15 December 2014

FEATURE: Winter Warmers #2

Global warming.

It's getting properly chilly, isn't it? No longer can we pretend that winter is 'just around the corner'; no, it's right here in our faces, screaming COLD COLD COLD all freezing day long. Fortunately we've got a few mates who can help; friends with pretty awesome connections in the cold-fighting world. And so we've gathered together another smorgasbord of toasty bits and bobs, sure to keep you warm and jolly until the daffodils pop up.

On Top

Helly Hansen Mountain Knit Jacket

This thick lambswool jacket (or, as your gran would call it, cardigan) is a perfect wintery bit of kit. Great as an everyday wear, it is also think enough and insulating enough to be worn as an outer layer. It features hand pockets, a YKK zip, ribbed cuffs, hem and collar, and woven elbow patches.

We love how versatile the Mountain Knit Jacket is, making it a good thing to have on unpredictable days out when the weather can be surprising and random. Available for both men and women (with only a slight difference in the knitted design), this is must-have winter garment.

£120 (£100 for the women's)

DeLorean Sweatshirt from Tshirtgrill

We got a bit excited when we discovered tshirtgrill.com, filled as it is with hoodies and t-shirts adorned with clever phrases and slogans from our favourite movies. Keen to get a chunky hoodie for inclusion in this feature, we had a massive range to choose from, including those with quotes from The Shining, to others suggesting that Jeremy Clarkson should be the next Prime Minister.

The one we went for though (which is made from a thick and cosy blend of cotton and polyester) features the one and only DeLorean DMC-12, a car which once had a minor role in a film about kissing your mum. Or something. Needless to say being toasty and warm while displaying obscure film knowledge is a double winner for us... and great value as well.



Extremities Hot Bags

Yes, they might sound rude (you got it, right?) but these gloves for hands on extremely cold days and/or adventure sporting, are the absolute mutt's nuts. Like sliding your hands into their own little duvet, the Hot Bags are fingerless mittens with adjustable wrist straps that scrunch up good and small to be packed away in your pockets.

We weren't big fans of mittens before using the Extremities Hot Bags, but since discovering just how snugly our fingers can be while out braving the cold, we'd slip these back on any day. Just don't try to play the guitar while wearing them. Trust us.


Fuse Flap Mittens

If you're still not convinced that mittens are the way forward this winter, how about the best of both worlds? These cut-off gloves from Fuse are great for dong precision work where you need your finger tips while out in the cold, but feature a fold-over flap that transforms them into mittens.

The gloves themselves are much tighter and firmer than most cold-weather gloves, as they are clearly designed for active lifestyles. We found them great for cycling as they freed up our fingers for braking, gears shifts ect. But then once off the bike and walking, the fold-over flap helped to keep our fingers from getting frost bite. A great combo.


Available from http://www.amazon.co.uk


Extremities Mountain Toester Long Socks

Weirdly, we get really excited about socks. In fact we would say it was one of the highlights of being a tech and clothing journalist to know that your socks are just better than everyone else's. That aside, here we have the Royal Highness of Socks, the Mountain Toester from Extremities.

Long, thick and completely insulated, these make wearing wellies and walking boots in the cold an actual pleasure. Mostly made from wool (with nylon and elastane chucked in there to help with flexibility) the Mountain Toester Long Socks feature heavily padded ankle, toe and heel sections to make it feel as if you're walking on clouds.

Oh right: 'Toe'ster. We get it now.


Snugpak Merino Technical Socks

You'd think that sleeping bag designers would be experts in keeping all parts of your body warm, and that is certainly the case with this offering from Snugpak. Their Technical Socks are light and stretchy, yet have a tremendous amount of padding on the underside, making them perfect everyday feet-bags during the winter.

We love how light and comfortable they are to wear, despite that cushioning padding and gentle grip section around the ankle and arch of the foot. Whereas the Extremities were all about the extremeness of the season, these would be your go-to socks for tackling the Boxing Day sales.



Helly Hansen Montreal Chunky Knit Set

Keeping that precious brain warm is a must this winter, especially considering that zombies actually prefer to eat lightly chilled brains: fact. This set from our dear friends in Norway includes a structured knitted beanie hat in merino wool and a pair of similarly constructed mittens.

The beanie is nice and chunky and feels just like your Great Aunt Nora might've made it for you. Both hat and mitts have a homely and soft design to them and are perfect for combining two of the most difficult things to do during winter: stay warm and look good.

Oh, and yes... the bobble can be removed. Just saying.


HAD Winter Fleece

A fun one this, the HAD Winter Fleece is basically several winter warmers in one varied package. Made from polyester and built into a long and stretchy soft tube shape, the HAD can be styled on your noggin as either a scarf, a head band, a hat, a balaclava... and many more.

It comes in more than thirty printed designs and colours, meaning that as garments go, this is massively flexible. We found it was most comfortable loosely draped around the neck to act like a neck warmer, but should we suddenly get the urge to rob a bank, we could pull it over our faces and get... sorry, went off track there.


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