Mackintosh Definition - Definition of Jackets for the Apparel Industry presented by Apparel Search
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A Mackintosh is a form of waterproof raincoat, first sold in 1824, made out of rubberized fabric. The Mackintosh is named after its Scottish inventor Charles Macintosh: note the added letter 'k' in the name of the garment.
Although the Mackintosh style of coat has become generic, a genuine Mackintosh coat should be made from rubberised or rubber laminated material.
As well as their practical use as a rainproof garment, Mackintoshes feature in a peculiarly British form of rubber fetishism.
Charles Macintosh patented his invention for waterproof cloth in 1823 and the first Mackintosh coats were made in the family's textile factory, Chas Macintosh and Co. of Glasgow. But in 1830 the company merged with the clothing company of Thomas Hancock in Manchester. Hancock had also been experimenting with rubber coated fabrics since 1819.
Early coats had problems with smell and a tendency to melt in hot weather, but Hancock further improved their waterproof fabrics, patenting a method for vulcanising rubber in 1843, which solved many of the problems.
Throughout the 19th and 20th century, the company continued to make waterproof clothing and by the end of the 20th century was called Traditional Weatherwear Ltd, with a factory based in Cumbernauld near Glasgow. In recent years the company has been keen to establish the traditional rubberised Mackintosh coat as an upmarket brand in its own right. As a result they have collaborated with leading fashion houses such as Gucci, Herm's, Louis Vuitton and Liberty. The coats have become particularly popular with Japanese women and the company won a Queen's Awards for Enterprise in 2000 for it success in international trade.
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