Niche & New Tech

Trend & Design Center workshop on designing for disabilities.

The latest tech offerings on display at Outdoor Retailer hit a wide range of performance targets ranging from next-to-skin to outerwear.

Robust textiles that feature longevity are key for the season ahead. Hyosung’s new high-performance creora ActiFit spandex, designed to keep pace with endurance athletes and the conditions they encounter — whether it be salt water, intense sun or a rocky crag — is defined by durability, UV and chlorine resistance, and superior recovery. Patagonia, in a bold move, has done away with 2.5 layer construction all together and rebuilt its classic Torrentshell line explaining that the new three-layer shell for Spring 20 “is more comfortable, durable and built to last longer than ever before.”

Suppliers also see value in collaborations. Sorona continues its partnership with Cordura showcasing fabric by ChiaHer in a variety of looks; additionally Sorona introduces three insulation products with Youngone as part of a collab with Repreve. Gore ventures into warm weather base layer via development with Under Armour. The new lightweight blend of 90 percent poly /10 percent ePTFE creates a super fast wicking t-shirt material.

Exploring new ground in biomimicry, PrimaLoft NEXT debuts as an innovative textile platform that combines the thermal advantages of insulation with the versatility of fabric. Schoeller elevates thermo-regulation tech with its new iLoad Comfort Bio that relies on microcapsules to balance out temperature fluctuations. The Swiss firm’s new aerobrane e-spinning breathable membrane offers optimal weather protection.

Technology around coloration takes a step forward, too, with newcomer Chromuch, from parent company Nan Ya Plastics. Its branded ChromShield Technology is a water free solution dye method with fibers made of recycled PET bottles available in stock for better lead times and low MOQ.