11/08/2010 12:09:04

Words by tcsh

Clothing Glossary

100 weight The traditional measurement of a Microfleece. 200 weight is a midweight and 300 weight is heavy.
Baselayer The layer of clothes that one wears against the body, usually a lightweight breathable tee shirt.
Beading The behaviour of a droplet of water when placed on a truly waterproof surface. The water droplet forms a bead and runs of the garment - much like off a ducks back!
Breathability The capacity of a garment or fabric to allow moisture and air to pass out of it. The more breathable a garment is, the less clammy the internal environment will be.
Breathe See Breathability
Breathing See Breathability
Down Jacket An insulated jacket filled with down, which acts as a very efficient insulator.
Durable Water Repellent Finish See DWR
Duvet Jacket See Down Jacket
DWR A layer of treatment that is applied to a garment in order to encourage water to run off it (bead). This stops the water from being absorbed by the garment. The treatment can be reapplied with Reproofing products.
eVent A comparable waterproof fabric to Goretex, it also uses uPTFE to keep water out and, in many cases, feels more breathable than the equivalent Goretex.
Face Fabric The layer of a garment that is forward facing. In a three layer waterproof jacket, this face fabric can vary considerably, depending on the end use requirements. This leads to a situation where a garment can be listed as Goretex ProShell however the face fabrics can be wildly different leading to a very different product performance. The Face Fabric is as important as the actual waterproof layer.
Fleece A form of synthetic fabric that is generally a lot lighter than wool but is still very warm.
Flexable Soft Shell A type of nylon softshell that is made by Haglofs
Goretex A brand of waterproof fabrics that has historically been widely used in outdoor Shells. It uses Breathable uPTFE to keep water at bay.
GTX See Gore Tex
Hardshell A garment of clothing that has a 'hard' waterproof Face Fabric. These are typically waterproof jackets or over trousers.
Membrane The inner layer of many waterproof or windproof fabrics that acts as a barrier. Decent membranes have a network of pores that allow moisture to escape (Breathe).
Microfleece A light form of fleece
Microgrid A pattern of fleece construction that features a waffle pattern of fleece. This creates a fabric that has a greater warmth to weight ratio.
Midlayer A layer of clothing that one wears in between a base layer and a shell layer. This normally consists of a warm and insulating layer such as a fleece top.
Paclite A highly breathable and lightweight version of waterproof Goretex fabric. It has just two layers, the Goretex, and the face fabric.
Pants The industry term for trousers (yes, we know it makes us sound American)
Performac A type windproof fabric produced by Haglofs that is akin to Pertex and is constructed from 100% recycled materials.
Performance Shell A type of Goretex fabric that is used in waterproof garments that do not need as much breathability as ProShell garments, i.e. Skiwear, Fishing, Motorcycling etc.
Pertex A brand of wind proof fabric that is widely used in outdoor clothing and sleeping bags. The lightweight fabric is flash heated to seal the fibres in order to prevent wind from passing through, however body moisture can.
Polartec A market leader in outdoor fabric production. Originally specialising in fleeces, they have now branched out into windproof materials.
Power Dry A base layer fabric from Polartec that is designed to wick moisture rapidly by using two types of fabric yarn to absorb, then evaporate the moisture.
Power Stretch A versatile cold weather fabric from Polartec that has a smooth surface and a fleece-like inner surface. A variety of thicknesses are available depending on the insulation needed.
Powershield A soft shell fabric from Polartec that contains a wind proof membrane. The face of the fabric tends to be a smooth, tight weave whereas the inner has a brushed fleece feel.
Primaloft A brand of synthetic insulation that provides very high quality insulation through the use of hollow synthetic fibres (see Synthetic Insulation)
Proofer A name to describe a variety of liquid products that, when properly applied, can restore the DWR finish to a garment.
ProShell A type of waterproof Goretex fabric that offers the highest level of weather protection, breathability and rugged outer fabrics through the use of 3 layer construction.
Reproofing See Proofer
Shell See Hardshell
Softshell A type of shell garment that is not made from a waterproof fabric such as Goretex or eVent yet still affords some weather protection. They may or may not have a wind proof membrane in them but will have a tight weaved Face Fabric and a DWR finish.
Stitch count The number of stitches per inch of fabric - the more stitches means a better quality finish.
Synthetic Insulation Any insulated material that is not based on Down. Normally, it is a hollow synthetic fibre. Synthetic products tend not to lose their warmth as much as down when wet, a bonus in the UK.
Thermal Pro A fleece material from Polartec which has one of the highest warmth to weight ratios.
Wicking The action of a fabric to transport moisture from the body out into the environment, in order to maintain a pleasant, dry feel to a garment
Wind Pro A dense fleece fabric from Polartec that allows very little wind to permeate it, thus acting like a Windproof without the membrane.
Windbloc A type of wind proof fleece from Polartec that features a built in Membrane to bloc breezes.
Windstopper A brand name for Gore's windproof membrane fabric. It uses a layer of PTFE to keep the wind out.
Windtop An upper body garment that is comprised of a windproof material.
XCR The precursor to ProShell, this is a type of highly breathable waterproof Goretex fabric that is now only available in footwear.


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