Each Article is first cut then sewn by our team of machinists before it is passed to one of our experienced coat-makers. Interior seams and pockets are glued and taped by hand; a process called 'smearing' before being rolled flat using a hardened steel hand roller then finished with a rubber cleaning wheel tool.
All our Vulcanised Articles are handmade exclusively in rubber bonded (vulcanised), natural cloths such as 100% cotton, wool or silk. Still produced at the original Victorian mill in England, two-layers of cloth are bonded with a layer of rubber in-between creating an impenetrable barrier ensuring the finished cloth is 100% waterproof.
Hancock Traveling Articles are machined at our factory using our trademark V-Quilt pattern in lightweight nylons, wools and silks. Designed to be layered underneath our Vulcanised Articles in winter or worn as a single layer in warmer weather.
MAKING A HANCOCK VULCANISED ARTICLE
Step 1: Shears
Tailors shears are used to cut by hand our specially made rubber bonded (vulcanised) cloth; a process patented by Thomas Hancock in 1843. They give great accuracy in pattern and garment cutting. The shears are used in all trim and detailed work on our Articles.
Step 2: Glue
Our specially formulated rubber solution that we use to glue together and waterproof all seams guarantees complete production from the harshest of weather. Made from natural rubber with a few secret ingredients and to this day is still made in Manchester, England by the great grandson of the founder.
Step 3: By Hand
The index finger is the most important tool used in the hand making of our Hancock Vulcanised Articles. The skills required take 3 years to learn and ensure that the correct amount of rubber solution is loaded onto the finger for spreading (a process known as smearing) of all seams and hem lines.
Step 4: Tape
Vulcanised cotton tape is applied by hand, over the glued interior seam to guarantee a fully-waterproof garment. This technique is difficult enough to master for at sections of the garment such as sides, shoulders etc. pieces such as armholes require the aid of a wooden domed tailors block for support underneath the garment.
Step 5: Finish
These traditional tools are used to finish the garment. The roller is used by the coat maker to apply pressure along the interior taped seam to ensure the tape is firmly bonded to the glue. The cleaner is used to remove any excess glue that may have spread outside of the tape; producing a clean finish to the interior of the garment.