Travis Gumbs: Although we are approaching the end of spring and into the nice, hot summer weather, the rain of the past couple months has not been afraid to make an appearance. Spring weather brings rain and with rain brings garments that protect and keep us comfortable. With every blog post I talk about some recent obsession with a particular garment or item. You can add wax cotton to that list. It is easy to gain a fondness for anything that works as good as it looks. Experiencing the rain bounce off of a newly waxed jacket is like a kids first time seeing microwave popcorn. Wax cotton is a classic piece of menswear that is rich with history.
The Barbour Jacket was yet another eBay find. I find that the vintage waxed jackets often times look a lot better with a nice worn in patina look to it. It is always tricky when buying items like this online. It is hard to see how extensive the natural wear is on camera and even easier for sellers to hide imperfections. The best ones are primarily sold by UK dealers.
Josh’s jacket is apart of Schott N.Y.C.’s Perfecto line. This long lasting historic company known for their leather jackets, recently started a capsule line called Perfecto. The Perfecto line uses quality, construction, fit and creative fabrics to update old models as well as introduce new ones. The jacket Josh is wearing is Schott’s iconic perfecto jacket done in wax cotton. This is a fine example of combining the best of both worlds.
During the 15th century mariners would use oil grease on their heavy sailcloth,making it waterproof. However, the oiled sailcloth didn’t always prove itself suitable. Aside from its heftiness, sailcloth would harden and become very stiff in warm weather. It wasn’tuntil the 1930s where wax cotton, a more sutilable substitute was introduced. Woven in Scotland, wax cotton provided a lightweight, breathable and water resistant alternative. It was widely popularized by J. Barbour & Sons and worn by many hunters, sailors, bikers and people of all ages. Wax jackets are now an iconic piece of British fashion.