By  on August 4, 2014

Burlington Industries is introducing Merino FX, a collection of seasonless performance merino fabrics designed for outdoor enthusiasts.

Burlington, a division of International Textile Group Inc., will launch the line at Outdoor Retailer show that opens Wednesday.

Burlington said the Merino FX collection includes pure merino wool and blends in various weights and constructions. The line features performance and sustainable blends that incorporate Cordura yarns, Supima cotton, flax and Tencel. The company said the natural comfort, resilience and versatility of wool make it a staple for any outdoor wardrobe.

“Harvested from merino sheep, merino wool is often overlooked as a year-round and versatile fiber,” said Tom Aubrey, product development manager for Burlington. “The very thing that makes wool warm in winter makes it cool in summer, and the natural give and elasticity of wool fibers yields to the body’s movement, making them incredibly comfortable, wrinkle resistant and long-wearing — a perfect complement for outdoor lifestyles.”

Merino wool naturally regulates temperature and excels in insulating the body against the heat, as well as the cold, Burlington noted. The fibers trap pockets of air close to the body and these pockets warm or cool as the need arises. Wool fibers are hydrophilic and have a high capability to absorb moisture and transmit it to the air, keeping the body dry and comfortable.

In addition, the company noted that merino wool has a soft hand and is lightweight, with natural antimicrobial properties, and most are machine washable.

“Wool also provides a tremendous platform for sustainable fabrics,” Aubrey added. “It is 100 percent biodegradable and is incredibly durable due to its crisp, compact structure that far outlasts many synthetic fibers.”

Burlington’s worsted wool heritage dates back to 1954 and centers on the wool expertise of the Burlington Raeford brand, named after the plant where it was first produced. Burlington worsteds are known for quality, styling and superior color-match capabilities. Burlington has been the primary supplier of worsted wool and wool blend fabrics for the U.S. military for more than 50 years.

Also in the outdoor performance sector, Burlington said Monday it was introducing Durepel Eco, an environmentally engineered finish that provides water repellency free of fluorocarbon compounds. Durepel technology is a water- and stain-repellent finish with strong durability that provides maximum protection through repeated washings, while maintaining the aesthetics engineered into every fabric.

Durepel Eco replicates the “Lotus Effect,” producing a coating that creates repellency in the same way Lotus leaves repel dirt and rain droplets roll off the wings of a butterfly. Durepel Eco fabrics carry the Bluesign label certifying they have been manufactured using approved dyes, chemicals and raw materials. The Bluesign system offers a third-party approval certification for the textile industry that takes into account the whole production process and minimizing the impact on the environment and safeguarding human health. Burlington became a Bluesign system partner in June 2013.

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