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Failsworth – A History

Here’s a little insight into one of our newest brands, Failsworth.

A Brief History

Failsworth was originally established in 1875 under the name ‘Maypole Hat Works’. In 1881 the company relocated to Claremont street, Failsworth, Manchester where they became ‘The New Failsworth Hat Manufacturing Company’. They stayed in the same factory (the largest hat factory in Europe) for over 100 years, becoming ‘Failsworth Hats Limited’ in 1940, and moving to new premises in 1998.

During the war, Failsworth supplied the RAF with hand crafted helmets and made ‘special equipment’ for commando frogmen. In the 1950s, the Failsworth name became well known within retail and they began to supply shops like Selfridges and Harrods.

From the beginning, selling about 15,000 hats a year to the present, making over 2 million, Failsworth has been well developed – and with their keen sense of keeping up to date with the latest trends and fashion, Failsworth will no doubt be running for many years to come.

Ethics and sourcing

Failsworth only use products that have been ethically sourced and will only work with companies who share the same beliefs. They regularly visit different parts of the world where they source only the best materials and learn different manufacturing techniques from people in different countries. They continually review procedures and strengthen their ethical policies.

We are pleased to be stocking Failsworth hats, offering British styling and quality at extremely competitive prices, and have picked three of our favourites below.

Failsworth ‘Adventurer’ Wide Brim Hat (£29)

This traditional English Failsworth wide-brim hat is available in two earthy shades of light felt. Features complementary adjustable strap belt with contrasting yellow stitching.

Fully crushable, ensuring it’s perfect for travel – simply unpack, shake and it’s ready to wear!

Failsworth English Waterproof Country Cap (£26)

A traditional Failsworth tweed country cap, with Porelle liner and water-resistant fabric. Offers warmth, durability and style.

Failsworth English ‘Malaga’ Hat (£15)

Classic summer Failsworth fedora in natural straw, with interior sweatband. Features canvas ribbon trim with leather detail and brass adjuster.

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Straight From Our Rep – Ross, Fjallraven

Here at The Sporting Lodge, we like to keep up to date with the latest news from our brand representatives, and today we had a visit from our Fjallraven rep, Ross. We’ve worked with Ross for many years, and took the opportunity to ask him some questions and get some tips on choosing your Fjallraven products. Ross has worked in the outdoor retail business for 18 years, and for Fjallraven since 2010.

Q. How do you select the best fit?

A. The best way is to choose from the different ranges we have, if you’re after an active slim fit you’re best going for the Keb or Abisko range. If you want a more forgiving size with better range of movement go for the Ovik, Sarek or Kiruna range and if you want the traditional ‘boxy’ fit stick with the original Greenland range.

Then there’s the trousers where you have pro fits, which are a mid and regular waist, and the non pro fit which are the traditional high waist, very comfortable and a little baggy.

At the end of the day it’s all about what you feel comfortable in!

Q. If my trousers come in raw length, what’s the best way to alter them?

A. People do it different ways, if you’re a dab hand at sewing, this is the main way, cutting off the length with scissors, or if not I suggest using something like wonder web, which you can stick on, it works just the same.

Ross’ Top Tip If you’re using Wonder Web (hemming tape), or similar, don’t cut off the excess material, fold it up and it can act as an extra layer of protection. Like a gaiter! Also, if you do manage to rip or singe your G-1000 material (very difficult, especially with the HeavyDuty), you have emergency material available to cut off the bottom and use as a patch!

Q. Can you tell us about the different materials used?

A. All our fabric is G-1000 which is a cotton blend. It’s so durable due to the way it’s woven, which makes it UV proof up to 40F, mosquito proof and water and wind resistant. This can be improved by using the Greenland Wax, which I’ll tell you more about soon.

We source only the best materials and track them straight from the beginning, some of our range is organic cotton and in the future we will be doing the whole range with it.

Q. Why isn’t the whole range in organic cotton?

A. Because it is so difficult to get hold of the best quality, we’re working really hard on this!

Back to the materials, we have the G-1000 Lite range which is a lot lighter than the original, best used for spring and summer trekking. As it’s lighter, it’s slightly less durable so we’ve added rip stop into the material. This is a true rip stop that is stitched into the material (basically if you rip your clothing the rip stop will only let it rip in vertically or horizontally so it’s really easy to fix!).

Then we have our G-1000 Silent range, as the name suggests this material is best for hunting. It’s made from the original G-1000 but has been brushed to to make the material extremely soft and of course silent.

