For a fabric with its heyday in the distant past, waxed canvas is enjoying a remarkable resurgence. Your nearest hip boutique probably stocks a few bags and jackets made from the stuff. But how does it stand up to use on the boat and in the workshop? I purchased a few yards of DuraWax Heavy Waxed 12-oz duck from Sailrite and found it useful, attractive, and easy to work.DuraWax comes in two grades: light, which is treated with paraffin wax, and heavy, treated with beeswax. Both have the same underlying 12-oz cotton-duck fabric and, in both, the added wax is an integral part of the product, not a superficial coating. According to Sailrite, the light grade is 50 percent paraffin by weight—there’s just as much as cotton. The heavy grade is 54 percent beeswax. Wax contributes water resistance, windproofing, stiffness, and shape memory to the fabric. Both grades are available in ten traditional-looking colors.

Photographs by the author

The sewing kit roll keeps a needle holder, a sewing palm, and a roll of whipping twine with an awl tucked inside. When the top flap is folded down, prior to rolling the kit, its top right corner needs to be angled inward to keep from covering the upper snap.

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