the time to look/read!

Christophe Loiron
Mister Freedom®
©2023

 

 

HELO Jacket, Navy blue/Signal yellow, “Sea Hunt” Fall 2014

Helo Jacket Promo Mister Freedom 2014

Helo Jacket Promo Mister Freedom 2014

Helo Jacket Promo Mister Freedom 2014

Helo Jacket Promo Mister Freedom 2014

Helo Jacket Promo Mister Freedom 2014

Helo Mister Freedom 2014

Another terrifying adrenaline-charged stunt, captured by Mr. Tadashi Tawarayama of Seven Bros. Pictures, 2014. Breathtaking, no?

 

 

 

HELO JACKET, Signal Yellow/Navy Blue
“Sea Hunt” mfsc collection, Fall 2014

The final heavy hitter of our “Sea Hunt” two season-long saga comes in the form of an airborne pilot-type jacket: the “Helo”.
We first made a signal yellow Helo. And against Tina Turner’s advice, realized we needed another Helo. So there’s a navy blue version as well.
Are you still there?

I know nothing about flying machines, but I’ve always found helicopters fascinating. All kinds of shapes and colors, unlikely floating crystal bubbles in metallic frames, hovering and defying gravity and winds…

“When the command is GO… SCRAMBLE!” said the old GI Joe™ Action Pilot™ leaflet I dug out of surviving bits and pieces of childhood stored in a metal trunk back in the Old Country.
I was not much into video games or fire trucks as a kid, but kinda dug helicopters for some reason. Maybe because TV programs were full of them. Félix, the bright yellow Hughes 300 lifting off from the helideck of the Calypso with Cousteau on board meant Adventure. TC’s chopper in all its ‘Verner Panton’ paint job glory meant bizness…
Fancy recreational toys, island tour vehicles, for rescue missions or airborne stunts, Air Cav mean machines or rotorhead dreams… no matter the assignment, these flying crafts always seemed to be manned by skilled daredevils, handling real joysticks that surely beat Atari’s. I was sold.

Some of the above vintage photos/infos courtesy of members of the Professional Pilots Rumour Network, rotorhead section. All credits to the original owners.

So, when it came to designing a pilot-type jacket for one of our ‘Sea Hunt’ character, a rescue helicopter pilot, I was GO.
In many of the 1960’s-1980’s photos I’ve researched, helicopter pilots are wearing flight coveralls, CWU (Cold Weather Unit) jackets or jet pilot type jackets. It seemed that a jacket specifically made for helicopter pilots never existed in the US Air Force (I could be wrong). So I decided to blend nylon flight suits with MA-1, N-3B and CWU-type gear to come up with one.
The expert at Buzz Rickson’s kindly opened their doors, and allowed us to utilize their resources and mil-specs trims.
Back in California, we played with several ideas, different body types, length balance, styles, periods, tweaked pocketing and construction for a while…
For those into design anecdotes, the early sketch had a narrow and straight throat latch and a zipper chest pocket. After seeing an actual early prototype sent from Toyo Enterprises, I realized it made the jacket look too ‘racing’. I opted for a latch in the shape of an L-2B flight jacket waist tab and an alternate chest pocket design instead…

Well, let there be flight and there was flight, from sketches to prototypes, we eventually landed a ‘plausible’ hybrid. A jacket that looked to me like it had been around tarmacs cockpits for decades. The Mister Freedom® mfsc “Helo Jacket” was born.

Helo sketch Mister Freedom Feb2014 Helo sketch Mister Freedom Feb2014 Helo early proto Mister Freedom 2014

Our “Helo Jacket” shares its insulating qualities with original Air Force MA-1 type flight jackets (I mean the real vintage USAF deal, not the cheapo ‘Made in Pakistan’ civvy versions). While the thick wool pile lining will guarantee warmth, the wool knit collar and wrist bands will help prevent the cold air from penetrating.
The ‘Space Age’ V-shape of the cuffs was borrowed from a 1960’s WEP fixed-wing USN pilot jacket (detachable top part of a winter flying suit MIL-S-18342 C. Many thanks to reader Matt Henderson for the knowledge. More valuable insights on WEPs here).
This specific detail proved to be a real challenge during manufacturing. I believe the original purpose of these V-shaped cuffs was to allow extra stretching for a wrist instrument. In 2014, their main achievement was to provide real headaches to the skilled machine operators mounting our Helo Jacket… Sorry ’bout that.

Instead of the familiar orange lining of vintage MA-1 or L-2B reversible flight jackets, we opted for a non-emergency yet contrasting weather cloth lining. This is the same fabric we had milled for our Spring 2014 “Skipper Jackets“. This 100% cotton fabric not only feels nice against the skin, it also provides an interesting contrast in texture/hand/feel next to the mil-specs 100% nylon twill shell.
The Helo is a heavy winter jacket of about 3 Lbs.

Designed in California by Mister Freedom® and manufactured in Japan by Sugar Cane Co.

SPECS:

FABRIC:
Shell
: Mil-specs heavy 2/2 nylon twill, milled in Japan.
Lining: 100% cotton 6 Oz. “Weather Cloth” tightly woven windbreaker popeline, milled in Japan.
Inner: Insulating wool pile.
Two model options:
a) Signal yellow shell/Navy blue linning & knit trims.
b) Navy blue shell/Olive “Jungle” green lining and knit trims.

DETAILS:
* Original design inspired by vintage US Air Force flight gear.
* Vintage mil-specs replica parts & trims.
* Heavy duty 1950’s-type “Crown” zipper front closure.
* Inner windflap.
* 100% wool knit collar and cuffs.
* Two inside chest pockets.
* Snap throat tab.
* Expanding knit wrist “V” gussets.
* Arm “cigarette” zipper pocket (fits a case-less iPhone5)
* Bottom cinch string, leather sliders and eyelets.
* Made in Japan.

CARE/SIZING:
When needed, professional dry-cleaning ONLY.
Do NOT wash.
Our Helo Jacket is true to size, with somewhat of a slim fit. If you are usual a 38 in msfc jacket, you are a 38 in the Helo.

Please refer to approximate measurements in the chart below. Please note that due to the thickness of the shell/inner/lining, measurements are somewhat subject to interpretation.

Helo Jacket Mister Freedom 2014

Available Un-Issued.

SIZES:
36
 (Small)
38
 (Medium)
40
 (Large)
42
 (X-Large)
44
 (XX-Large)
 Retail $849.95

Email sales@misterfreedom.com or call 323-653-2014 with any questions unanswered above.
Thank you for your support.