Clothes

Slinging My Parka Around the Garden … Station.

7th April 2016
Cape Heights Brightwood Parka

Approximately 6 months from now my good lady and I will be celebrating our first few hours of marriage in a small café situated on the site of a disused railway station in the small Northumberland village of Langley. I appreciate this might sound we’re having our reception on the set of Cranford, but please just try and run with me here.

We took a trip to the Garden Station (the venues official title) over the weekend and whilst my future wife discussed preparations that I have little interest or input into, I saw this as an opportunity to throw together some kind of rural editorial featuring this Cape Heights Brightwood Parka I recently purchased from the Hip winter sale.

Having bought the parka roughly 7 weeks ago when we were in the midst of an arctic blast, it was with a hint of irony or perhaps stupidity on my part that I decided to wait until arguably the warmest day of the year to date to take these photos. Although in fairness, with an 80/20 polyester/cotton teflon construction you would be sweating your noggin off wearing in this on a cold day.

Cape Heights appear to have followed in the footsteps of many of their nations counterparts with that age old combination of technical detailing meets fashion aesthetic. And, it simply wouldn’t be American outerwear without a triangular shaped snowed-topped peak for a logo. As the saying doesn’t go, if it ain’t broke, copy Penfield.

Nevertheless, the Brightwood shits all over any big coats Penfield have released over recent seasons. I mean for starters there’s far more going on under the bonnet, including a removable Jacket Sling System allowing the wearer to safely throw off the jacket at any time. Although I’m not sure why you would want to sling this thing off and more to the point, why the need for it to be done safely? I’ve slung the odd jacket in my time and never once feared for my wellbeing? Anyway, I’m yet to fully fathom out how the whole sling game works, but to summarise they look a lot like braces and you will never find the need to use them, but they do look quite good and will mostly appeal to any technical outerwear buffs.

Frustratingly, the elasticated slings are fastened to the jacket via nylon hooks, one of which detached itself from the jacket on the day of purchase. This was repaired, but the pressure from elasticated sling just unravelled the stitching again a few days later, which has led me to question why Cape Heights opt for weak-as-piss nylon to attach stretchable elastic to their jackets?

On the plus side, pockets keep cropping up all over the thing, three internal and five external to be exact and the artificial fur hood is massive, drawcord adjustable and proper warm.

The Brightwood comes in three colours; red, navy and this black version and at time of writing there were still a few left in the Hip sale.

Pros:

  • It looks ace inside and out + will keep out the elements.
  • A great selection of utility pockets.
  • Value for money at £475 original, £275 at sale price.

Cons:

  • Big questions marks over the build quality of the elasticated sling system.

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