Surplus military outfitters are a dime a dozen in America. For decades, unused military gear has been liquidated at these specialty stores—often at extremely reasonable prices.
But time has taken its toll on the once vast quantities of authentic surplus gear made by former U.S. military suppliers like Alpha Industries.
Jeff Carvalho, Highsnobiety’s own managing director, knows a thing or two about surplus gear.
For him, what started out as a hobby of thrifting old army clothes has turned into a full blown vintage military obsession, which is exactly why we sent Carvalho to explore and revisit some of the best surplus shops in the country.
In this four-part video series, we begin our journey in Carvalho’s adopted hometown of Boston where he discovered Kenmore Army & Navy during his undergrad years.
Back then it was known as the spot to get the newest gear, but it was also the place to go for cool kids in the know to find legit surplus gems hidden in those endless racks of clothes.
But no matter how popular the military look continues to become, owner Gerald Blocher says he’s been hearing the same thing for decades. “Every time I tell somebody I have an army/navy store, they always say, ‘Oh camouflage, that stuff is really hot now.’ I’ve been hearing that for forty years,” Blocher explains.