Coalatree—the company who previously launched a highly-rated hoodie made from recycled coffee grounds—is back on Kickstarter with its latest creation: a windbreaker that is capable of “healing” small punctures by rubbing them with your finger.
The Whistler Windbreaker is made from 100% nylon with a DWR coating that repels water from light precipitation. However, it’s not just any nylon material— it’s “HiloTech,” which is said to have specially woven nylon strands that are comprised of microscopic fibers. Those fibers are clingy like the hairs on an insect’s leg, and when you apply a little bit of heat and friction by rubbing the material with your finger, it can force the fibers to adhere in a way that covers a small hole.
Beyond its ability to heal small punctures, features include an interior glove pocket, an exterior phone pocket, hand-warming pockets, a chin guard, hood and waist drawstrings, elastic cuffs, as well as a reflective logo on the sleeve. When not being worn, the jacket can be stuffed into its front chest pocket, making for a compact package that’s easy to travel with. The stuffed package even has a carabiner loop that lets you hang the jacket on the outside of a travel bag.
While the product is interesting and Coalatree certainly deserves the benefit of the doubt, it would be nice to see a more thorough demonstration about the types of damage that you can reasonably expect to repair on this thing. The demo video indicates that thorn or small nail puncture could be rubbed away in a few seconds, but an author at The Inventory said he didn’t have any luck “healing” a small linear cut made with scissors. What about small holes burned into the material from campfire embers?
The Whistler is scheduled to ship in March 2020 with Kickstarter pricing starting at $72 for a single jacket—$57 off from the anticipated retail rate. Sizing from XS to XXL and as a point of reference, size medium weighs seven ounces.
In an announcement on its Kickstarter page yesterday, Coalatree said it had managed to reach its initial goal for funding at $50,000. That amount has reached $62,275 as of writing and the company says if it can reach its “stretch goal” of $100,000 on Kickstarter, it will add a new red color option to its current choices of black, blue, and green. Considering the campaign still has 27 days to go and it’s only just now hitting the news circuit, reaching $100,000 or higher seems pretty possible.
As mentioned, this isn’t Coalatree’s first foray into the stranger side of fashion, having previously funded and shipped a hoodie made from recycled coffee grounds. That project reached $558,796 in backing and is available today for $109 with favorable reviews around the Internet. The company also boasts that it hasn’t been late to deliver on a single Kickstarter project.