Toque, in the context of textiles, refers to a type of traditional knitted hat that is typically worn to provide warmth and comfort in cold weather. The term "toque" originated from the French word "toque," which means a chef's hat. However, in the textile industry, it is commonly used to describe a knitted hat worn by individuals in various professions and for recreational purposes.
A toque is usually made from soft, warm, and insulating materials such as wool, acrylic, cashmere, or a blend of fibers. Its design features a close-fitting crown that covers the head and extends down to cover the ears. The length of the toque can vary, ranging from a short beanie-style hat that sits snugly on the head to a longer version that provides extra coverage for the ears and neck. It may also have a folded brim or a pom-pom attached at the crown for decorative purposes.
The primary function of a toque is to provide thermal insulation and protect the wearer's head and ears from cold temperatures. The tightly knit construction of the hat helps to trap body heat and prevent it from escaping, keeping the wearer warm and comfortable. Toques are commonly worn in winter sports and outdoor activities such as skiing, snowboarding, hiking, and ice skating. They are also popular among individuals in professions that require them to work outdoors in cold climates, such as construction workers, utility workers, and law enforcement personnel.
Toques have become a fashion accessory in addition to their practical use. They come in a wide range of colors, patterns, and styles to suit individual preferences and fashion trends. Many fashion designers and clothing brands incorporate toques into their winter collections, offering both classic and contemporary designs to cater to diverse consumer tastes.
In terms of top users and manufacturers of toques, there are several notable brands and companies in the textile industry that specialize in producing high-quality hats. Some of these include:
Patagonia: Patagonia is a renowned outdoor clothing brand known for its commitment to sustainability and environmental responsibility. They produce a range of winter accessories, including toques, using eco-friendly materials and ethical manufacturing practices.
The North Face: The North Face is a popular brand that offers a wide range of outdoor apparel and accessories. They manufacture toques using advanced technologies and high-performance materials, ensuring durability, warmth, and comfort.
Smartwool: Smartwool is a leading manufacturer of merino wool products, including toques. Merino wool is known for its exceptional warmth, moisture-wicking properties, and softness, making Smartwool toques a favorite among outdoor enthusiasts.
Arc'teryx: Arc'teryx is a Canadian company specializing in high-performance outdoor gear. They design and produce toques using innovative materials and techniques, resulting in hats that provide superior insulation and protection in extreme conditions.
Canada Goose: Canada Goose is a luxury brand famous for its premium down-filled jackets and winter accessories. Their toques are crafted with attention to detail and feature a blend of luxurious materials, providing both style and warmth.
These are just a few examples of companies that excel in manufacturing toques. However, there are numerous other brands and manufacturers worldwide that contribute to the production and popularity of this versatile and essential cold-weather accessory.
The term comes from the Spanish word toca. A toque is a type of hat with a narrow brim or no brim at all. They were popular during the 13th-16th century in Europe, especially in France. One toque that is still common is the toque-blanche, which is the standard chef's hat.
A close fitting, brimless hat.