Fashion & Clothing > Mens & Ladies


Year: 1953
Views: 320,078
Item #: 1089
everyone needs a Pakamac. Gents models from 17/6 - Ladies models from 10/6 ...but make sure it is a Pakamac. The original "Raincoat in your pocket"...
Source: Picture Post. May 16, 1953

Comment by: Pamela on 22nd March 2010 at 12:35

I am utterly compelled to add to this discussion, I can't believe what I have stumbled upon. I need to express just what a chord it struck with me. I've been quite taken aback that men are interested in plastic and nylon macs. Where oh where were you in the days when I was looking for a husband. I suppose being quite isolated here in the highlands explains my ignorance. If I read between the lines of some of the comments, I gather that some of the men share the passion I myself feel about plastic macs. I can understand my own feelings now but I thought it was only a girl thing. I remember being a teenager and feeling intensely jealous of my friend who'd been bought a plastic pakamac. I couldn't really understand why I was so jealous nor of the feelings I had, but I simply had to have one myself. Wearing my first pakamac I was quite overwhelmed by the feelings the plastic mac generated and just how desirable I felt in it. Those feelings have stayed with me all my adult life, which probably explains why I still buy them now and wear them nearly every day. Sadly, my husband didn't share my passion and so now feel that I missed out.
Even though fashion seems to have consigned plastic and nylon macs to the past now, they are very definitely my style. Fortunately I've been purchasing replacements for my depleted wardrobe from Rainmac and Susie High. I consider myself quite a traditional lady and so I'm rarely seen without my navy blue nylon mac and on wet days, definitely a plastic mac. Sometimes both! It would have to be a very sunny day that my mac is rolled up and consigned to my basket. The fact that I still feel desirable, feminine, vulnerable and passionate in a plastic mac, always made me thing that this was exclusive to women and not something shared by the opposite sex. I always thought that macs were a functional thing for them and that was definitely confirmed by my husband. Now alone, I have to confess just how much wearing a plastic mac is a comfort to me too. So much so that I've even taken to sleeping in one.

Comment by: Anna on 20th March 2010 at 21:21

Well my 16yo is now resplendent in his new navy nylon pakamac mackintosh. He's not a great fan it has to be said, but he looks very smart buttoned up in it, and most importantly, keeps him dry

Comment by: BRIAN HUMPHRIES on 15th March 2010 at 23:08

It is so lovely to see more and more comments on Pakamacs-plastic macs and nylon macs. I have worn one of my Stay-Dry nylon mackintoshes for nearly the whole evening-and have ordered three more. These macs are beautiful beyond all description and I am hoping Sue will ring me back to check on my order, so we can ecstasise over them again. DO TRY THEM FOR YOURSELVES!!!! It is my ultimate aim to puyrchase one for every day of the year-and to keep ordering thereafter. They just will not stop swishing, rustling, and inflating when you wear them, and they are so lightweight it is unbelievable!!

Comment by: Emese on 11th March 2010 at 12:19

sorry to write it's very difficult to buy a Pakamac in Hungary, there is no import, then nobody wears them, therefore there is no import, catch 22

Comment by: beatriz rel?┬░mpago on 11th March 2010 at 12:13

I also like macs, having a beautiful colorful collection.
beatriz, salamanca, spain

Comment by: Leslie Reich on 10th March 2010 at 13:54

I stumbled upon this site by accident, but it evoked nostalgic memories. The business was founded by the Cohen family. In the 1970s the dynamic owner, Lenny Cohen, commissioned me (I acted as a merger broker) to find a buyer.
I negotiated a deal in mid-1976 with Black & Edgington Plc,
a quoted concern. As so often happens in these deals, nothing was the same again. Incidentally, besides rainwear
the business then also made inflatable armchairs; all the rage at the time.

Comment by: Anna on 7th March 2010 at 09:08

Perhaps i'm very fortunate but there are many outfitters and market stalls locally where one can buy nylon macs, or pakamacs. I take my 16yo son in for his new one soon, and will be able to try on a range in our local shop where they thankfully still stock them.

