Recently, you may have seen the term “3D-knit” listed in a product description. More likely than not, it was a shoe — it’s how Nike makes its Flyknit uppers, and Adidas uses it to create Primeknit. Lately though, 3D-knit tech has made its way into other products, with a notable category appearing: baselayers. Patagonia released its 3D-knit Capilene Air baselayers last year, and brands like Helly Hansen and Holden Outerwear plan to launch collections anchored in the innovation for winter 2020. Smartwool is the latest to join in the movement with Intraknit.
Smartwool’s argument for making a 3D-knit baselayer has a common thread — pun intended — with that of other companies: the construction is seamless. Seams are friction points, and getting rid of them makes for a more comfortable next-to-skin layer. Smartwool went beyond that though, harnessing the method to create body-mapped garments with separate zones for increased ventilation or insulation and others for freedom of movement. To start, Smartwool is offering midweight Intraknit tops and bottoms that are available exclusively at REI.
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