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What is "Mackinaw" - Definition & Explanation

Historically, it was made from an ordinary grade of wool that often had shoddy re-used or remanufactured wool mixed in. A twill weave where the weave is concealed. Mackinaw is heavily fulled or felted and napped on both sides to conceal the weave. Much of the fabric is in a plaid or large check design or brightly colored, or with different colors on each side. Mackinaw is heavy and thick, very similar to melton. It is named after MacKinac Island, Michigan and is also called snow cloth. It was used by miners, lumbermen, hunters, trappers, fishermen, and cowboys in jackets, mackinaws and coats. It was also used for blankets, shirts, and some heavy sportswear, and windbreakers. Mackinaw is another fabric that has been replaced by more modern, lighter and warmer synthetics and blends.
Heavy woollen cloth used for shirts, jackets, and pants; first made by the Hudson‘s Bay Company in 1912. Often the term used for the jacket itself.

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