Comment by: Steve on 3rd March 2010 at 18:54

I too had one of these grey plastic macs with the plastic buttons when at school in the sixties. They were sold at the local “Sewing Needs” shop (they also sold the local school uniforms). I remember my mother taking me there to buy one (at about twelve or thirteen years old) despite my protests because I thought they were sissy and didn’t want to wear one even though my friends had them. I was made to try them on for size (you didn’t argue with my mother for long, especially with other people in the shop) and to this day remember my embarrassment and the shopkeeper saying how sensible they were to have in your satchel, as she buttoned me up in it and patted the collar down then stood back to look at me. Then I was made to wear it home because it looked like it might rain but really because my mother was making her point about me behaving. Strangely, after that embarrassment I always liked to wear it if it rained and have one that I wear now. Sometimes I recall that day as I button it up and pat the collar down. I like the smooth and soft feel of the plastic, the swishing sound it makes and the sound of raindrops on it.

Comment by: John on 1st March 2010 at 09:09

It's good to see the interest in genuine pakamacs. I'm probably to young to remember or have been made to wear a plastic pakamac to school......unfortunately. However, all through my school days I wore a genuine nylon pakamac in navy blue. My mother would always insist on it be a "pakamac" as they were a "good make" I looved wearing my nylon mac when it rained or even just at the treat of rain but as I got older I became more fashion concious and was then torn bewteen wearing a nylon mac that I enjoyed or being more fashionable. When I was around 14 I can recall that my nylon mac had gone a bit small on me and my suggested that she would take me to town to get a kagoul at the weekend. I was in shock what was I going to do as I still wanted a nylon mac but at the same time the kagoul would have been more "acceptable". Eventually and before the trip to the shops on the Saturday, I plucked up the courage and came straight out with it and "said I would rather have a nylon mac than a kagoul" my mother asked if I was sure to which I treplied yes knowing there would be no going back and more importantly I could never argue again about being told to wear it. Sure enough I was taken to town and a navy blue nylon mac was purchased although in the shop I was again given to option of a kagoul which I refused. As you would guess it wasn't long before I wore the mac for school and even the weekends. After requesting to be bough and "kept in a nylon mac", I wore it more frequently and probably the more memorable experiences of wearing it was when I didn't really need to, EG looked like it might rain but if I failed to wear a jacked under the mac then I knew I would have to leave it on even if the threat of rain completely went away!

Comment by: BRIAN HUMPHRIES on 27th February 2010 at 22:30

No one has contributed to this site for a month so I feel I must break the silence. Recentl, I ordered some more of those lovely Stay-Dry nylon macs, and Sue, at the suppliers, advised me on delivery. When I told her about how much I loved these beautiful macs, we just swelled with mackintosh love, with mackintosh pleasure and with mackintosh excitement. In my view, these are simply the finest lightweight,swishy, rustly nylon mackintoshes available at the moment, and like the original grey-black semi-transparent plastic Pakamacs, you feel you want to own as many of them as possible-one for each day of the year? I am just waiting to hear that someone else has ordered these macs, hoping they feel as I do about them. I love nylon and plastic Pakamacs so much, I get all emotional about them!!! I have even shed tears over them!!! I JUST LOVE PLASTIC AND NYLON AND RUBBER MACS AND I CANNOT SAY IT ENOUGH!!!!

Comment by: Anna on 4th February 2010 at 21:08

I find it difficult to understand why nylon macs are no longer clothing of choice for many children any more. They are very smart especially buttoned right up, and worn with a smart hat of some kind

The modern scruffy trend leaves me cold though, so my son knows he'll be wearing his nylon mac for a while to come yet


Comment by: Brian Humphries on 27th January 2010 at 22:07

Lovely to hear your comments, Prudence! And I am so thrilled that my remarks inspired you to wear one of your nylon macs. In fact, when I read your remarks, I unpacked one of my navy nylon macs from Stay Dry, one I hadn't worn yet, and am wearing it now. I'm swishing and rustling beautifully. I have six of these Stay Dry nylon macs at the moment, but I will certainly be ordering more. Navy nylon macs were so popular with the girls at our school, in the late '60s, but even more so at a neighbouring all-girl's school, where the girls would swish their macs, filling them with air, and puffing themselves up beautifully. Prudence, Anna, Susie and Angela-all of you-you really must try these Stay Dry nylon macs. Although they fasten on the male side, they are described as unisex. Lightweight, swishy, lustrous and shimmery, they are everything one wants in a nylon mac. And you feel you want as many of them as possible. I have read Robin's remarks that he was bought a plastic Pakamac every year-music to the ears!! However, if genuine Pakamacs were still available, I would be buying one EVERY WEEK!!

