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For those cold weather members: how effective is wearing silk long johns under your suit? Any recommendations or 'gotchas' associated with this practice? One of my concerns is that it will be too hot once indoors.
 

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Layering natural fabrics is usually a great way to ward off the cold. Cotton can be problematic, as it holds moisture, but silk doesn't have that problem so much and is a lot warmer for the weight and thickness than either cotton or wool.

That said, the problem of what to do when going from cold to warm and vice versa is hampered by any layer that can't be easily removed, like undergarments. If one is going to be out in the cold for extended periods, then that is not such a problem. If there are longer periods indoors, especially coupled with some physical activity such as dancing, then it would be better to focus on outerwear that will get you there and then can come off. The legs can withstand more cold if the torso, head, hands, and feet are well protected. Then the coat, scarf, gloves, hat, and overshoes can come off inside by the fire.
 

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...the problem of what to do when going from cold to warm and vice versa is hampered by any layer that can't be easily removed, like undergarments...If there are longer periods indoors, especially coupled with some physical activity such as dancing, then it would be better to focus on outerwear that will get you there and then can come off...
Very true, especially in regions with cold winters and overheated interiors.
Nothing can be done about the former; the latter is an environmental scandal.
The legs can withstand more cold if the torso, head, hands, and feet are well protected. Then the coat, scarf, gloves, hat, and overshoes can come off inside by the fire.
It depends what is meant by "withstand"; this is true with respect to the legs' feeling cold, but the legs have 36% of the body's surface area and will be a big heat drain unless adequately insulated.
 

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I have often found that cotton long-johns present a regular risk of extreme indoor overheaeting, at the occurence of even the slightest physical activity.

Would silk long-johns be likely to overcome this problem?
 

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Silk LJs are much lighter and thinner than cotton so they breathe more. I have a pair of cotton-rayon(i.e. artificial silk) LJs that are much warmer than silk. I guess you should select your material depending on the environment in which you wish to wear them.
 

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Very true, especially in regions with cold winters and overheated interiors.
Nothing can be done about the former; the latter is an environmental scandal.
No it's not, it's an issue of the difficulty in properly controlling the temperature in large buildings.

I don't see why some people need to interject politics into every little thing.
 

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I have a rotation of silks and wear them steadily with suits and slacks from mid-November to around the beginning of trout season (late April).

I might think twice about pairing them with really heavy flannels, but then again I'm not going to wear those if I am going to be inside most of the day.

When it's really cold out I add the tops, but not too often. Those are reserved for actually being outside for extended periods.
 

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I love the silk LJ I have and am in a scandalously heated public building most of the day. When outside they do a very good job keeping me warm.
 

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Winter silks

I have a couple of pairs from Winter Silks that I wear on the days when the wind combines with the cold. They definitely make a difference, and I have never found them to be too hot while I am at the office.
 

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The human body likes a very thin,wet, 98.6 degree microclimate to be comfortable.
Insulation is a very simple 3 base layer system; a thin transpiration layer next to the skin, insulating layer(s)and a outer shell that blocks wind or rain from overwhelming the inner layers.
All materials, products and systems ( hopefully) replicate these 3 elements.
The base layer merely regulates the efficient transpiration of our 98.6 degree thermostat by moving, or retaining body moisture ( aka sweat) while allowing efficient physical movement of the body INCLUDING little movement, when a binding garment will lose insulation.
Of the 4 common base layers; cotton,silk,wool and modern synthetics, silk is the best overall choice.
Cotton is NOT the killer clothing as known among rescue personel. Wearing it above 20 degrees is, when dry cold becomes wet. Yet the RAF developed VENTILE cloth for channel ditching, a tightly woven cotton.Ventile, sadly is vry expensive, deservedly so. Wool , however thin, can, in some instances contribute to overheating. Synthetics ,while the best insulators, are mechanically dangerous in fire, retain body odour and vent poorly.SILK, is lightwieght, a superb traspiration layer,hypoallergetic and-to a suit wearer the best DRAPING choice.
 

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If you need the silk LJ's to get to the office on frigid days and are then uncomfortable in the office, go into the men's room and take them off.
You might be surprised as to how often I do exactly that!

However, it's an uncomfortable practice. Not for the undressing in a public toilet in itself, but the art of concealment of the garment in question after the act.

I usually find I have to take my bag with me to the toilet. Then I feel a little conscious of appearing rather like a lady who's reached her special time of the month.

I wonder if silk long-johns would fold up tightly enough to fit in my pocket?
 
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