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Sunday, December 27, 2009

Review: Scottevest Pack Windbreaker

Now that the presents are open, it’s time to figure out how to carry those new gadgets! Return the loser gifts and get what you really wanted.

I’m not a huge techie, but I do appreciate something that lets me hold my cell phone and iPod, along with other important mommy supplies (like keys, water, glasses, tissues, candy, Chapstick and anything else I carry with me when I don’t bring my purse).

Scottevest sent me a Pack Windbreaker to review. It’s part of their Technology Enabled Clothing (TEC) line (more on that later). Like other windbreakers, this one has a hood that rolls up under the back collar, and it folds up into a little self-contained pouch that you can clip onto your backpack or rope into your belt. My backpacking days are over (okay I only had one backpacking trip ever), but I still take day hikes when the kids don’t complain too much.

What makes the jacket unique is that it has a LOT of pockets. 17 to be exact (though I haven't found them all yet). See a funky x-ray view here. It even has two little Velcro pen-holders. I feel a bit like 007 wearing this – each specialized pocket has some distinct purpose. One pocket has a stretchy thing with a roach clip on one end. It’s clamped to a glasses cleaning cloth. That’s in the glasses pocket.

Fortunately, each pocket held a little card describing what it’s for. I feel a bit like an idiot actually needing instructions for a windbreaker, but so be it. On most of the interior pockets, there’s a little tag sewn in showing the function, like a pair of glasses, an MP3 player, or a cell phone.

On the inside of the right and left sides are see-through plastic windows for the MP3 player and cell phone respectively. The jacket has a wire-management system so you can have your iPod wires nestled into the jacket so they don’t get tripped up while you’re wearing it. The website has wiring instructions, which is good because I’m not sure I would figure it out on my own. Like I said, I’m not a techie.

The pockets where your hands go are deep. And one even has an elastic strap to keep your water bottle upright. Which is good because some of mine leak.

Scottevest claims the pockets are “no bulge” however when I put a water bottle in mine, it understandably did not sit flat on me. And the phone/MP3 player basically sits over my female chest anatomy. So an uneven bulge there too. If a flat-chested man wore it, I suppose those chest pockets would look pretty flat.

And considering the jacket is only offered in men's sizes, that's probably why. The jacket sells for $75 on their website.

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