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Worn Wear Sale

Get up to 50% off select pre-loved Patagonia gear through June 30.

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Earth Is Now Our Only Shareholder

If we have any hope of a thriving planet—much less a business—it is going to take all of us doing what we can with the resources we have. This is what we can do.

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Transforming Trash into Fleece
When it comes to fleece, we love to talk trash. Recycled soda bottles, unusable manufacturing waste and worn-out garments (including our own) are used here and there to create our fleece vests,, fleece pullover and full-zip fleece jackets. . Using recycled materials for what some call our “fuzzy jacket” styles lessens our dependence on petroleum as a source of raw materials. But using recycled materials wasn’t always the way we made our beloved fluffy fleece—whether it’s for women, men, babies or kids.
The Story of Fleece
ABack in the early 1980s, Patagonia partnered with Massachusetts-based fabric maker Malden Mills to create the first light, strong pile fabric out of virgin polyester, which we then used to make our very firstmen’s fleece pullovers and women’s fleece pullovers. .Soon after, the world fell in love with fleece. Before long, every outdoor brand started making things out of this versatile new fabric—from fleece sweatpants to fleece headbands to technical fleece.. Colorful fleece provided nearly all the benefits of wool, was easy to wash and could be layered over or under virtually anything.
Colorful Fleece: The Move to Recycled Fleece
Polyester fleece is a petroleum-based fiber and we wanted to limit our use of fossil-fuel based materials in our line. We worked with our mill partners such as Polartec (hence the name polar fleece), formerly Malden Mills, to create recycled fleece. By 1993, we were the first outdoor clothing manufacturer to transform trash into fleece. Our first recycled polyester fleece was the color of the plastic bottles it was made from: soda-bottle green.
Wool and Polyester Blend Men’s Quarter-Zip Fleece?
Our fleece today has come full circle. We started our journey to polyester fleece by trying to find a warmer, more breathable alternative to a favorite wool sweater our founder, Yvon Chouinard, loved. Yes, polyester fleece has some advantages over wool, but wool isn’t a petroleum-based fiber, and we like that. And recycled wool is better yet. Blending recycled wool into, say, our quarter-zip fleece pullover styles allows us to emit less carbon than we would using virgin polyester. It also helps us divert quite a lot of clothing from landfills. If you’re looking for the perfect fleece, we haven’t made it yet. We’re still tinkering.

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