Athleisure Trends Flexible, Wearable &
Environmentally-Focused at ORWM '17
by Kathlyn Swantko
Flexibility and wear-ability were strong apparel trends evident at Outdoor Retailer Winter Market 2017. Millennial thinking is clearly at the heart of this athleisure focus, as manufacturers continue to look to engage this generation, and entice them with apparel that suits their all-encompassing, transitional fashion and lifestyle needs.
Although this crossover trend in apparel is not new, the ever-changing attitude of millennials has become an important focus for a broad range of outdoor apparel manufacturers. Gaining momentum and growing in a big way, the demand is for clothes that combine the look and comfort of everyday fashion with the technical benefits of traditional outdoor apparel.
Another important trend for both the traditional outdoor customer and the Millennial generation is the use of environmentally-focused technologies in textile and apparel production. The outdoor industry has taken the lead in the production and development of sustainable products. In fact, there appears to be a challenge among many industry manufacturers as to which outdoor brands can be the most sustainable in their product offerings.
The FabricLink Network looks at several companies that are taking these outdoor trends and developing fashionable silhouettes with technical aspects that can move throughout the day in a variety of performance activities.
Dish & Duer Lightweight Super Stretch
denim is 30% lighter, 30% stronger, with
5 X's more stretch than traditional denim.
Dish & DUER is a new manufacturer in the outdoor market that offers fashionable clothes for the modern customer, who wants to lead an effortless, active lifestyle. The Dish & DUER fabric innovations that provide the technical functions and enhance the collection for an active, transitional daily life include: Performance Denim, containing technical fibers that provide comfort, and temperature control; No Sweat Woven Pants that have the softness of casual knits plus anti-microbial and odor-resistant protection; Limitless Stretch fabrics that utilize sustainable fibers to provide high-stretch, fabric-retention, softness, and never fading color; and Live Free, a strong, lightweight, high-strength fabric that is rain- and spill-repellent, breathable, and comfortable.
Avalanche Chamonix jacket,
insulated with DuPont™ Sorona®.
Avalanche, celebrating its 30th year in business, focuses on sustainable insulation for its 2017 Active, Outdoor, Urban and Heritage collections. These lines feature styles from performance base layers to insulated outerwear for men and women. The fall 2017 line reflects the broad tradition and meets the demands of today's consumer for comfort, style and performance, while also being sustainable. All insulated styles in the collection utilize DuPont™ Sorona®, made from annually renewable plant-based ingredients. A safe and stable source for down-like insulation, Sorona® fiber creates elegant, lightweight garments that offer the same unique compression and recovery characteristics as down, but contains 37% renewably sourced plant-based material.
Halley Stevensons, the Dundee, Scotland maker of waxed cotton fabrics, showcased its Wax C4X line of fabrics for apparel and luggage. The company works closely with the brands on the development of its innovative waxes, which are a by-product of oil production, and include waxes made of mineral oils, petroleum jellies, and paraffin waxes. Wax C4X is the exciting next generation of performance waxes. The Wax finish has many benefits over traditional waxed cotton fabrics, including four times higher water proofing characteristics compared to traditional waxed fabrics. This "no PFC" wax has excellent water shedding properties, outperforming traditional wax in shower rating, hydrostatic head and Bundesmann testing. Wax C4X has superior durability to abrasion and weathering, and adds extra strength to the base cotton. It acts as a protective layer to the garment, making this the perfect choice for performance. Unlike traditional wax cotton, at ambient temperature, Wax C4X does not transfer or migrate onto other fabrics, leathers and linings. The wax is also virtually odorless. While most waxes have a jelly-like consistency at room temperature, Wax C4X is a flexible solid. Garments made using Wax C4X cotton also resist dirt and other contaminants.
Duckworth, the only source-verified 100% made-in-USA wool clothing company, promoted its “sheep-to-shelf” supply chain at ORWM’17. Its Helle Rambouillet merino wool comes from non-mulesed, pure Montana grown sheep, which are setting the standard for industry best-practices with its three patent-pending, environmentally focused technologies: Vapor Wool™, a cooling wool blend of 38% Helle Rambouillet Merino Wool/50% recycled polyester/12% Modal®; WoolCloud™, a natural insulation made from 80% American Merino Wool/20% PET; and Duckworth's patent-pending Chlorine-Free Shrink Control technology, which makes its 100% Helle Rambouillet Merino wool machine-washable, while retaining its natural, ultra soft properties.
ExOfficio's Womens Robson
Reversible Hoody with S°Warm
Hollow Fiber Technology
Exofficio featured its innovative S° Warm technology, which elevates the versatility of travel apparel. The Technology provides a layering system to keep travelers warm and comfortable. S° Warm technology is a family of adaptive performance yarns and fabric treatments that provide a high warmth-to-weight ratio that keep the traveler warm and comfortable. The treatments are integrated into garments to provide the traveler with the right technology for each layer of their outfit. First layers have S° Warm technology that converts water vapor from the body to thermal energy. Second layers work to trap body heat without bulk, and the outer layers provide warmth through insulation even when wet. Additionally, ExOfficio has incorporated IR reflection technology into all layers of the S° Warm collection to trap body heat and reflect it back to the skin.