Feathers with stems are leaf-shaped structure of fibers. Based on where it grows, the length varies from 2~10 centimeters. Feathers of 8 centimeters or longer are usually used for feed powder and the badminton. Feathers of 2~6 centimeters are used as pillow's filling material due to their elasticity and compressive resistance. Feather pillows are much more comfortable than any other filling materials.
Down is a spherical structure of fibers under the calamus that cling and grow onto muscles in the abdomen and hollow under the wing. It is chiefly for maintaining a warm body and radiating. DOWN is only 8-10% of the plumage of a goose or duck. It is a rare and natural warmth keeping material. The densely covered thousands of tiny air holes on the spherical structure absorb human body heat, cut off outside cold air to provide the best protection against the cold. Feathers are light, gentle and with good elasticity. Among natural materials, we may say feathers are the most ideal filling material for clothing and quilting.
Down is from the belly and wing-pits of duck or goose,
the weight is about 8-12% of the whole weight of down & feather.
Generally, DOWN quality differs because of different climatic conditions under which the geese or ducks grow. For example, under cold climate, the ducks and geese grows naturally large and dense soft under plumage to resist the cold. On the contrary, in the tropics, the soft under plumage will be small and sparse as it is chiefly for keeping warmth and dispersing body heat. When we are buying a feather product, we usually do not know where the feathers originate only if it is marked in order to highlight the its preciousness.
For example, at present, goose DOWN coming from places such as Poland, Hungary and Siberia is the main material for premium goose DOWN duvet. It is usually attached with a certificate of origin. An exceptionally good duvet filled with DOWN from the extremely scarce EIDER in North Pole may cost as high as NT$300,000 each.
When we are purchasing a DOWN product, basically we can look from the proportion of feathers for a better understanding. The proportion refers to the percentage of DOWN and feathers included. A higher proportion of DOWN means a better quality. Depending on the country's standard, the proportion of DOWN ranges from 100% to 50%. For example, the indication of 80/20 refers to 80% of DOWN and 10% of feather. The clothes or quilts that contain a higher percentage of DOWN will not have the feathers to run out of the slit, and are better in conserving warmth.