DESIGNING PUFFER COATS AND JACKETS

Winter is coming and so is the need to design and produce beautiful, comfortable and sustainable puffer coats and jackets. Today puffers are not just the most durable defenses against cold weather. They became an important piece of visual self-expression and even stepped into the haute-couture world.

MATERIALS

LINING

1.The first (base) layer is worn directly next to the skin. It is primarily used to keep the skin dry and at a regular temperature. This is mostly achieved through the structure and composition of the fabric selected.

Fabrics used: polyester and its blends, merino wool, cotton blends, bamboo fabric, etc.

INSULATION

2. The purpose of the insulation layer is to increase insulation and keep body heat. This must remain dry and therefore Polyester fleece fabrics, which are lightweight, breathable and resistant to compression are considered optimum. Commonly puffer jackets are either filled with duck or goose down, or with a synthetic insulator such as PrimaLoft.

responsible-sourcing-designing-puffer-coats-jacketsSource: Macpac Wilderness Equipment 

OUTSIDE LAYER

3. The outer shell is used to protect the underlying layers from environmental moisture and wind. This is principally accomplished with high-performance fabrics, which also promote water vapour transfer out of the clothing system. Waterproof and breathable fabric technology is a wild and rapidly growing frontier in the clothing industry. The dominant producers are the W.L. Gore Corporation, makers of GORE-TEX® fabrics, Japan’s Toray (Entrant®), General Electric (eVent™), Polartec® and Sympatex™.

ETHICAL SOURCING

Many innovative brands, such as Patagonia, Columbia and Zara, use synthetic fillings for  their coats. More and more people are becoming concerned about the sourcing of materials and responsible treatment of nature. According to Quartz, Moncler had a significant drop in share prices and negative social media coverage after the Italian TV-program Report accused them of using suppliers that life-pluck the geese.

Synthetic fibers are usually heavier than down, but also hypoallergenic,water resistant, and cheaper. Even though their production might raise some environmental questions, they do not involve direct animal mistreatment baggage.

designing-puffer-jackets

PURPOSE

CASUAL

Today the huge mid-class segment of consumers is much more sophisticated in their clothing preferences than it was twenty years ago. With a huge variety of options, they go for “the best choice”, which is a stylish, eco-friendly and cheap outerwear. Considering the number of potential customers and predictable demand due to seasonal changes, casual and affordable outerwear production is a good business opportunity.

SPORTSWEAR

Will you design uniforms for the next Winter Olympics? Well, maybe.

Sports puffer jackets have their own requirements. Usually, they include smart fabrics that even out lumps and bumps and move with the body. Veteran icons such as Supplex, Lycra spandex, MicroModal and Tencel, are being used in modern active collections; mixed in with a new generation of heat resisting,sweat-wicking and quick-drying microfibers.

New textiles, such as Outlast fiber and Fibers by Invista and, use technology to keep right body temperatures and provide antibacterial properties, meaning it’s even easier to stay fresh in warm puffers.

LUXURY 

“It’s warm out, but the fashionistas are all wearing their Canada Goose,” WWD deputy editor Arthur Zaczkiewicz told the Guardian last winter. “They’re sweating, but they’re doing it. Fashion trumps the weather.” The luxury segment of

The luxury segment of the fashion industry today includes outerwear thanks to brands such as Moncler and Canada Goose. More intricate fabrics and patterns, sophisticated embellishment and breath-taking fashion shows converted a puffer coat from being a necessity to being a desired object.

MORE ABOUT LUXURY OUTERWEAR HEREdesigning-luxury-puffer-coat-jackets

COLLECTION DEVELOPMENT

Development of a full line of designs is a long and complicated process, that won’t be covered in this particular article. Nonetheless, I prepared two sketching tutorials that will help you to put your ideas on paper.

DRAWING

In the fashion sketching video-tutorial below, you will learn how to draw different types of puffer jackets with regard to their volume, fabric, and texture.

COLORING

In the second part of this step-by-step fashion sketching video-tutorial, I am explaining how to render different textures that are frequently found in different designs of puffer jackets, how to show matt, velvetish and shiny textures, how to show quilting and how to add the details.

Waiting for your designs of puffer coats or any illustrations made with the use of these techniques?. Just submit your work in a comment section below. More practice – better results?.

MORE KNOWLEDGE:

New Fabric Tech Could Be Outerwear’s Biggest Advance in 40 Years

5 Fashion Labels Using Smart Textiles In Activewear

How to Choose the Best Down Jacket

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