Our Down

Down is a tremendous insulator - you simply cannot get a better insulator that packs down well, keeps the weight low, and has excellent longevity. Whether used in garments, sleeping bags, or bedding, down excels at keeping you warm. It is the core of our production.

We are very proud of the down we use, and we want you to see why. Take a look at this video created when we committed to using 100% Responsible Down Standard certified down.

The Responsible Down Standard

Committing to using RDS certified down means that the whole story of the down we source is monitored by the independent and highly respected Textile Exchange. With the rigid standards of the RDS, you can be confident that the down in your Feathered Friends product is not only the highest quality available, but was also ethically sourced from humanely treated geese.

Each phase of down sourcing is monitored and audited every year. Paired with tracing capabilities, the origins of down have never been more transparent.

We began using RDS certified down in March 2015, and we now fill all Feathered Friends products with down certified under the Responsible Down Standard.

Traceability | trackmydown.com

All of the down that we source is traceable - in addition to all the measurable details that make our down great, we know where it comes from.

All Feathered Friends products made after Spring 2015 will include an additional tag that has the down batch number on it. With trackmydown.com - powered by Allied Feather & Down - you can see all of details of the down inside, including:

Geographical Origin
Third Party Testing Results
bluesign® certification
Responsible Down Standard (RDS) certification (if applicable)

Have a batch code?
Track Your Down Here

Why Down Keeps You Warm

The structure of down is phenomenal. A single plume of down consists of ultra-fine filaments with microscopic nodes radiating from its center. Although a single plume weighs next to nothing, it creates an intricate, three-dimensional network of micro air pockets. As these plumes fluff out and combine with more down plumes, a thicker barrier of millions upon millions of tiny air pockets are created. Consequently, a non-conductive barrier of air is formed, keeping warmth where you need it - with you.

Down Plume - In Detail

What keeps you warm: The finer structure of a single down plume

Fill Power

One of the strongest indicators of the quality of down is its fill power, which is a standardized measurement of loft that down provides.

Fill power measures the volume of one ounce of down. It is measured by the following process: one ounce (28.35 grams) of down is placed in a graduated cylinder. A 68.4 gram weighted disk is placed on top of the down. Once the disk settles, the compressed volume, measured in cubic inches, is the fill power. So 700 fill power down has a volume of 700 cubic inches per ounce of down, 850 fill power down is 850 cubic inches per ounce of down, and 900 fill power down is 900 cubic inches per ounce of down.

Not only is fill power a decent indicator of down quality, it becomes especially important in weight-conscious activities, such as mountaineering and backpacking. Since higher fill power down provides more volume of insulation per ounce, you need less of it to insulate. For items with a lot of down insulation, this could mean saving considerable weight, with the added benefit of better compression for a smaller packing size.

Fill Weight

Fill weight is the physical weight of down used for a product. We measure the fill weight in ounces (or grams for the rest of the world). For instance, a jacket may have a fill weight of 9 ounces. That means there are 9 ounces of down inside - regardless of what fill power the down is. Knowing both the fill weight and fill power gives you a pretty solid baseline to compare products, because one of those numbers on its own doesn't give you enough information. A jacket with 9 ounces of 850 fill power down will be substantially warmer than a jacket with 9 ounces of 600 fill power down.

Down FAQ

Are down and feathers the same thing?

Even though geese have down plumes and feathers, they are not the same thing. Down plumes are extremely light, three-dimensional structures that trap heat. They also loft up, are very resilient to compression, and do not contain a quill shaft. Feathers, on the other hand, are two-dimensional in shape, and are based on a tubular quill shaft. While feathers do offer a bit of insulation, the weight-to-warmth ratio is nowhere near as high as a down plume.

Are products with the same fill power down equivalent?

Fill power is a great metric for comparing down products, but the fill power number alone cannot tell the full story. Another major factor is fill weight, which is the actual physical amount of down, by weight, that is used in a product. Additionally, the full composition of the down is important. Namely, what percentage of the down contains down plumage, also known as "down cluster," in relation to other elements, such as feather and quill? Down that contains high percentages of feather and other miscellaneous elements tends to be of lower quality.

Does everything you make use down certified by the Responsible Down Standard?

Yes! As of March 2015, we fill all Feathered Friends products with down certified under the Responsible Down Standard.

Do you blend your down with feathers?

No. We want our down to be as close to 100% down as possible. Our down routinely tests well over 90% down cluster, which is brilliant. So we never blend or dilute our down - we keep our down the way it is when we receive it.

Is your down hyopallergenic?

Yes it is. All of the down we use - across all fill powers - is certified hypoallergenic.

Looking for information about the fabrics we use? Learn about our Fabrics on our Fabric Information Page

Still have questions about our down? Feel free to Contact Us at our Seattle store at (206) 292-2210 or send us an email to customerservice@featheredfriends.com for more information