Outdoor apparel brand swrve inc. yesterday launched a capsule collection made of CORDURA® Combat Wool™, a fabric with all the features of Merino wool but with incredible long-lasting durability, on Kickstarter. Within 24 hours over 70% of the financing goal for the project was reached and it became the most popular in the fashion category.
Swrve has chosen to launch this project, a unique collection of refined outdoor apparel and the first capsule collection for the brand, on Kickstarter as an unprecedented business method for the company.
The capsule collection includes a short-sleeve button-up shirt, a long-sleeve button-up shirt, a work jacket, an unstructured blazer, and a cap.
All the garments include the subtle features in design for which swrve is known like unique seam placement or added fabric for functionality, explains Matt Rolletta, lead designer. “Over the 13 years I’ve been designing for swrve, I’ve learned how to create garments that move seamlessly with the body,” he says. “I’ve been thinking about making a casual blazer for a few years now,” he continues, “and as soon as I touched this fabric, I knew that it would be the perfect material for this piece.”
“We fell in love with this fabric as soon as we set eyes on it because it’s durable, comfortable and functional,” says Muriel Bartol, general manager, “it hits all the necessary points for a swrve garment.” Combat Wool™ has the look, comfort, and feel of 100% Merino wool with built-in long-lasting durability. This fabric blend offers up to 10x better abrasion resistance, 2.1x better tensile and 1.4x better tear resistance compared to 100% Merino wool fabrics. “In addition,” Rolletta says, “the weight of the fabric and the luxurious hand-feel and drape, in combination with the ripstop weave nods to military apparel but in an elegant and subtle way that makes this the most interesting wool fabric we’ve ever come across. This fabric is so incredible, we were immediately inspired to bring it to the consumer. But, we also know the final product—available in limited quantities—will have a higher price point than our customers are used to. Launching it on Kickstarter will help us make this project a reality.”
The Kickstarter crowdfunding launched on August 31, 2017 with a goal of raising $18,300, half the fabric cost. Backers will receive one or more garments of their choosing, depending on their level of backing. “We’ve never used outside funding before,” says Bartol, “we never wanted to have outside investors dictate how we do things. This way we are free to focus on making the best garments possible without the outside pressure to lower the cost, which inevitably will result in a lower-quality garment. Kickstarter allows us to keep our goals and values aligned with our customers because they are the ones helping us finance it.”
Swrve has worked with CORDURA® fabrics before; they are well known for their CORDURA® denim jeans launched in 2011. These jeans have quickly become a beloved item by swrve’s loyal consumer base for their near indestructability and uncompromised comfort.
“We’re excited to expand our selection of garments made with CORDURA® fabrics,” Rolletta says, “especially with the combination of wool. We love wool. It naturally wicks sweat off your body and prevents stink. It’s an excellent insulator so it keeps you warm in the winter and cool in the warmer months. And unlike other materials, it even insulates when wet. And it’s fire-resistant!”
The CORDURA® Combat Wool™ ripstop fabric is made by legendary mill Chia Her, a mill swrve has always admired for their high-quality fabrics in fantastic material mixes. Production will be done with a family-owned factory swrve has worked with before. They are small enough to be responsive to every concern, yet big and experienced enough to expertly handle the detail-oriented cut + sew for this project.