Friday, March 5, 2010
Shown here are two of the patent drawings for camouflaged clothing invented by Douglas N. Hamilton, and registered as US Patent Number 5,010,589, dated April 30, 1991. Intended for hunters or soldiers, it has two advantages that come from its use of removable fringe (see 13) that hangs below the sleeves. One advantage (for hunters) is that scents or lures could be applied to the fringe only, instead of applying them to the main garment. Different scents could be applied to different sets of fringes, and then easily interchanged. In addition, according to the patent's text, the fringe "break[s] up the outline of the human body of the user and thus improves the camouflage of the wearer."
This reminds us of a passage in Eliot Wigginton, Foxfire 5. Garden City NY: Anchor Books, 1979, p. 411—
When asked about their buckskins, Hawk said, "The story is that it [the leather fringe] helped water drain off in a downpour instead of soaking into the cloth, but I don't go along with that…But I believe that one thing that it did do, whether they realized it or not: it helped to break up the silhouette when they were in the woods. I mean, if you were dripping with fringes and things, you would blend in with the woods easier than if you were just a hard silhouette."