We started Iffley Road in 2013 because we realized how uninspiring most running kit was. Gaudy colours, shiny material, either skin-tight or hopelessly baggy. If your own kit makes your heart sink every time you put it on, you’ll know exactly what we mean.
We wanted to create something completely different. Running gear that looked sharp and felt wonderful to wear, but didn’t compromise on technical performance.
Scratchy, sweaty and shiny were out; soft, subtle and stylish were in.
Drirelease - Imagine a fabric that feels like soft cotton, but is highly technical
We spent over a year preparing to launch Iffley Road, during which time we were also training for an Ironman. We mention this not out of a desire to boast, but because it enabled us to test our prototypes thoroughly on our long training runs.
Potential fabrics had to be highly wicking, extremely comfy and also look good. Our fabric search took almost as long as our training, as we scoured the fabric shows for the right supplier before eventually developing our own bespoke blend of drirelease at a specialist Portuguese mill.
Because fabrics made with drirelease technology are not treated with chemicals of any kind, performance is permanent. It will not “wash out” over time. The great thing about drirelease fabrics is the patented combination of synthetic hydrophobic fibers and natural hydrophilic fibers that allow the fabric to manage moisture naturally, dramatically improving how sweat is wicked from the skin and released into the air.
In our case we have chosen a blend of 85% performance polyester and 15% cotton. This not only wicks sweat really quickly but also dries four times faster than cotton.
Comfort and looks
The mix of fibers and the way our drirelease is woven make for a super soft, cotton like feel. To further avoid the risk of chafing we minimize the use of panels in the construction of our tops and use a flat over lock stitch on all internal seams.
We use a piqué construction on all our tops. Piqué is a particular way of weaving, developed originally in the Lancashire cotton industry, which gives our tops a pleasing old school look. It has functional benefits too as piqué cloth is naturally well ventilated and holds up well wash after wash.
Our drirelease tops looks sharp and feel wonderful to wear, but without compromising on technical performance.