Gear review: Patagonia launches workwear | SummitDaily.com

Gear review: Patagonia launches workwear

Stephen Regenold
The Gear Junkie

Clothing that lasts a lifetime of manual labor, and has "no break-in time" before you wear it: That is the big claim Patagonia makes with its just-released line of workwear.

The company uses new materials but a known look for the shirts and pants in the line. The brand touts the workwear made with "Iron Forge Hemp" canvas is more durable, abrasion resistant, and more comfortable off the rack than conventional canvas clothing.

Patagonia's blend is made of 55 percent industrial hemp. Beyond that, 27 percent of the fabric is recycled polyester, and 18 percent is organic cotton.

The line comprises 17 products built for hard work at a price that goes toe-to-toe with stalwart brands like Carhartt.

At the core of any workwear line is the pant. Patagonia offers the Iron Forge Hemp Canvas Double Knee Pants for men and women. For anyone who has worn Carhartt double-knee dungarees, these should look pretty familiar, although the fabric is different.

They retail for $80 from Patagonia, which is about $30 more than a comparable, USA-made Carhartt.

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At the high end of the price range for the line sits the men's and women's Iron Forge Hemp Canvas Barn Coat. Both cost $200.

Made from the same burly material, these coats have 92 percent recycled polyester insulation, YKK zippers and doubled fabric panels on the shoulders to increase durability and add comfort while carrying loads.

Not everything gets the hemp treatment. The men's Fog Cutter Sweater, for example, is 70 percent recycled wool, 25 percent recycled nylon, and 5 percent other fiber. It costs $100.

The women's Tin Shed Jacket, $150, is made of polyester with a fleece lining and DWR-treated face fabric.

This is an interesting direction for Patagonia. Workwear is a large market, but it remains to be seen if America's craftsmen and women will open their wallets a little more for an established player in a new game.

Stephen Regenold writes about outdoors gear at GearJunkie.com.

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