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CLUTCH Journal



Adding functional beauty to your everyday wear – NIGEL CABOURN DESIGNER


Clothing inspired from observing previous generations.
Nigel Cabourn designs garments based on the functional beauty of vintage military wear. Each one of the brand’s seasonal collections, which serve as tools for everyday lifestyles, reflect his inspirations as well as new and unique designs.
Nigel Cabourn, who lives in the UK, expresses his own unique vision through his self-named brand. The brand is based on vintage military designs. Many brands focus primarily on US military wear for their inspirations, but in Nigel’s case his inspirations span across all military genres. In addition to being a fan of American vintage, he also has a deep passion for British vintage wear. Take one look at his vast collection of vintage garments that have been compiled for over 30 years and it’s easy to see why. What makes his designs stand out from the rest is the reality found in every detail, a result of his careful observations of various genres and eras. His designs combine functionality, durability, and simplicity, which are all important features of authentic military wear. The garments are not complete reproductions, but incorporate original details while paying respect to the original. This attention to detail and blend of vintage and original designs is why the brand has been supported by many fans throughout the years.

 In addition to the Authentic line and Main line, which consisted of garments produced primarily in the UK and Japan respectively, the workwear-based Lybro line has been added to the brand’s collection from last season. All three of the lines are inspired by military designs, with everything from the fabrics to the details playing an important role. With so many military-related documents lost forever, many past garments may not ever be reproduced again, but that mysterious aspect is what charms its fans. And Nigel is one of those fans. His passion for the military genre crosses the world of fashion, and it is evident from his works that he loves and respects it regardless of the trends that are associated with it. 

Known as a vintage military collector, Nigel has amassed a vast collection of wear and gear over the years. In addition to the British military, he possesses a deep knowledge of the American military. Every season, he incorporates a realistic story or historical background for the themes of his collections.

Designer Nigel Cabourn showing off detail conscious denim setup.

A hooded cardigan with a front button design. The rounded pocket designs are a catchy detail.

This denim jacket is a simple item featuring a tailored design, small lapels, and gusseted back pockets.


A pair of British army pants featuring asymmetric pocket placements and a unic work jacket with a stylish stand-up collar. 

A British officer shirt with a semi-wide collar and rounded hem. 

A sweatshirt with a gazette design, which is commonly found in vintage wear. On the left cuff part is a broad arrow, a symbol used to indicate British military property.

A Basque shirt that was worn as uniforms by the French navy. The playful design features a classic Mallory Jacket shoulder detail.

A sleek all navy blue outfit that is balanced out by rolling up the relaxed wide-leg trousers.
A pair of simple high rise 5-pocket denim. With its basic design, you can wear these with anything.
The design of these sweatpants, which were made with heather gray cotton, was based on an American vintage style. The soft fleece lining provides excellent comfort.

A pair of functional Lybro combat pants featuring multiple pockets and a suspender button on the waist band.

A pair of utility pants made with Herringbone cotton. Suspender buttons have been attached to the waist part with a slight taper.

In the forefront are a pair of utility pants commonly worn by members of the US navy, and in the back are a pair of monkey pants, which feature a large pocket in the hip area and were also worn by the US navy. Both were made with a blend of various fabrics.

A laundry bag made for the Lybro line. The stencil print further brings out a vintage feel.

The simple design of the USMC cap with the brand initial “N” printed on it is a fan-favorite.

A pair of vulcanized sneakers from Nigel Cabourn made by MOONSTAR. The upper part and sole has been unified with the color green.

The USMC cap is part of the Lybro collection. Enjoy the beautiful aging process of the cotton fabric.

Nigel Cabourn 

Photo by Toshiyasu Uchida Text by Tamaki Itakura 


*This journal was reedited from the feature story from the 2016 April “CLUTCH Magazine” vol. 48 issue. 

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