Latest Fashion Trend: Clothes for Concealed Carry

With state legislatures nationwide lifting restrictions on concealed carry permits, it is becoming fashionable to dress as if you're loaded--locked and loaded, that is.

In this case, the wardrobe does not make the man, but does make the bad man question if a potential victim is armed or not.

"When someone walks down the street in a button-down and khakis, the bad guy gets a glimmer of fear, wondering: are they packing or not?" said Allen Forkner, a spokesman for Woolrich, which has added a second pocket behind the traditional front pocket of its $65 chinos for the "fashion-aware gun owner."

The 182-year-old clothing company's new concealed carry collection offers cotton-twill khakis and basket-weave button-downs with hidden pockets, false buttons and stretchable waistbands for those who prefer to pack their gun in a holster.

Other clothing companies, such as 5.11 Tactical and Under Armour, are following suit, designing clothing for those with concealed carry permits, and for those who wish to be perceived as one of those with concealed carry permits. No surprise. Certainly not in this case, where fashion is merely following a trend. According to the New York Times, the number of concealed-weapon permits nationwide rose from 5 million in 2008 to 7 million in 2011.

That's just enough permitted concealed carry gunowners to make looking like you're packing a viable crime-deterrent even if you aren't packing.

Ecouterre.com, a "green" fashion website, asks readers in a survey, "Is 'concealed carry' clothing haute or not?"

"HELL NO! As if I needed more reasons to be paranoid on the streets" or "HELL YES! I want to protect myself and have the element of surprise on my side." As of noon on May 2, it was 202 "HELL YES!" votes against 30 "HELLO NO" votes.

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