The Armed Forces of the Netherlands have a tradition of military camouflage use that dates back to the Second World War. British camouflaged Denison airborne smocks were worn by Dutch personnel of No 10 (Inter-Allied) Commando and Dutch paratroopers during the war, and many surplus smocks (as well as surplus British M1942 windproof uniforms) were also employed by Dutch Army Commando personnel into the early 1950s. Following WW2, the Dutch Armed Forces received considerable assistance from the United States, including surplus stocks of WW2 issue reversible jungle camouflage uniforms (worn by Dutch Infantry serving in Indonesia), and even a rare American 1942 experimental spot pattern. Although the latter was never worn by US military personnel in combat, it did see limited service with the Dutch Korps Speciale Troepen (Special Troops Corps) during the war in the Dutch East Indies.
Around 1951 the Dutch developed their own spotted pattern camouflage that remained in service until the mid-1960s. Interestingly, there is no evidence suggesting this camouflage pattern was worn by Dutch troops serving in Indonesia. The period running from 1950 through the 1980s saw the majority of Dutch military personnel serving in olive drab combat clothing, as did most of their NATO allies.
A period of trials, experiments and utilization of camouflage by Dutch elite units began in the 1980s. Circa 1980, some units of the Dutch Army were issued a two-piece rainsuit produced by the Belgian firm Seyntex and printed in a jigsaw-type camouflage design. A new style of uniform, designated PSU-80, was also tested by the Dutch Army during the 1980s, leading to an evaluation of the German flecktarnmuster pattern by the 13th Armored Infantry Brigade between 1985 and 1987. The flecktarn pattern was never adopted, however, possibly due to its association with Second World War era German patterns. It was only in 1991 that the Dutch Army finally adopted camouflage for general issue, and the pattern chosen was simply a locally-produced copy of the British DPM pattern. This continues to be worn by the Dutch Army even in today's world of pixelated and digitally-designed camouflage. Subsequent to the adoption of DPM, a locally-produced version of the US tricolor desert pattern was also issued, and in 1992 also a unique Dutch jungle camouflage pattern for employment in tropical environments.
The Dutch Royal Marines (Korps Mariniers) also experimented, very briefly, with a camouflage pattern of their own in the early 1980s. Influenced by the Belgian jigsaw design, it was never fully-implemented and soon disappeared. Yet a long cooperation with their British counterparts in the Royal Marines led to frequent uses of British made DPM uniforms during this decade, and even production of a Korps Mariniers DPM pattern in the latter part of that era. Yet circa 1993, the Marines completely dropped European camouflage designs entirely and instead have opted to wear uniforms made from US produced m81 woodland and tricolor desert camouflage fabric.