Next we have our HeavyDuty range. This is by far the strongest material we produce, it’s like having a triple layer of the original! Lots of our bags, including the Kanken No. 2No. 21 range and the Duffel No. 4 are made from Heavy Duty G-1000 because it’s so durable. It is stiffer than the original, but if it’s clothing like our Greenland Jeans they will soften in time and look better and better!

And lastly in the G-1000 range we have the Eco which is our ecological alternative to the original, just as durable but made from recycled polyester and organic cotton- this will be the future!

All the Kankens are made from a material called Vinylon-F – this is robust lightweight synthetic material with natural properties, ensuring that when it gets wet the fibres swell and absorb the moisture, making it denser, hence more water resistant.

Q. How do you know the G-1000 material is so durable?

A. Every material that is sold must go through the Martindale rub test. It’s a test where the material is put on a round and rubbed against a sand paper like material. 6,000 rounds is the lowest the material needs to pass without any thread breaks. Our G-1000 passes at over 15,000 rounds, and our Heavy Duty G-1000 went twice at 25,000 rounds and still there were no thread breaks- quality!

Q. Can you tell me about the Greenland Wax?

A. Greenland Wax is made from Beeswax and paraffin, we’ve been getting it from the same company since Fjallraven started. The idea of the wax is to improve performance of your item by enhancing its water and wind resistance and also it prolongs the life of your garment by deterring. All our garments come pre-waxed.

Q. How do you apply it, and how long will it last?

A. You apply the wax by putting it on the material and ironing over it (on a cotton setting) to press it into the material. Duration depends on what activity you’re participating in and how long you are in the elements, but usually one layer will come out in one wash, two layers in two, etc.

Ross’ Top Tips:

  • Apply the wax in thin layers for best performance, about 2 layers for summer and about 4/5 layers in winter.
  • Press harder on the stitches using the edge of the wax to really get it into the material.
  • In summer, only wax certain areas – like the knees, shoulders and hoods for protection. This will keep maximum breathability in the other areas when it’s warm.

Q. What’s in store for 2015?

A. We’ve got a lot happening at Fjallraven HQ! We’ve recently employed our new designer, Henry, who really wants to get back to our classic style, that means more leather, fur, down and wool.

We have new colours of Kankens including Campfire Yellow, Orange and Lake Blue, and new ranges of number bags like the Ovik, Vintage and Totepacks. New travel accessories, leather wallets and card holders. We can’t wait, can you?

Q. Why did you want to work for Fjallraven?

A. I am really passionate about outdoor retail and had never seen products like Fjallraven’s. I really wanted to be involved in developing such a unique brand.

Q. Lastly, what’s your favourite item?

A. Without a doubt it has to be the Keb Trousers! They fit me like a dream and are genuinely the best trekking pants I have ever known!

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Sporting Lodge Website and Showroom Launch

What a busy year we’ve had!

At The Sporting Lodge, we’re excited to announce our new website launch, which offers an improved user experience and many new features. We hope you enjoy browsing our improved product catalogue, and welcome your feedback.

What’s New?

My Account – you can now register a personal account, which allows you to:

  • Receive personal offers and discounts (include 10% off your first order as a registered user). We’ll keep you up to date with all our latest offers and events, and you can unsubscribe at any time!
  • Create your own Wish List to keep track of your favourite products.
  • Compare similar items on-screen, to get a quick side-by-side overview of key product features.
  • Track your order history and status with our detailed overview of your past orders and returns.

Product Reviews

At The Sporting Lodge we feel the best way to find out about a product is to ask someone, and who better to ask than our customers, who’ve experienced our products firsthand.

Feel free to review a product any time – we’d love to hear your opinions on everything from jackets to shotgun cleaning accessories. Customer feedback ensures we can continue to stock the products our customers want to see, as well as expanding our offerings from popular brands.

Visit Our Lake District Showroom

Along with a new website, our Lake District showroom is now open to visitors.

Our showroom is based in Cumbria overlooking the beautiful idyllic Lake District, where there are many things to see and do. We will be opening (10am-3pm Mon-Fri) to the general public but if you’d prefer to visit and browse on your own we are more than happy to arrange private showing appointments. We look forward to seeing you!

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Sweden Joins Forces with Scotland – New Fjallraven Forest Range

The world-renowned Scottish Shetland Wool used since the 1800s for the British Army has now been combined with a Swedish Fjallraven twist. Fjallraven, who pioneered the exclusive G-1000 fabric (one of the most durable cloths for the outdoors in the world), has teamed up with the famous Scottish cloth mill, Abraham Moon, to produce the fantastic Forest No. 3 Hunting Jacket and Forest No. 26 Hunting Trousers.

