New Zealand-based Icebreaker recently introduced a new ultra-lightweight performance fabric as part of its Spring/Summer 2012 collection, which was on display during an October event at the company’s Soho, New York City, store. Called GT150, it is Icebreaker’s lightest-ever merino wool, and will be featured prominently in the GT Bike collection of styles for road and mountain bikers. The new fabric is a key component of GT Bike’s summer-weight tops, which the company says resist odor, dry faster, and keep bikers cooler and drier than the synthetic garments that dominate the athletic apparel market.
Icebreaker’s bike jerseys are comprised of 97 percent merino, with 3 percent LYCRA and include special features such as gripper elastic at the hem, reflective rear details, a three-panel back pocket, and reinforced stress points on tops. Its bike shorts are 85 percent merino and have a high quality Italian chamois with ergonomic padding. The garments also include a host of functional features to boost performance, according to Icebreaker senior product designer Gerard Smith. “From the featherweight of mesh venting zones in the running pieces and the placement of the pockets on the cycling jerseys, Icebreaker designers know what athletes need out of their apparel,” Smith says.
The Spring/Summer 2012 collection also marks the debut of Icebreaker’s Black Sheep line — luxury men’s and women’s merino sweaters available in crewneck, v-neck, boatneck, cardigan, and hooded styles. The sweaters are made from an exceptionally fine micron of merino wool, grown in New Zealand’s rugged Southern Alps, which is knitted into a fine gauge. Special garment features in the Black Sheep series include raglan sleeves with fully-fashioned details, shoulder darts, ergonomic side seams for a superior fit, and ribbing at the hem, cuff and neckline.
The company has also evolved its Nature range — previously a layering system with two weights, for underwear and base layers—into a full assortment of natural merino underwear for women. The styles are also made from Icebreaker’s lightest merino fabric and are available in classic (the Siren line) and sporty (the Sprite line) underwear styles. The range also includes bras for the first time, which are being introduced for Spring/Summer 2012 in both the Siren and Sprite series, and are designed for low-impact activity.