The Kingdom of Sweden
Sweden has a long history of camouflage design, dating back to the 1940s. The earliest patterns were primarily intended to cover vehicles and artillery pieces, although the shelter quarter was also in use, mostly likely influenced by German designs. Nevertheless, the standard combat uniform of the Swedish Armed Forces remained plain forest green until the very late 1980s. Although several camouflage designs were introduced for trials, in the 1950s, 1960s, and 1970s, none were ever officially adopted. It was only in 1990 that the M90 splinter camouflage pattern was finally introduced, a design that remains in use today.
Swedish Camouflage Patterns
- Introduced in the 1940s, the blotch or puzzle pattern camouflage design seen below was printed on fabrics and primarily employed as covers for military vehicles and artillery pieces.
- The design printed on the helmet cover below dates to the 1950s, and was employed by Coastal Artillery units.
- Illustrated below are examples of two patterns introduced around 1953, possibly for consideration as vehicle covers. These were also produced as Maskeringsärm (masking sleeves), which were individual coverings for the arms - probably intended for use by reconnaissance or scout personnel - no doubt worn over normal combat clothing.
- Illustrated below is the Quartershelter four-color camouflage pattern introduced during the 1960s. The design consists of large, non-overlapping patches of blue-green, dark brown, light brown & grey. Although never produced as a combat uniform, the shelter did serve a dual purpose as a camouflage poncho. Information from Swedish sources suggests these shelters saw continued use through the 1970s, with limited employment into the 1980s and possibly 1990s as well.
- In the late 1970s or early 1980s, the Swedish firm Barracuda developed a camouflage that was tested by the Ministry of Defense. A complicated design, it incorporates dark green, light olive green & pale green splinter shapes with an overprinted pattern of circular spots in dark green, light olive green, pale green & orange-tan. Produced as a trial version of the M59 combat uniform as well as on netting for vehicles, the pattern was never adopted. Variations for desert and artic/snow conditions were also produced.
- Introduced in 1989, the M90 "splinter" pattern seems to have been influenced by German WW2 designs such as Splittermuster (splinter pattern). The Swedish pattern incorporates dark green, dark olive green & moss green splinter shapes on a khaki background, and is the standard combat uniform of all Swedish ground combat personnel.
- Introduced in 2004, the M90K pattern is a variation of the standard M90 splinter pattern and the standard pattern worn by Swedish military contingents serving in desert regions. The Swedes have nicknamed it Ökenkammo.