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Velcro  

Fun Facts

  • George de Mestral, a Swiss engineer and amateur naturalist, was walking his dog through the woods. When he returned home, he noticed cockleburs stuck to both his pants and his dog.
  • Fascinated, he observed the cockleburs under a microscope. He noticed how the little burs latched with the fibers in his pants. Mestral decided to create a “hook and loop fastener” that would resemble how cockleburs worked. He said it would be as effective a fastener as a zipper.
  • Many people laughed at Mestral, but he persevered. He hired a weaver in France to help him design the fabric.
  • Mestral named his product after the French words “velour” (velvet) and “crochet” (hook).
  • It took a lot of mistakes, but Mestral kept trying. He discovered that when sewn under infrared light, nylon makes the little “burs” he was looking for. In 1956, he got a patent for his invention and started the Velcro company, which makes over 60 million yards of Velcro each year.
  • All this from some curiosity and a walk in the woods.

Vocabulary

  1. Engineer: someone who designs inventions and products to solve problems
  2. Naturalist: someone who observes, explores, and identifies things in the natural world

Questions and Answers

Question: Is Velcro the only brand of “hook and loop” fastener?

Answer: No, other companies have made their own hook and loop fasteners, but no one else can call their product “Velcro.”

Learn More

Watch a video about the history of Velcro.

 

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MLA Style Citation

Declan, Tobin. " Facts for Kids - Who Invented Velcro? ." Easy Science for Kids, Aug 2018. Web. 17 Aug 2018. < http://easyscienceforkids.com/velcro/ >.

APA Style Citation

Tobin, Declan. (2018). Facts for Kids - Who Invented Velcro?. Easy Science for Kids. Retrieved from http://easyscienceforkids.com/velcro/

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