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Posted by: Wilderness Wear Australia on 08/04/2017

MeFu baselayers for adventurers and all

MeFu baselayers for adventurers and  all

Wilderness Wear is launching its clever MerinoFusion range of apparel and accessories, developed by the Melbourne-based company over years of successful manufacture.

The collection is affectionately known as MeFu and has been developed as a hybrid fabric by combining the two fibres and gaining the facilities and benefits of both.

MeFu base layers have received an unqualified vote of confidence from Aussie adventurer Kate Leeming for her upcoming cycle ride across Antartica - she had tested the Wilderness Wear garments on a four week ride across Canada's Yukon region earlier this year and reported "The Merino Fusion garments that you provided are the best I have ever used as a base layer."

Wilderness Wear Operations Manager Jon Pote details how the development of this innovative 100 percent Australian-made fabric, MerinoFusion has come about: "The association of Superfine Merino wool and high grade Polypropylene (PolyPro+) with Wilderness Wear goes back many years, with substantial ranges having been designed and manufactured using each material.

"Of course, there are stand-out features for both, and depending on what climate and activities apply, either one can come out as favourite.

True Polypropylene has spectacular moisture wicking capability and thermal properties suitable for high-level and extended aerobic activity and also has the benefit of low irritation, while superfine Merino boasts soft handle, stable temperature control and low odour, suitable for extended use over many days, along with warming capabilities even when damp or wet.

Pote says, "An early contender for Wilderness Wear in the hybrid material category was DuoTherm™ developed by company head, Phil Endersbee."

As a two-fibre solution, it initiated the idea of a proprietary material that brought together the benefits of both sides. Produced in-house with a 1/2 Milano stitch double jersey knit construction, it was a strong beginning in this new material space.

"Fast forward to 2015 and we start to see the true benefits of a company which manufactures and has the ability to design, develop, prototype, test and ultimately produce its own unique foundation materials, all under the one roof in Preston, Victoria. "

MerinoFusion finally came from operations lead, Jon Pote, when he revisited the notion of a hybrid material combining the same two fibres woven on the one machine for a truly integrated solution in a full range of weights and without the sense of inner and outer surfaces.

Early marketing recognised the concept of 'the best of both worlds from nature-made and man-made fibres' and a new packaging concept was put in place to give distinction from the company's already established 100 percent Superfine Merino base layers.

"MeFu looks technical and fashionable with opportunity for combinations of stunning colours, starting with the black and grey combination, then the colours were added to flesh out the palette options, culminating in Fusion Volcano and Fusion Rainforest providing a visual pop to the range.

Says Pote, "Then we tested and instantly it became apparent that the MerinoFusion had amazingly responsive thermal properties. It was very quick to warm up (when movement started) and also quick to cool down - and in general, it provided better insulation in passive (casual) situations when compared to anything which was 100 percent wool.

Extreme cyclist and adventurer Kate Leeming, preparing for a landmark transverse of Antarctica, took some of the MeFu prototypes through their paces on a .Canadian artic challenge earlier this year.

Testing here included mixing up layering with a wide range of materials, including cotton, wool, synthetics and bamboo.

Some garments were dedicated cycling items and others were general technical outdoor, including head gear, underwear, socks and gloves - all important for the gruelling temperatures that occasionally tipped minus 40?C.

In those conditions, the process of keeping moisture away from the skin and working at temperature regulation via layering the MerinoFusion was given as key, and led to Leeming's praise of the MeFu collection.

The first MerinoFusion items were a 190gsm weight and cut to a long-sleeve crew neck design with raglan sleeves. Then followed variations that included hoodies, zip-necks and leggings, all in men's and women's styles and across a wide colour range.

Now a lighter weight, in 160gsm, doubles the number of styles on offer! Check out the exciting collection.

Wilderness Wear Australia

Ph: 03 9416 7211