Choosing the right jacket for changing weather can be challenging — you either nail it or end up with too few or too many layers, which can put a damper on your day of dashing from coffee to work to appointment to apartment. But a new Kickstarter promises a jacket that can transform to fit all of your needs in an instant. The Utility Jacket is an innovative piece of outerwear that you can actually wear *four* different ways. In one chic garment, you have the choice of a long jacket, a shorter jacket, a vest or a short vest. Equipped with this, you’re really ready to take on whatever the day throws at you, weather-wise and style-wise.
The jacket was created by Seamly.co, who ran a successful campaign on Kickstarter for the Versalette (one garment: 30 ways). The company is highly interested in minimalist, versatile clothing, aka luxe-looking garments that are easy to pack for holiday travel or budget trips. Zippers make the magic possible here — you can unzip the sleeves or bottom portion to choose your style for the day, creating long layered looks or shorter drape-y options. The tiny zippers and side pockets are hidden from view and don’t make the jacket feel bulky. Buttons give you various options for the front closure as well.
Besides the extreme versatility, the jacket is made from sustainable fabrics. It’s actually biodegradable (whaaat?), made from eco-friendly hempcel, a combination of hemp and lyocell, a fabric made from the pulp of hardwood trees. The lyocell is manufactured in China but overseen by a woman-owned (yay!) and family-run (double yay!) company in Colorado Springs called Envirotextiles. The workers involved in the nearby hemp production are paid a fair wage and receive paid maternity leave. The entire jacket is certified as a Sustainable Biodegradable Product, which means consumers get transparency on issues like material origins, processes and labor conditions.
The liner of the jacket is also made out of a wonder material called cotton linter, a fiber found around the cotton seed that’s usually discarded and also biodegradable. The liner promises to be warm in winter and cool in summer while also wicking moisture.
The list of cool features goes on: The design itself was crowdsourced — Seamly.co had their customers weigh in online about design choices on their website. And once funded, this jacket will be made locally in a family-owned sewing shop in Westminster, Colorado.
The jackets available for $152 (retail value $178) on Kickstarter are all gone now! You’ll can get in at the $162 level, but that’s limited too, so hurry. Your jacket will arrive by February 2016, just in time for the winter-spring transition.
Would you wear this jacket? Into sustainable design? Tweet us your thoughts @BritandCo.