How can I stop my down parka from shedding?

The padding of a parka jacket or coat is sometimes created from duck or goose feathers. This type of filling is is lightweight, warm, breathable and compressible (and recovers well from compression) according to Gear-Zone. One of the disadvantages is that down feathers tend to shed, which can be frustrating for the wearer who does not want them on their clothing.

Avoid pulling feathers

If you see some feathers sticking through the outer fabric, avoid the temptation to pull. When down clumps, it can feel like a jagged edge protruding through the parka; however, pulling will usually cause another feather to form a spike. Try to push the feather back into the jacket.

Check for tears

Inspect the lining material for any rips or tears. Carefully feel around the seams, openings and buttonholes in a good light. Even broken stitches can cause feathers to escape. Sew up any broken stitches or rips and check regularly. Avoid placing sharp objects such as keys or pens in the pockets.


Storing the jacket in a compressed state may cause feathers to clump and therefore increase the likelihood of down shedding. Always store on a hanger and shake loosely before wearing again to remove any stray feathers.

Additional lining

If the down is shedding in one particular area such as the armpits, sew some fabric to create a reinforced lining. If the jacket is shedding all over, sew a lining in the entire inside of the garment. Measure the interior of the parka to create a template, cut out fabric and sew in place. If you do not possess good sewing skills, consider taking the parka to a tailor.

Weather conditions

Damp or wet weather may cause the down of the parka to clump together and dry in lumps. Placing the parka in a tumble-dryer will plump and soften the feathers making it more difficult for them to escape. After drying, shake the parka gently to ensure even distribution of the feathers.

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About the Author

Jules Halliday is a writer, coach and public speaker with more than 20 years experience of recruitment, training and management in a variety of sectors. Passionate about career and personal development, Halliday is director of TMS Coaching Ltd and founder of All UK Jobsites.