Snuggle Up - Winter's Still Around!

WOW, there are some stunning products out on the market this winter, all designed to keep you warm and cosy, from head to foot and from inside out. Equine's very spoiled panel members have thoroughly tested some supreme pieces of footwear, stunning items of outer wear and an array of snuggle-into clothing. Here's just a taster of a few fabulous ideas - you'll find all 30 of them in the December issue of Equine. Order a copy from the secure online store at www.theequinestore.co.uk

 
VERY HIGHLY RECOMMENDED
Muck Boots – Women’s Pacy II Boots
The company says: Style and comfort go hand in hand with these all-condition riding boots. They are insulated with the company’s signature neoprene shaft, and feature a cosy fleece lining for extra warmth and comfort. The slim profile, heel spur and buckle detailing add style as well as function to these riding boots so you'll look stylish whatever the weather throws at you. Sizes: 3-9. RRP: £120.00 www.muckbootcompany.co.uk
Our tester, Sally Burns, says: These boots are seriously fantastic. They have a thick sole and good grips have been great when traipsing through thick mud stayed secure on my feet.  The inside of the boots are very soft and comfortable and kept my feet warm, plus they are a good fit round your calves. I find myself wearing them around the yard most of the day and they have never felt heavy on my feet. When washed they’ve cleaned up well. 
 
 
VERY HIGHLY RECOMMENDED
Musto – Women’s Blair Gore-Tex® Boots
The company says: Engineered for a slimmer fit and tailored to the leg for added comfort and a rider-friendly design. Fully waterproof and breathable performance, plus the Musto outsole with OUTGRIP which delivers superior stability over mud and rocks. Overlaid panels, with rolled edging aid durability, prolonging the life of the boot. Styled gold stitching links the company’s Royal Warrants and antique brass trims together for a premium finish. Sizes: 4-8 (with half sizes). RRP: £350.00. www.musto.com
Our tester, Barbara Clarkson, says:  These boots are beautiful to look at and fabulous to wear.  They are very light weight, but well made from quality dark brown suede and have a little red flash on the sole which makes them just a little bit different.  They come into their own in wet weather as they are also warm and waterproof which has been extremely useful recently.  Despite coping well in inclement weather, the suede dries out well and brushes up like new. They are true to size and the foot shape is very supportive and fairly snug although now that I've been wearing them for several weeks the leather has given a little and is now more flexible despite the ruggedness of the tread on the soles. This is a great plus point as other similarly designed boots I have are much less comfortable. These boots are also long in the leg which is a bonus for a tall person like me. The only improvement to them would be to have a slimmer fit in the leg around the calf muscle as they are too generous there.  It's a shame because these particular boots are so very elegant otherwise.  That aside, they are my new favourite boots! 



HIGHLY RECOMMENDED
Horseware – Rambo Original Long Turnout Boot
The company says: Versatile everyday yard boots made from tough, durable, ballistic green nylon with soft leather. Warm, waterproof lining. Hard wearing with extra grip sole. Front zip closure and button fastening. Sizes; 4(36) – 11(45). RRP: £129.95 - £134.95. www.horseware.com
Our tester, Maria Phillips, says: These lovely boots are designed with country pursuits in mind. Fully waterproof, they are made from a combination of leather and waterproof fabric and can be used as a riding or walking boot. The inner fabric is suede so they kept my feet very toasty. The rubber sole has a good tread without being too bulky and the waterproof fabric around the ankle allowed flexibility. I particularly liked the front zip, similar to the design of many riding boots, as it helped pulling the boots on and off with ease and the zip cover at the top stopped the zip from catching. I cleaned the boots simply with a hose avoiding spraying the zip area. I found that they were slightly snug around the legs and would possibly be more suited to someone with a slim calf if an extra pair of socks is required. However, they are very smart, durable and very practical and for that reason I would suggest that, with Christmas in mind they would make a lovely present.



VERY HIGHLY RECOMMENDED
Zamberlan – Unisex Stivale Canada Zipped Boots
The company says: High boot in rubber doubled with neoprene laminated to rubber. Covered YKK zipper with thermo-sealed bellow. Rand and instep with knurled rubber for better foot protection. The double density rubber outsole, Sherwood Vibram, ensures stability, cushioning and great grip also on wet ground. Elastic back collar for easier stride. Sizes: 7 (40) – 14 (47). RRP: £165.00. www.zamberlan.com
Our tester, John Collier, says: I’ve been like a pig in muck wearing these wellies. I can imagine Q issuing a pair to James Bond, suave and sophisticated, just the footwear for the casino. But seriously, these are warm, waterproof, amazingly good looking wellington boots, not out of place at Burghley or the local shoot. Smart enough to wear in church. Easy to get on and off with a zip gusset, very chunky zip, that is doable with gloves on. The boots are well shod with a Vibram sole, and there are elasticated gussets behind the knee for comfort. These really are the iPhone X of the wellie world I cannot recommend them highly enough. And they look a million dollars.



HIGHLY RECOMMENDED
Horseware – Women’s Keela Base Layer
The company says: A practically fabulous, functional base layer ideal for multi-sport activities. Made using 95% polyester/5% spandex, antibacterial and wicking fabric.
Pewter or Berry. Sizes: XXS-XXL. RRP: £18.95. www.horseware.com
Our tester, Terri Graham, says: Super, silky soft to wear and keeps you comfortable and warm without allowing moisture to build up. It is the most comfortable material to wear, no bulk or restrictive seams. Washes and dries well, keeps its shape. One of those go-to items of clothing that seems to fit the bill for when you’re outside, whether riding, teaching or just at a show. A definite addition to the winter wardrobe. 
 
