Menswear to Watch Vol. 3 | Gorpcore
Named after the popular hiking snack Good Ol’ Peanuts and Raisins (a.k.a.: trail mix), Gorpcore is a style of fashion that centers around hiking- and outdoor-inspired clothing. Think of it as a category sitting between normcore and techwear. Just as these two styles have both garnered their own followings, Gorpcore stands out for having a totally distinct look.
Stemming from the normcore trend of the early 2010s, in Gorpcore you’ll see a lot of generous, loose cuts in both tops and bottoms. There are also chunky sneakers, loud socks, functional bags, and a revival of ’90s classics like windbreakers and fleece jackets. And you don’t have to be in head-to-toe Gorpcore! All of these elements can be integrated with other popular fashion styles including maximalist, streetwear, workwear, and preppy looks.
As you would expect from hiking brands, the color palette for clothing is quite reminiscent of the scenes that you’d encounter in natural surroundings: sunsets, mountains, and forests. You’ll see a lot of vibrant shades of orange, yellow, green, purple, and teal that blend with nice earth tones, particularly beige, dark grey, and olive.
The term Gorpcore was first coined by Jason Chen of The Cut in 2017 as a way to describe a very generic, yet eye-catching “granola” style that everyone knew but couldn’t quite put a name to. As a style that has been around for years, hiking-inspired products started to catch on in high-end fashion labels as we saw a surge in luxury bum bags, sandals, and more technical outerwear. As many have said before, Gorpcore could even be called camping-chic.
You’ll often spot this aesthetic on celebs like Vampire Weekend’s Ezra Koenig and other big fashion icons like A$AP Rocky. Frank Ocean made headlines when he was spotted at the Louis Vuitton fall/winter ’19 show in a bright orange Mammut jacket, hiking boots, and a patterned Arc’Teryx beanie.
Having amassed a cult following amongst men’s fashion enthusiasts, Gorpcore has become one of the hottest trends, making a path for big outdoor brands like Patagonia, The North Face, Snow Peak, and Montbell to find new fame with different crowds.
Being such an incredibly accessible and attainable aesthetic, Gorpcore can easily be incorporated with almost any style of men’s fashion. From the finance bro that wants to add that Patagonia vest to their business-casual outfit to the everyday hypebeast putting on a North Face puffer while waiting in line for a sneaker drop, any guy can add in a bit of trail mix to their style.