We all have “Holy Grail” items on our lists; whether they be cars, homes, or destinations. In this case, the list is my clothing to be acquired list, and the “grail” is a Baracuta G9 Harrington jacket. Throughout my life I have had a few Harrington jackets, but my hunger for authenticity was never satisfied with them and I wanted the real thing, a Baracuta G9.
Baracuta, a British menswear company created the G9 jacket in 1937. However, the G9 is commonly referred to as a Harrington which as it was worn on the 60’s TV show Peyton Place by the character Rodney Harrington (Ryan O’Neal). In the 1950’s Baracuta started to sell their products in the United States. Not long after being introduced in the States the jacket made its way onto the silver screen. Elvis was perhaps the first to popularize this jacket wearing it in the 1958 movie ”Kid Creole” and Frank Sinatra donned a G9 in “Assault on a Queen.” Although these style heavyweights may have contributed to the G9 trend, the jacket remains synonymous with the king of cool, Mr. Steve McQueen. The jacket continues to remain popular and is still a standard in the world of traditional menswear.
It was an Saturday morning thrift two summers ago when I found this jacket. I was browsing the coat section when I paused to check out what I imagined was just another Harrington styled jacket. When I noticed the Baraucta tag on the jacket my heart rate immediately increased. The tag read 40R and being a 36-38S, I was ready to be dissapointed. However, I tried it on and the fit was perfect! The color is Kelly green and while that would not be my first choice (a navy version is still on my list), I was in a thrifters’ paradise. With my head spinning I made my way to the cashiers and dropped a $1.50 on the jacket. For a quick comparison, you can get a brand new G9 for around $225-$300. So, yeah, I got a deal. The lesson to be learned is that patience and persistence are the key to successful a successful thrift. As I am finishing up this post, I am re-energized by this find, and I am heading out to do a quick round of thrifting.