 
 


VERY HIGHLY RECOMMENDED
Equisafety – Aspey Jacket
The company says: 100% waterproof, lightweight, breathable fabric with taped seams, which when combined with its high performance design, undoubtedly makes this jacket the best on the market. Exclusive pull down warning triangle, which fastens at the sides of the jacket, that can be rolled back into the collar when not needed. Inside zipped pocket and mobile phone pocket, 360° of reflection and fluorescent properties, strong two-way front zip and two large, hidden pockets. Fully washable on a 30° wash. NOTE: This jacket has been re-vamped and is now called the Inverno and fully reversible with black quilt interior. Orange, Yellow, Pink. Sizes: XS-XXXL. RRP: £99.99.
Our tester, Susan Lacey, says: I really love this jacket. It has a great shape about it and is nice and warm. Very practical to wear on the yard for general duties and of course, fantastic to ride out in making sure that you can clearly be seen with the bright colour and then the reflective strips. Plenty of pockets which are always handy. Size wise it is generous but that allows for layers should you need them. All-round this is a great jacket with the added peace of mind of the safety aspect.


VERY HIGHLY RECOMMENDED
SSG Gloves - 10 Below Winter Riding Glove
The company says: Engineered using the company’s digital fabric on the palm, combining feel and grip with breathability and durability. The new synthetic leather backing improves the waterproofing and flexibility. There is a Thinsulate lining and inside that, the SSG exclusive polar fleece, which in this updated glove is treated with ‘Thermal feelings’ material, ‘Wintersun’ which increases the glove warmth. These gloves are as good as gets offering four layers of warmth enough to combat the coldest weather whilst retaining the feel and control that every rider needs. Black. Sizes: 5-13. RRP: £39.99. For stockists visit: www.mackey.ie
Our tester, Ben Hobday, says: These really are amazing gloves. Over the past couple of months I don’t think there’s a day when I haven’t worn them. I’ve used them while riding, schooling, hunting and around the yard. They are thick enough to keep your hands warm, but not too thick that you can’t ride out in them and they’re waterproof. There is a stretch material that fits around the wrists which keeps the gloves in place and stops wind or dirt going down inside. One great feature is that they come with a stretchy-type string with a loop attached to the gloves that you put around your wrist. This is such a simple idea, but one of those that you wonder how you’ve managed without it. It means that if you have to take off a glove, or gloves, to use your phone, open a gate or sort tack the gloves stay in place and they don’t get lost. I have worn them in all weathers and they have been very durable. I will be buying more! 



HIGHLY RECOMMENDED
Horseware – Woman’s Eve Padded Jacket
The company says: A flattering fit makes this on trend padded jacket fashionable and practical. Cosy lined zip pockets and inside zipped chest pockets. Water repellent ripstop fabric. Reflective crest. Two way zip. Berry or Pewter. Sizes: XXS-XXL. RRP: £57.95. www.horseware.com
Our tester, Caroline Mosley, says: I took this jacket on holiday with me as it was packable enough to fit in a small rucksack when walking in Yosemite! I also used it when working in the yard and I have to say it’s very comfortable. I thought it was going to be too short for me when it first arrived (I have a long body) and I’m pleased to say it isn’t. The zip pockets are large enough to hold my iPhone 7 without it being a squeeze, and as well as the two outside pockets it had an internal pocket – also with zip closure so plenty of room to hold phones, gloves, polos etc. It was a good fit for me so I would say the size matches what it says.  It has a cotton lined neck collar which is nice as it doesn’t feel cold to touch. The polyester fill is toasty warm, and the outer layer is showerproof so very useful to have for autumn/winter.  This company, as always, makes really good products and this is ideal.



VERY HIGHLY RECOMMENDED
HKM Sports – Women’s Lauria Garrelli Scotland Quilted Jacket
The company says: Wonderfully styled and warm quilted jacket. Tailored fit, two front pockets and a hood. Light weight but highly insulted to give that extra warmth in the winter but not hand heavy. Great looking addition that will be a must this year. Other coordinate products available in the collection. Deep Blue or Deep Wine. Sizes: XS-XXL. RRP: £71.95. www.hkm-sports.com
Our tester, Caroline Powell, says: I have never tried any items from this range and when my jacket arrived I thought it was just going to be one of those garments that you wore for a while and then it went in to the 'pile' of jackets that accumulate over time....but not this one, I find myself drawn to it every time I go out the door. The jacket has a nylon/polyester outer with a cotton wool filling and it does make the jacket extremely light and comfortable to wear. Because it is breathable it makes the jacket the perfect layer for the chilly mornings and I find I still have it on the majority of the day. I love how the zip goes all the way around the cotton hood so every day you can adjust the snug seal around your neck no matter what you are wearing underneath. Very stylish with riding attire and the tailored fit of the jacket means it is chic enough to cross over to everyday life. It has survived the washer and dryer test and it still looks as smart as the day as it arrived.


This article first appeared in the December 2017 issue of Equine magazine. To subscribe to Equine, visit the secure online store at www.theequinestore.co.uk