Friday, November 5, 2010

The Maroon Beret

3 Generations of British maroon berets: Jalpotex from 1948, 
British Beret Industries from 1944 and Kangol from 1946
Following the posts in the Green Beret Series, let's move to a similar phenomenon: the maroon beret. Like it's green counterpart, it is a beret loaded with (military) history and cachet. Most armed forces around the world reserve the maroon coloured beret for their airborne and commando regiments, beginning with the British Parachute Regiment in 1942 during their North African campaign in WWII. 
South African Para
It was the wife of the 1st Airborne Division's commander, general Frederick Browning, who chose the colour; his wife happened to be the well-known novelist Daphne du Maurier.  
Whereas the colour green for a beret seems to be pretty much reserved for the military (except for myself, loving my green cotton Tolosa Tupida's and Castilla's in varying sizes...), the maroon beret is a very popular beret among the civilized population.

Previously on this blog there was Michael Esposito, and the maroon beret is also widely adopted by artists, writers and the South American gaucho's. 

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