“The whole is greater than the sum of its parts.”
Not to sound like nerds who sit around reading philosophy (except when we do), but it was Aristotle who first pointed out this axiomatic truth. And while, if historical depictions are to be believed, he might have rocked a multifunctional toga much of the time, that’s likely only because our Puffer hadn’t yet been created.
The Puffer is synergistic in a way that Aristotle would’ve loved. That’s because synergetic garments consist of parts that, when combined, create outcomes far greater than any one piece could on its own. As you might expect, we created our first synergetic garment through the serendipitous collision of our Bauhaus (form follows function) design philosophy and our all-eventualities (doing all the things) ethos.
The design requirements for the Puffer were many, multifarious, and dire:
- Functionality of a belay parka
- Convertibility to an insulated waterproof parka
- Suitability for very lazy and active outdoor pursuits
- Sufficiently chic for urban activities
- Adaptable to changing bodies
- Wholeheartedly embrace our cyborg reality
- Sustainably manufactured.
We achieved these objectives through a level of modularity that — like most great things in life — is best experienced. However, for the readers among us, we break it down in the design & materials section here. If you’d like to go deeper, then we strongly recommend learning about the recycled materials we used from Majotech and re:Down, both pioneers in accelerating our transition to a zero-waste world.
Achieving so many objectives requires trade-offs, and the world of apparel isn’t known for the elegant synthesis of form and function. Designing the puffer to wear underneath a Shell comfortably required zagging from the zeitgeisty oversized comforter look. It’s a pain we endure in order to be warm when it's wet out.
However, in reality, it all boiled down to zippers and pockets, and the Puffer has twelve and seven, respectively. While so many pockets felt liberatory, using so many zippers took us into the dark global duopoly of zipper manufacturers. Basically, there’s YKK, and the other one you’ve never heard of and shall not be named. Future design iterations will be a trauma response.
On a brighter note, however, serendipity contributed more than her fair share. When we created its zip-off skirt, we neither expected it to be worn as a scarf (which customers happily do) nor as an actual skirt (as seen here on the Balinesian dance floor). No doubt Aristotle would’ve worn it off the shoulder, toga-style.
What will you do with yours?