Kiki Kuhns is the Marketing Director for Boyt Harness Company, makers of some of the best safari shirts available.
What’s the history of the safari shirt?
History goes back to early safari clients in the 20’s and 30’s who had tailors Nairobi make custom “safari outfits” before each safari. They were fitted on the day they arrived and it took one or two days for them to get their clothes. The epaulets and other styling features were adapted from British officer military clothing or “campaign” clothing of the day.
The look of safari jackets and shirts was popularized in the 1950’s by Ernest Hemingway and has been worn by many famous people in movies since such as JR Ewing in Dallas and James Bond in many movies.
Safari clothing became extremely popular after movies such as King Solomon’s Mines and Hatari were released in the 1940’s – 60’s.
How important is the fabric? Color?
Safari clothing is designed for comfort and function. There are many “casual” safari shirts on the market that target consumers who want the “look” but there are very few that are truly designed for hunters. The cotton material used is very important. If the weave of the material is not dense enough, thorns will easily catch the material and tear it. 100% cotton fabric breathes unlike synthetic so it works better on hot days. Khaki is a good neutral color that blends in well during most East Africa hunting seasons. Green is not as popular as khaki.
How important is it to have the DSC logo embroidered on your safari
shirt? Does having one lead to better hunt success?
While it is not really proven that the DSC logo on safari shirts leads to better success, it is believed that it does convey better confidence, which does in fact lead to success. Also, hunters that proudly wear clothing with the DSC logo shows everyone the support they give to this great organization.