The Flicker Family History

Flicker in action in North Cascades

They are finally here: a wide version of our bestselling Flicker Quilt sleeping bag, AND a kids edition!

Take a look at them on our website!

Here is a little history on how the Flicker family of bags came to be.

Two years ago, we launched the Flicker series of down quilt sleeping bags. They quickly became favorites of our staff and adventurers of all types searching for a light bag that could meet a wide variety of needs.

The Flicker was a long time in the making. Our designers are always exploring ways to not only make traditional bags even better but also to create new designs. Their work has resulted in a wide range of bags, from the Penguin and Condor sleep systems to expedition bags for the coldest climates and the innovative and unusual Spoonbill. The quilt-style bag was an area of increased interest for outdoor enthusiasts looking for lightweight but adaptable insulation, so we began experimenting with designs that maximized versatility in a unique and effective way.

At first, our designer spent over a year experimenting (a luxury of being a small company) off-and-on with the classical quilt design which had no zipper. In warm weather this design is perfect, because it is light and provides just enough insulation while not restricting movement. In cold weather, however, the open quilt is not ideal because every movement results in a gap between quilt and pad that steals heat and lets cold air in. He explored ways to attach this traditional design to the pad, but none of the approaches panned out.

The breakthrough happened when our designer accidentally got stuck with a quilt during a particularly cold night. To keep warm, he ditched the pad attachment straps and simply tucked the bag beneath him. While this approach meant he was stuck on his back all night, it occurred to him that adding a few extra inches to the quilt would allow it to zip, which would drastically improve the quilt’s warmth and allow him to move around.

The next morning he returned to the factory and built the first flicker prototype. From the beginning the goal of the Flicker was to save weight while maximizing versatility. This philosophy led to the design refinements that characterize the Flicker of today; a center zipper instead of an open quilt, and a cinch around the feet rather than a clunky fixed footbox.

Throughout the exploration phase, our designer was also guided by a desire to balance weight with usability. The Flicker occupies the sweet spot discovered during the design process; the fabrics are light but durable, the design allows for many uses, and the zipper and cinch increase comfort and warmth without adding too many grams.

Now, we added two new quilts to the Flicker Family; a wide quilt and a kids version. These new adaptations of a favorite design are the result of feedback from those who loved the original Flicker and a continuation of the creative and thoughtful design process that is at the heart of all Feathered Friends products.