Wind and rain resistant, the warmth of Shetland wool is now reinforced with the toughness of G-1000 Heavy Duty for these pieces, new for Autumn Winter 2013. Available to buy online today at The Sporting Lodge.

The garments can be waxed with Fjallraven Greenland Wax for enhanced durability. The No. 3 Forest Jacket has practical details and pockets for convenient storage of items you want close at hand, such as a clip-on radio attachment on the left shoulder and large top-loaded bellow pockets with side pockets built in behind them. There are also two pockets with ammunition holders, two chest pockets and a large top-loaded back pocket. Inside, there are a further three pockets. Buttoned sleeve cuffs. Forest Jacket No. 3 is a durable, stylish and hard-wearing garment that will keep you warm and provides excellent insulation, even when damp.

The No. 6 Forest Trousers are reinforced at the knees, back and leg endings with G-1000 Heavy Duty, which can be waxed for enhanced durability. They have several practical pockets, including two large leg pockets for maps, a GPS, gloves and other goodies you need to keep close. The knees are pre-shaped and have openings for Fjallraven Knee Pads, while the section over the inner thighs is seamless to minimise the risk of chafing. The waist is cut high at the back for extra comfort when squatting down, and has belt loops and reinforced brace zones and buttons for braces. The rear seam is triple stitched to withstand wear. Zippers from the side of the knee down simplify putting on/taking off and leg endings can be adjusted with press buttons. Silent, pliant and comfortable hunting trousers that are suitable for both sitting for longer periods and for moving around.

Scotland meets Sweden. The perfect match for quality, durability and functionality.

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Our Essential Festival Kit 2013

Festival season is well and truly upon us.. are YOU all kitted out? We’ve put together four of our festival favourites so you can learn more about them as we explain why they should be at the top of your packing lists this year!

1. The bag. Fjallraven Vintage Backpack (30 Litre).

You won’t believe that this retro lightweight wonder can carry up to 30L of festival necessities! With real leather straps and a variety of different coloured weatherproof fabrics to choose from (in Fjallraven’s signature G-1000), we’ve judged this the ultimate festival backpack! With two outer side compartments, water (or beverage of your choice) is just a small reach away, along with the all important safety pocket in the top lid, ideal for your mobile phone or music player. Our favourite feature of this bag is in the wearing – the more rugged and worn it gets, the better it looks in our opinion! Have a look for yourself!

2. The pillow. Fjallraven Travel Pillow.

Heading to an overnight festival? Possibly preparing for a few nights of fun, wishing for nothing more than to collapse into bed at the end of the night and be in a cocoon of comfort and plushness. Sounds like an exaggeration doesn’t it? Well we kid you not, this value for money saviour promises to command your wish of just that! Nobody wants to be lugging round their own bed pillow, with the possibility of it getting dirty or ruined. This tiny treasure travel pillow copes with moisture and nasty weather conditions, ensuring your comfort for the best nights sleep possible at a noisy festival. The red colour means you will always be able to find it, and it also comes in its very own pack bag. How cute.

3. The jacket. Fjallraven Greenland Jacket.

Available in women’s and men’s sizes, this beauty of a jacket is THE jacket of the season, combining weatherproof features with true, classic Fjallraven style – which helps the jacket reign supreme as one of Fjallraven’s top selling products. This 6-pocketed marvel leaves no room for improvement, and there’s a pocket for just about everything (possibly excluding the kitchen sink). Also equipped with a hood, once you’re zipped up you’re well and truly ready for anything a festival throws at you! A wide range of colours also enables you to pick a colour to go with any outfit!

Available to buy online as both Women’s Greenland Jacket and Men’s Greenland Jacket.

4. The flask. Fjallraven Limited Edition 10oz Flask and Cup.

The festival go-er’s best friend. Providing nutrients, energy and an option for warmth, all from one packable vessel. We present to you, a unique stainless steel flask, bound in brown leather, and not one but two cups, reads to serve the beverage of your choice. We don’t know about you but when we queue up at a festival, excited to get coffee at the coffee stall, our thoughts are going wild at the thought of a warm beverage tantalizing our tastebuds.. until we see the price. For a stylish and durable casing to protect and preserve your favourite drink, look no further, we’ve got it covered.

We hope you love all the pieces we’ve picked out for you – but remember, we also have a full range of festival clothing and accessories in our festival shop, all available for immediate dispatch!

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Father’s Day Feature – Fjallraven No. 21 Backpack

One week to go and typically, Father’s Day has either been forgotten about or clouded by (excuse the pun) the current top notch British weather we’ve been lucky enough to enjoy!