Comment by: Prudence on 27th January 2010 at 13:53

Just like Susie, I remember those translucent Pakamacs with plastic buttons in the early 80s. I thought they were fabulous. I also remember nylon Pakamacs from the 70s and earlier. The ones I wore had 4 quite distinctive buttons. I loved to have one of those nylon macs in every colour possible but especially navy blue or beige. As far as I can remember they all came with different girl's names on the label. I still wear nylon or plastic macs but sadly I don't have the original Pakamac. The ones I prefer though, are of a similar style and I love to wear them on every possible occasion. I'm thrilled that Brian does too, it puts me in the mood to put mine on now.

Comment by: Robin on 25th January 2010 at 09:01

In the late 60's and early 70's my Mother bought me a new plastic Pakamac for virtually every school year. They were always made from see through charcoal grey plastic. On rainy school mornings, when I got up from the breakfast table, my two Sisters always used to shout together "don't forget your Pakamac!"

Comment by: Brian Humphries on 22nd January 2010 at 22:24

I am wearing one of my plastic rainmacs at the moment-beautifully smooth and grey, and as see-through as baby pants when the light shines through my beautiful mac. But, much as I love lightweight plastic and nylon macs, I may be purchasing a shiny black rubber mac very soon. At school, when one of us bought and wore a semi-transparent plastic Pakamac, we felt we wanted to tell the WHOLE WORLD, the macs were so beautiful and exciting! When I acquire my SBR mac, I will feel exactly the same. Yes, i do own a lightweight latex rubber mac-a rubber Pakamac of sorts-but this forthcoming rubber-surfaced mac will be my first of this type. I'll keep you all posted!!

Comment by: Thai Trevor on 17th January 2010 at 08:28

I now have a permanent residence in Thailand after living in Birmingham most of my life, i have read all the comments with interest,personally prefer the nylon macs but do have a very nice plastic one purchased via the net from Foxster called jeantex klaus they sell mens and ladies when i came her after selling up in England i had Two suitcases and agonized over which raincoats to take and leave behind i have many more now as when the rainy season starts here 6 out ten people are wearing there plastic macs some nylon but the plastic ones cost little mainly on there small motorbikes well through perseverance and ebay i found six months ago someone selling old stock in the packet original Pakamacs looking forward to the rainy season

Comment by: Brian Humphries on 12th January 2010 at 21:13

Dear Angela,
Thank for your e-mail and your interest! The shop to which I refer is "Cocoon" in Digbeth but, although they usually have a good selection of plastic macs, they do not actually stock nylon macs. It is left to enthusiastic punters like you and me to wear them when visiting there in the hope that the staff get the message!! Their plastic items, which include adult baby wear and leisure wear, are manufactured by PVC-U-Like, and are actually cheaper if you order directly from THEM. Should you require further details of how to get to Cocoon, please e-mail me, and I will provide you with my phone number. Again, many many thanks for your interest. This website is proving to be a wonderful opportunity for contacting the right people, as well as a library of information on Pakamacs. Many thanks yet again and best wishes from Brian.

Comment by: Angela on 11th January 2010 at 08:54

I have bought some of my nylon coated PU macs from Rainmac in Midhurst. I have two red and one navy, they are waterproof and have lovely hoods. I wear them a lot while out if there is any sign of rain. Brian , where is your raincoat shop in Birmingham?

Comment by: BJ on 11th January 2010 at 08:31

Hi everybody

Nylon pakamacs were standard issue when I was at high school in the UK and Australia in the 70s. At the girls school up the road all the girls wore them, the younger ones with plastic fold-up rainhats because the macs most often didn't have their own hood, then later on more girls had umbrellas, usually the same shade of navy blue and of course the brollies were nylon as well so the match was poerfect, and they looked wonderful. Some of those girls rode their bikes four or five miles to and from school wearing a nylon mac and a rainhat and still reached the other end perfectly dry.

