1922 - The Puffy Pioneer
The puffer we know and love today is credited as an invention of George Finch, an Australian mountaineer, scientist & inventor. A non-conformist at heart, he created his own eiderdown jacket to wear on the 1922 British Mount Everest expedition. Made in bright green fabric intended for a hot air balloon and stuffed with eider (duck feathers), his jacket was far from the traditional mountaineering garb of tweed suits layered over silk, cotton & wool topped with a gabardine jacket.
Initially mocked by his expedition teammates for such a getup, his invention did the trick - helping him and his companion Geoffrey Bruce reach a record breaking 27,000 feet of elevation.
1936 - The Skyliner
The puffer didn't start to gain popularity until 1936, when Eddie Bauer, the creator of the Eddie Bauer brand, created the Skyliner jacket.
Some of best inventions are born out of necessity. For the Skyliner, it was a near brush with death that lead to its invention. As an avid outdoorsmen, Bauer was out on a trek when his bulky, waterlogged wool coat became too heavy and he was forced to take it off. In the freezing conditions developed hypothermia and almost died. His brush with death inspired him to create a jacket that was both warm, lightweight & wearable.
The design used quilting to prevent the down from bunching at the bottom of the jacket.
The style was patented in 1940 & kickstarted a trend in outdoor apparel. That trend exploded as soldiers returning home from World War II began mail ordering Eddie Bauer products for their adventures. This popularity only increased as the company created specialised down jackets and suits for American expeditions to the Himalayas in the 1950s.
The 1980s - Milan's Paninari
A youth subculture that took Milan by storm in the early 80s (immortalised in the Pet Shop Boys’ 1986 B-side Paninaro). During a time of political turmoil in Italy, the Paninari focused expensive clothes, and hanging out at their favourite haunt, the fast-food café Al Panino.
This subculture marked an important shift. Clothes that had previously been worn specifically for harsh weather conditions or particular sports were now making their way into everyday wear.
Today - Tough, cosy & lightweight
The puffer jacket has come a long way & with modern technology and production methods, it's a highly practical and versatile style that boasts impressive performance.
The FRAHM Ripstop Puffer Jacket doesn't mess with this classic, only elevates. We wanted to create a more stylish, grownup version, that uses high-quality materials and is kinder.
We've used a subdued ripstop outer that doesn’t tear open at the sight of a thorn. We've included plenty of plush storage pockets and slimmed down the silhouette for a flattering fit.
The jacket is filled with 100% recycled Primaloft ThermoPlume ™ (much kinder than down, we don't want to hurt any birds).
It also doesn't look like an inflated wet-look big bag. Nobody wants to wear inflated wet-look bin-bags. Not grown men, with stubbly chins, anyway.