Tuesday, November 01, 2016

Gear Closet: The Cubed Travel Jacket from Clothing Arts

Finding just the right clothing to keep us comfortable in the outdoors can be a real challenge at times. We need garments that consistently perform at a high level, providing protection from the elements, while still managing to feel good when worn. It doesn't hurt if those articles of clothing happen to look good too, allowing us to seamlessly transition from the town to trial and back again. With that in mind, the outdoor industry has invested a lot of time and effort into developing the best products for their customers, giving us a lot of options for out adventurous pursuits.

These same sentiments have been sweeping through the travel industry over the past few years as well, and as a result we're seeing good looking gear made for frequent travelers that also incorporate the latest technical fabrics. This allows those products to also perform at a high level, while delivering all of the functionality that is unique to travelers too. That is exactly what you get from the Cubed Travel Jacket from Clothing Arts, a stylish jacket designed specifically with the needs of travelers in mind, with more than a few features that you didn't even realize you needed until now.

For those not familiar with Clothing Arts, the company makes a line of apparel to keep travelers safe and comfortable no matter where they go. For instance, the Pick Pocket Proof Pants are a must have for any adventure traveler, while the Travel Shirt features classic good looks that makes it feel right at home in any environment. But the Cubed Travel Jacket is the company's first attempt at making outerwear, and the designers behind it have clearly put a lot of thought into what they wanted to deliver. The result is a jacket that not only looks good, but offers Clothing Arts' trademark security features too.

Made from eVent's DVStorm fabrics, the Cubed Jacket is both water and wind proof, without sacrificing breathability. Those fabrics, when paired with taped seams, help to keep all but the worst weather conditions at bay. In fact, I took this jacket with me to Spain a few weeks back, where we faced regular rain showers and the occasional gusty day. But, this jacket performed admirably in all weather conditions, keeping me comfortable and dry at all times.


Despite being made from these highly technical fabrics, the Cubed Jacket doesn't look technical. That is to say that there is nothing about this jacket that screams "outdoorsy." Instead, it is made with a more fashionable look that allows it to blend in seamlessly in urban environments, while still looking good on the trail too. No one will ever mistake this jacket for something from The North Face or Mountain Hardwear, but that is a very good thing for travelers who don't want to look like they just stepped off the mountain. Instead, they'll find a more understated – and again classic – design that won't go out of style by the time the next fashion season rolls around.

In terms of other features, the Cubed Jacket also includes velcro wrist closures and waterproof zippers to further assist in battling the elements and dialing in just the right fit. It also comes with a detachable hood, which is nice to have in rainy conditions but can be removed when visiting a destination where that isn't especially a problem. Personally, I prefer a jacket with a hood, but I also like that you have the option here.

Of course, most of these features that I have noted already aren't enough to help the Cubed Travel Jacket to stand out in an increasingly crowded market. But, what this jacket does better than any other I've worn, is offer you plenty of pockets to carry your items around, most of which are secure enough to ensure that those items remain safe from unsavory characters.

As mentioned, Clothing Arts has made a name for itself by creating travel apparel that offers security options that make those items pick-pocket proof. Those same sensibilities carried over here with a variety of onboard storage options. In addition to two standard hand pockets, you'll also find two Napoleon pockets, and for more stashed away on the interior of the jacket. Those options include compartments that are perfect for stowing away your passport, sunglasses, smartphone, and even a small tablet.

There are a number of small details that help to set this jacket apart from the competition as well, including the ability to access the contents of some of the interior pockets from both inside and outside of the jacket. This is a level of versatility that I haven't found in other travel jackets, and it is something you come to appreciate when wanting to access your smartphone in a rainstorm for instance.

Several of the larger interior pockets also come with patent-pending security clips that add yet another layer of protection from thieves. In addition to having to gain access to the interior of the jacket, and open the zippered pockets, any would-be pickpockets would also have to get around the security clips without being noticed. Not an easy task to say the least, which should provide a nice piece of mind when traveling abroad.

Each of these small elements blend together incredibly well in the Cubed Travel Jacket, making it a must have for anyone who travels regularly. It is a deft combination of convenience, comfort, and versatility, wrapped up in a good looking package. It isn't easy to make jacket that delivers on all of those fronts, and creating one that is both water and wind proof is a nice feature as well.

All of that functionality and design comes at a price however. The Cubed Travel Jacket carries a price tag of $380, which puts it right in line with some of the best high-end technical jackets from the outdoor brands that we love so much. If you think of this product as "just a travel jacket" you'll probably see that price point as being way to high. Indeed, you can definitely find good dedicated travel jackets for less. But, if you take a look at the specs on Clothing Arts' offering, and weigh in its level of performance, this is a jacket that is more akin to something you'd find in more technical outdoor pursuits. The Cubed Travel Jacket hasn't been designed for those activities of course, but it performs on much the same level.

If you need a travel jacket that stand up to the rigors of the road with ease, while also providing a high level of versatility and security, than this is the product for you. Not only does it look good and provide protection from bad weather, it also allows you to carry a full day's worth of gear with ease and security. And when you buy this jacket you can bet that you're investing in a product that will last for years and accompany you on many adventures. It is durable enough to take virtually anywhere, and you'll look great no matter where you. What more could you ask for out of any piece of travel clothing?

Find out more at ClothingArts.com.


The Waterproof Shell Reinvented from Adam Rapp on Vimeo.

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