Never fear, the team at The Sporting Lodge have handpicked a product we’re sure any father would be excited to get his hands on, and are very excited to tell you about! We present to you, the Fjallraven Number 21 Backpack. This delightful yet durable rucksack has been recommended by the likes of the undeniable Teen Vogue.

So, why this backpack? It’s just a bag, right? Wrong. This creation is made from Fjallraven’s signature G-1000 fabric, boasting both reliance and durability. It is also available in four exclusive colours (Black, Green, Navy and Ochre) and three different sizes, too! (SmallMedium and Large). If this doesn’t prove dedication to style, we don’t know what does. Combined with leather detailing within the adjustable, padded straps, fastenings and thick piping, there’s not a lot that this bag can’t withstand. There’s even a seating pad within the bag, ready to pull out and use wherever you fancy. Want more?

Continue reading Father’s Day Feature – Fjallraven No. 21 Backpack

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Featured – Fjallraven Greenland No. 1 Special Edition Jacket

At the Sporting Lodge, we’re big fans of the whole Fjallraven range, but once in a while we come across a particularly stand-out product that deserves its own spotlight! The Greenland No.1 Special Edition jacket is an new twist on an old favourite – with the original Greenland Jacket devised and launched back in 1968.

Extremely comfortable to wear, in a lightweight fabric, but still resistant against showers owing to the G-1000 fabric, this is the perfect jacket for summer. We found it really easy to apply Greenland Wax, and loved how effective the application was for increased durability – this jacket will take you from summer into autumn with no trouble!

Practical as well as stylish, the chest pockets are surprisingly deep, especially considering their understated appearance – so you won’t be short of storage space. Leather edging around the cuffs and hood have great functional application (as well as aesthetic!), and allow the fabric to avoid chafing and remain comfortable against skin when wet. The Greenland No. 1 Special Edition’s double fastening closure with both zip and buttons also create an effective
wind barrier, perfect for unpredictable UK summers!

In addition, 5 Euro from the sale of every jacket is contributed to the SEFALO Arctic Fox project, working to reverse the decline and threatened extinction of the Arctic Fox in Sweden and Norway.

We hope you love it as much as we do – available to buy online now at the Sporting Lodge in four fantastic colours!

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Father’s Day is Coming Up

This year, as a special Father’s Day promotion, we’re offering a fantastic 15% off all brands at the Sporting Lodge (applicable to full-price products only), including Fjallraven, Beretta, Perazzi, Brady, and many more. Simply enter the code FATHERSDAY15 at checkout to claim your discount.

Why not take a look at our hand-picked Gift Collection to get you started? You’ll find a varied range of gift ideas to suit all tastes. We’ve also recently launched our new optics collection, featuring high-quality binoculars from Steiner.

Offer ends Monday June 17th, so don’t miss out!20013

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Fjallraven Greenland Wax – Waxing Lyrical..

Every so often, you come across an item that you just can’t do without. As a keen outdoors person I spend most of my free time and work time in the great outdoors – and all weathers offer oportunities to test the products we sell.

Fjallraven clothing is fast becoming a must have brand when stepping outside to work or play. Fjallraven’s G-1000 material (a unique blend of polyester and cotton) works well in all weathers and terrains, and can simultaneously withstand the rigours of thousands of washing machine cycles.

While Fjallraven G-1000 fabric is a workhorse, it’s not water resistant – and this is where Greenland Wax comes in! When you apply Greenland Wax, an eco-friendly mix of paraffin and beeswax, the material performs even better, capable of repelling water even in the heaviest of downpours. Forget sticky, smelly wax – this stuff is clean and easily applied in a matter of minutes, using an iron or hairdryer.

We’ve been using Fjallraven Greenland wax for many years, and in short, it works! Fjallraven have also introduced the Greenland Wax in a handy drawstring bag for Summer 2013, ideal for a rucksack or jacket pocket. And don’t forget, Fjallraven Greenland Wax isn’t limited to Fjallraven products – it works well on ventile, canvas, or any cotton based material. If you have a pair on Converse shoes, try it out for fantastic results!

Happy waxing and keep dry!

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Fjallraven Spring Summer 2013

Spring is here! Our brand new Fjallraven Spring Summer 2013 collection is now in stock, featuring some old favourites in vibrant new colours (including Ochre), as well as several brand new never-seen-before releases.

Included in the collection is the eagerly awaited Fjallraven Greenland No. 1 Special Edition jacket, as seen late last year on Orlando Bloom, as well as a great selection of lightweight jackets, outdoor shirts trousers and headwear.

For a limited period, we’re also offering 20% off any full-price Fjallraven trousers, using the code FJALLTROUSER20. Pick up a bargain!