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Tailored Winter Jackets

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    Tailored Winter Jackets

    Who has a winter jacket they love?

    Being smaller framed and short, I feel like I spend most of winter looking like the Michellin man. I'd love to find a medium to heavy weight jacket that has good structure and a flattering cut without too much bulk. In a perfect world, I'd prefer something with a synthetic filling as a lot of down/feather harvesting is pretty problematic.

    If you want something specifically for riding I would check out Asmar Equestrian. They make some great vests and jackets and they have zippers that allow it to open up and fan out so it doesn't poof or ride up in the saddle. I have a vest by them that I wear pretty much daily in the winter (the Milton vest which I think they discontinued?). I'm also petite and so I especially appreciate that zipper feature, as otherwise things usually ride up on me and i don't like short jackets.


      I usually just stick with the good outdoor brands (North Face, Colombia, Helly Hansen), they're pretty good at designing warm and breathable jackets. I generally layer a puffer vest over a rain coat or soft shell so I can take the vest off if I get too hot. On the really cold days I switch to a puffer jacket, the ones with the tighter quilting seem to give a more tailored appearance.

      Having a thicker jacket for grooming and switching to a thinner jacket for riding can be a good option too. By the time you get a fitted jacket in a size that you can layer or fit a warm sweater under, it doesn't really look fitted anymore.


        A friend had a Columbia Omni Heat jacket with a removable liner that she got from her equestrian team and it looked great and she raved about the warmth.


          The Asmar All Weather Rider is *really* gorgeous. I actually spent the first few months after I got it wearing it as a fashion jacket before I accepted the inevitable and got it smelly. It's not quite as warm as your puffy jackets but the skirt actually makes a big difference in channeling heat up from your horse up into the jacket and keeping your legs warm in breeches. It's also easy to put a puffy jacket on over it.

          I've worn mine every winter for 4 or 5 years now... so I have some things that I'd like different. But obviously not serious things since I've worn it for so long. Not sure if any of these have been improved in newer versions: 1) The price. I got mine on a weird sale from a reseller. It was still expensive. 2) The hood isn't helmet's removable, but I'd like a really helmet friendly hood to keep rain from coming down the back of your neck. I took my hood off years ago and I don't even know where it is at this point. I'd also like the hood to roll up into the collar instead of just being removable (see: taking it off and losing it). 3) I'd like the skirt a few (4+) inches longer... it's a really gorgeous length, but I get a strip of wet between the bottom of the skirt and the top of my boots. I have short legs and a long torso, so that's probably part of it. 4) The opening on the breast pocket is *slightly* small for my phone, I have a large phone in a slim case. If I squeeze my phone in there's plenty of room in the pocket, and the other pockets are a good size, so even a slight increase on the pocket zipper length would be perfect. 5) I would loooove a small mantle/cape just over the shoulders to provide an extra layer of rain protection on the shoulder seams, and a small vent hidden under the mantle. The seam sealed version probably doesn't have problems with the shoulder seams but I think a mantle would fit with the style of the jacket and also you could have that hidden vent... 6) I got the yellow (see weird sale) and it's really beautiful, but the light color does show slobber stains. I think darker colors would be fine.


            Originally posted by NeedsAdvil View Post
            A friend had a Columbia Omni Heat jacket with a removable liner that she got from her equestrian team and it looked great and she raved about the warmth.
            Columbia makes the warmest fleece anywhere around. I used to be a big fan of The North Face but Columbia beats them hands down. Better fit and longer arms, too.


              I guess it depends on where you are and what your activity level is.

              Layers of breathable items are superior and nothing beats the clothes designed for hiking. Years of experience with weather-proof and breathable technical fabrics is key

              silk tee shirt or cami base layer, technical fabric mock or turtle neck, wool sweater, fitted and polar fleece vest should see most people well equipped. A long sleeve polar fleece will likely be needed in harsher climates.

              I agree with the Columbia, North Face and REI lines for their years of actually creating the concept of breathable, wicking, cold weather athletic gear.

              If I were serious about outdoor gear for winter, this would be my starting place. Get the base there, if you want to finish with a more stylish vest from an equestrian wear line, you can
              -- * > hoopoe
              Procrastinate NOW
              Introverted Since 1957


                Original Poster

                Thanks for the brands and leads. It’s quite mild here relative to many areas of the country. However, tolerance to temperature is often relative to what you encounter! I’m uncomfortable without a light jacket below 60, while a friend visiting from Chicago would be ready to pull out shorts and a t shirt.

                In the winter, typical evening riding temperatures range from high 30s to high 40s. My core warms up quickly and after I warm up a long sleeve heat guard turtleneck or that plus a light vest is all I need. The primary role of the jacket is something that is streamline enough for grooming and general barn chores but warm enough that I’m not a popsicle. If someone decides to be chatty and I spend ten minutes standing, my current jacket leaves me shivering. Perhaps that’s inevitable if I don’t want to look like a marshmallow?

                I think looking toward outdoor companies may get me more bang for my buck. I’ve started a short list based off of some of the brands suggested. If anyone else has an outdoor brand they like, I’m all about that research life. Water resistant is nice but if it’s really pouring I’ve got a larger heavy duty shell a streamline jacket should fit under.

                any brands or specific jackets to avoid?


                  if you’re okay with down I would suggest Northface. Mine is the perfect cut, it’s tailored but warm and easy to get layers under. The synthetic coats are also nice but much different. Mine is much thinner and is quite warm for the weight but it is not warm enough to be a true winter jacket. It’s also cut quite a bit boxier.


                    Check out Patagonia's down sweater, its just what you are looking for. Its feather light and not bulky but warm, I wore it with either a turtleneck or a thin sweater underneath it. I threw my big heavy barn coat over it for grooming and tacking up, by the time I was ready to mount I took off my barn coat and rode in the down sweater, and depending on the temperature I often removed that as well once my warmup was complete.