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Inventors’ Stories
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George de Mestral, Velcro Inventor
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George de Mestral, holding a strip of Velcro®


George de Mestral, holding a strip of Velcro®



More Photography:


A dog with burrs stuck to its coat
A dog with burrs stuck to its coat


Pulling burrs from a dog’s coat
Pulling burrs from a dog’s coat


Cockleburrs from the burdock plant
Cockleburrs from the burdock plant









Velcro® Inventor

George De Mestral got the idea for Velcro® from cockleburs caught in his clothes and his dog’s fur.

During a walk in the woods in 1948, Swiss engineer and outdoorsman de Mestral caught hundreds of burrs in his clothes and his dog’s fur. He wondered how they attached themselves so tenaciously.

De Mestral observed the burrs under a microscope. He saw that each one was covered with hooks that looked like a monster’s mouthful of spiked fangs. These hooks grabbed onto anything that had a loop--clothing fiber, animal fur, or human hair. The common burr was a natural “hook and loop fastener.” De Mestral realized he could create a fabric fastener that acted like the burrs, and so the idea of Velcro® was born.

Next: The Work of George de Mestral ›





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