Saturday, March 29, 2008

A feminine upland vest? For real!

I've been in the market for an upland vest ever since I started hunting, but I've never found what I needed. It wasn't the shape of the men's vest that put me off - I mean, how could you possibly make something with a big ol' game-bag pocket pretty? It was the fact that my hunting stores never carry a men's small.

Then I went to the SHOT Show on a mission to find women's hunting clothing, and there in the SHE Safari catalog was this beautiful upland vest. It wasn't just sized for me; it was shaped for me too. It was the only upland vest I'd ever seen with a feminine shape, so I went online, added another $130 to my beleaguered credit card balance and waited for the mail to come.

When the vest arrived this week, I wasn't disappointed. The vest fits great, looks great and has lots of cool features.

Here's what I like about the vest so far:

1. Feminine shape. When I was a tomboyish little kid, I loved making people think I was a boy. My neighbor Tammy and I giggled whenever some kindly old person called us "son." But I'm over that, and while I don't need to look sexy out in the field, I no longer enjoy being mistaken for a male.

This vest is cut for a woman's curves, and the shape of the blaze elements accentuates those curves.

2. Cool front pockets: These roomy bellows pockets expand by undoing Velcro on the bottom that holds them close to the vest. But the best part is the flip-out shell holders:

If you want to keep the shell flaps out, you can pin them up with a Velcro flap on the vest just above the pocket.

3. Easy-to-clean game bag. Just unzip the top...

... then unzip the sides...

... and down she goes.

4. Fit. I have a difficult proportions: size small from the waist up, and size large from there down. Though I wouldn't mind an extra inch in the bottom hem on this vest, it still works for me, and I suspect the proportions are right for most women. (And if you have the opposite proportions, forgive me for not knowing how this vest would work for you, because I can't even imagine being so blessed.)

And as luck would have it, my university is on spring break next week, and I'm going pheasant hunting with my friend Dana on Wednesday. I'll be sure to let you know how this vest works out in the field. Woo hoo!

Check it out: Click here to see the catalog listing for this vest. You'll notice that it says "Available in May 2008." Guess I just I got lucky and got an early edition.

© Holly A. Heyser 2008

Click here for gear review policy and disclosures.


Blessed said...

I like it! I hope your upland hunt goes good - I always had to wear a boy vest when I upland hunted, or squirrel hunted, or rabbit hunted...

Anonymous said...

That looks like it's a good vest Holly. Can't wait to hear how it works on the pheasant hunt.

Yum, pheasant!

The Hunter's Wife said...

The vest looks like a great fit for females. Good luck with the hunt!

NorCal Cazadora said...

I feel very lucky to be reviewing women's hunting clothing now, because it's forcing me to seek and try things that I might not have found otherwise. Bonus points, my credit card company likes it too!

Windyridge said...

Wow it's about time. My vest is pretty typically male but we interchange hunting clothing around here and the boys wouldn't appreciate a feminine vest LOL!

NorCal Cazadora said...

Ha! Isn't that exactly the point? They wouldn't appreciate wearing our clothes, but some of them actually have to ask, "Why aren't our clothes good enough for you?"