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Featured Story: Stand at Ease

Here at Tilley, we know a thing or two about rugged, outdoor clothing that’s built to withstand all the rigours of your travels. We aim to keep you well covered any way we can – jackets, hats and even lifetime guarantees.

Our latest addition is this military-inspired jacket. In keeping with some of our recent pieces, like the Intrepid bag (inspired by a WWII motorcycle messenger bag), we have given a nod to the past while tweaking the design with some up-to-date styling. Made from a durable nylon fabric, with antique brass zipper and lots of roomy pockets, and then garment-dyed, this jacket is designed to stand the test of time. So whether it’s Machu Picchu in May or Nepal in November, this jacket will cover your back, and is sure to become your closest friend. Please return the love and attention.

So, what goes into the making of this jacket?

Step 1. Inspiration – the jacket is modeled on a Canadian military jacket. It’s an authentic design that inspired us to develop a contemporary piece that still maintains the integrity of the original and keeps some of its features, such as the size and shape of the pockets, epaulettes and buttons.

Step 2. Creating a unique Tilley pattern. 20 pattern pieces were developed.

Step 3. From here the first samples are made, then fit and tested (and fit and tested, and fit and tested and fit….. you get the picture)

Step 4. The notions (zippers, binding, buttons etc) are all dyed before being sewn on to the garment. Bar-tacking, where we sew like crazy (a non-technical piece of jargon) around all stress points to reinforce them, takes place before we move on to ….

Step 5. We made the decision to garment dye the jacket to give it an authentic, rugged look. When you garment dye something (i.e. it is dyed after it is made up, notions and all, rather than dyeing the pieces individually before they are sewn together) you never know exactly how the shade and overall colour will turn out. It’s a bit of a gamble, but well worth it when you see the incredible shade of military green that we were able to achieve – built in character, ready to go!

During this garment-dyeing process, the jacket will shrink and this process takes several goes to get the exact shrinkage down pat. This has to be built into the garment for production.

Step 6. Production – we are now ready to manufacture

Step 7. Quality control and final trim and inspection. The folks that perform these tasks are the unsung heroes as they’re our last line of defence against any glitches in the production process.

So there you have it, 16 weeks from start to finish (strikes at the Port of Vancouver not withstanding!). Enjoy.