I still say a proper nylon mac is still the thing when you can't use a brolly without makiung a nuisance of yourself, looks better and keeps you drier than those awful cheap plastic ponchos they sell at sports stadiums these days.

Comment by: angelamac on 10th January 2010 at 20:13

I too love nylon macs and have quite a collection.

Comment by: Anna on 7th January 2010 at 18:42

Hello Brian

Thanks for the acknowledgement. Fear not, I manage to find nylon macs on the high street even now, as my son knows very well. A shame they weren't more prevalent though.

Comment by: Susie on 6th January 2010 at 13:22

I've really enjoyed reading this and the memories of the fabulous Pakamac. I wore a navy blue nylon mac as part of my school uniform in the late 60s/early 70s and regularly at other times. My last memories of buying genuine Pakamacs was in the early 80s. Both were buttoning translucent plastic macs with collars, sadly now discarded. I've continued to wear nylon and plastic macs to this day and I don't mind what the weather nor how cold. Only this morning, extremely cold and snowy, I was well wrapped up inside my navy blue nylon one. The greatest demise is their disappearance from the high street, whether plastic or nylon. They are long due a revival but thank goodness for the internet.

Comment by: Brian Humphries on 4th January 2010 at 22:36

Nylon macs are really lovely-all the thrills and excitement of see-through plastic Pakamacs,except that these macs can be worn in any weather. I read of a girl's school, in the 60s, where navy nylon macs were compulsory wearing. One of the girls loved her lightweight mackintosh so much that she became hooked on nylon macs in general. As a lady, she could not pass a shop without buying yet another nylon mac. I bet you would be the same, Anna!!

Comment by: des on 4th January 2010 at 22:15

well lets hope that this year we see more of the original "smokey grey" semi transparent Pakamacs,I still love wearing mine and would love to share it with another like minded Pakamac enthusiast,I also love the ladies Plastic macs,but not see a ladies Pakamac for many a year! wish i could feast my eyes on a nice seethru one!!

Comment by: Brian Humphries on 4th January 2010 at 21:45

Anns, your comment was lovely and really appreciated. But don't despair-some lovely navy nylon macs are available from "Stay Dry"-just type the name into your search engine. These macs are beautifully swishy and really lightweight, rolling up to that lovely Pakamac size, which we all love so much. You will really love wearing these macs should you order them. I wear them regularly when mackintosh shopping in Birmingham. Also, "suzie high" invariably has some excellent used nylon macs on offer at very reasonable prices. Tyhere is no need for anyone to be without a nylon mackintosh, and I do hope you-and other Pakamac enthusiasts-will follow up these searches. What a lovely website this is turning out to be, with all these Pakamac ideas and comments-beautifully lively and creative. But never forget-LOVE your Pakamacs. Love your Pakamac and your mac will love you.

Comment by: Anna on 1st January 2010 at 10:14

A shame there weren't more such shops stocking nylon macs Brian. good luck.


Comment by: Brian Humphries on 28th December 2009 at 23:03

Much though we love Christmas, we are all waiting even more for warmer weather and showers in order to wear our nylon and plastic Pakamacs out of doors. I, for one, will be extending the range of macs I wear, hoping to include some female ones-especially when I visit our rubber/rainwear shop in Birmingham. I always talk to the girl assistant about the mac I am wearing at the moment. Some times she gets slightly annoyed-but we all know where that may lead! I would love her as a regular rainwear partner. Wish me luck!!

Comment by: Brian Humphries on 23rd December 2009 at 22:57

Pakamacs were so beautifully see-through-they were "girly" macs for boys to wear, and could not fail to excite sexually. The most beautiful pakamacs of all were those of the early 60s-beautifully textured plastic, with a very fine "ribbing" which caused swishing and rustling, driving the wearer wild with excitement.

Comment by: sam146 on 11th December 2009 at 16:29

Another facet I loved was the very intense PVC aroma, especially when brand new - vaguely like peppermint. I wish there was some way of preserving that aroma, which would sadly fade after a few weeks.

Comment by: Anna on 7th December 2009 at 14:59

Too young to remember the plastic version, but brought up with the nylon ones. My son wears one to school also - much better protection than so called modern rainwear