Member Spotlight | Wilderness Wear
Meet Wilderness Wear Australia! Established in 1989, the company is 100% Australian owned, producing 100% Australian made apparel, with a focus on quality materials and functional designs in the active wear space. The team are proud of their “200% Australian” business model and continue to support the growth of the local industry as members of the Council of Textile & Fashion. From advanced hybrid material technology through to local sourcing of merino wool, their technical approach to the active & outdoor wear space make Wilderness Wear an ideal option for those looking to support local business.
As a result of innovative material technologies, a meticulous approach to design development and vigorous quality testing, their product lines are suited to a range of activities at various extremes of climate. Think everyday wear through to climbing, snow sports, cycling, camping, fishing, adventure racing, yoga, sailing, mountaineering and kayaking – Wilderness Wear have you covered. Their product development team have been hard at it this past year with a suite of updates and additions made to a number of long-trusted lines, and some imaginative new concepts brought to market for release this southern hemisphere winter.
A FOCUS ON MATERIALS
“It begins with the materials: some improved and some new”.
Attention to material qualities is a key feature of the Wilderness Wear product lines. With supplier and partner Schoeller®, Wilderness Wear have also revised and refined their fibre and material inputs to an ultra high-end, putting the very best in garment performance and comfort in the hands of their customers. This includes Merino wools at incredibly low micron counts, as fine as 17.5μm – otherwise known as ‘Superfine’ grade, ultra fine Polypropylene, and introduction of specialist Teflon fibres for improvement of wear in certain sock designs.
New to their range this year is the ‘MerinoFusion’ line; thermal active wear with origins in a high-tech hybrid fabric developed in house by Wilderness Wear. The team cite the line as being the “best of both worlds: nature-made plus man-made”. In a world-first endeavor, popular yarns Superfine Merino and Schoeller polypropylene have been woven together to form an integrated fabric that brings about key benefits of the two: exemplary thermal properties, high moisture wicking, fast dry, rapid climate adjustment, low odour, hard wear, minimal pill and soft handle. The garments have been tested in a variety of settings and activities – in Australia and off-shore, on mountains, roads, trails and the bush – all with stellar results in terms of performance and comfort.
Better still, the Superfine Merino wool and premium polypropylene yarns used in their MerinoFusion garments also observe global ecological guidelines along the complete production and procurement chain, including:
- EXP – a revolutionary new process that enables the wool to remain machine-washable without the use of chlorine.
- bluesign® – approved fabric label designates textiles that were produced in compliance with especially high environmental standards.
- Öko-Tex Standard 100 – the world’s most widespread textile label for textiles tested for harmful substances.
SOCKS DESIGNED TO LAST
Their line of hiking socks are another great example of where material technology has been integrated to enable key features that compliment the products’ end purpose. Through advanced knitting technologies, Wilderness Wear have incorporated Blister Free™ Teflon into the high abrasion areas of heel and toe. Their other sock lines also include 80% Pure Australian Merino wool (25μm), for superior softness and excellent warmth, with a balance of specialist synthetics taking up the functions of fit, stretch and reinforcement.
RE-DESIGN & QUALITY TESTING
“The design of these garments follows a well-established process: innovate, sample, test, review, develop, refine and re-refine".
This ‘Develop, Refine and Re-refine’ approach to quality and design is at the core of Wilderness Wear’s process and a vital component in their success in the active & outdoor wear space.
Textile & garment testing takes place via their branded Q3LAB, where the ‘Q’ stands for quality! This area of the Wilderness Wear business focuses on development and testing. Here, a team of experts assess long-term wearing (and washing) across multiple settings – not just a try-once process before letting the machines run.